Culinary Arts Alumnus Featured in Oklahoma MagazineAugust 1, 2016
Jamie Sammons ’12August 2, 2016
Alumni Spotlight: Kelly Yacobucci
A.S. Business Administration, Class of ‘03
A.S. Early Childhood, Class of ‘05
B.S. Child Care and Development, Class of ‘06
Where You'll Find Her Now
Currently, I work at SUNY Cobleskill as the First-Year Experience Coordinator. I have been working at the college for the past eight years teaching various English courses, our freshman seminar, and communications courses.
I have earned three degrees from SUNY Cobleskill. An Associates in each Business Administration and Early Childhood. I also earned a Bachelors in Child Care and Development.
"The college is a blend, just like I am, between liberal studies and agriculture."
Every single course I have taken in college was instrumental in my education, even if I didn’t realize it at the time. Since I am an instructor, I use my Early Childhood teaching skills every day. Those skills are instrumental in connecting with students and figuring out how to best convey information to my students whether they are 3 or 53. As a mother, everything that I learned about child growth and development has made me a better parent.
I also have a farm with a variety of livestock from beef cattle and goats, to chickens and ducks. I put my business degree to use with the farm. It is a hectic life to have a husband, three kids, a career, and an ever growing farm, but I can’t see it any other way. These are things that I have wanted, and there is no better time than right now.
The whole atmosphere of the college is what has helped to inspire me in my professional life and personal business life. The college is a blend, just like I am, between liberal studies and agriculture.
Finding the Right Path
I started at SUNY Cobleskill fifteen years ago as a Culinary Arts major. While I absolutely loved that program, I knew that cooking wasn’t the right career choice for me at that time. I really had no idea what my career path was supposed to be. I switched majors to Business Administration because I worked for a local
bank and figured that maybe I should stick with that. It turns out that I was not all that good at numbers, but I did finish my degree.
After a year working in an office and not feeling that I was on the right path, I returned to Cobleskill with hopes to become a teacher. When I got back in the classroom I had a renewed vigor for learning, and I connected with my early childhood professors: Dr. Gail Wentworth, Kathy Puciato, and Dr. Sandy Malcolm.
However, I found that I also enjoyed taking English classes, especially with Paul Lamar, Erik Hage, and Dr. Susan Zimmermann. I took more than I needed to, in fact. Once I had graduated and I was in my grad program, Dr. Zimmermann hired me to teach Composition 101 courses. She mentored me through my introductory years of teaching, as well as through the intensive coursework I was taking myself for my Master of Arts in Liberal Studies.
A recent achievement in my career has been #1 becoming the FYE Coordinator. Fifteen years ago, I would have never envisioned what my career path or personal life would become. My own journey is part of why I am so passionate about working with our first year students. I understand that they aren’t always sure of what they are doing in college or where they are going to go with it. I guide them to make smart choices, trust their instincts, and make the most of being in college. I couldn’t be happier than to see one of “my” students who I worked with as a freshman walk across the stage at graduation.
The other recent achievement happened last February when I was chosen, along with my colleague, Amanda Hantho, to present at The National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience Conference in Dallas, TX. While I was eight months pregnant with my third son, we traveled to present the excellent work that we are doing with our students, and have very positive feedback from our peers. Again, the opportunities that I have had are ones that I would have never dreamed of not long ago.
Students, Take Note
I would like prospective students to know that Cobleskill is an amazing institution to be a part of, so much so, that I chose to come back after graduating and work here. The opportunities that are available here are endless, and we support our students fully because we are committed to their success.