Strategic Plan and its Impact on the College
Our Strategic Plan is vital to achieving a thriving and effective college. It helps us set our course and mark our progress as a wholly-engaged and represented campus community. Shared governance is a fundamental quality of SUNY Cobleskill. Conceiving and building the Strategic Plan together affirmed our dedication to teamwork, collaboration, and inclusivity, seeking input from every corner of our campus. We are all better together, characterized by a commitment to our shared direction.
SUNY Cobleskill in the Spotlight
The significant media attention we receive is no coincidence; our pursuits are relevant, timely and conducted with a vision for innovating the future. When you see SUNY Cobleskill in the news you see progress – not novelty.
This year we welcomed the National Intelligence Committee to our campus on two occasions, highlighting our reputation as a community of forward-thinkers and an inviting forum for shared dialogue. A National Public Radio piece about SUNY Cobleskill’s research on disease-resistant hops gained national attention, showcasing the work of our biotechnology students. The U.S. House Committee on Agriculture held a listening session at the College, gathering insight from our campus and area communities on its new farm bill. In naming SUNY Cobleskill a “2018 Hidden Gem for Women in STEM,” College Raptor recognized our determination to provide a STEM curriculum ensuring the best possible outcomes for students.
Teaching and Learning
We are all learners – our entire community of students, faculty and staff. Our holistic approach to education encourages us to learn about ourselves, our subjects, and the world around us. As they develop their interests and hone their abilities, applied and experiential learning are essential to our students. Our students teach us how they learn, and we respond by building educational models to help them focus and achieve their goals.
At campus events such as the Graphic Design Senior Show and Student Research Showcase, students exhibit their ideas, creativity, and talents on platforms designed to prepare each student for professional success. Students representing SUNY Cobleskill hone their entrepreneurial skills at the annual New York Business Plan Competition, pitching original business ideas. In competition, members of SUNY Cobleskill’s Livestock Judging Team earned top-10 finishes at the 2018 North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Judging Conference. Overseas, our Dairy Judging Team won first and second place in the dairy judging contest at the 178th Royal Highland Show, held in Scotland. To showcase student accomplishments, as well as our ability to adapt to each learner, SUNY Cobleskill promotes a culture that maximizes the capabilities of our students.
To better prepare students to flourish in their careers, SUNY Cobleskill stays ahead of the ever-changing professional landscape. From College in High School dual enrollment programs, like Ag PTech, that transition qualified high school students into SUNY Cobleskill degree programs, to graduate degree agreements, for those continuing their education, SUNY Cobleskill connects its students to a vast network of educational opportunities.
Many programs initiate at SUNY Cobleskill and branch out from our campus. Transfer and articulation agreements give outgoing students the chance to transition their learning to other institutions. Graduate school agreements, including the 17 we signed in 2017, provide students the opportunity to earn advanced degrees. Additional agreements, such as our newly-signed Applied Plant Science Education Collaborative with Cornell University, lay the groundwork for students to earn aligned degrees at both schools. Students at our College may also move from two-year to four-year programs without ever leaving our campus.
Other SUNY Cobleskill programs take place off our campus — though with our guided instruction and curricula. Community College degree completion programs are available at schools including Rockland Community College, Hudson Valley Community College and Herkimer County Community College. These programs provide a seamless transfer of course credit and are designed for SUNY Cobleskill degree-seeking students to complete degrees on their campuses.
For our athletes and musicians, and our beekeepers and pastry chefs, students engage in ways showcasing their abilities and highlighting their interests. Many student clubs correspond to academic programs, promoting hands-on learning in the classroom and field.
At the upcoming Leadership Summit, student club leaders will exchange ideas with members of SUNY Cobleskill’s Office of Student Development. This meeting of the minds of our student and College leaders will facilitate conversations to enhance student experience. With an aligned mission and vision for academic excellence, featuring mandatory library and peer-monitored study hours, the reintroduction of Greek Life promotes healthy student engagement. This summer SUNY Cobleskill also celebrated the one-year anniversary of the launch of Coby Quest. This initiative for underclassmen to develop and refine leadership skills awards badges to mark progress in the areas of leadership development, civic engagement, career readiness, and diversity, equity and inclusion.
Multiple student clubs and organizations earned recognition this year. These include our chapters of Ducks Unlimited and The National Wildlife Turkey Federation, along with our Bass Fishing and Dairy Judging Teams. Students also engage with members of our communities off-campus, through volunteer and community service work. The Campus Community Coalition collaborates with citizens of Schoharie County to problem-solve on topics impacting our campus and the County, establishing programs and maintaining communication.
Partnerships with Community and Beyond
The Institute for Rural Vitality at SUNY Cobleskill has exponentially increased our ability to build and nurture partnerships. Through its mission to engage the substantial resources of SUNY Cobleskill in collaboration with regional partners, to enhance community and economic vitality in rural NY, the Institute enriches our region and its citizens. The Institute’s Center for Business Development fosters agreements with businesses through START-UP NY, creating opportunities for students to earn hands-on business experience while ensuring the growth of our College, community and business partners. The Institute’s Center for Art and Culture coordinates collaboration between SUNY Cobleskill and regional organizations, including the nearby Iroquois Indian Museum and The Farmers’ Museum in Otsego County. The Center for Rural Legal and Policy Services, Center for Community Advancement and Center for Food and Farm Entrepreneurship each facilitate partnerships, internships, and joint ventures challenging our students and invigorating rural NY.
SUNY Cobleskill also applies itself to sustaining international partnerships. Dual-diploma joint programs in Turkey, South Korea, and China are just some of our agreements with overseas partners. This year SUNY Cobleskill joined a coalition of nine other SUNY campuses to embark on a long-term initiative to establish a sustainable village and learning community in Haiti. Locally, nationally, and globally, SUNY Cobleskill values its status as a good neighbor and world citizen.
The achievements of our student-athletes this year range from championship-caliber athletic performance to record-breaking service in our community. Spearheaded by the department of athletics, SUNY Cobleskill led all SUNY campuses in One Love Foundation’s annual “Around the World: Yards for Yeardley” walk/run, racking up more than 2.2 million miles. In marking our 10-year jump from the NJCAA to the NCAA in 2018, the Fighting Tigers repeated as NEAC Men’s Swimming & Diving champions, winning the Conference for the third time in four years. The Conference also honored 43 SUNY Cobleskill student-athletes with the NEAC Scholar-Athlete Award. This is the highest number of Fighting Tigers to ever win the award, and the second consecutive year our College set a new high-number of honorees.
As our student-athletes reward us with their efforts on and off the field, we began renovations to Iorio Gymnasium, which hosts our volleyball and basketball teams. Construction began in March and the newly-renovated facility is reopened for the fall 2018 season.