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GCC holds its' third annual 'Scholars Symposium'


BATAVIA, N.Y. -- It was a day of when professors, administrators, staff and many special guests are in the seats watching, listening and discovering what lessons have been learned, and what kinds of information, research, knowledge and creativity inspires students at Genesee Community College. It was also a day when the Haudenosaunee Indian nation, the early residents of the region, could proudly revisit their original name for Batavia which meant "the grand hearing place."

At the third annual Scholars Symposium this past Thursday, March 29, 2018, GCC students, faculty, staff, community leaders and friends showcased some of their most poignant work. Presented by the Genesee Community College Undergraduate Research & Creative Activities (CURCA) Committee, the full-day event included presentations, performances, exhibits and guest speakers-all focused on the most inventive and bright the minds of the College community. This year, more than 125 students, faculty, staff and community judges participated, with all events being free and open to the public.
"Started several years ago through a GCC President's Innovative Award, the Scholars Symposium is now a campus-wide celebration of creative and innovative work accomplished by our students, faculty and friends of the College," said JoNelle Toriseva, director of GCC's English, Communications and Media Arts, who continues to organize the event. "Together, the College community and our many supporters come together to take stock in the many bright and creative minds that circulate around us each day, and we marvel at the professional and personal growth that predominates within this institution."

Dr. Deborah Nawoczenski gave the event's keynote address, "Curiosity Does Not (always) Kill the Cat Extending Discovery Beyond 'Ok Google.' "She is currently an adjunct professor with the University of Rochester's Department of Orthopedics, and also retired from Ithaca College's Department of Physical Therapy where she was professor and co-director of the Movement Analysis Laboratory and Center for Foot and Ankle Research. Dr. Nawoczenski spoke about the myriad surprises that is intrinsic in research and the rich connections a person makes during careful studies. She shared many personal stories that showed that one can never predict where the journey of research will take a person.

The event culminated with an Awards Ceremony in the Stuart Steiner Theatre which included a Poetry Slam performance by award winners Alysa Brenhock, Julien Tuast, Xochitl Rosario and Emily Carey, who is president of GCC's Creative Writing Club. The award winners of the Third Annual Scholars Symposium included:
  • Excellence in Computer Science Award: Cameron Bennage, "In a Game of Battleship, Can the Computer Be Better Than You?"
  • Most Global in Perspective Award: Airi Hayasaka, "Otaku--The Differences in Otaku Culture Between Japan and the U.S."
  • Most Global in Perspective Award: Miranda Schiller "What Is Home?"
  • Excellence in Sustainability Award: "Sustainable Still Life" with David Fenn, Timothy Frew, Gaia Fukuzato, Andrea Kirsch, Stacy Mullett, Anthony Nickel, Kera Pfeiffer, Christian Pierre-Louis, Meghan Potter, Maura Rogers, Jacy Sero, Timothy Slivinski, Summer Storms and Javin Williams
  • Photographic Artistic Excellence Award: Kasey Edgerton "Visions of You"
  • Excellence in Mental Health Award: Amanda Pahuta "Unflattening My Prison"
  • Excellence in Teaching & Education Award: Xochitl Rosario "Communication with Infants, Toddlers, and Adolescents"
  • Best Poster Award: "Back Pain? Maybe Your Backpack is to Blame" Breda Castaneda, Norbert Ortiz-Perez, Casey M. Swartz and Laura Whitcroft
  • GSA Award: Cole Rogers, "I __You; My Generation"
  • Excellence in Creativity Award: Cole Rogers "I __You; My Generation"
  • Best Oral Presentation Award: Cameron Bennage "In a Game of Battleship, Can the Computer Be Better Than You?"
  • Overall Academic Excellence Award: Cameron Bennage "In a Game of Battleship, Can the Computer Be Better Than You?"
  • Excellence in Criminal Justice Award: Jamie E. Englerth "Solitary Confinement: Is it a Necessary Evil?"
  • John Gardner Literary Award: Alexis Hackmer "A Dark Light"
  • Excellence in Literary Arts Award: Brock Nahalka "Luck of the Draw"
  • Excellence in Poetry Award: Cole Rogers "I __You; My Generation"
  • Excellence in Narrative Award: Kasey Edgerton "Visions of You"
  • Excellence in Craft & Form Award: Anna Lena Adams "What is Art"
  • Judges' Choice Award: Amanda Pahuta "Unflattening My Prison"
  • Scholars' Symposium Award for Forwarding Artistic Excellence: Emily Carey
  • Scholars' Symposium Award for Artistic Achievement: Julien Tuast, Celeste Cowie and Lucas R. Cook
  • Scholars' Symposium Award for Forwarding Academic Excellence: Liliam Montilla, Preston R. Herrmann
For specific information about the Scholars' Symposium contact Director of English, Communications and Media Arts JoNelle Toriseva. Her email address is: jrtoriseva@genesee.edu, and her telephone: 585-343-0055 ext. 6627.

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