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SUNY Plattsburgh Celebrates Winter Commencement Saturday, Dec. 16

PLATTSBURGH, NY __ The long-awaited day for some 450 students who are eligible to receive bachelor's and master's degrees and certificates of advanced study from the State University of New York College at Plattsburgh is close at hand. Hugs, tears and joyous laughter will be in abundance during Winter Commencement on Saturday, Dec. 16, at 11 a.m. in the SUNY Plattsburgh Field House.

Student Speaker RuthAnn Skowronek RuthAnn Skowronek, a senior from Readington, N.J., has been named student commencement speaker.

"Finishing school is a nice breath," said Skowronek, an individualized studies major in public art and environmental activism.

"Everyone's experience at college is different, but I will try to pull out some of the similarities," Skowronek said of her speech. "The biggest value of college is the development of people at that age in their lives when they grow and expand their world view."

Skowronek, a Presidential Scholarship recipient, has been active on campus with several environmental projects, including the community garden and making Algonquin Dining Hall the green hub on campus through her work on the Dining Advisory Committee. The dining hall features an organic salad bar and locally-grown produce. The take-out packaging is also biodegradable.

As part of her capstone project, Skowronek also painted an agricultural-themed mural at the entrance of the dining hall.

Skowronek also received the Student Initiative Award for her environmental work from the Association of Council Members and College Trustees (ACT) of the State University of New York during its annual meeting in Saratoga, N.Y., in October.

Dr. John Ettling will preside over the commencement ceremony. Diploma covers will be presented to each graduating senior by Donald Garrant '57 G'69, College Council chairperson, and Arnold Amell '53, member of the College Council.

Dr. Charles I. Zinser, professor of geography, will serve as the faculty marshal for the ceremony. Zinser joined the faculty as an instructor in 1966 and served as the first chair of the geography department in 1973-74. Zinser will lead the processional of faculty and students into the ceremony carrying the College mace.

The Adirondack Brass will provide the music, including "Pomp and Circumstance," and the Elgin and District Pipes and Drums from Huntington, Quebec, will play the bagpipes. The Cardinal Singers, under the direction of Jo Ellen Miano, associate professor and chair of music, will also perform during the ceremony.
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