More than 1,100 graduate, take next steps

students walkMore than 1,100 students took part in SUNY Oswego’s recent Commencement ceremonies. Many have already mapped out their future plans.

Joshua Miller, the Student Association president for 2007-08, is among those headed to the workforce. After the May 17 ceremonies, he was prepared to take his master’s in business administration/bachelor’s in accounting degree into audit work for KPMG’s Syracuse office. He said experience as SA president and, previously, director of finance taught him skills such as time management, negotiating, budgeting, computer proficiency, networking and communication, all of which he plans to use in the business world.

The SA presidency also taught him “that anything is possible if you work hard enough to achieve it,” Miller said. “Oswego has been an amazing home to me the past few years, and I would not trade my experience here for anything in the world. I came here a confused freshman and am leaving a confident graduate prepared to enter the business world and take on whatever comes my way!”

Blair Pecka will bring her broadcasting degree to WTVH CBS-5 in Syracuse as a media account executive. Pecka said she was confident of her abilities from what she learned in the classroom at Oswego, as a teaching assistant for a “Broadcast Sales” class, sales manager for campus TV station WTOP and interning at Fox-40 News in Binghamton.

Being a member of the Laker swim team, holding school records and serving as captain her senior year, “taught me so many key elements such as teamwork and time management,” she said. “Swimming here was a huge part of my life and helped push me to succeed not only in the pool but in the classroom. I plan on taking everything I’ve learned these past four years from being a student-athlete to help me succeed in my career.”

Some graduates, like physics major Greg Feiden, will continue their studies. A Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence winner, Feiden has accepted an offer in a Ph.D. track astrophysics program at Dartmouth College, working toward his goal to become a professor in physics and astronomy.

Feiden cited “several extremely good professors” for guiding him through classes and avenues to present his own research at major conferences. “Their teaching methods have been phenomenal in helping me understand and learn the material, no matter how complicated it may be,” he said. “Research is another large component, both on campus and in the form of summer internships. Being familiar with performing research and the methods involved are key to preparing for graduate school.”

Childhood education major Chelsey Hammond’s plans include attending the College of Saint Rose’s professional teacher education program. She also will substitute-teach in Albany-area school districts. A key member of Oswego’s Ice Effects synchronized-skating team that won a major regional competition, Hammond also plans to continue to figure skate as well as teach skating.

“I have had the best experience at Oswego. I made the best friends I could ever ask for and I feel like I am more than prepared to teach in my own classroom some day,” Hammond said. “I try not to think about graduation a lot because I don’t really want it to be over.”

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(Posted: May 18, 2008)

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