VISITING WRITERS – 7 p.m. The Hartwick College department of English presents the first reading in the Visiting Writers Series. This month will feature poet Roger W. Hecht (Associate professor of English at SUNY Oneonta) reading from his works, meeting with students, and giving insights to what its like to be a professional writer. Free. Masks, vaccination required. Eaton Lounge, Bresee Hall, Hartwick College, Oneonta. 607-431-4921 or visit www.hartwick.edu/academics/academic-departments/english-department/visiting-writers-series/
Retiring Hartwick College President Margaret Drugovich said she will miss the Oneonta community
when she steps down next year.
“I really enjoyed being part of the Oneonta community and I’ll miss it,” Drugovich said on Monday, Sept. 20, and said how much she liked the warm atmosphere of the people in Oneonta.
“They care deeply about one another and the people in it,” Drugovich said. “It’s just a great place to be and I’ll make sure to tell the next person who will be president that it’s a community they will really enjoy.”
ONEONTA – Fred G. Hickein passed away on August 25, 2021 at A. O. Fox Memorial Hospital, Oneonta.
Born on July 27, 1927 in Owego, NY, Fred Hickein was the son of Beulah Barnett Hickein and Fred Walter Hickein. When he was about 2, moved to Oneonta, residing with mother, sisters, uncle, great grandfather and grandparents. He graduated from Oneonta High School in June 1944. Joined the United States Navy in April 1945, released as a reservist in June 1946. Recalled to active United States Navy Reserve in November 1950 and released to inactive duty in May 1952. After graduating from Hartwick College in 1953, he joined the Howard E. Brown Insurance Agency, purchasing the agency and operating it until 1983. Fred also worked with AAA. Over 37 years he coordinated and accompanied over 25,000 6th grade safety-patrol students to Washington, DC and Gettysburg, PA. He served as Executive Vice President and Manager of the Tri County Motor Club (AAA) from October 1981 until his retirement in 1992.
Fred married Eleanor (Ellie) Brown on June 4, 1954 and they recently celebrated 67 years of happy life together as proud parents of four children.
ONEONTA — In light of the disastrous SUNY Oneonta outbreak of COVID at the start of the fall 2020 semester, both local colleges are increasing measures to avoid a repeat this month.
SUNY Oneonta and Hartwick College told AllOtsego this week that various restrictions to ensure the safety of both the students and the community will be in place as students move in and go through the fall 2021 semester.
Richard Lee, provost and vice-president for Academic Affairs at SUNY Oneonta, as well as the co-chair of the COVID response team, said the school is constantly learning and adapting to the situation with COVID.
“We have to be more adaptable,” Lee said, in order to “make sure that we can commit to students.”
Some of the restrictions include masking being required in all buildings, including classrooms and labs, as well as all students being required to be pre-screened before arriving on campus. Students have to be approved with a green check mark before they can enter campus.
“Although we can’t predict the future, we’ve learned from the past,” Lee said. “I don’t think anyone wants to be masked but I think it’s a small price for us being together. Of course, nobody is thrilled about it.”
Professor of Biology Dr. Mary Allen received the 2020 Bunn Award for Outstanding Teaching from Hartwick College.
Because of a reporter’s error, the wrong person was credited with the award in the May 27 edition of The Freeman’s Journal and Hometown Oneonta.
ONEONTA – Hartwick College celebrated the graduating classes of 2020 and 2021 on Saturday, May 29, in a virtual commencement ceremony.
As the college acknowledged the unusual circumstances surrounding the graduation of the ’20 and ’21 classes, speakers highlighted some of the important lessons that the students would take with them in life.
Elizabeth LeTendre, a digital marketing entrepreneur who graduated Hartwick College in 1990, encouraged the graduating classes to step outside of their comfort zones in order to be successful.
“To be successful, you need to be comfortable with being uncomfortable,” LeTendre said. “Struggling is an important part of the growth experience … Fear is good. Don’t be afraid to take risks and don’t be afraid to fail.”
College President Margaret Drugovich rang the ceremonial bell at 11:30 a.m. to kick off the graduating ceremony followed shortly by a harmonizing rendition of the Star Spangled Banner by the Hartwick College Choir.
Matipa Mutoti, the 2020 student government president, was the first to acknowledge some of the circumstances the graduates had to deal with during the coronavirus pandemic.
“Graduation is a big achievement under any circumstance, but especially for us,” Mutoti said, listing off the need for students to adapt to social distancing, virtual classes and a volatile job market. “I believe this may have made us stronger. The fact that we are here today shows that we are able to face adversity. …
“Whatever our next steps may be, I believe that our experience at Hartwick College has provided us the tools to be the medicine that our world desperately needs right now.”
Lydia Marteney, the 2021 student government president, also acknowledged the difficulty that the COVID pandemic had placed upon the school while speaking from her home in Auburn.
“Although this day might not look like how we had imagined it, today is a day to be proud of our many accomplishments and remember the glory days of our life as Hartwick students,” Marteney said. “For me, it’s strange and somewhat scary to think that we won’t all be up at Oyaron hill next year, but if we think back to the beginning and the many steps, both literal and otherwise, of our journey here at Hartwick we will realize that we are truly ready for the next step in our lives.”
David Long, chair of the Hartwick College board of trustees, also spoke during the graduation ceremony, talking about his own “abbey road” from England to Oneonta and the strangers who made him feel at home.
“Today you’re journey is uniquely yours, well underway and yet still to be created,” Long said. “You’ve already overcome some tough obstacles in life, demonstrating resiliency even at your young age.”
He spoke about the “unprecedented disruptions” of lives but how the graduates had to make their way through the college with “a unique determination.”
“You found your way,” Long said. “Well done.”
Presentations of awards were given to Madison Germuska and Kiara Biroo, who were awarded the Abraham Kellogg Oratorical Prize for 2020 and 2021 respectively.
Dr. Mary Allen, Professor of Biology, was awarded the Margaret B. Bunn Award for Outstanding Teaching. In addition, former state Sen. James L. Seward, who graduated Hartwick College in 1973, was awarded the President’s Award for Liberal Arts in Practice, and Richard Clapp, 1962 graduate, received the President’s Medal.
David Damon Jeffres died peacefully at home on May 2, 2021, at the age of 91 following a 13-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. He was surrounded by his family and canine companion Rocky.
He was also a loving husband, father and devoted college professor.
He was born in Council Bluffs, Iowa on November 2, 1929, the son of Edgar Perry Jeffres and Sibyl Irene Jeffres.
He graduated early from Thomas Jefferson High School in Council Bluffs, IA, at the age of 17, so he could enlist in the Navy.
After graduating from the U.S Navy School of Music he served honorably for four and a half years during which time he played trumpet in the Navy band, achieving the position of musician first class.
Following his discharge from the Navy, he earned Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in Education and French, respectively, from the University of Colorado (Boulder) and completed PhD coursework in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas and SUNY Albany.
Oneonta will be closing Main Street from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday, May 15, in celebration of SUNY Oneonta and Hartwick College graduates.
The street will be closed between Elm Street and Chestnut Street for the purpose of outdoor shopping and dining.
Council to revisit mask ordinance
The Oneonta legislative council discussed the city’s mask ordinance Monday, May 10, and the matter is expected to be brought up at the next Common Council meeting at 7 p.m., Tuesday, May 18. Questions with the ordinance included whether to have different criteria depending on whether an individual was vaccinated.
Garden Club to hold sale
The Oneonta Federated Garden Club will be holding their Spring plant sale 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday May, 29 at Huntington Park.
After years of planning, as part of a downtown revitalization initiative, community leaders broke ground at the site of the Dietz Street loft project Friday April 30, in Oneonta, with the hope of revitalizing and bringing “greater vibrancy” to the city’s downtown.
Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig, state Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-Maryland, Hartwick College President Margaret Drugovich, Empire State Development Deputy Director Allison Nowack and other community and business leaders attended the ceremony and lifted ceremonial shovels for the groundbreaking.
These lofts, which began development in April, will bring more people to the downtown area, Herzig said.
The four story building would include artist lofts, 24 middle-income, two-bedroom apartments and units for people with disabilities.
WRITERS SALON – 7:30 p.m. Open mic followed by presentation by author April Ford whose debut novel ‘Carousel’ won an award in the category of LGBTQ+ fiction for the International Book Awards. Free, open to public. Presented by Community Arts Network of Oneonta. 607-432-2070 or visit www.canoneonta.org/event/writers-salon-april-ford/?instance_id=1195
ONEONTA HISTORY – 6:30 p.m. Online program from exhibit ‘Up from the Ashes: Oneonta Shaped by Fire’ featuring exhibit planners Carlene Bermann, Bob Brzozowski, others will discuss highlights. Presented by Greater Oneonta Historical Society. 607-432-0960 or visit www.oneontahistory.org/upcomingevents.htm