News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.

Hartwick College

At Oneonta’s 2 Colleges, Fewer Rapes Than Most


At Oneonta’s 2 Colleges,

Fewer Rapes Than Most

ONEONTA – A new U.S. Department of Education report on rapes and “fondling” cases among the 45 Upstate colleges puts both SUNY Oneonta and Hartwick College in the bottom third.

SUNY Oneonta tied for 30th, with four rapes reported in 2017 and two in 2016, and one fondling each year.

Hartwick College tied for 36th with three rapes reports each year, and two fondlings in 2017 and one in 2016.

Hartwick Hails Class of ’19

Hartwick Class of 2019

Departs Oyaron Hill

Nursing major Mataiah Waters, Milford, above, walks with 214 fellow graduates during the recessional at Hartwick College,’s 88th annual Commencement on Oyaran Hill in Oneonta earlier this afternoon. At right, Hartwick President Margaret Drugovich, rear, joins the crowd in recognizing Eric Cooper, associate professor of biology, who was the recipient of this year’s esteemed Margaret B. Bunn Award for Outstanding Teaching. (Ian Austin/

Joseph’s Broadway Photographs Move Here From Lincoln Center

Joseph’s Broadway Photographs

Move Here From Lincoln Center

Oneonta native and celebrated Bay Area photographer Stephen Joseph documented behind-the-scene action from “American Idiot” to “Spider Man” for “Broadway Revealed, Behind the Theater Curtain”, which is being brought from Lincoln Center to Hartwick College this summer.

ONEONTA – The return of the native – from Broadway.

Photographer Stephen Joseph’s latest exhibit, “Broadway Revealed: Behind the Theater Curtain,” to open at 3 p.m. Sunday, June 9, at Hartwick College’s Foreman Gallery, does for New York City what Joseph did for his native City of the Hills in “Oneonta 360.”

An approach honed here – presenting panoramas of relatively intimate spaces – is applied in “Broadway Revealed” to theater’s behind-the-scene artists and technicians. It debuted in 2012 and included the Lincoln Center’s New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.

OH-OH FEST: Annual Concerts Struggling In Crises Past, Crisis Present


Annual Concerts Struggling

In Crises Past, Crisis Present

Rapper Sean Kingston performs at St. Joseph University outside Philadelphia earlier this month, but a threatened protest by Know Violence Here caused SUNY Oneonta to cancel his OH-Fest concert, scheduled for Saturday, April 20.

Editor’s Note: The cancellation of Sean Kingston’s concert at OH-Fest Saturday evening, April 20, in Neahwa Park, sparked a pungent debate on All’s Facebook pages. Here’s a sampling of the back and forth.

►Kevin Comstock – If students from both colleges are the ones that pick the performers, then the concert should be held on campus … Keep the carnival downtown for the kids and family’s to enjoy.
►James Flannery – Honestly I’ve loved OH-Fest my whole life, and now being a SUNY student it’s become a headache. I don’t think we need to get rid of it, but we need to evaluate a lot of things. Example, part of
my tuition is the Student Activities Fee, which is due to increase to over $800 next semester. It’s so high because of OH-Fest. I feel like my money has now been wasted. So adjustments have to be made across the board.
►Teresa – If I were anyone famous, after this, I’d say … no to coming here. I truly am ashamed of this town and the college for allowing it
►Tiffany Frazier – Ya, ’cause they wasted 60 grand….
►Rose Straney-Kjellquist – So instead of shrugging and sweeping it all under the rug, SUNY made a lesson out of it and is enacting changes. Awesome.
►Kimmehameha German – Maybe next time they should do some vigorous research. Quick Google search would’ve told them about Kingston’s almost decade-old rape allegation, which he was never officially charged for or found guilty of. Their attempt at social justice cost $60,000.
►Matt – Start by not getting rappers?
►Karen Hayes Knickerbocker – The only winner here is Sean Kingston. He got $60k and didn’t have to do a thing to get it. If I were him I would have walked down Main Street with his entourage. Just cause.
►Tyler Logan – I’ve never seen a city struggle so much with an annual concert. Every year there is some mishap or complaining. Just be done with the whole thing, because clearly nobody can handle a ONCE-a-year event. Small-town problems.
►Robert Makofske – The squeaky snowflake gets the grease.
►Nikke Allen Hunt – They didn’t protest when A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie performed, even though he has a rap sheet including sexual assault prior to his performance in Oneonta.
►Teresa Olmstead – Talk about condemnation of someone who has never been charged with a crime nor convicted. You are a disgrace to the Land of the Free and to the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights
►Irene Morrissey – He settled out of court, which means money cures everything in the USA!
►Gina Colone – But just because he settled out of court doesn’t necessarily mean he was guilty? Right? If someone is assaulted I’d think they’d want that person in jail, unless money is motivator for the allegations.
►Teresa Olmstead – I don’t care about the music … but cancelling it the way they did just because of 9-year-old allegations. And yes, you’re probably right about it being motivated by someone wanting money. They know famous people will settle regardless of their innocence because it’s bad for them
►Tom Whitney – Hey, c’mon … Only the Prezzz is allowed to $buy$ his way outta trouble!
►Crystal Couse – The man is accused of gang rape. I guess I don’t understand why people think a person like this is acceptable in our town??
►Astrid Tara – Not that I attend it in many years, but I think it’s ridiculous that this is happening. If you don’t agree with who’s playing don’t go. No one is holding you hostage to attend. Too many people easily offended by everything. Could’ve brought a lot of business to the area for the weekend. Don’t complain local businesses aren’t thriving when you drive business that could be made out of the area.

In Rapper Sean’s Wake, SUNY Students Seeking More Vigorous Vetting


In Rapper Sean’s Wake,

SUNY Students Seeking

More Vigorous Vetting

Professor Achim Koeddermann, left,  and Anthony Gomez, center, listen to SUNY Oneonta junior Eric Battista, right, who drafted the resolution for a new selection process for OH-Fest talent.  “I wanted to learn from this,” he said. (Ian Austin/


Bill Harcleroad, director of Campus Activities & Leadership was optimistic difficult conversations will help avoid future awkward situations..

ONEONTA – While most SUNY Oneonta students were at OH-Fest festivities today, eight students, a faculty member and a staff member met gathered at 5 p.m. to discuss ways to avoid selecting musical performers that did not match “the values of SUNY Oneonta.”

SUNY junior Eric Battista scheduled the meeting after he emailed students early about a resolution he drafted, proposing to “change the way speakers/performers are chosen and handled in the future” by the college’s Student Association.  He said he received “hundreds of emails” back from students who said they supported his proposal but already had plans at the time of the meeting.

Battista decided to write the resolution and introduce it after SUNY Oneonta administrators Friday canceled tonight’s OH-Fest concert.  Their decision came after learning students intended to protest the concert’s top performer, Sean Kingston, after discovering 2010 gang-rape allegations made against the rapper.

Street Fair Enjoyed At OHFest XIII

OH-Fest Concert Out,

But Street Fair Enjoyed

Tonight’s Rapper Sean Kingston concert in Neahwa Park was cancelled over gang-rape allegations from nine years ago, but despite warnings of rain, the 13th annual OH-Fest Street Carnival went off without a hitch today as Main Street was filled with throngs of locals and students alike gathered to enjoy music, food and festivities. Above, Oneonta’s Yussef Romeo and Fay Pikul, played one of the carnival games, while Paige Stewart, right, hugs Tiny Tim, a pygmy goat from New York Goat Yoga in Gilbertsville. OH-Fest is an annual joint celebration of spring by Hartwick College and SUNY Oneonta students.  (Ian Austin/

Survivors MarchTo ‘Take Back The Night’

Survivors, Supporters

‘Take Back The Night’

Carrying the “Take Back The Night” banner, Michaela Watts, left, and Taylor Trombley, members of the Opportunities for Otsego’s  Violence Intervention Program, led a group of students from the SUNY Oneonta campus to Hartwick College during the annual Take Back The Night march this evening. The crowd gathered to hear the stories of survivors at both campuses before continuing on to Muller Plaza in downtown Oneonta, where they closed out the night with affirmations of solidarity, pizza and music from the Cooperstown band, Hanzolo. At right, Frankie Graham, Oneonta, a representative of the Otsego Pride Alliance, spoke to those gathered in Muller Plaza: “I am a survivor, and I am here to say how important it is to tell our stories. I know the terror of the event and I know the fear of being outed. But we here at OPA are here to listen and support. You do not have to get through it alone. Know there is a safe space in this town where people will listen and believe you.” (Ian Austin/

Hartwick E-Hub Students Share Experiences With Rotary


Hartwick E-Hub Students

Share ‘Liberal Arts In Action’

Rotarian (and Hartwick College president) Margaret L. Drugovich, above, introduces Hartwick students Allison Taft and Taylor Diepold, who spoke at today’s the Oneonta Rotary Club luncheon at The Elks Club.   Each Thursday this month, Hartwick is providing luncheon speakers to the local club.   Today’s topic was the “E-Hub Experience: Liberal Arts in Action” initiative.  Economics Professor Kristen Jones, at left,  explains how uncertainties in the future of the workforce led the college to develop the program, which helps students apply liberal arts training to hands-on problem solving.   Allison Taft spoke of the Applied Theater segment:  for instance, acting students are helping train nursing students by portraying patients’ ailments more realistically; in turn, the program helps the fledgling actors sharpen their skills.   Taylor Diepold described the development of an Agricultural Distribution Model to help local farmers get their produce to market. (Ian Austin/

Good Samaritan, There’s No Good Reason Not To Apply Naloxone


Good Samaritan, There’s

No Good Reason Not

To Apply Naloxone

By ALICE CEACAREANU • Hartwick College professor, Translational Biomedical Research Management

Synthesized by the same chemist, Aspirin and heroin were destined to change the world: one for the better and one for the worst.  Since 1897, they each keep counting human lives, one gives them back while the other takes them away.

Heroin, an opioid, binds to the opioid receptors on the brain and remains in the body for extended periods of time. The drug is rather difficult to remove. For that reason, giving an opioid antagonist may be insufficient to eliminate the risk of death in a heroin overdose. The opioid antagonist wears off long before heroin will, leaving room for significant risk of death if the opioid use is continued and appropriate medical care is not sought immediately.

The opioid antagonist, Naloxone, has been on the market for nearly 50 years and is currently available for both intranasal and intramuscular administration. The drug causes no harm and has no potential for abuse. Its use is considered first aid or emergency treatment for a reason: this classification protects the one administering it from liability.

To encourage saving a life, New York State 911 Good Samaritan Law protects from charge and prosecution when calling 911 in an overdose emergency. According to the NY Penal Law §220.78 and NY Practice Criminal Law §26:27.50, the Good Samaritan Law protects both the individual providing assistance and the overdosed individual even if possessing controlled substances (up to 8 ounces), alcohol where underage drinking is involved, marijuana, drug paraphernalia or sharing drugs.

Naloxone is dispensed based on a patient-specific prescription or based on a non-patient specific prescription, a so-called “standing order.”  New York State Public Health Law Title 1 – §3309 allows Naloxone to be dispensed by a licensed pharmacist or registered health professional to a person at risk for an opioid-related overdose or a family member, friend or other person who would assist a person at risk for an opioid-related overdose.

The state Naloxone Co-payment Assistance Program (N-CAP) allows individuals with prescription coverage to obtain Naloxone at no or lower out-of-pocket expenses when getting Naloxone at a participating pharmacy. As of 2018, half of the pharmacies in the Otsego County participate in the NCAP Program. Three quarters of these pharmacies are in Oneonta.

If you have Naloxone at home, share this information with friends and family. Let them know where Naloxone is kept and show them how to use it. If used, near expiration date, lost or damaged, make sure to request a refill and have it available.

Always remember that opioid overdose risk is higher when injecting or mixing opioids with other drugs. Presence of medical problems, such as impaired liver function, may also increase the overdose risk.

When stimulated with high levels of opioid drugs, opioid receptors on the brain induce slow breathing which causes the blood oxygen to decrease. Low oxygen induces sleep and even slower respiration rate, until complete respiratory failure.

Death is unavoidable unless a Good Samaritan takes action at the right moment. Don’t wait! If Naloxone seems faster, give Naloxone first. On the 911 call say, “I think someone may have overdosed,“ then follow the operator directions while help is on the way. You are their only chance, remember that!

Alice Ceacareanu is a New York State licensed pharmacist and founding professor of Hartwick’s Translational Biomedical Research Management Program, the college’s first master’s degree program.

Bill Davis Will Receive Doctor Of Laws Degree At Hartwick Graduation

Bill Davis Will Receive

Doctor Of Laws Degree

At Hartwick Graduation

Revered Local Businessman Joined

By Sally G. Herbert, Entrepreneur

William K. Davis

ONEONTA – Bill Davis, ’49, retired president of the Country Club Auto group and a former Hartwick College trustee, will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at the college’s 2019 commencement at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, May 18, on Elmore Field, it was announced today.

Another former trustee, Sally Griffiths Herbert, ’88, a successful entrepreneur in New Hampshire with her husband Tom, will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters.

“It will be a  joy to honor Bill and Sally,” said Hartwick President Margaret L. Drugovich. “Their dedication to advancing the college – as former trustees, as loyal supporters through the years – sets an example for us all.

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