FROM THE HOLLYWOOD HILLS to the bright lights of Broadway, from the pages of major magazines to the studios of ESPN and NBC, and from the art galleries of New York to the concert halls of major cities, graduates of Oswego’s School of Communication, Media and the Arts (SCMA) are making a name for themselves…and their alma mater.
We are so proud of all of their accomplishments. And we are especially pleased to feature in this issue stuntwoman Joanna Shelmidine ’89, Disney executive Janice Simcoe ’83 and movie producer Andrew Miano ’95.
Theses accomplished professionals, in the spotlight today, are among the thousands of graduates from the departments of art, music, theatre, communications and broadcasting, the fields that have long been studied at SUNY Oswego and now are combined in SCMA, our newest school. The inspiring successes of our graduates from these areas form a springboard for the future.
This year, we welcome the leadership of our inaugural volunteer Advisory Board to the school, as plans are under way for a renewal of the physical spaces that now house SCMA. It’s all in the future, so as they say in show business … “Stay tuned!”
Fifty years ago, our college had newly graduated from teachers college to comprehensive college of arts and sciences; we had just opened our new science building, Piez Hall; and President Foster Brown had recruited a young chemistry professor from Purdue University — Dr. Richard Shineman — to help expand Oswego’s science programs. Now, at another exciting time of growth and innovation for the sciences on our campus, the Shineman name is once again at the forefront.
As I write this, 10 faculty members from our School of Business have just departed for Turkey, where they plan to make new professional connections that will down the road benefit our students. This is just one example of the kinds of projects going on in this dynamic school, which we feature in this issue of the magazine with stories reviewing its 20-year development and profiling one of our most accomplished business alumni, Bob Moritz ’85.
Throughout our 150-year history, a hallmark of an Oswego education has always been an emphasis on learning by doing. As I travel around the country, alumni from every era share stories of Oswego professors who involved them as equals in important research and creative projects. The pages of this magazine are brimming with examples, like Peggy La Tulip Focarino ’77, whose love of physics was nurtured in Oswego’s labs and now inspires her as she leads the U. S. Patent Office. RIT Chemistry Professor Todd Pagano ’96 has become a national advocate for involving undergraduates in scientific inquiry and has personally opened the doors to meaningful research for hundreds of deaf students. Debra Schutt ’77 takes skills she learned alongside Jon Vermilye ’66 and Ken Stone ’68 in Waterman Theatre to adorn the sets of HBO productions.
Her career took her to the soaring cathedrals of Europe in search of medieval stained glass windows, but as a teacher, Professor Emerita of Art Helen Zakin was always more comfortable in the intimate seminar rooms of Tyler Hall.