The power of place thrives at Geneseo.
By President Denise A. Battles
Thanks to Danish inventor, designer and software developer Jens Rasmussen, finding places has never been easier. A searcher simply types in the name or GPS coordinates of any destination, and the ubiquitous red Google Maps pin that Jens designed (or a close variation) precisely marks
The pin, however, tells only part of the story. It doesn’t reveal the power of place, the impact that one location can have on people and the world. That’s especially true of 42.7959, -77.8213, better known as One College Circle.
Nationally recognized as a leader in public liberal arts education, SUNY Geneseo stands out in another way; we’re located in a natural wonderland. Rich, productive farmlands surround our campus and the adjacent historical village. Old-growth forests, serene lakes and the spectacular Letchworth Gorge are a short drive away while majestic views of the Genesee Valley instill wonder in our own backyard.
Our connection to nature, with its corresponding learning and recreational opportunities, certainly enriches students’ lives. Yet, that alone doesn’t make our College unique. The intellectual stimulus, emotional support, and sense of belonging provided to students by faculty, staff and community neighbors nurture personal growth and academic success. And through this combination, the power of place takes hold.
At Geneseo, the power of place has no boundaries — a theme that resonates in this issue of the Scene. Our geographical location and our commitment to providing the best public liberal arts education creates a one-of-a-kind learning environment. As you’ll read in these pages, we transform students’ lives, and they, in turn, go on to change the world.
The “magic” of Geneseo connects students, alumni, and faculty and staff to our College and region to a degree I’ve not experienced on any other campus. Looking forward, we are committed to sustainability as a core College value to preserve this power of place.
As responsible stewards of our buildings and land, we continue to enhance our physical space. After more than a year of construction activity, Sturges Quad is free of backhoes, cement mixers and other bright yellow earthmoving equipment essential to a major underground infrastructure project. Lush, green lawn, wider sidewalks, and our beloved Seuss Spruce and Painted Tree welcome campus community members and visitors back to the Quad. In addition, planning is underway to renovate Sturges and Fraser Halls to develop updated spaces to support our learning community’s needs.
Unquestionably, part of Geneseo’s appeal is how it inspires hopes and dreams. We attract students from increasingly diverse areas — both urban and rural — who find inspiration in our wide-open spaces and natural beauty as they prepare to venture out into the world.
Similarly, we welcome alumni and friends who are drawn by their memories and the shared touchstones that connect us all to Geneseo: the sun setting over the valley; the ivy vines climbing on Welles; and the sweet notes of our alma mater ringing from the Sturges carillon at noon.
In the midst of ever-changing technology, the red pin may one day disappear from our online maps, but Geneseo and all it stands for will remain. We are resolved to “see beyond the horizon” as we continue to create a campus learning environment that remains relevant, yet timeless.
By doing so, the power of the place we know as Geneseo will endure.