UAlbany Welcomes Students; Offers
By Greta Petry (September 1,
Ryan helps students move into Indian Quad.
This fall, as it has for the last several academic
years, the University at Albany is welcoming
new first-year students, inaugurating new academic
programs, welcoming 32 new faculty, and celebrating
the completion of several important renovation
UAlbany continues to be a school of choice
for many top students. This fall a projected
2,100 freshmen, including more than 200 Presidential
and Frederick Douglass Scholars and two National
Merit Finalists, entered the University. An
estimated 38 percent of the entering class falls
within the highest selectivity grouping established
by the State University of New York System Administration,
a slight increase from 36 percent in 2003.
Robert Andrea, director of Undergraduate Admissions,
said of the freshman class, “Their list of activities
while in high school is impressive and includes
participation in student government, music,
theater and the arts, newspapers, literary journals,
and radio. They also contributed many hours
of outreach efforts through community service
projects and volunteer activities.”
Among the University’s new academic offerings
is an expanded journalism program. Two new courses
in journalism are part of the program’s continuing
efforts to offer students the most contemporary
training in journalism reporting, writing, and
analysis, according to William Rainbolt, Ph.D.,
program director. The first, Public
Affairs Reporting, will be taught by
Mike Hendricks, editor of The
Business Review and former reporter and
news editor for The Associated Press. The class
gives students a chance to study and report
on the presidential campaign locally, as well
as other areas of public affairs journalism.
The other, Broadcast Journalism,
is taught by David Guistina, special projects
director for WAMC Radio and former news producer
at WNYT-TV, Channel 13.
The journalism program, which is a minor, has
expanded to hire two full-time faculty members
in addition to part-time professional media
lecturers. Nancy Roberts, Ph.D., joins the University
this fall from the University of Minnesota’s
School of Mass Communication and Journalism.
She is the author of four books, and the editor
of the most widely used survey textbook of American
media history. In January, Thomas Bass, Ph.D.,
author of five nonfiction books as well as articles
in The New Yorker, Wired,
Smithsonian, Audubon, Discover, and others
will join UAlbany from Hamilton College.
New faculty have been recruited and appointed
to 27 departments and programs. These include
four new faculty members hired through the University’s
new interdisciplinary Information Technology
(IT) Commons Initiative. Through joint appointments,
this initiative seeks to bring to the campus
outstanding scholars and teachers in the interdisciplinary
fields related to information science and informatics.
One such appointment is that of Yvette Mattern,
who has joined the faculty in Art, Music, and
the School of Information Science and Policy.
Mattern is teaching a new course, History
and Practice of Video Art, offered in
the College of Arts and Sciences.
“The video class will add a dynamic course
to our new program in combined media and will
benefit both the studio arts and art history
programs,” said JoAnne Carson, chair of the
Department of Art. The course will focus on
the history and theory of video art and the
history of performance in video from the late
1950s through the early 1980s.
Even as the UAlbany campus continues to move
ahead academically, there have been physical
improvements as well.
The parking and mass transit office has moved
to a new location on Center Drive East by the
Chemistry Building. The old parking management
construction trailer was demolished over the
summer to make way for Podium West, a 216-space
parking lot for students, faculty, and staff.
No overnight parking will be permitted. “This
is the area of the campus where parking is most
desired, so this will be a very welcome addition,”
said Vice President for Business and Finance
The Indian Quad (Podium East) parking lot is
being replaced. This will have 136 spaces for
students, faculty, and staff; 24 hour parking
will be permitted. This is being termed replacement
because, perhaps by as early as next summer,
the existing Indian Quad parking lot will be
closed due to the relocation of the grounds
and warehouse facility to that location.
In addition, parking changes include reconfiguring
the visitors’ lot next to Collins Circle, an
interim measure to implement a reconfigured
vision for the Collins Circle entrance. This
will eliminate all parking from the cobblestone
area and will expand the lot in front of the
Arts & Sciences building, and is for visitors
Other projects include: the re-opening of Oneida
Hall on Indian Quad to students after complete
renovation; rehabilitation of 14 classrooms
in the Humanities Building, two lecture centers,
and one room in the Business Administration
building; installation of a new sidewalk between
the parking lot adjacent to Empire Commons and
Washington Avenue; and renovations to the first
floor of Milne Hall on the downtown campus.
In addition, the Page Hall Lounge is scheduled
for a major renovation, with completion expected
by the end of October, 2004. Page Hall lounge
capacity will go up to 150 for non-seating events,
like receptions. The audio system in Page Hall
is also being improved.