UAlbany News

Leonard Named School of Business Dean
Paul Leonard has been named dean of the School of Business, effective November 1. The appointment will run through the balance of this academic year and the following two academic years. Interim Provost Jeryl Mumpower said the University will conduct a search for its next permanent dean of the School of Business after the next president and provost are appointed and during the term of Leonard’s own appointment. Full Story >>

Campaign Update
The Bold.Vision. Campaign has increased by $4 million in the past three months, bringing total University support to nearly $286 million. Recently, the Gen*NY*sis Center for Excellence in Cancer Genomics, currently under construction at the East Campus, was awarded a grant of $230,000 from the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation and received a gift of $25,000 from Fischer Scientific. In addition, the Arthur Vining Davis Foundation awarded $150,000 to the University’s Center for English Learning and Achievement.

Cancer Center Announces Fund for Memory and Hope Honorary Committee
UAlbany’s Gen*NY*Sis Center for Excellence in Cancer Genomics has announced the names of the founding members of the Honorary Committee for the Fund for Memory and Hope. The committee will support the center’s commitment to research into the genetic origins of cancer. The initial fundraising goal is $25 million to equip a new state-of-the-art facility and support cutting-edge research. The centerpiece of the building will be the Wall of Memory and Hope. Full Story >>

University Libraries Announces New Initiatives Fund
The Dean and Director’s New Initiatives Fund, established through a gift from Dean Meredith Butler, will enable the University Libraries to support new initiatives to advance the Libraries’ collections and services. To learn more about opportunities for investing in this endowment fund, which has a goal of $100,000, contact Roberta Armstrong at (518) 442–3540 or

Schools and Colleges

Rockefeller College Announces Mentor Program
Rockefeller College is rolling out a new mentor program that will match students and young alumni with an alumni mentor in a field related to their interests. The time commitment for the mentor can be as little as a monthly phone conversation or more depending on the interests of both parties. If you are interested in either being or having a mentor, contact David Liebschutz at

U.S. DOE Helps UAlbany Increase Number of Special Education Doctorates
UAlbany faculty Deborah May and Kevin Quinn have received a $747,000 U.S. Department of Education grant for Preparation of Leadership Personnel in Special Education. The grant will enable the division of Special Education at UAlbany to increase the number of doctoral candidates, prepare participants to assume leadership roles in the field of special education, assist in career placement activities and provide ongoing evaluation. Full Story >>

UAlbany Faculty Receive Breast Cancer Research Awards
UAlbany professors Douglas Conklin and Carolyn MacDonald have received awards from the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program for their novel concepts in breast cancer research. The global award competition offers hope that new research may provide improved prevention, detection or treatments for breast cancer. Full Story >>

Endowment Created to Honor Dr. William Reid
Dr. William Reid, a faculty member in the School of Social Welfare, passed away earlier this month. Reid was internationally recognized for his groundbreaking achievements in social work practice and research and was dedicated to furthering outstanding doctoral education and research. If you are interested in contributing to the William J. Reid Endowment for Doctoral Dissertation Research, email Stephanie Wacholder or call (518) 442-5324.

School of Social Welfare Professor Receives Healthcare Grant
Ronald Toseland, a professor in the School of Social Welfare, has received a five-year grant from the Veterans Administration to support the "Center for Integrated Healthcare." This Center, to be located in Syracuse, will explore methods to integrate mental health care into primary care. Toseland will serve as senior scientist/co-investigator on the grant.


Basketball Season Tickets Available
The 2004-2005 Great Danes basketball season is right around the corner. For information on basketball season tickets visit our web site or contact Rob Totaro at (518) 437-4415.

Big Purple Growl & Ferocious Feast Set
The 8th Annual Big Purple Growl and Ferocious Feast is scheduled for Saturday, February 5, 2005. The event will feature a women's and men's basketball double-header against the University of New Hampshire. Ticket information for the event will be available online next month.

more great dane news!

Of Note

Online Career Center Matches the Best People With the Best Jobs
Where do the best ad execs, accountants and artists look for advancement? They log on to UAlbany’s Online Alumni Community Career Center – exclusively for UAlbany alumni. If you have a job opening you’d like to fill, or are looking for a new job, start in the same place where you gained your career skills. Posting a job is as easy as a few quick clicks of the mouse. Check out our homepage or email Melissa Samuels or call (518) 442-3083.

UAlbany License Plates Show School Pride
New Yorkers can show their UAlbany pride with custom UAlbany license plates. Plates cost $34.50 with a $25 annual renewal fee (2 year minimum renewal) or $63 for a customized plate with a $50 annual renewal fee (2 year minimum renewal). Orders can be placed at any NYS DMV office, online at or by calling 1-800-364-7528.


Master of Fine Arts Candidates on Display at Art Museum
The University Art Museum is featuring the artwork of five UAlbany fall 2004 Master of Fine Arts (MFA) candidates, Dec. 2-19. The exhibit offers viewers an opportunity to see how today’s emerging artists are addressing contemporary issues in the visual arts. There will be an opening reception Dec. 10, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

The Rivalry Heats Up As UAlbany Takes on Siena
Join fellow UAlbany alumni at the Mad River Bar & Grill Nov. 23 for a festive pregame party as UAlbany prepares to take on Siena in the annual rivalry basketball game. Come eat, meet fellow UAlbany fans and hear Athletic Director Lee McElroy talk about the future of UAlbany’s athletic program. For event details, visit the alumni web calendar at

November 23 – UAlbany Basketball vs. Siena Pregame Party
December 12 – Winter Commencement
December 22 – UAlbany Basketball vs. Villanova Pregame Gathering at Villanova
December 28 – UAlbany Basketball vs. Syracuse Pregame Party at Syracuse


In the last issue, we asked you to tell us what the most difficult course was you ever took at UAlbany. Based on your responses, the challenges were many! See below responses from fellow alumni.

No contest - it was "Junior Comp" as English majors fondly referred to [I think] English 211.  A paper a week, plus a heavy reading load and intense classes as Dr. Fred Silva demolished our papers one at a time. And all of this for 2 credit hours! My reward was one of my few undergraduate Cs, which, at this remove, I believe was a fair grade although I am certain I did not feel that way at the time. Still, if brutal, the course has been rewarding in the long term. On the other hand, I cannot look at a copy of The Great Gatsby without shuddering. Fitzgerald was the author we used as the critical subject and we read TGG at least six times that semester, mining even the semi-colons for every  nuance. Michael George King ‘73

My most difficult course was Statistics, but I don't know why because I was
a math minor and member of Kappa Mu Epsilon. Robert Niles '61

The most difficult course that I had to take at the University of Albany was without a doubt statistics!!! I had to take the course more than once, and although the professors were very friendly and tried to help in every way possible, it simply did not click! What's terrible to say is that although I did take the course and finally passed it with a B or something to that effect, I can't recall all that I learned in that course!!! It's time for a refresher! I guess I'm not as bad as some others, my girlfriend is still pursuing her bachelors degree and can't seem to get past Organic Chemistry to save her life... (this is the 3rd or 4th time taking it... wow!) Oh well! Nohelani Etienne '02

Easily for me it was microeconomics. This class, like many others such as statistics and accounting, requires students to keep up with the readings and assignments timely, since each lecture builds upon previous sessions. By falling behind you are continually trying to catch up and become caught in a difficult cycle. Paul Schaffer ‘86

Okay - I'm ancient - a 1982 grad - but I still remember taking a graduate level Test and Measures class. We were all psych majors and math was not our strong suit. The professor was great, he understood our limitations and made the class material relevant to our needs. Unfortunately he either became ill or passed away during the semester. The replacement teacher was a true math geek and it never occurred to him that we might not be...after a couple of classes, I drew the short straw and had to ask him to slow down - he had lost the entire class. He taught the materials as if we were in the movie “Good Will Hunting.”  All I wanted to do was counsel students, not compete with John Nash.  Of course we all survived, but I still get queasy thinking about T & M. Gail Mance-Rios ‘82

Probably Chem 121 and 122. Gen Chem for science majors. Amalia Oster ‘01

The toughest course I took at Albany was in my senior year (1953). Nura Turner was my professor and the course was Trigonometry. In order to get the course points to graduate then we had to have a major, a minor, a third subject, and a fourth subject. I was NEVER good at math (I think there is dislectia in math as well as reading). But with a little help from my Advisor, Josiah T. Phinney, Ms. Turner passed me. He said she owed him a favor. He made me promise I would never teach math anywhere. Years later when I decided to teach first grade I had to teach the New Math. It was so easy and I realized I had had a very poor background in math. Katherine Brumfield Pickett ’53, ’54 NYSCT

Statistics Roberta Steinhorn ‘75

The most difficult class (and worst for me) was an English course "Structure and Function of the Speech Mechanism". With the help of friends, I survived it the second time.

That would have to have been Accounting 101 in the Fall of 1967, my freshman year. The podium was still very much under construction, and the finish work in many classrooms was, well, unfinished! In our Accounting classroom, both the carpeting, and the acoustic soundproofing for the scalloped ceiling, were not yet installed. You can imagine what Accounting-speak to a Freshman student, new to that arcane terminology, sounds like when it's reverberating and echoing down what was essentially a concrete subway tunnel! Challenging as that may have been on its own steam, the powers that were at the time also decided to install a professor whose heavily Hindi-accented speech rendered terms such as “debits,” “credits”' and “accounts receivable” akin to the contents of an indecipherable exotic codebook. And, to jack the “degree of difficulty” up to a full “10,” an experimental accounting textbook, which was canned after that year .... long after I accepted the college's most gracious invitation to “withdraw without penalty!” Ken Turow ‘72

Organic Chemistry I. The material is overwhelmingly too much and the professor (who I shall not name), was not good at instructing. He would talk to the wall instead of the class. Additionally, I think the material could be lessened in volume and this would increase comprehension, hence learning, very much.
I went on to get an MS in Molecular Biology from Florida State so I am not just a big cry baby.  On my own time Orgo looks interesting, but within the confines of that class it was like a cage.
auf weidershein! Kenneth Mann ‘94

Biochemistry. 200 students in one classroom, the eptiomy of non personal. Brian Levin ‘76

Published by: UAlbany Office of Alumni Relations /