SUNY Student Leadership Academy

2022 Cohort Programming 

Fall Seminar Series:  SUNY SAIL Student Leadership virtual programs were  held on various Fridays 1:00 -3:00 p.m. throughout the Fall semester. The schedule was as follows:

  • *Friday, October 21: Set Yourself Up for Success in College & The Power of Mentoring
  • Friday, October 28: Know Yourself to Lead Others
  • Friday, November 4: Communicating with Impact
  • Monday, November 18: Managing People Responsibly: Creating Cultures of Accountability for Yourself and Others
  • Friday, December 2: Creating Inclusive Environments As A Student Leader
  • *Friday, December 9: Program Reflections and Graduation

*1-4pm session

Leader Speaker Series: In conjunction with the Fall webinar series, we invited a leader to address the students for the first 30 minutes. We aim to align the program to the background of the speaker. We will kick off each webinar by hearing from an accomplished leader and students will have an opportunity to ask them their questions.

Participation Criteria: With a campus liaison in place, campuses were allowed to send up to two students to attend the Fall 2021 student leadership programming at no cost. The Student Leadership offerings are open to any current SUNY student. Ideally, we strive to have a broad array of students representing the wonderfully rich diversity that defines our student body, with at least two students from every campus. These student leadership offerings will host a maximum of 120 students.

Set Yourself Up for Success in College & The Power of Mentoring

Friday, October 21

Guest Speakers:

Mike Bishop, Director of Student Leadership, Cornell University

Christie Smith, Dean of First-Year Admissions, Nazareth College

Laurel McAdoo, Assistant Director, Human Resources, Research Foundation for SUNY

Camilo Medina, Assistant Director of Grants and Contracts Accounting, Virginia Commonwealth University

Seminar Summary:

A breakdown of the SLA program and expectations was discussed with the students. Guest speakers shared a list of steps that will set students up for success in their leadership path in academic and professional settings.


Know Yourself to Lead Others

Friday, October 28

Guest Speakers:

Meylin Andares, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, IOPS, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Ben Conard, Chief of Staff, Fair Trade USA

Dr. Martha Asselin, Director of Leadership and Service, University at Albany       

Seminar Summary:

Guest speakers advised students to look inward, assess their strengths, always be open to development opportunities, and figure out their leadership style. 

Communicating with Impact

Friday, November 4

Guest Speakers:

D Ekow King, Assistant to the Vice President for Student Affairs & Founding Director, Office of Intercultural Student Engagement, University at Albany

Steve Jones, President and Chief Executive Officer, Skyview Networks

Drew Kahn, Founding Director, Anne Frank Project & Distinguished Service Full Professor, Theatre, Buffalo State College

Denise Mercier, Assistant Director, Design and Printing, SUNY System Administration

Indigo Young, Associate Clinical Professor & Speech Language Pathologist, Arizona State University

Seminar Summary:

During this session, students not only learned the importance of knowing their audience, students also learned to articulate their thoughts in an impactful way, through the art of performance.

Managing People Responsibly: Creating Cultures of Accountability for Yourself and Others

Monday, November 18

Guest Speakers:

John Dias, Reporter CBS New York

Johanna Kendrick-Holmes, Director, NYC Special Events and Programs, SUNY System Administration

Pathy Leiva, Director of Access and Opportunity Programs (AOP) at SUNY Oneonta

Meg Sheeley, Dean of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, Deputy Title IX Coordinator, SUNY Ulster Community College

Dr. Sritha Rajupet, Director of Population-Based Health Initiatives, Director of the Post COVID Clinic, Deputy Division Director of Graduate Medical Education, Associate Clinical Professor, Stony Brook Medicine

Seminar Summary:

Guest speakers taught students the essentials of people management by teaching them to be responsible for their own success and growth; to be accountable through creating an environment of respect, trust, transparency, and honest; and to be a source of motivation who models the way and follows up with their team.

Creating Inclusive Environments As A Student Leader

Friday, December 2

Guest Speakers: 

Dr. Ron Milon, Chief Diversity Officer, Fashion Institute of Technology & SUNY SAIL Fellow, SUNY SAIL Institute

Bailey Wadsworth, Executive Director of Student Voices, SUNY Student Assembly & Student, SUNY Polytechnic Institute

Giovanni Harvey, Executive Director of Communications, Student Assembly, SUNY System Administration & Student, SUNY Polytechnic Institute

Dr. Kimberley Willis, Director of Financial Aid, SUNY Brockport

Alicia Francis, SVP & Head of Strategic Initiatives, Weber Shandwick

Seminar Summary: 

In this session, guest speakers discussed the elements that are necessary for an inclusive environment. Student also learned the strategies of creating an inclusive environment within their communities, as well as learning how to bring the best out of their peers and teams by being a welcoming and encouraging resource.

Program Reflections and Graduation

Friday, December 9

Guest Speakers: 

Anta Cissé-Green, Senior Vice Chancellor and General Counsel, SUNY System Administration

Cheryl Hamilton, Interim Student Advocate and Executive Director of Educational Opportunity Programs, SUNY System Administration

Seminar Summary: 

Students had the opportunity to talk to SUNY’s Anta Cissé-Green, the Senior Vice Chancellor and General Counsel; and Cheryl Hamilton, the Interim Student Advocate & Executive Director of EOP. Design team members, Campus Liaisons, and Seminar Speakers all had an opportunity to share their words of encouragement and congratulations with the cohort. At the end of the ceremony, the cohort reflected on their academy takeaways and awarded each other their certificate of completion.