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Two Cayuga students among inaugural SUNY scholarship winners

Two members of Cayuga Community College’s Class of 2020 are among 100 SUNY students to receive the inaugural Chancellor’s Undergraduate Scholarships and Graduate Fellowships.

Cayuga’s Hannah Christopher and Shealyn Shattuck were named recipients of the highly selective award, which recognizes SUNY students with strong academic records who plan to continue their education at a SUNY institution. SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson announced the scholarship recipients on Friday.

“We are immensely proud to recognize these exceptional students from across SUNY who have worked tirelessly to excel in their fields of study,” said Chancellor Johnson. “Their recognition as the winners of the Chancellor’s Graduate Scholarship Award will no doubt inspire countless other students to pursue their educational path at SUNY, and in turn we will continue to provide access and opportunities to invest in tomorrow’s innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders.”

“We’re very proud of Hannah and Shealyn for their tremendous accomplishments. Both of them excelled in the classroom. More importantly, they’re committed to community-minded careers that will help other people. That selflessness speaks to their priorities and who they are as outstanding members of our community,” said Cayuga President Dr. Brian Durant. “Congratulations to Hannah and Shealyn for earning this scholarship.”

A graduate of Weedsport Central School District, Ms. Christopher graduated from Cayuga in December 2019 with an Associate of Arts Degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences: Humanities and Social Sciences and a concentration in psychology. Christopher said she was honored to receive the scholarship and was looking forward to continue working toward a career as a therapist.

“When I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do as a career, the one thing I knew was that I wanted to help people. That was my main goal. I wasn’t sure what career that would lead me to, but I found I enjoyed studying psychology, which appealed to me personally and as an opportunity to help other people,” she said.

Christopher will be attending SUNY Geneseo where she’s planning to earn her bachelor’s degree in psychology.

Ms. Shattuck, who graduated from North Rose-Wolcott Central School District, is graduating from Cayuga this spring with an Associate of Science Degree in Liberal Arts & Sciences: Mathematics & Science. Shattuck thanked her professors for pushing her to succeed at Cayuga, and credited her experience as a tutor with helping identify her career goal.

“I realized recently that I always enjoyed school but never knew specifically what I wanted to do as a career. Once I started tutoring, I realized without even spending much time thinking about it that I thoroughly enjoyed working with students, in particular when they needed help with math,” she said. “That experience, combined with my work at a local elementary school, showed me that I wanted to become a teacher.”

Shattuck is continuing her education at SUNY Oswego in the fall, where she’s planning to earn her bachelor’s degree in Adolescence Education Grades 7-12: Mathematics.

Chancellor Johnson announced the scholarship program in January during her 2020 State of the University System address. The program recognizes graduating SUNY students who plan on continuing their education at a SUNY institution.

Eligible students must have a minimum grade-point-average of 3.3, and either graduate with an associate’s degree and are pursuing a bachelor’s degree at a SUNY institution, or graduate with a bachelor’s degree and remain with SUNY to earn a graduate degree. Of the 100 inaugural recipients, 45 are students who received their associate’s degree and are continuing at a SUNY institution to earn a bachelor’s degree.

The non-tuition scholarships of up to $5,000 can be used on room and board costs, books, technology, childcare or other expenses. The scholarships were by nomination only and were open to all students.