GCC celebrates 50th anniversary of its founding today

Posted 15 April 2016 at 12:00 am

Press Release, GCC

BATAVIA – Founding a college is no simple task. Establishing Genesee Community College in the mid-1960s involved more than a decade of planning with hundreds of community members working hard in support of the innovative idea that Genesee and surrounding counties would benefit from having a college.

As GCC recognizes its 50th Anniversary, numerous historical dates are being celebrated, as are the pioneering efforts and vision of its founding citizens.

Today (April 15, 2016) is Founding Day at GCC’s Batavia Campus, which will celebrate the exact date 50 years prior that the State University of New York officially approved and recognized the interests of the Genesee County Board of Supervisors to establish and sponsor a two-year college in Genesee County. It is one of many important dates in the college’s history, and also the first event in the coming 18 months where GCC will reflect on it’s unique past while planning ahead for the future.

At 11 a.m. today on Founding Day, the college community including students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni and friends will gather in the William W. Stuart Forum for a cake cutting ceremony. In addition, a specially prepared historical photo show will run continuously until 2 p.m., and all visitors will have the chance to be part of a pending time capsule by briefly answer the inquiry: “What I found at GCC.”

Edited responses to this inquiry will be added to the soon to be launched 50th Anniversary website. WGCC, the college’s radio station will be broadcasting live, and the GCC Cougar mascot will pose for numerous photo ops. Lastly, the college will officially release the new 50th Anniversary logo featuring a creative blue and gold flame matching the College’s colors that date back to the late 1960’s with the insignia “The True-Blue Past – Our Golden Future.”

“This is the ‘soft opening’ to the college’s anniversary program,” President James Sunser, Ed.D. said at a recent planning meeting. “It gives us the opportunity to publish and promote our calendar of upcoming events and the many opportunities we are looking forward to, including the new logo with a few surprises.”

The next big college event is the official groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday, April 28 at 4 p.m. for the new Student Success Center and the Event Center. College and community leaders will gather to recognize the start of construction for these two new facilities, collectively valued at more than $21 million and totaling 75,000 square feet.

In addition, the program includes the opportunity to officially kickoff GCC’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, paying homage to the community leaders 50 years ago whose vision gave rise to Genesee Community College’s long term success. Final plans for groundbreaking ceremony are in development and details will be available soon.