Croston, Garippa, Merring, Rudolph, and Tracy honored with Pioneer Awards at Alfred State

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Pioneer Award recipients (L to R: Kellan Croston, Anthony Rudolph, Erika Tracy, Cynthia Merring, and John Garippa).

ALFRED, NY, May 31, 2022 – Alfred State’s Keelan Croston, John Garippa, Cynthia Merring, Anthony Rudolph, and Erika Tracy were honored with Pioneer Awards at the annual Recognition Celebration.

The Pioneer Award acknowledges those who have demonstrated commitment and dedication to the college’s mission and goals, have made contributions that have had a measurable positive impact on college operations, are seen as positive role models that show creativity and initiative, and have shown a consistent level of exceptional performance throughout their employment.

Croston, a Trades Specialist (Carpenter) with Facilities. excels at all areas of his job. He takes tremendous pride in his work for the betterment of the campus.

Tasks he performs include building shelves, repairing cabinetry, assembling desks, refinishing woodwork, and installing and finishing drywall. He was key in the preparation for classes to return to in-person during the COVID pandemic. He worked to determine the best way to install plexiglass shields in all the classrooms, labs, and offices, and worked to figure out how to hang and attach them, including custom cutting and drilling.

When working with others he is very patient and explains the work in detail letting them learn “hands-on” while he observes them. He does not wait for work to come to him and is flexible to multitask.

Croston is credited for going beyond the scope of his job description, showing creativity and flexibility while meeting campus needs, and always doing so with a great attitude.

Garippa, an associate professor in the Automotive Trades department is an exceptional example of what commitment to the college should look like. He is not only willing to help but is always happy to do so.

He is to be credited for his phenomenal approach to a hands-on teaching method and his willingness to spend a great amount of time with students until he is sure they are obtaining a complete understanding of a topic.

His attitude creates the most constructive and encouraging work environment for his fellow co-workers and his students. He consistently makes himself available and is present for college events. It is evident the pride he takes in the success of his students.

Garippa is full of wisdom, careful in what he says, how he says it, and how it is delivered. He uses constructive criticism and words in a way that is accepted by the students, His qualities are embodied in his students and they become more professional and mature just being in his classroom and lab.

Merring, an Office Assistant 1 (Keyboarding) in Business Affairs, is the face and friendly voice of the office. She warmly greets students, faculty, staff, and suppliers with a smile and cheerfully answers their questions. She is the contact for all accounts payable questions and is friendly and professional in each interaction.

Her commitment to Alfred State is evident in the everyday discipline, patience, and character with which she approaches her work and the contributions she makes towards creating a caring community among her colleagues.

Merring is a true professional and strives for perfection in every single task. She is a subject matter expert with the State Financial Systems, and she led the implementation of the e-procurement platform for purchasing. She has spent her whole career in accounts payable and her vast experience and knowledge make her a very valuable asset to the college.

She is seen as a positive role model in her office and has consistently demonstrated an elevated level of performance throughout her time at Alfred State. She is a dependable self-starter and team member, and it is a pleasure to work with her every day.

Rudolph, a Senior Admissions Advisor with Enrollment Management, shows his dedication to the mission of Alfred State daily. He has been instrumental in the college’s implementation of the new Constituent Relationship Management system called SLATE.

He has worked countless hours, nights, and weekends to make sure the system, communications, and events are all working smoothly. He is constantly answering questions from the team, training others, solving problems, and making big ideas come true.

Rudolph’s work requires him to work closely with various areas around campus including but not limited to; residential life, athletics, and faculty and staff to ensure that the college is delivering a quality product to our students. He is credited for being a dedicated, passionate, productive, and professional colleague.

He has an amazing way of looking at a situation from all sides, seeing it for what it is, and assessing what actions will make a positive impact on the situation.

Tracy, the COVID 19 Response Coordinator, has shown a high level of commitment and consistently worked above and beyond what is expected during the entire pandemic. She has collaborated with healthcare professionals, administrators, and academics to ensure the safety of the campus.

She is a positive role model not only for her department but also for all she encounters. Throughout the pandemic, she has handled herself with poise and professionalism. She has been able to maintain her composure, positive attitude, and strong customer service skills.

Her kind, approachable, can-do personality inspires her colleagues and the student workers she oversees. The value she has added to the efforts of Health and Wellness Services has been immeasurable. She has a heart for service and wants the absolute best for Alfred State students.

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