Most people do not expect to see college students meeting at 5 p.m. on a Friday night to listen to a presenter speak about liability and risk. However, that is just what one would have seen at SUNY Potsdam recently, as Greek students welcomed Michael Paestella, a 1995 SUNY Potsdam graduate and an alumnus of Theta Omega Phi fraternity (Prometheus).
Paestella currently works as the director of student involvement at SUNY Oswego. He spent an evening talking with 25 Greek students about risk as it relates to alcohol, hazing and sexual assault at his alma mater last month.
According to Donnalyn Eaton Shuster ’78, president of the Greek Alumni Council and Omega Delta Phi’s alumni association, this presentation was “the first in a series of alumni-driven workshops that would benefit not only the students, but allow our vast talent pool to be showcased by the College in a teaching capacity. The presentations can showcase the success levels of Potsdam graduates, as they take the time to ‘give back’ to the college. Future presentation topics can include wellness, stress management, financial management and more.”
The mission of the Greek Alumni Council is to bring together alumni of SUNY Potsdam’s recognized fraternities and sororities in collaboration with current Greek members and the College to support Greek life at SUNY Potsdam. In doing this, the GAC strives to maintain high standards, promote and encourage values, serve in an advisory capacity, assist in developing leadership skills, provide mentoring opportunities, collaborate with the community at large, and support the mission of the College.
The other officers of the Greek Alumni Council include Michelle Hastings Hannon from Zeta Gamma Sigma, who is the council’s vice president, and Stephanie Allen-Manuel from Alpha Kappa Phi, who is the council’s secretary.
The recognized Greek houses at SUNY Potsdam share the common values of friendship, scholarship, community service and leadership. As recognized houses, members of those sororities and fraternities must work hard to uphold those values and challenge themselves to reach a higher standard, to meet the expectations of the College and the community.
For more information about Greek life at SUNY Potsdam, visit www.potsdam.edu/studentlife/greeklife.
Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,350 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training and leadership in the performing and visual arts.