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Opioid research conducted with Bassett Research Institute to be published

By Upstate Institute on June 7, 2017

The research on New York State’s opioid crisis, conducted by faculty and students at Colgate in collaboration with the Bassett Research Institute in Cooperstown, will be published in the journal “Drug and Alcohol Dependence.” This article looks at the research on  prescribing patterns and opioid overdose morbidity in New York from 2010 through the second quarter of 2016, before mandatory use of the state’s controlled substances database began in August 2013. The research project looked at morbidity (complications and health effects) from overdoses, not mortality, because the numbers are much bigger.


Chelsea Mohr ’17 Wins Upstate Institute Award

By Chris Henke on May 8, 2017

Each year the Upstate Institute recognizes one or more students with our Upstate Institute Award, given to students who have dedicated themselves to supporting our Upstate New York community with outstanding service and scholarship.  We are proud to award the 2017 Upstate Institute Award to Chelsea Mohr!  Chelsea is a senior Sociology major and Film and Media Studies minor who has provided research support to Madison County’s Community Action Partnership (CAP), an organization coordinating a range of social service resources to area residents.  Chelsea first began her work with CAP though Associate Professor of Sociology Janel Benson‘s course on Community Based Research during the Spring 2016 semester, where the class worked with CAP to assess the results of a mentoring program pairing adult mentors with youth ages 8-16.   Chelsea then continued this work during Summer 2016 through a research position (again supervised by Prof Benson) that partnered with CAP to assess the long-term impact of their mentoring program, by contacting alumni of the program, now in their late teens and twenties.  The results of Chelsea’s research demonstrated the effectiveness of the program, and, in turn, Chelsea and Prof Benson brought this research back to campus earlier this term, where they hosted a well-attended workshop for Colgate students about best practices for mentorship.

Congratulations to Chelsea!  And a big thank you to Prof Benson for your support and to CAP for your partnership on these projects.

Chelsea Mohr ’17 (l), winner of the 2017 Upstate Institute Award, with Professor Chris Henke, Faculty Director of the Upstate Institute.

Burke Chair Dr. Andy Pattison Hosts Events for Colgate’s 13 Days of Green

By Chris Henke on May 2, 2017

Dr. Andy Pattison, this year’s Burke Chair of Regional Studies, was busy during Colgate’s celebration of Earth Day and the 13 Days of Green that led up to it.  Dr. Pattison hosted two events, including a presentation and Q&A session with Dr. Cameron Brick of the Department of Psychology at Hamilton College (on April 11) and a panel of community members and students engaged through his course on local climate change planning (on April 21).

Drs. Pattison and Brick (seated at table in center) discuss the topic, “Why We Know What to Do and Still Fail to Protect the Environment,” in Donovan’s Pub.

Chris Rossi (standing left) discusses collaborative work with students from Dr. Pattison’s (standing right) course on local climate change planning in the ALANA Center.

Nezar Mehanna ’18 works with SOMAC this year

By Upstate Institute on March 29, 2017

Below is a guest post from Nezar Mehanna, one of the five students working with local community organizations this year as a part of the Upstate Institute and COVE Community-Based Work Study program:

Nezar Mehanna helps a student in front of an ambulance

Nezar Mehanna ’18 is working with SOMAC in Hamilton this year on a variety of projects.

Currently at SOMAC I am working with the director of operations, Kyle Sylvester, and members of the board to implement a new policy manual to replace the current version. Working through each section and policy gave me great insight into what it means to run an ambulance organization. Flipping through New York State Department of Health laws and reading about the current standards in emergency medicine, such as the controlled substances in each vehicle or proper procedure when attempting rescue operations made me appreciate the responsibilities paramedics in the community take on. My other projects for SOMAC include updating the company’s website, designing the decals that were placed on the new paramedic fly car unit 511, and researching and submitting grant proposals as a part of SOMAC’s capital improvement plan as the organization is working to get the newest life-saving medical equipment for the Hamilton Community.

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Deadline Extended for Student Field School Applications

By Upstate Institute on March 10, 2017

The Upstate Institute has extended the deadline for applications for the 2017 Summer Field School from Colgate students. Students now have until Friday, March 24 to submit an application for this summer’s fellowships. Applications are available here, along with a list of the projects that will be funded this summer.

Chelsea Mohr ’17 and Prof Janel Benson Host Workshop on Effective Mentoring

By Chris Henke on March 9, 2017

Chelsea Mohr, a senior sociology major, and Professor Janel Benson recently co-facilitated a brownbag on effective mentoring at the Max Shacknai COVE. Several campus volunteer organizations attended the workshop, which asked participants to explore their volunteer group’s assumptions about the role of a mentor and how they could improve their outreach and effectiveness. The session was informed by Upstate Institute supported research projects on effective mentoring conducted last year in Professor Benson’s Community-Based Participatory Research Course and Chelsea Mohr’s student-initiated summer research.

Professor Janel Benson (left) and Chelsea Mohr ’17 at the COVE.

Two student research projects receive funding

By Upstate Institute on February 1, 2017

The Upstate Institute is funding two student research projects this spring through the Student Research Funding program. This program enables students engaged in research that is of a high quality and benefits or informs the Upstate community in some way to apply for funding to cover the directs costs of the research project. Research projects funded by the Upstate Institute must be conducted within a department or interdisciplinary program, and sponsored by a faculty member in the sponsoring department or program. This funding will normally be used to support research during a student’s senior year (as part of a senior thesis or honors project), and can be used for any costs associated with the project.

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Marlowe named Burke Chair for 2017-2018 academic year

By Upstate Institute on January 30, 2017

Elizabeth Marlowe, Associate Professor of Art and Art History, has been named the Gretchen Hoadley Burke ’81 Endowed Chair in Regional Studies, for one year, beginning July 1, 2017.

Elizabeth Marlowe holds a PhD in Art History from Columbia University. At Colgate she teaches courses on Roman Art and Medieval Art History and on Museum Studies. Her research and publications on classical art offer new readings of key monuments from late antique Rome. Early in her career Liz’s article “Framing the Sun: The Arch of Constantine and the Appropriation of the Roman Cityscape” earned her the College Art Association’s Arthur Kingsley Porter prize for the best article by an emerging scholar in the history of art and architecture, and since then she has published widely in a range of prestigious journals. Her recent work has focused on ancient art historiography’s largely uncritical reliance upon a small canon of archaeologically undocumented artworks. Shaky Ground: Context, Connoisseurship and the History of Roman Art(2013) calls for greater epistemological consciousness in the writing of Roman art history. The book advocates shifting the focus of the field away from long-famous artworks in museum collections (many of which have been heavily restored to live up to modern aesthetic ideals; others may even be forgeries) to more recently-discovered works whose archaeological contexts are better documented. At Colgate Liz was instrumental in creating the new Museum Studies minor, which she directs.  Her current teaching and research explore issues central to Museum Studies through a close examination of a range of important museums in New York’s Upstate region.


Political Leaders for Hamilton, Madison County, and Beyond

By Chris Henke on December 6, 2016

This post includes a list of the political leadership for the Village and Town of Hamilton, Madison County, and our State and Federal representatives, all the way up to the President.  We hope that this will serve as a useful reference for students, staff, faculty, and community members who wish to contact their elected officials.  Our thanks to Bruce Moseley, Colgate’s Associate Director of Corporate, Foundation, and Government Relations, for his help compiling this list. (Last revised December 2016.)

Want to keep up with news from the different levels of government listed here?  The list includes links to the websites for each office, with news, meeting information, policy proposals, and other information.  In addition you can reference the Federal Congressional Quarterly Roll Call for news at the national level and the New York State of Politics blog for the state.  Want to contact one of your elected officials?  We include contact information for many of them, below, and you can also consult this wiki for tips on how to call, write to, email, or visit an elected leader.


  • Mayor

Robert McVaugh (no party)

  • Board of Trustees

Ruthann Loveless (D)

Russ Lura (no party)

Jen Servedio (D)

Sean Nevison (D)



  • Town Supervisor (budget officer, chair of the town council and representative to the County Board of Supervisors)

Eve Ann Shwartz (D)

Suzanne Collins (D)

Peter Darby (D)

David Holcomb (R)

Chris Rossi (D)



John M. Becker (R), Chair



Andrew M. Cuomo (D)

David Valesky (D), 53rd District

William “Bill” Magee (D), 121st District



Barack Obama (D) until 1/20/17

Donald Trump (R) starting 1/20/17

Charles Schumer (D)

Kirsten Gillibrand (D)

Richard Hanna (R), through 12/31/16

Claudia Tenney (R), as of 1/1/17

ENST 390 students release data on village deer population

By Upstate Institute on November 17, 2016

Students in the Environmental Studies 390 course, entitled “Community Based Studies of Environmental Issues” taught by Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies Catherine Cardelús, have shared the results of surveys they conducted about the perspective of community members and students on the culling of deer in the village of Hamilton.


“The Status of White-Tailed Deer in Hamilton” presentation, held at the Hamilton Public Library on November 16, included updated data on the deer population in and around the Village of Hamilton. Data was shared through a powerpoint presentation, and through the brochures, available below.

ENST 390 Research Page 1

ENST 390 Research Page 2