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Faculty Handbook: Section 2

The College


The College was chartered by an Act of the State Legislature in 1911, and officially opened in 1916 as the Schoharie State School of Agriculture.  A year after instruction in agriculture began, a home economics division was added.  The Divisions of Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism and Early Childhood evolved from this program.  From 1922 to 1933, a rural teacher training program was offered, which later was transferred to the teachers colleges of the state.  In the early 1950s, the Business and Computer Technologies Division evolved from the Agriculture and Natural Resources Division.  Courses in the liberal arts and sciences have been offered continuously since 1916, with divisional status granted in 1956.

 In nearly a century of service to the citizens of New York State, the College has undergone many changes in name, organization and curriculum.  It became one of the original campuses of the State Univer­sity of New York, in 1948, and was designated as an Agricultural and Technical College in 1964.  The College was granted approval to offer curricula leading to a Bachelor of Technology degree beginning with the fall 1987 semester.  The name of the institution was amended to reflect its expanded mission, and is now the "College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill."

SUNY Cobleskill is one of the oldest institutions of its kind in New York State, and is a senior member among two‑year colleges nationally.


The College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, and the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences.

Registration of Curricula

All curricula offered at Cobleskill are registered by the Education Department of the University of the State of New York and are approved for the purpose of awarding the degrees of Associate in Arts (AA), Associate in Science (AS), Associate in Applied Science (AAS), Associate in Occupational Studies (AOS), Bachelor of Technology (BT), Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), and Bachelor of Science (BS).

College Mission and Goal Statement (Official)

SUNY Cobleskill’s mission is to provide superior educational experiences supported by technology.  We take pride in delivering technical and general courses with personal attention in a student-centered environment, emphasizing friendship, cooperation and respect.

 Our primary focus will be to provide quality Associate and Bachelor degree programs in select agricultural, technical and occupational fields supported by liberal arts and sciences.  We will offer quality Liberal Arts and Science programs.

We will sustain a quality educational and residential environment which encourages intellectual and cultural growth, personal development, creativity, and diversity.

We will keep our programs relevant to the changing needs of our students, community, industry, and society.

We will maintain a physical environment conducive to learning, personal health and safety.

We will serve students from a wide geographic area.

Local Organization and Control

The College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill is governed and administered locally through:

The College Council

Section 356 of the New York State Education Law provides for the estab­lishment of a local council consisting of ten members, nine members appointed by the Governor and one member selected by Student Government, to supervise the operations and affairs of each institution of State University. Names of the Cobleskill Council members are listed in the College Catalog. The local council of each institution is empowered to do the following:

President's Staff

The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees require that each campus establish an "administrative conference (which shall have a membership) comprised of the Chancellor, the chief administrative officer of the College and such other persons as may be designated by the chief admin­istrative officer...The Chancellor, or in his absence, the chief administrative officer of the College, shall be the presiding officer...Each college administrative conference shall act as an advisory and consultative body to the chief administrative officer of the College...(and) shall meet at the call of the chief administrative officer of the College."

Academic Council

The purpose of the Academic Council is to make recommendations to the provost in matters pertaining to academic affairs and to serve as a liaison between the provost and the school/faculties for consultation and communication. Specifically, the Academic Council assists in matters related to:

The Academic Council identifies:

Consistent with this charge, the SUNY Cobleskill Institutional Effectiveness Plan calls for the Academic Council to do the following:

Members of the Academic Council include:

Professional Faculty Organizations on Campus

Association of College Councils and Boards of Trustees

This organization meets to discuss matters of mutual concern to all SUNY Colleges and Universities. The Association is especially active in legislative matters.

United University Professions

United University Professions (UUP) is the officially recognized exclusive bargaining agent for the professional staff of the State University of New York.  United University Professions chapters on each SUNY campus work diligently to improve the terms and conditions of employment and to defend the civil, professional and human rights of the SUNY professional staff.

United University Professions (UUP) is affiliated with the New York State United Teachers, the American Federation of Teachers and the AFL‑CIO. Through these affiliations, members of UUP become eligible to purchase a variety of supplementary economic benefits including accident, disability and life insurance plans, automobile and homeowners' insurance, discount buying plans, travel programs and legal services.  Membership is open to all teaching faculty and non-­teaching professionals.  Due to a law which was enacted in September, 1977, an agency fee is assessed to all members of the bargaining unit, whether they join UUP or not. This agency fee is equivalent to dues.

Special Committees Required by SUNY
(Appointed by College President)

Affirmative Action 

Purpose - To review campus affirmative action activities and participate in procedures established by the Chancellor’s staff for reviewing complaints related to federal regulations prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex, ethnicity or physical handicap.

Composition - The committee is comprised of ten appointed members, serving one-year and two-year terms. A teaching faculty member, a non-teaching professional, a CSEA representative and a Management / Confidential professional are appointed for a one-year term and a two-year term. A student representative recommended by Student Government and appointed by the President serves a one-year term, A representative from the Educational Opportunity Program is appointed to a one-year term.  The Affirmative Action Officer and a representative from the Human Resources Office will serve as non-voting members, ex-officio

Animal Care and Use Committee

Purpose - The committee is to review animal care and use protocols for all vertebrate animals used in teaching and research. All faculty and staff using vertebrate animals in either teaching or research endeavors are required to submit an Animal Care and Use protocol to the campus Animal Care and Use Committee for approval before such activity occurs. In all cases of vertebrate use, faculty and staff will strictly adhere to the procedures outlined in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. 

Composition - The committee shall consist of not less than five members. At least one Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, with training or experience in laboratory animal science and medicine, who has direct or delegated program responsibility for activities involving animals at the institution. One practicing scientist experienced in research involving animals, one member whose primary concerns are in a nonscientific area and one individual who is not affiliated with the institution in any way other than as a member of the committee. An individual may fulfill more than one of the requirements.

SUNY Cobleskill Institutional Review Board

Purpose - It is the responsibility of the College to ensure that the rights and welfare of human subjects are protected in any research process and to protect the University from circumstances of liability. The primary responsibility for this protection lies with the individual who engages in the research project, however, the SUNY Cobleskill Institutional Review Board (IRB) will conduct a thorough review of each research proposal to be sure that human subjects are adequately protected.

Composition - The IRB will consist of three to four faculty and staff members, serving time-limited terms. Faculty and staff will be nominated and selected based on their expertise with research, statistics, codes of ethics, and knowledge of students. Additional members may be called in temporarily based on special expertise with a specific type of research project. The IRB will be responsible for reviewing a formal proposal submitted by the researcher, and offering approval, disapproval and/or required changes to the project.

Chancellor’s Awards Committee for Excellence in Teaching, Librarianship, Distinguished Professorships 

Purpose - The committee is to nominate a faculty member/librarian to receive recognition of and award for teaching excellence, extraordinary professional achievement (librarian) and to nominate the faculty member/librarian to receive recognition of and award for excellence.

Composition - The committee is comprised of one faculty member from each academic School, one librarian, one past recipient of the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, Chair of Faculty Governance or designee, and one student.

Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in Professional Service Committee

Purpose - The committee is to nominate a member of the professional service personnel) non-teaching, non-librarian) to receive recognition of and award for outstanding job performance.

Composition - The committee is comprised of two management/confidential professionals, three non-teaching professionals, one faculty member, the chair or designee of the Faculty Governance Committee and one student.

Intercollegiate Athletics Board

Purpose - The committee is to develop and recommend intercollegiate athletics policy, monitor compliance with rules and regulations, propose changes in intercollegiate athletics program, plan for intercollegiate athletics participation on campus and in conferences, develop and recommend the intercollegiate athletics budget, establish the standards for the academic progress of athletes (within NCAA, conference and College rules), interact with campus governance groups on intercollegiate athletics matters and other matters appropriate to its purview referred to it by the campus President.

Composition - The membership of the Cobleskill IAB will consist of sixteen members. To ensure compliance with NCAA policies, faculty and administrators combined shall comprise the majority of the voting membership of the Board. Ten voting members will be appointed from the faculty and administration with the Director of Athletics being one member. Terms of appointment will be for two years with five members appointed in alternate years. To ensure adequate student representation, no less than one-third of the voting membership of the Board will be students.  Six voting student members will be appointed annually.  At least one male and one female from intercollegiate athletics teams and at least one non-athletic student will be appointed. Students must maintain a minimum 2.0 average and be enrolled full-time during the term of their appointments.

The campus President after consultation with the Faculty Governance Committee and Student Government will appoint faculty and student members. The campus President will also select administrative and other members. Both the chair of the Board and the college’s voting delegate to the NCAA will be appointed by the campus President and must be faculty members or administrators. Non-voting members may be appointed at the discretion of the campus President.

Personal Safety Advisory Committee

Purpose - As an advisory committee to the President, it deals with the broad range of campus safety issues including the personal safety and security of campus community members, traffic safety, occupational safety and health, fire safety, building hazards, safety in the institutional environment and any other health or safety issues referred to it.

Composition - The committee will be composed of two female students, two male students, one male and one female representative from residential life, a Wellness Center representative, a Counseling Center representative, the Director of Facilities Management, the Chief of University Police, an environmental health and safety officer and two faculty or staff members, male or female, as needed to make an equal number of male and female committee members. 

Special Committees Required by UUP Contract

College Panel

Purpose - A campus panel is selected according to the provisions of Article 33, Section 33.5, of the Agreement between

Composition - The Panel consists of an odd number of members not less than nine.

Professional Evaluation Committee

Purpose - The campus committee on professional evaluation shall, upon the request of a professional employee, review a final evaluation report characterized as “Unsatisfactory”. The committee review shall be addressed to both the procedure and substance of the unsatisfactory evaluation. Following its review, the committee shall prepare written recommendations to the professional employee, the immediate supervisor and, as appropriate, to the campus President.

Composition - The committee shall consist of five members, three of whom shall be professional employees serving positions in the negotiating unit selected at large by all professional employees in the negotiating unit. The remaining two members shall be selected by the campus President.

Professional Promotion Review Committee

Purpose - The committee reviews appeals of promotions that have been denied. It reviews all applications for promotion submitted to it by professional employees.  If the committee determines that the increase in duties and responsibilities under consideration does not warrant promotion, the panel shall so notify the employee.  If the panel determines that the increase or change in duties and responsibilities under consideration warrants promotion, it shall forward its recommendation to the campus President with a copy sent to the applicant.

Composition - The committee shall consist of not less than five nor more than seven members elected at large by all professional employees.

Special Boards

Alumni Board of Directors

Purpose - Through its Board of Directors, the Alumni Association conducts its business including sponsoring regional clubs, Alumni Day and other programs.

Composition - Membership of the Board consists of four officers, seventeen members and three student representatives elected for two-year terms.

Child Care Center Board of Directors

Purpose - To control all matters of policy and expenditure of funds relative to the establishment, operation and maintenance of a day care center for dependent children of State employees, of students enrolled in SUNY units, and the public at large; and to provide a practicum site for student enrolled in Early Childhood Education and related disciplines.

Composition - Membership of the Board of Directors consists of not less than nine nor more than fifteen members. A minimum of three directors shall be parents or guardians who currently have, or formerly had, children enrolled in the Child Care Center.  Directors are elected at an annual meeting by majority vote of the members present. Approximately one-third of the directors are elected annually for a term of three years.

College Foundation Board of Directors

Purpose - To conduct the property, affairs, business and concerns of the College Foundation, which supports a range of programs within the College. The Foundation seeks to generate financial support from the private sector which will provide the margin of excellence above those resources provided by the State.

Composition - The Foundation is governed by 25 members. Fifteen at-large members from the community who serve three-year terms, two College Council representatives who serve one-year terms, two Alumni Association who serve one-year terms and the Alumni Association president,  one faculty member serving a three-year term and one student serving a one-year term. They elect the Board of Directors which is comprised of seven at-large and three ex-officio members. The President of the College and two members appointed by the President serve one-year terms as ex-officio members. The Board elects four officers annually from among the seven at-large members to serve as the Executive Committee, specifically president, vice-president, treasurer and secretary.

Cobleskill Auxiliary Services

Purpose - To establish, operate, manage and promote educationally related services for the benefit of the campus community and to aid students and faculty in the development of auxiliary services.

Composition - All Directors shall be at least eighteen (18) years of age. The Board shall be composed of members of each of the following constituencies:

Eligibility - The directorship of the Corporation shall be open to all full-time members of the student body, academic employees, and management confidential employees, who qualify under Law.   There shall be twelve (12) directors as follows:

  1. Student Directors - Student directors shall consist of four (4) full-time matriculated students with a GPA of 2.00 or above - (two [2] freshmen and two [2] upperclassmen), to be elected for one-year terms.  One (1) of the student directors shall be the President of the Student Government, one (1) shall be a Bachelor of Technology student and one (1) shall be a commuter student.  Student directors shall be elected, appointed or terminated by Student Government prior to the Annual Meeting of the Corporation.
  2. Academic Directors.  Four (4) full-time academic employees who may be teaching or non-teaching (including librarians) faculty members of the College, to be nominated by the Constitution and By-Laws of the Faculty of the State University College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill, New York.  The Academic members shall be established so that one-half shall serve for the balance of the fiscal year in which they are elected and one (1) shall be established so that one-half shall serve for the balance of the fiscal year in which they are elected and one (1) additional year, another one-half of the directors shall serve for the balance of the fiscal year in which they are elected and two (2) additional years.
  3. Management Confidential Directors.  Four (4) full-time management confidential employees shall be appointed to one-year terms by the Chief Administrator of the College prior to the Annual Meeting of the Board.


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