AU Press Releases

AU hosts 2009 WNY Student Leadership Conference

The 2009 WNY Student Leadership Conference, scheduled for Monday, Jan. 19, will be hosted at Alfred University, co-sponsored by Canisius College, the University at Buffalo, St. Bonaventure University, Niagara University, and AU’s HEOP Program.

Workshops will cover a variety of leadership topics. Registration is $15 a person and can be competed online at involvement/leadership.cfm. Students from Rochester Institute of Technology; Daemen College, Buffalo; and Alfred State College will also be attending the conference.

Kathy Woughter, Alfred University vice president for Student Affairs commented, “It is a wonderful privilege to host the second annual WNY Leadership Conference. We hope to have over a hundred students sharing their leadership experiences and learning from professionals at several colleges and universities. What a great way to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, JR – bringing people together to transform ourselves, our organizations, and our communities.”

Some of the speakers presenting throughout the educational sessions include Janet Tant, captain in the U.S. Navy, presenting “Leading in the Military Context: How Valid is GI Jane?” This session will explore some of the common perceptions about military leadership and offer alternative views specifically in the context of leadership in Reserve components.

Bruce Kulp, senior project manager at One Communications, will offer “Getting Ahead through Networking.” He will teach students how to use networking for leadership and job development.

Diana Castellanos and Rafael Rodriquez, both of the University of Buffalo, will be presenting a public speaking workshop that will help students find ways to calm their fears and learn basic concepts of public speaking to improve skills.

Nancy Williams, recruiting coordinator for the Career Development Center at Alfred University, will present “Interviewing 101: Marketing Your Leadership Skills During an Interview,” an interactive session where students can learn an easy three- step process that will prepare them for interviewing.

Other speakers will include Terri Frysh of the University of Buffalo; Cathie Chester, director of counseling services at AU; Trish Dillenbeck and Jamie Jueckstock of Buffalo State College; Laura Findlay, AU graduate assistant; RJ Cook, AU senior; Jill Crandall, internship and co-op coordinator at Alfred University; Amy Jacobson, immediate-past director of the Women’s Leadership Center at AU; and Fowziyyah Ali of the State University of New York at Geneseo.

During the conference, participants will also be completing a service project in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. In 1994, Congress initiated the King Day of Service a national day of community service grounded in his teachings of nonviolence and social justice. “The aim is to make the holiday a day where people of all ages and backgrounds come together to improve lives and bridge social barriers.” More information about this movement can be found at

There will be four educational sessions throughout the day, located in various locations in the Powell Campus Centers. Each educational session has three-four speakers students can choose to listen to.

The schedule for the day is as follows:
10-10:45 a.m. Registration and work on Service Project
10:45 a.m. – Welcome session and Icebreakers
11:20 a.m.-Educational Session I
12:15 p.m. - Lunch, Keynote Speaker and Service Project
1:30-4:30 p.m. Educational Sessions II-IV
4:30 p.m. - Closing Session

For more information on the conference, contact Woughter by e-mail at, or by phone at 607.871.2132.