Dear Members of the Syracuse University Community: The start of every new semester brings with it excitement and anticipation. This year, those emotions are heightened and for some include anxiety associated with a return to campus life during the COVID…
J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge: González Speaks, Scott Wins, Syracuse Stage Benefits
The 2019 J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge was painted Orange this year through Syracuse University’s multifaceted involvement. In its 42nd year, the road race continues to be a community event for Syracuse. More than 6,000 runners, walkers and rollers—including more than 110 University employees—traversed the 3.5-mile route along Onondaga Lake Parkway.
Bea González, vice president for community engagement and special assistant to Chancellor Kent Syverud, spoke as an honored guest at this year’s event because of the University’s involvement as both a participating organization and a VIP sponsor. González is also president of Syracuse Stage’s board of trustees.
“There is a lot of momentum right now regarding Syracuse University’s partnership with the community as an economic driver, research institution, volunteer hub and more,” says González. “Year after year, the Corporate Challenge is a visible example of the collaboration, partnership and togetherness that exists all throughout the CNY region that we are excited to be a part of.”
The University’s involvement was coordinated by a team of people led by team captain John Beecher, budget manager in the School of Education. Beecher coordinated the team along with Emily Winiecki in the Office of Community Engagement, Kim DeStefano from the Wellness Initiative and Lori Levengood from the Office of Government Relations.
“Being a part of something that brings so many Syracuse University employees together has been a powerful experience. The Corporate Challenge presents a unique opportunity to engage folks in a fun way,” says Winiecki. “Not to mention, I beat my time from last year.”
There were many impressive performances by Syracuse University faculty and staff, including the top spots, personal bests and first-timers.
Sascha Scott, associate professor and director of graduate studies in art and music histories in the College of Arts and Sciences, earned her fourth consecutive and fifth overall first-place finish in the women’s division with a time of 20:10. Jon French, assistant teaching professor of chemistry in the College of Arts and Sciences, was the top male finisher from Syracuse University and seventh overall with a time of 19:12.
Disha Manocha, marketing strategist in the Division of Marketing and Communications, participated in the event for the first time as a new employee at the University. She says she took a chance signing up, after not exercising for over a year. “I keep reminding myself to not limit my challenges but to challenge my limits,” says Manocha. “I didn’t win, but finishing the race has gotten me motivated to work out and get back into my dancing shoes.”
Proceeds from the event benefit Syracuse Stage’s educational programming. The Stage, a professional theater in residence at Syracuse University, operates as an independent nonprofit organization.
This summer, Syracuse Stage is hosting three programs for local middle school students. Two programs will be held at SALTspace on the Near Westside: July 15-19 and July 22-26. An additional two-week summer program will be held at Syracuse Stage July 29-Aug. 9, teaching students acting, voice and character development. Students will stage a truncated version of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at the conclusion of the program.
Regular educational programming for the Stage continues in the fall, as Syracuse Stage brings performances to elementary school audiences. This year’s performance will be “Suzette Who Set to Sea.” In addition, during the season, matinee main stage productions at Syracuse Stage are performed only for schools.
“It is a vital part of our mission to serve the community. For as long as we have been in operation, which is 46 seasons, we have been partnering with schools to provide access to and instruction about theater to area students,” says Joseph Whelan, director of marketing and communications at Syracuse Stage.
Anyone interested in bringing programming to children, registering children for programs or learning more about Syracuse Stage education opportunities can contact Kate Laissle, associate director of education, at 315.442.7755 or firstname.lastname@example.org.