Cayuga Faculty, Staff Receive SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence

SUNY honored four 91 faculty and staff members with the celebrated SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence this spring for their outstanding contributions to the College and its students.

Presented annually, the Chancellor’s Award recognizes SUNY faculty and staff for their dedication and achievements while also emphasizing SUNY’s commitment to classroom instruction, intellectual drive, and support for local communities. Awards are issued in Faculty Service, Librarianship, Teaching, Professional and Classified Service, and Scholarship and Creative Activities.

“Our recipients of the 2024 SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence demonstrate outstanding commitment to our students and our institution. They recognize Cayuga’s mission, and the important role they play in making our College an essential member of our Central New York community,” said Cayuga President Dr. Brian Durant. “On behalf of our faculty, staff and trustees at 91, I applaud our recipients for earning this well-deserved award.”

Cayuga recipients were recognized at the College’s 2024 Commencement on Wednesday, May 15, at Falcon Park in Auburn. Honorees are:

Excellence in Adjunct Teaching

Daniel Ferens — Adjunct Instructor

A U.S. Air Force veteran, Dan joined Cayuga in 2011 and has led business and computer science courses to student acclaim. As an instructor, Dan has successfully incorporated new technologies into his lessons, while also encouraging students to apply course principles to researching real-world campus community projects. Recently, Dan was an essential member of the College’s Mission, Vision, and Values Review Task Force, and was also instrumental in facilitating opportunities for students to submit feedback on Cayuga’s planning and mission. Dan earned his Master of Arts in Business Administration from the University of Northern Colorado, as well as a Bachelor of Science and Master of Engineering in Electrical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Excellence in Faculty Service

Dr. Terry Kupp — Professor and Director of the Learning Commons-Academic Support 

Professor Kupp has led Cayuga’s academic support services since 2012, ensuring students have access to tutoring, accessibility and testing services. Her work is integral across the College, from assisting admissions and faculty with placement testing to leading study skills workshops for students and coordinating Cayuga’s electronic and information technology accessibility efforts. She’s also served as the co-chair for Cayuga’s Middle States Self-Study Steering Committee, during which she’s shown exceptional leadership and commitment to Cayuga’s mission. Professor Kupp earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership and Management from Capella University in 2019, and previously earned her Master of Science from Syracuse University and Bachelor of Arts from Smith College.

Excellence in Teaching

Dr. Michael Pacelli ‘85 — Professor of Biology

Professor Pacelli returned to work at his alma mater in 2002 after earning an Associate in Science in Math and Science from Cayuga in 1985. At Cayuga, he has dedicated himself to creative instructional methods, including incorporating animation and video clips into his courses. Professor Pacelli leads courses in fields including, but not limited to, biology, chemistry, genetics, viticulture & enology, and zoology. After graduating from Cayuga, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from Le Moyne College. He then attended SUNY ESF, where he earned his Master of Science in Environmental Engineering in 1996 and his doctorate in Environmental Science in 2008.

Excellence in Classified Service

Glenn Warner — Building Maintenance Mechanic

Known throughout Cayuga for his work ethic, versatile skillset and engaging personality, Glenn started at Cayuga in 2009 as a custodian, and since 2018 has been a building maintenance mechanic. In this role, he performs skilled building repairs and maintenance work, along with supervising a number of workers in the Buildings and Grounds’ Maintenance and Repair Program. Outside the College, Glenn has served with the King Ferry Fire Department since 1983, and is currently an honorary member and vice president.