Jan. 6, 2015

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Kowal listens, talks at regional meeting

uupdate 1-6-15

UUP President Fred Kowal discusses union issues with Western New York chapter leaders at the first in a new series of regional meetings.

The first meeting was held Jan. 6 in Buffalo, where Kowal met with more than 20 chapter presidents and officers from Alfred, Buffalo Center, Buffalo HSC, Buffalo State, and Fredonia. He briefed chapter leaders on a host of union initiatives, including UUP's new legislative agenda and its multifaceted action plan to reduce student debt and provide a long-term funding source for SUNY.

“I’ve decided to do this to bring people up to date but to also get information from them,” Kowal said at the meeting, held at UUP’s Buffalo Center Chapter offices on the UB campus. “We need to know what’s happening at the campuses and we want to let you know what we’re doing and where we need your help.”

A meeting in Central New York is set for Jan. 13 at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse. Representatives from several campuses, including Upstate, Binghamton University, SUNY Cortland, SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry and SUNY Oswego are set to attend. Other meetings are in the works.

Chapter leaders said they appreciated the effort.

“I think this is a great idea,” said Buffalo State Chapter President Rick Stempniak.

Kowal detailed a number of topics at the meeting, including teacher preparation and education issues and the impact the state’s START-UP NY program could have on SUNY schools in Western New York.

VP for Professionals Philippe Abraham, Secretary Eileen Landy and Acting Membership Development Officer Ray Gleason were also at the seminar.

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