2008 Recipients


Mary Calabrese
Finger Lakes Community College

Mary is a 1992 graduate of Geneva High, with two children: a nine year old daughter, Nicole and a four year old son, Dominick. She works 35 hours a week at Royce and Rosen Kranz where she has been employed for four years; she has been a licensed insurance agent for fourteen years. In addition, she has been attending FLCC on a part time basis for the last 7 years where she has been successfully working towards a degree in Graphic Arts and ultimately pursuing her dream of a career in the art field. She has been on the Dean's list for most semesters. With this busy lifestyle, she finds time to do volunteer work and donates considerable amounts of her artwork to charities. In her spare time, Mary and her daughter 'create unique pieces of jewelry and sell them at the Smith Opera House and the South Bristol Cultural Center.' Her experiences at FLCC have made her a more confident person as well as making her feel that she is much closer to the realization of her dreams. She is also very much aware of the fact that she is setting a good example for her children and that they too can achieve their goals if they work hard and persevere. Mary is a 'firm believer in working hard and setting her goals very high'. 'It is so important not to let go of your dreams'. Her work ethic, discipline, creativity and commitment are well-documented and unequivocally make her a most worthy and deserving recipient of the Ed and Gerry Cuony Scholarship as well as an outstanding example of what the community college is all about.

Pat A DeVellis
Finger Lakes Community College

Pat has "lived a life that most people would not understand." In primary and elementary school, he was an exemplary student and a Boy Scout. His father, Patsy DeVellis, a self-employed handy man whom Pat followed around virtually every day after school was his "world." As Pat was preparing to enter 6th grade, his father passed away and his own life began a "downward spiral." His grades dropped and he had what he now acknowledges "extreme disciplinary problems." Thanks to two concerned staff members at the Geneva Middle School, he was able to get his "life back on track." He left school before the end of his freshman year; attended BOCES classes; received his GED and took on a sereies of part time jobs, most at minimum wage to help support his family and help them keep their home. In 2006, with Mom's blessing, Pat entered FLCC where he initially encountered some difficulty and frustration but soon adjusted to his new environment. According to one of his professors, Pat eventually "demonstrated great intellectual curiosity, very strong interpersonal skills, continued improvement, and considerable potential to grow and thrive in academic situations." Pat plans to attend Hobart College, and ultimately, his dream is to obtain a Doctorate degree and to give back to his community by teaching at FLCC. Thus far, his hard work, conscientiousness and commitment have indicated that he is well on his way to a successful future.

Hannah Y Schoonover
Geneva High School

Throughout her 4 years at Geneva High, Hannah has pursued a challenging and rigorous academic schedule: Advanced Placement courses in Language and Composition, Physics, US History, Biology, and Calculus; four years of Latin; and she competed in the Math League. She achieved a GPA of 92.7. In addition to her academic successes, Hannah became involved in a unique program called "New Visions Medical" offered through BOCES and Geneva General Hospital for students who are interested in the medical profession. She spent half of her day at Geneva General and was given the opportunity to examine a full array of medical careers. Hannah has also been involved in many other activities in school and the community. She is a member of the National Honor Society; she was a member of the band for four years; and participated in school plays and musicals as well as the Geneva Theater Guild. She also was a key participant on the Varsity Cross Country team. Hannah will be attending Ithaca College where she will be enrolled in the school's outstanding and challenging Physical Therapy program.

Marc Mason
Geneva High School

Marc's academic pursuits during his four years at GHS are most impressive: Advanced Placement courses in US History, World History and Biology; 4 years of Spanish; and he received final grades in the 90's in all of his Social Science courses. He achieved a GPA of 88.6.He also has received a Wegman's scholarship and the Senator Mike Nozollio Award. He participated in a number of sports: Football for 3 years; Lacrosse for 2 years; Track for two years; and Basketball for two years; and, was a delegate to Boys' State; he was a member of Model UN. He has done volunteer work involving foreign aid at St. Stephens, participated in the Big Brother, Big Sister program, the Blood Drive, and the 30 Hour Famine. This summer, Marc will be participating in the Presidential Classroom Future Leaders Summit at Georgetown University. He will be attending Syracuse University in the fall to pursue a dual major in International Relations and Law with a minor in Political Science. He plans to receive his Masters degree and ultimately work with the United Nations Security Council to help create resolutions for global issues.

Elena Augustus
DeSales High School

Elena Augustus has clearly demonstrated the qualities that make her worthy of this prestigious award. She achieved a 90 GPA for four years and was this year's NYS Lottery Scholarship winner. Elena was a member of Key Club, vice-president of the National Honor Society and an active member of Student Council all four years. A four year Varsity basketball player, Elena was a first team all-league selection in her junior and senior years. She also participated on the girls soccer and softball Varsity teams. She is a talented vocalist, a coach for the CYO girls basketball team and a volunteer at Geneva General Hospital Day Care. Elena will attend Keuka College to pursue her studies and play on the Keuka Storm basketball team.

Robert Gilles Jr.
DeSales High School

Robert Gilles Jr. has excelled as a DeSales High School Student-Athlete. He achieved a 96 GPA for four years,receiving several top academic awards in Math, Biology and Chemistry. A five-year starting player on both the bowling and baseball teams, he was named first team all league all five years in both sports. This year he was named Captain of the football team. Robert was president of his senior class and participated in Student Council all four years. He is a graduate of Boy's State, a member of the Middle States Committee and a mentor in the DeSales Reading Program. He has volunteered at the Sons of Italy, Geneva Lunch Program and was the top fundraiser for the DeSales Walk-A-Thon. Robert is a recipient of the University of Rochester Susan B. Anthony Award and the Helen Gallagher Award for service. He will attend HighPoint College, North Carolina to pursue his studies and play Division 1 Baseball.