Charles Dickens Comes to GCC to Support History Club

The Genesee Community College History Club is excited to kick off the holiday season as Charles Dickens, played by WKBW-TV’s Meteorologist Mike Randall, presents “A Christmas Carol.” All are invited to the College’s Batavia Campus on December 18, 2017 at 7 p.m. to enjoy this festive and heart-warming storytelling experience.

A multifaceted actor, Randall studied both theatre and meteorology in school and since 1983, Randall has reported the weather on WKBW-TV in Buffalo. An award-winning reporter, his interview repertoire includes such talents as Willie Nelson, Jerry Lewis, John Candy, Steve Allen, Gregory Peck and Robert Goulet. In September 2017, Randall was inducted into the Buffalo Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

Back in 1868, Charles Dickens toured the country bringing his classic novel, “A Christmas Carol” to audiences everywhere. Nearly century and a half ago, Dickens’ performances were completely sold out in Buffalo. For the last decade, with only a replica of Dickens’ famous velvet, fringed reading lectern and a copy of “A Christmas Carol,” Randall has been transforming himself into Dickens, recreating the original tour atmosphere in stages, halls, classrooms and many other venues. Randall performs in a period costume with a beard and wavy hair, and through his expert theatrics he brings Charles Dickens to life. He plays each of the novel’s characters with distinguishing voices and mannerisms capturing all of the subtle comedic timing of Dickens’ original work.

The performance will take place at GCC’s Batavia Campus in room T102 of the Conable Technology Building. Tickets for the performances are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. Advanced ticket purchases are strongly recommended as seating is limited!

Proceeds from the performance will go to the Genesee Community College History Club.

“Coordinating the event is part of the service learning experiences for GCC students and members of the College’s History Club,” Derek D. Maxfield, GCC’s associate history professor said. “This event is great opportunity for students to learn about the value of community engagement as well as history, and it is a terrific opportunity for local families and friends to enjoy a festive holiday event that is fun for all ages.”

For advanced tickets or more information, contact Associate Professor of History Derek D. Maxfield at (585) 343-0055 ext. 6288, or via email:


Pups coming for World Kindness Day!

Puppy!We will be celebrating World Kindness Day on Thursday. November 9th in the Forum from 12:30 – 2:00 pm.  The actual celebration of the day is Monday 11/13 so we will have many “kindness ideas” for you!  Also the Genesee Animal Shelter and Volunteers for Animals will have 4 legged friends for us to love and be kind to!

We are collecting supplies for the shelter on that day.  Urgent needs include:

  • Kitten food
  • Dry cat food
  • Dry and canned dog food
  • Dog collars
  • Cat litter

Students will be available that day that can pick up donations if you need help getting them to the Forum.  There will also be a spare change collection for the shelter and signing holiday cards for local veterans and the troops overseas.

Please join us for some kindness on the 9th!

Writing Club presents author Stephen Schottenfeld

Noted author Stephen Schottenfeld will present a reading on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at 12:30 p.m. in the Roz Steiner Art Gallery at the Batavia Campus of Genesee Community College. Bluff City Pawn is Schottenfeld’s most recent work, published in 2014 by Bloomsbury USA. The story follows a Memphis, Tennessee pawnshop owner as he enlists his brother’s help in a scheme to acquire a valuable gun collection. Through the lives of three brothers, the book explores themes of class, family, race, ownership and loyalty during tough economic times where desperation and the drive to ahead dominant.

He also completed a story collection, Miss Ellen Jameson Is Not Deceased, and he is currently at work on his next novel. His stories have been published in various publications, including The Gettysburg Review, Virginia Quarterly Review and New England Review. His work has garnered a grant from the Michener/Copernicus Society of America, a Halls Fiction Fellowship from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a Shane Stevens Fellowship in the Novel from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and special mentions in both the Pushcart Prize and Best American Short Stories anthologies.

Schottenfeld holds a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and earned an M.F.A. at the University of Iowa, where he is also a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He currently is the James P. Wilmot assistant professor of English at the University of Rochester.

JoNelle Toriseva, Creative Writing Club co-advisor and director of English, Communications & Media Arts, invited Schottenfeld to campus to share his work and creative process with students and the local community.

For further information, Schottenfeld’s “Artie Gottlieb, Consulting Philosopher,” is available online at the Virginia Quarterly:

Additionally, Schottenfeld reads an excerpt from Bluff City Pawn at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference available at: and a 2015 interview on Fiction Writers Review is available here:

Visiting Poet – April 17 at 12:30

Poet Jennifer Grotz will present a poetry reading on Monday, April 17 at 12:30 in T102.

Ms. Grotz is the author of three books of poetry, most recently Window Left Open. Also a translator from the French and Polish, her most recent translation is Rochester Knockings, a novel by Tunisian-born writer Hubert Haddad. Her poems, reviews, and translations have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The Nation, The New Republic, New York Review of Books, Ploughshares, New England Review, and in four volumes of the Best American Poetry anthology. Director of the Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference and assistant director of the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, she teaches at the University of Rochester.

Faculty, staff and students are invited to come and experience the beauty and joy of poetry as can be heard in the closing lines of Ms. Grotz’s poem “They Come the Way Flowers Do”

“When it spreads its wings its back reveals
ecstatic blue, and when a dozen that waited like pebbles
for your approach alight, it is the opposite of snowfall,
butterflies hardly conjures how the world is snowing sky.”

This event is sponsored by the Creative Writing Club.

Concert to Support History Club

As some of you know, our own Sonny (Frank) Mayo just released a new CD, Chasing the Chord, and is our featured artist in an upcoming concert to benefit the GCC History Club on February 11th at 7:30 PM in the Stuart Steiner Theater.

The students are raising money to go on an educational spring trip to Richmond, VA and Washington, DC.  Tickets are $10 presale and $12 at the door; GCC students are only $5 – as are children under 12.  You may obtain presale tickets from Derek Maxfield in B273 (, or from Flo Nolan in the second floor Humanities suite, or from any club member.  Copies of the new CD will be available for sale at the concert.

The GCC History Club is honored that Frank has donated his time to raise money for the club.  I hope you will support us too!


Derek D. Maxfield
Associate Professor of History

Historical Horizons History Initiative

I wanted to share with everyone the news that GCC will be hosting a new history initiative – Historical Horizons.  Sponsored by the History Club, the central piece (and only piece at present) will be a new lecture series that will take up a wide array of historical topics.  Tonight we inaugurate the new lecture series with a lecture entitled “The Alamo – The Myth, the Reality…and John Wayne.”  Our first speaker is Tom Schobert, a retired U.S. Army Lt. Colonel and more recently one of the most respected Gen. Robert E. Lee impressionists.

Historical Horizons lectures in Batavia are held the first Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM in T102 and are FREE and open to the public.  It is our hope to expand the lectures to the campus centers in the near future.  The calendar of lectures for the fall semester follows.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Professor Maxfield at anytime.  Thank you.

FALL 2015

7 October 

“Hell’s Half-Acre: The Bloody Angle at Spotsylvania”
Kris White, co-author of A Season of Slaughter: The Battle of Spotsylvania Court House

4 November

“The Philosophy of History: What does it Matter?
Jim Simon, GCC Associate Dean of Orleans County Campus Centers

2 December

“Recalling Reconstruction: The Ugly Story of a Splendid Failure”
Prof. Derek Maxfield, GCC Associate Professor of History


Derek D. Maxfield
Associate Professor of History

Anti-Bullying Campaign

Last week an e-mail went out announcing the anti-bullying campaign sponsored by Christian Students United & the Gay-Straight-Alliance.  The CSU & GSA hope our collaboration will demonstrate to the entire college community that often the most important things in life are much bigger than our individual personal or political beliefs.

Phase I of our campaign involves posting flyers around campus to create a bullying simulation.  Some of the flyers have been torn down (in the stairwell on the first floor of the D-building) and so clearly they are having their intended effect – to disturb those that encounter them.   But, tearing down the flyers will not make bullying go away.

To that end, just last Friday, 15 year old Jamie Hubley from Ottawa, Ontario killed himself.  He was bullied because he was gay.  In his suicide note he wrote, “You can’t break when you’re already broken.  I’m tired of life really.  It’s so hard, I’m sorry, I can’t take it anymore…..I don’t want to wait 3 more years, this hurts too much.  How do you know it will get better?”   Clearly, stopping daily insults and the pain that results from bullying is not as easy as tearing a piece of paper off of a bulletin board.  For things to change all of us need to be active participants.

As difficult as this subject is, and as difficult as it is to see these flyers, we would like to encourage all faculty, staff and administration to open your eyes, your ears and your hearts and to use these flyers and this campaign as an opportunity to listen to and to communicate with our students about how harmful bullying is.  Further, pay attention and should you see something, stand-up for our kids and say something.


Debra Crossett
Advisor – Christian Students United

Candice Faulring
Advisor – Gay-Straight-Alliance

Bollywood Dance Mania – Oct 15

Next Saturday, October 15th is the first “Cool Kids @ GCC” event of the 2011-2012 year! 


 Bollywood Dance Mania!!

Saturday, October 15th  
10:00am – GCC Forum

INDIA comes to Cool Kids!!  Get your cool on with the latest rage – and coolest cultural and colorful dance forms from all OVER India!  Join this troop of dancers and experience more than dance – experience India!  After the dazzling performance – WE ALL DANCE!!

Free and Open to the Public!


Brought to you by Generation Cool
(Want to hop on the Cool Kids Email List?
For Full 2011-2012 Schedule: or Facebook/Cool Kids!)    

Sponsored by your Campus Activities Board

Internet Safety Seminar

Internet Safety Seminar – Keep You & Your Family Safe

WHO should attend:  Those who use the Internet

WHAT:  Seminar on Internet Safety –Presented by Batavia Police Detective Todd Crossett and Barry Garigen

WHERE:  T102

WHEN:  Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 12:30 PM

WHY: To protect yourself and your children from Internet dangers

HOW:  Learn the dangers, warning signs and prevention strategies involving social networking to include: Internet gaming, pornography, cyber bullying, Internet predators and Internet auction fraud.

All are invited

September is National Campus Safety Awareness Month