Two MVCC students receive Chancellor’s Award for excellence


UTICA — Mohawk Valley Community College students Abbygail Coston and Sabah Haji were selected to receive the 2022 Chancellor’s Awards for Student Excellence, the highest honor bestowed upon students by the State University of New York system.

Abbygail Coston, of Vernon Center, has maintained a 3.98 grade point average as a dual major in photography and fine arts. She is the president of Photography Club, and a member of Student Congress, the Judiciary Committee, and MVCC’s Lambda Beta Chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society.

Her photography has been recognized in both local and national publications, and this past fall, her photograph “Life During” was accepted into the SUNY Exhibition Series. In addition to working in MVCC’s photo lab and as a photography tutor, Coston runs her own photography business, Picturing Changes. She plans to continue her education to obtain a master of fine arts degree.

Sabah Haji, of Utica, is a first-generation college student and the daughter of refugee parents from Somalia.

She earned her associate degree in human services at MVCC in December and is now completing the Mechatronics certificate.

Haji is an alumna of Oneida-Herkimer-Madison BOCES P-TECH program, an integrated high school and college curriculum focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. She is the president of both MVCC’s Muslim Student Association and MVCC’s Lambda Beta Chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society, as well as a peer mentor and tutor.

Haji models tremendous resilience and persistence and values the importance of her education. After graduation, she plans to transfer to a SUNY school and dual major in mechatronics and sociology.

“Now more than ever, it is time to celebrate the accomplishments of our students who have helped one another get through this global pandemic and focus on getting the most out of their college education, and this year’s CASE winners are at the top of the class,” said SUNY Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley.

“It is my great honor to celebrate the fortitude, leadership, and achievements of this year’s winners, and I applaud their hard work and desire to do more for their campuses and fellow students. I, for one, can’t wait to see what they do next,” Stanley added.

The SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence acknowledges students for outstanding achievements that have demonstrated the integration of SUNY excellence within many aspects of their lives in areas such as academics, leadership, campus involvement, community service, or the arts.

It is the highest honor bestowed upon a student by the state university system. This year, 180 students from 61 campuses received the award, the announcement added. . 


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