Chancellor Johnson Honors 249 SUNY Students for Academic Excellence and Leadership

April 10, 2018

Olympian, World Champion, and Empire State College Alumna Erin Hamlin Joins Celebration of SUNY’s Best

Albany – State University of New York Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson today presented 249 SUNY students from across the state with the 2018 Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence. SUNY students, their families, campus presidents, and faculty convened in the Albany Capital Center to congratulate this year’s awardees.

A complete listing of student recipients is available online.

“I am immensely proud of these students, who have demonstrated academic excellence and dedication to enriching their campuses and communities,” said SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson. “From research publications in industry journals to volunteering in hospitals and local clinics to holding leadership roles at their institutions, I am inspired by each student we recognize today. Congratulations to all of the students receiving this year’s award.”

Chancellor Johnson was joined by special guest Erin Hamlin, a four-time Olympian, 2014 Bronze Medalist, and two-time Luge World Champion. Hamlin made history at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games as the first American (male or female) to win an Olympic medal in singles luge, and was the first U.S. woman to win a medal in any luge discipline at the Olympic Games. The Olympian and world champion earned her A.A. in interdisciplinary studies online from Empire State College.

“As a proud SUNY alum, it is my honor to stand here today as we celebrate a room full of SUNY students and their pursuit of excellence in academics, athletics, and community,” said Hamlin. “Your achievements as SUNY students is just the beginning, and I have no doubt that this determination and dedication you possess will drive you to excel in all of your future endeavors.”

The Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence was created in 1997 to recognize students who have best demonstrated, and have been recognized for, the integration of academic excellence with accomplishments in the areas of leadership, athletics, community service, creative and performing arts, campus involvement, or career achievement.

Each year, SUNY campus presidents establish a selection committee, which reviews the accomplishments of exemplary students. Nominees are then forwarded to the Chancellor’s Office for a second round of review. Finalists are then recommended to the Chancellor to become recipients of the award.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year, is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2022, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

Share this:


Holly Liapis
Email the Office of Communications