Two Students Earn Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence

SUNY Chancellor Award winners Asma Halimi and Rosanna Cuttone with President Dr. Timothy E. Sams

SUNY Old Westbury seniors Rosanna Cuttone and Asma Halimi have been selected as 2023 State University of New York Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence recipients, the highest honor bestowed upon students in the SUNY system.

The Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence acknowledges students who have best demonstrated their integration of academic excellence with other aspects of their lives, which may include leadership, campus involvement, athletics, career achievement, community service or creative and performing arts.

SUNY Chancellor Award winners Asma Halimi and Rosanna Cuttone with President Dr. Timothy E. Sams
SUNY Chancellor Award winners Asma Halimi (left) and Rosanna Cuttone with President Dr. Timothy E. Sams.

"The students recognized today are an example of our extraordinary student body and their rich and diverse 'SUNY stories,'" SUNY Chancellor John B. King, Jr. said at the award ceremony on April 24, 2023. "Student success is at the core of everything we do, and I am honored to celebrate students from all SUNY campuses who are receiving this year's Chancellor's Awards for Student Excellence.”

Rosanna Cuttone, from East Meadow, New York, is a Psychology major graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology with a minor in social work. In addition to being on the Dean’s List and Athletic Director’s Honor Roll each semester with a GPA of 3.82, Cuttone recently received a scholarship from Tau Sigma, a national honor society recognizing academic excellence in transfer students. Cuttone, who competes in both softball and cross country, was President of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC) and represented Old Westbury at the NCAA Career in Sports Forum Conference in Indianapolis in June 2022. Outside the classroom, she works as a Student Ambassador and Tour Guide, peer mentor in the Office of Student Success and TRIO, and is the founder and president of OW Rainbow, a LGBTQIA+ support group with more than 100 members.

Asma Halimi, from Huntington, New York, is a Politics, Economics and Law major who will graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in politics, economics and law. A member of the Honors College, she has been on the Dean’s List every semester with a 3.91 GPA. As president of the PEL Club, she led activities that have improved, informed and inspired the campus community. This includes leading a campus midterm election voter registration drive to promote student turnout in 2022 and hosting various Pizza and Politics events. Halimi was recognized by the Center for Student Leadership & Involvement for her work bringing notable guest speakers to campus including Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Bill Dedman. Her support for public and community service started in her first year at SUNY Old Westbury as a campaign volunteer with the Huntington Town Democrats, and she later served as part of the New York State Assembly Session Internship, as a legislative intern under Assemblywoman Monica Wallace.

SUNY Old Westbury is a selective public liberal arts college with more than 4,500 students studying in more than 40 undergraduate degree opportunities in its liberal arts and professional programs and 16 graduate programs in business, education liberal studies and mental health counseling. On the College’s 604-acre campus, students are challenged to take ownership of their futures through an environment that demands academic excellence, fosters intercultural understanding, and endeavors to stimulate a passion for learning and a commitment to building a more just and sustainable world. For more information on SUNY Old Westbury, visit