Sydney VanNest wins 2023 SUNY Chancellor's Award
May 5, 2023
SARANAC LAKE – A student in North Country Community College’s Radiologic Technology program has been named the college’s recipient of the 2023 SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.
Sydney VanNest, a sophomore from Lowville, traveled to the award ceremony in Albany on Monday, April 24, with a contingent of family, friends and college faculty and staff. She was one of 193 SUNY students from across the state to be honored with a Chancellor’s Award, presented by Chancellor John B. King Jr.
“There is a place at SUNY for every New Yorker, and each of the students recognized today is an example of our extraordinary student body and their rich and diverse SUNY stories,” said Chancellor King.
The Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence was created in 1997 to recognize students who have shown academic excellence and accomplishments in the areas of leadership, athletics, community service, creative and performing arts, campus involvement, or career achievement.
VanNest was selected based on her accomplishments in the classroom, on the athletic field, and in her community. At the end of the fall 2022 semester, she had maintained a 3.88 GPA and received the Radiologist’s Excellence award for freshman year.
“Sydney has true drive and dedication to learning the radiology field, all while caring for her patients in clinical, along with her classmates in the classroom,” said Becky LaDue, director of the college’s Radiologic Technology program. “She is a very inspiring and committed individual with a very humble demeanor.”
VanNest has been in clinical training at Samaritan Medical Center in Watertown, where she works 32 hours a week.
“She is a pleasure to have at SMC, to teach and to work with,” said Beth Hayes, clinical instructor.
A member of Phi Theta Kappa honor society and Lambda Nu, a national honor society for radiologic technology students, VanNest has also played soccer and lacrosse for North Country. Last spring, she was a first-team all-region selection for lacrosse. In addition, VanNest has worked as a peer tutor in the college’s Learning Assistance Center in both her freshman and sophomore years. She won the LAC Peer Tutor Award in 2022.
“Sydney demonstrated commitment to her classmates and made sacrifices to help others succeed,” said LAC Coordinator Lisa Williams.
At home in Lowville, VanNest participates in the Lewis County Christmas Sharing Program, which she has been involved with since middle school. She also cares for her elderly grandparents by helping them with their daily needs.
VanNest said she was honored to be selected for a Chancellor’s Award.
“I felt humbled that I was chosen for such a prestigious award,” she said. “It was wonderful to attend the ceremony in Albany and hear about all the accomplishments of the other students receiving the award, and I was lucky to have a lot of support there with me.”
After she graduates from North Country later this month, VanNest said she plans to continue her education to become a diagnostic sonographer and work part-time as a radiologic technologist at Samaritan Medical Center.