Cazenovia College partners with Athenaeum for lecture series

Winifred Coleman has long had a strong connection with her community.

As dean of students at Cazenovia College from 1957 to 1971, Coleman was extremely loved and respected, two characteristics she has now brought with her to Skaneateles.

Now a resident at The Athenaeum of Skaneateles on East Genesee Street, Coleman is uniting the two lakeside communities through education, according to Wayne Westervelt of Cazenovia College.

"She is very affectionately known by those of us here at the college," he said. "She's an extremely well-loved dean of students."

Between the college and the Athenaeum, the Winifred Coleman Community Lecture Series has been developed. The series of four lectures to be held on Wednesday evenings in July beginning this week, July 8, is slated to be informational, yet fun.

"The emphasis will be on informative but fun, a little bit on the lighter side, not so much the real hard topics in depth," Westervelt said.

According to Westervelt, the opportunity to hold the lecture series presented itself because of Coleman staying at the Skaneateles home. It was a "logical connection," he said.

"They're [residents in Cazenovia] very aware of Winnie Coleman. Typically we get, 'Oh this is for Winnie, what can we do?'" Westervelt said about the response to the lecture series. "The other aspect is that it's an opportunity for us to branch out and be involved in a community event and initiative in Skaneateles."

Stephen Bowman, president of Peregrine Health Management Company, said the series lends itself to the company's philosophy of being a long-term care community.

"Residents should continue to grown intellectually and spiritually," Bowman said. "It brings the community into the building."

A dynamic model, Bowman said events such as the lecture series are both socially and intellectually stimulating for the residents at the Athenaeum.

"We're thinking out of the box and we're challenging," he said. "They're [Cazenovia and Skaneateles] very similar communities and both have a lot to offer each other. Winnie made the connection obvious and direct. They were thrilled to do this."

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