College Notes for October 2012

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Four local students have started their freshmen fall semester at the private College of St. Rose in Albany, N.Y.

Neil Bednar of Pittsfield, a graduate of Pittsfield High School; Ethan Graham of Pittsfield, a graduate of Taconic High School; Ryan Kasala of Dalton, a graduate of Wahconah Regional High School; and Avery Witherell of North Adams, a graduate of Drury High School, are among the 595 students in the class of 2016.

Bryant University
in Smithfield, R.I., welcomed three local students into the class of 2016.

Starting their freshmen year are two Dalton residents, Shawn Folan and Dean Nichols, both majoring in finance, and Noah Kelley of Lanesborough, an entrepreneurship student

Two Pittsfield residents are among those beginning the fall semester at Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic.

Peter Gregory is studying pre-biology and Jill Ritrosky is majoring in sociology.

"We are pleased that these students have decided to attend Eastern and have the opportunity to experience the benefits of our liberal arts education while enjoying student life on our beautiful campus," said Ned Harris, director of enrollment management. Harris notes that Eastern freshmen come from 162 of Connecticut's 169 towns, from 26 other states and from 44 other countries.

Pittsfield resident Bryan Levardi is enrolled at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, S.C. The 2012 Taconic High School graduate is among the 9,000 students enrolled at the university.

Olivia Wilber of New Marlborough will star in Dean College's production of "Cabaret." Wilber will be featured in multiple choreographed performances throughout the evening in a one-night-only program produced by the Franklin college's dance school. The evening is described as a "collaborative effort between staff and student direction and choreography," according to  Julianne O'Brien Pedersen, dean of the college's Joan Phelps Palladino School of Dance.

The shows will take place on Oct. 26 at 6:30 and at 9. For tickets and information:, 508-541-1605 or

Callen Brooks of Williamstown, a member of the Bowdoin College Class of 2015, was honored for academic excellence during the Brunswick, Maine, college's annual Sarah and James Bowdoin Day ceremony, held Sept. 28.

Students designated Sarah and James Bowdoin Scholars are in the top 20 percent of each class for the previous academic year, based grade-point average. In addition, those scholars who earned a 4.0 GPA are designated Sarah and James Bowdoin Book Award winners.

Jacob Botto, son of Jodie and Scott Botto of Clarksburg, is a member of the St. Michael's College Fire & Rescue Squad. Botto, a senior economics major, serves in the Rescue Unit. He graduated from Drury High School in North Adams before attending St. Michael's in Colchester, Vt.

The Fire and Rescue Squad is an independent volunteer organization of students that provides fire protection and emergency medical treatment not only on campus but also throughout a broad area of Vermont's most populous county. The Rescue Squad responds to more than 2,400 calls annually and Fire Unit to an average of 600 emergency calls per year. As one of the first college-affiliated fire departments in New England, St. Michael's Fire Department has been a model for colleges nationwide.

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