Candice Dixon ’73 (Elementary Education) volunteers on the Alumni Advisory Council because she hopes to see SUNY New Paltz build a strong network of graduates eager to stay connected, but her ties to the College and an overwhelming sense of service inspire her both on and off campus.
As a retired educator, Dixon does a variety of volunteer work within the community. She works with children at her church, volunteers with the homeless, visits nursing homes to bond with the elderly, and continues to work with Delta Sigma Theta, the sorority she joined many years ago as a SUNY New Paltz student.
“The College helped shaped my future,” said Dixon. “It was a stepping stone that led to 36 years in public education, working with students in special needs, teaching and administration.”
Dixon’s ties to the College and the community are thick with family history. Her brother, Marshall Dixon graduated in the 1950s, and her sister Mary Dixon earned her degree in 1966. For Dixon, the pull to SUNY New Paltz was a familial one, but was also linked to her aspirations to volunteer and ultimately to educate.
“I would like to commend the education department, even now,” she said. “They offered me invaluable teachings that helped me become an educator. The things I learned still resonate with me today.”
In her role on the Alumni Advisory Council, Dixon hopes to see students become more involved on campus in order to build similar bonds to those that inspire her now as an alumna.
“I want to see the association be proactive with students while they’re still at the College,” she said. “This will help alumni make more personal contacts and allow them to find a common bond.”
And while the campus may have changed since she was a student here, Dixon is encouraged that through communicating effectively with alumni and students, the greater message to get involved, volunteer and be heard will not be lost.
“I went to New Paltz during a very different time period, during Woodstock and Vietnam War protests,” she said. “But I would have to say, that the roots are still the same. We have a strong network of students and alumni eager to make a difference.”