Congratulations to the fall 2017 Foundations scholars!

Photo of foundations winners and staff


Foundations is a workshop series that introduces Syracuse University students to essential life-skills. Lecture topics include: community involvement, leadership, career development, financial wellness, healthy relationships and self-care, physical health and nutrition, and information literacy. While this series is open to ALL students, undergraduate students who attend all sessions can enter to win a $1,000 Foundations Scholarship each semester.

The Spring 2018 Foundations Workshop Series:

Jan. 22, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall
“Leadership” with Mark Trumbostudent-athlete engagement coordinator, Athletics
Beneath every house lies a foundation.  That foundation is responsible for bearing the weight of the entire house and its ability to stand against the elements of nature.  Your Core Values are the foundation that bears the weight of your decision making and choices.  What do you stand for? As the old saying goes, “If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.” This highly interactive session will push you to make tough choices and understand what it is YOU value!

Jan. 29, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall
“Resilience” with Kristelle Aisaka, Health Promotion Specialist | Mental Health, Office of Health Promotion

Feb. 5, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall
“Career Development” with Erin Miller ’16, co-founder and CAPCOM for Out There Productions; innovation and immersion recruiter for the iSchool
The most effective way to find your career path is to be aware of your passions, experience, and values. Sometimes that can be done with starting your own company. Other times, it means saying yes to opportunities that make you curious. You can get started right now, right here. Syracuse University provides a selection of immersive and exploratory experiences for students looking to build their education outside of the classroom. Get ready to expand your mind to create your own world. In this session, Erin will talk about her journey to building her passion-fueled career, and will make you adjust your mindset on how you think of your future.

Feb. 12, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall, *change in schedule, updated 2/2/2018
“Food as Medicine” with Veronica Tearney, sports performance specialist, Athletics; and Rachel Gregg, Pharm D., CSCS
An apple a day might not keep the doctor away, but in this lecture you’ll hear how everyday foods can help alleviate common ailments, plus you’ll learn some of the best exercises to rehabilitate or strengthen common areas of weakness and injury.

Feb. 19, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall
“A Comedic Guide to Money” with Colin Ryan, comedic speaker, financial educator, and author
Did you know that less than 48% of students can pass the Jumpstart Coalition’s Financial Literacy Survey? The secrecy and shame that surround money leave many people ill-prepared to make financial choices that will affect their entire future. Despite this, positive and open conversations are a solution… a solution that’s just not happening enough. Colin will have students engaged and interacting in a discussion of one core idea: your ability to manage your money directly affects your ability to have the life you want.

Feb. 26, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall
“Community Engagement with a Purpose” with the Rev. Brian E. Konkol, Ph.D., dean of Hendricks Chapel
We are connected with people and places through ways and means unlike any previous generation. We live in a “global village.” But what is the nature of our vast connections? As stated by Steve de Gruchy: “This is a [global] village that has a chief, a headmen, and favoured families, and poor families, and women who collect the water and the firewood, and beggars living on the scraps on the edge of the town; and lepers who aren’t allowed in town. And the price of having a stall in the market is too high for some families to trade their goods.” In light of the diverse connections that shape our societies, Brian Konkol, Dean of Hendricks Chapel, will explore the ways in which religious and spiritual principles can inspire community engagement practices, for the purpose of “converting our connections” in service to a common good.

March 5, 7-8 p.m., 010 Eggers Hall, *change in schedule, updated 2/2/2018
“Information Literacy” with Jeffrey Rubin, president and CEO, SIDEARM Sports
We live in the information age, and Information technology will substantially affect your life whether you like it or not and whether you pay attention to it or not. Social media, networking, and security played a big role in the past three elections. Digital currencies (i.e., Bitcoin) and Blockchain are becoming everyday global terms. Small data, big data, data analytics are crucial to the largest corporations to the smallest start-ups.

How does it all work? What do you need to know about all this technology in order to succeed in life? How is it possible to keep up with the rapid pace of innovation in information technology? You probably don’t want to be a programmer or engineer, so why do you need to know about all this information technology? During this talk, we will explore all of these questions through a process of enhancing information technology literacy. Even if you know little or nothing about how computers, networks, and software work, I will provide a grounding that will get you started on a path of lifelong learning about technology.

March 26, 7-8 p.m., 500 Hall of Languages
Foundations Celebration and Scholar Awards

Scholarship Eligibility Criteria

In order to be considered for a $1,000 scholarship you must be an undergraduate student, attend ALL sessions, and submit ONE of the following by Friday, March 9, 2018, at 12:00 p.m. to

  • A double-spaced essay about what you learned from at least two topical areas and how you will apply what you learned to your life (750 words maximum, in Microsoft Word or PDF format)
  • A video/vlog of 3-5 minutes discussing what you learned from at least two topical areas and how you will apply what you learned to your life (you can submit a link to a video)
  • A digital portfolio of photos and/or other creative media showing what you learned from at least two topical areas and how you will apply what you learned to your life (this option is open to your own interpretation; please let us know if you have any questions)

A selection committee will select winner(s) and notify winner(s) during the series awards session.

About Foundations

Foundations is a collaborative effort between many Syracuse University departments and schools, including Career Services, The Office of Financial Literacy, Athletics, The Office of Health Promotion, and The Office of Engagement Programs – with more partnerships to come.

If you are interested in participating or presenting as a Foundations partner, please email Mark H. Trumbo,, with a description of your topic and session, along with at least three desired outcomes from your presentation. All participants will be reviewed and determined via committee.

To provide holistic education across key areas to prepare students for life.

A collaboration of Syracuse University campus offices to provide engaging educational opportunities for students in key life areas.

Participant Outcomes and Evaluation
1)      To improve self-efficacy.
2)      To gain baseline knowledge and resources.
3)      To increase self-awareness.
4)      To engage in and learn about being socially responsible.