NYSSB celebrates its 150th in June, and the 100th for the Alumni Association

May 16, 2018

Credit http://www.thebatavian.com/tags/school-blind

This June 7-10, 2018 the New York State School for the Blind (NYSSB) and its Alumni Association will be celebrating milestone anniversaries.  NYSSB turns 150 and the Alumni Association turns 100!

You can get in on the celebration by attending the annual reunion of the Alumni Association that will take place June  7 through 10 at the Quality Inn in Batavia.  To reserve your space, contact Alumni Treasurer Chet Smalley at (814) 566-6332.

You can learn more about the NYSSB and this year's reunion activities by listening to this conversation with Alumni Association President Edwin Cooney and alumnus Andy Shields, who reflects on life at the school.

Following the Civil War in 1865 there was an increased awareness of the needs of persons with disabilities for medical care, rehabilitation, vocational training and education.  Soon thereafter residential schools began being established to meet these needs.  Just a few years later, in September 1868, the New York State School for the Blind (NYSSB) opened in Batavia, New York, on land that was purchased and presented to the state by the citizens of Batavia.

Credit Mary L. Martin Ltd. Postcards

The school opened with 17 students and by the end of the first school year, had grown to 65 residential students.  There were some attempts in those early years to hold reunions, but it wasn't until 1918 that the Alumni Association of the NYSSB was established. 

Credit American Printing House for the Blind

Through the years the Alumni Association has held annual reunions, supported trips for the senior class members of the school, recognized and rewarded academic achievement and proficiencies in braille, math, science and sports.

To reserve your space for this special Anniversary Celebration of NYSSB, contact Alumni Treasurer Chet Smalley at (814) 566-6332.