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Commencement Profile: James L. Wangelin

Posted: May 10, 2012

James Wangelin has earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration with a concentration in marketing.

Wangelin will receive the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence during the 10:00 a.m. baccalaureate ceremony at Buffalo State's 140th Commencement, Saturday, May 12, in the Sports Arena.

He maintained a 3.23 GPA while competing on Buffalo State’s men’s cross-country and track and field teams and serving as an Orientation Week leader and residence hall mentor.

Wangelin grew up in an economically challenged rural town where few students went to four-year colleges after high school. To Wangelin, a recipient of the Brigette Kallen Scholarship, being successful was not just about attending Buffalo State, but also about becoming a part of the Buffalo State community—by getting involved, helping people, and trying new things.

He made that dream a reality by excelling both in the classroom and on the field. On the cross-country team, Wangelin earned a top-five spot and was chosen Most Valuable Player for 2009–2010. He served as captain of both the cross-country and track and field teams. He helped Buffalo State capture its first SUNYAC Championship title in indoor track and field in spring 2011.

Since the end of his freshman year, Wangelin became involved with Buffalo State’s First-Year Orientation, earning a student leadership award at the National Orientation Directors Association Region IX Conference. Wangelin discovered a way to meet the needs of athletes while also meeting the needs of new students by serving as an athletic orientation leader. He got involved in Residence Life by becoming a first-year mentor in Porter Hall, and he encouraged and guided other students in becoming resident assistants or orientation leaders, or taking on other leadership roles.

In the community, Wangelin volunteered with the Buffalo City Mission and with terminally ill children at Women and Children’s Hospital of Buffalo. And he gave back to his high school alma mater, West Valley Central High, by working with its developing track and field players.

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