Since the early 1990s, HWS has strived to organize student, faculty and staff energies and interests in community engaged learning, to be a steward of place, and to uphold the democratic and public purposes of higher education. Many of our graduates go on to serve locally or nationally in various AmeriCorps programs or commit to two years of international service with the Peace Corps. HWS is one of only 100 colleges that matches a part of the Segal AmeriCorps education stipend and has been recognized by the Peace Corps on the list of "Top Volunteering Producing Colleges and Universities."
Geneva 2030, a community wide collective impact initiative anchored at HWS, was featured in a competition sponsored by the National Civic League and helped secure the "All America City" designation with the City of Geneva. HWS Colleges President Emeritus Mark D. Gearan served a key role on the planning committee of the competitive $10 million grant awarded to Geneva through NY State’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative. Many student community based research projects have been utilized in planning, assessment and development efforts by the city, school district, local non-profit agencies, and civic organizations.
- Welcome to Geneva, the thriving community that is home to Hobart and William Smith Colleges. For This Week in Photos, student photographer Billy Bird ’17 takes you through just a fraction of the local businesses and hot-spots that helped make Geneva an “All-America City in 2015.
- Bagels 'n Cakes,” opened in 1999 by Bill and Lori Legott, is a popular destination for students, offering everything from fresh-made bagels and sandwiches to cookies, cakes and homemade pies.
- Here, Caitlyn Heinz, a pastry chef at Bagels and Cakes, puts the finishing touches on a set of vanilla and chocolate cupcakes.
- Right in the heart of downtown Geneva on 489 Exchange Street, Geneva Bicycle Center is the place to go for all things bicycle related, from sales and rentals to repairs. Surrounded by rolling countryside and thriving wineries, Geneva is ideal for cycling.
- Owner Jim Hogan shows off some of the merchandise available at Geneva Bicycle Center. He has run the business for more than 15 years and the hard work of the staff has earned GBC a place in the top 100 bicycle stores in the U.S. for four years running.
- Located on Exchange Street, El Morro Restaurant features Puerto Rican and international cuisine. El Morro also has a food truck, which can be spotted at HWS during exams.
- Rafael Diaz, the owner of El Morro Restaurant, is also the chair of Festival Latino in Geneva, a popular celebration at the Bicentennial Park downtown.
- Linden Street in the city of Geneva is home to many popular restaurants and nightspots. On the weekend, the activity moves outside when Linden Street becomes a pedestrian walkway, and the social pulse of Geneva.
- One of Linden Street's newest restaurants, FLX Table, features a fixed menu, 12 spots at its table, and one different dining experience! Here, the co-owners Christopher Bates and Isabel Bogadtke pose for a photo.
- A staple of Exchange Street, Lake City Hobby and Toys has been in business in Geneva since 1971. The cozy hobby store sells everything from model kits, airplanes and trains to collectibles and remote controlled cars.
- Jim Greco has owned Lake City Hobby and Toys since 1976, when he and his wife Marlene purchased the store from John and Teresa Zugec. Jim prides himself on creating a friendly and inviting atmosphere, while helping customers find just the right toy.
- Melissa's Barber Shop is a men's haircare specialist on Seneca Avenue, just across from the Smith Opera House.
- Melissa Cardinale Peters, owner of Melissa's Barber Shop, has been running her business in Geneva since 2004.
- A downtown Geneva landmark since 1894, the Smith Opera House is a popular destination for students, faculty, staff and Geneva community members. Each year the Smith hosts numerous events including films, concerts, plays and performances.
- Kelly Bradley, Executive Director and Director of Operations of the Smith Opera House, sits in the lower level of the restored 19th-century theatre. Able to seat 1400, the Opera House features live performances and films, and is dedicated to enhancing cultural opportunities in Geneva.
- The Geneva Community Center brings members of the community together supporting collaborations and relationships that link organizations, services, neighborhoods and age groups. The Center also houses the Boys and Girls Club of Geneva.
- Chris Lavin ’81, the executive director of the Geneva Community Center, stands in the computer lab surrounded by desktops and 3-D printers, all for use by community members and children.
- Stomping Grounds is one of a number of interesting retail shops downtown. Specializing in vintage books and prints, they also carry custom postcards, antique maps, home accessories and gift items. It’s not unusual to find faculty and students in the upstairs lounge where patrons can relax, study and write.
- Bethany Haswell, co-owner of Stomping Grounds, shows off some of the prints and books available for purchase. Beth began Stomping Grounds with her husband James and, along with selling antique books and other items, runs a custom framing and fine art printing service through the store.
- Located on Preemption Road, Redman's Chicken & Ribs is Geneva's source of Southern style cooking.
- Larnard and Kelly Scott, owners of Redman's Chicken & Ribs, prepare for the lunchtime rush.
- Oba Express Sushi & Hibachi is a relative newcomer to the area, setting up shop close to the Hobart and William Smith campus this year.
- Jackie You (left) and Ken Chen (right), who had previously worked together in restaurants across New Hampshire and Maine, co-own Oba Express Sushi and Hibachi take-out and restaurant. While both are natives of China, You and Chen have always been enthusiastic about Japanese-style food, and are already making a name for themselves among Geneva's sushi-lovers.
- On historic Routes 5 & 20 just outside Geneva is Mac's Drive-In, a classic, old-fashioned diner with root beer floats, hamburgers, salads and all the fried favorites. This year, Mac’s celebrates its 55th year in business.
- John Conley and Craig Adam are co-owners of Mac's Drive-In, one of the few remaining drive-in restaurants in New York State.
- North of the City of Geneva is Qwiksolar Solar Farm, a co-operative where local residents and businesses can own a solar array and use it to remotely power their workplaces and homes.
- Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, founder Ryan Wallace moved Qwiksolar to New York State in 2012 and began working in the Finger Lakes and Rochester regions.
- Started in 2015 as charitable organization, BluePrint Geneva builds portable homes that are self-sufficient and that generate their own electricity and heat.
- Noah Lucas '13, a co-founder of BluePrint Geneva, finishes construction inside his 288 sq. ft. home. Lucas designed the home which relies on solar power and rain water harvesting, and that includes a composting toilet, wood stove and radiant in-heat flooring.
- A popular ice cream shop in the Geneva area, Mr. Twistee's on Pre-Emption Road makes their own ice cream, sherbet, frozen yogurt and Italian ice.
- Sharon Perrotto (left) and Barb Herbert (right) show off a cone of Strawberry Italian Ice at Mr. Twistee's ice cream. The family business is popular with both HWS students and the larger Geneva community.
- With views of the west side of Seneca Lake (and HWS), Seneca Yacht Club has provided sailing and recreation to Geneva for nearly 90 years.
- Justin Coyne, a sailing instructor at Seneca Yacht Club, prepares for an afternoon sailing lesson with children of all ages.
- A hub for New York State's agritourism industry, the Finger Lakes Wine Country is home to more than 120 wineries like Sheldrake Point Winery on neighboring Cayuga Lake.
- Assistant Winemaker Julia Hoyle '11 poses in Sheldrake Point's barrel room, which holds up to 97 barrels over the course of a year.
- This collection of photos highlights just a few businesses and organizations that make Geneva a thriving and diverse community. With the recent allocation of $10 million from the New York Downtown Revitalization Initiative, Geneva's future is bright.