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Coming up on Connections: Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Graduation cap

First hour: Why a growing number of colleges and universities are becoming test optional

Second hour: Discussing the health and future of midsize and regional banks following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank

Earlier this month, Columbia University became the first Ivy League school to go “test optional,” permanently – meaning it doesn’t require applicants to submit SAT or ACT scores. The institution first adopted the policy in 2020 during the pandemic, when there were concerns about access to the tests about the spread of COVID-19 at testing sites. Columbia is one of a growing number of colleges and universities that have become test optional, citing equity issues. We’ve reached out to colleges and universities in the region to inquire about their policies. This hour, we discuss the issue and current trends in the college application process with our guests:

  • John Baynes, former high school teacher, and current Monroe County Legislator for District 18
  • Emily Cady, college counselor at the Harley School
  • Shaun Nelms, Ed.D., superintendent of East High School, and professor at the Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester
  • Robert J. Alexander, Ed.D., dean of admissions, financial aid, and enrollment management at the University of Rochester

Then in our second hour, following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), there has been speculation regarding the health and future of midsize and regional banks. According to the New York Times, SVB’s failure “sent the stocks of more than a dozen small and midsize banks reeling on Monday, but they rebounded on Tuesday.” This hour, we talk with financial experts about the takeaways from SVB’s collapse and what banking customers need to know. Our guests:

  • Chuck Wade, senior vice president of Brighton Securities
  • Frank Hamlin, president and CEO of Canandaigua National Bank
  • Vince Yacuzzo, CFO of Canandaigua National Bank
  • Gwen Crawford, director of retail operations for Canandaigua National Bank
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.