Scene and Seen: Detailed Plans for SUNY Purchase's Recently Announced Retirement Community, and Fashion's Night Out in Westchester

We’re on the cusp of fall and, for many, vacation time has come to an end  and the kids are ensconced in their school routines. For our local institutions of higher learning, it has also been a busy time as well.

SUNY Purchase has revealed more detailed plans for the opening of its recently announced retirement community to be built on the campus’s southwest corner.

According to to a September 9 article in the Westchester County Business Journal, SUNY Purchase President Thomas Schwarz said there should be a developer selected and a definitive plan in place for the 40-acre complex within a year. The development will contain between 250 and 385 units, depending on the plan selected by the Purchase College Advancement Corporation (PCAC), a not-for-profit liaison between the school and project planners, with 20 percent of the units being set aside as affordable housing.

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At a press briefing, Schwarz said the project will be completely privately funded with no tax dollars going toward construction.

Also of note, Westchester Community College President Joseph N. Hankin celebrated 40 years at the helm of the school. According to an interview in the Business Journal, Hanking is still actively involved in all aspects of running the school—he even signs each student’s diploma at every commencement. According to the article, Hankin has overseen an increase in online courses being offered, and the percentage of minorities within the student body has exploded; WCC enrolls about 4,000 students in English as a Second Language programs each year. Hispanics accounted for 25 to 27 percent of the student makeup last year.

Hankin also played a big role in expanding the Westchester Community College Foundation, which seeks to support faculty and students through scholarships totaling $1 million annually.

Meanwhile, while Fashion Week was all the rage in Manhattan earlier this month, Westchester County was not left out of the fun. The Westchester took part in its first Fashion’s Night Out, a national event spotlighting retail. According to a September 9 article in White Plains Patch, the event made its initial splash in 2009 in New York City among various retailers and now has made a name for itself in more than 100 U.S. cities. The initial purpose was to shine a spotlight—especially in tough economic times—on retail and what it has to offer.

The evening at The Westchester carried on this focus, with more than 40 of the mall’s stores participating. The various store displays featured everything from free samples to giveaways.

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In other news, Main Street Connect, a National Community News Company, is bringing its “Better Schools Bonanza” to Westchester County, where readers of their community news sites will get the chance to vote for their favorite elementary school, with the hopes of helping their school claim a grand prize of $10,000.

This year’s Better Schools Bonanza is open to all Westchester and Fairfield County public and private elementary schools, with the school with the most votes from each county winning $10,000. The second place prize of $1,000 will go to the runners-up in each county. All schools that receive 500 or more votes will receive $500.

Beginning September 19, Main Street Connect readers in Westchester will be able to submit the name of their favorite elementary school on any of the 32 Westchester news sites. Voting runs through October 28. Submissions will be open for the entire run of the promotion. Readers can return to the sites every day to vote for their school. For a complete list of Main Street Connect’s new Westchester websites, visit

A leaderboard will display the top vote-getters in the two counties. The Better Schools Bonanza complements Main Street Connect’s efforts to return to the roots of local communities and revive the concept of the hometown newspaper in an online digital format. With local schools at the heart of each community, the contest rallies communities at the most local level possible.

Our CEOs & Business Leaders Golf Outing is August 5!

Our Best of Westchester Party is July 24!

Our Westchester Home Design Awards event is June 26!

Our Wine & Food Festival returns June 4-9!

Our Wunderkinds event takes place on May 23!

Our Best of Business Ballot is open through May 15!

Our Healthcare Heroes Awards event takes place on May 9!

Our Westchester Home Builders Awards take place on April 4!

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Forum is March 14!

Unveiled: A Boutique Bridal Brunch is February 25!

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