Rather than moving away after receiving his degree from Binghamton University, Kyle Seeley ‘11 is still around more than two years after graduation, and he has become a vital member of the city of Binghamton.
Originally from Middletown in Orange County, N.Y., Seeley’s decision to stay in Binghamton after graduation has granted him several opportunities to work in local politics. Since graduation, Seeley has worked as an administrative assistant and field director for the Dan Lamb congressional campaign. At 24 years old, Seeley currently works as the executive assistant to Mayor Matthew T. Ryan.
Seeley began work as Mayor Ryan’s executive assistant in July 2013 and will continue to do so until the end of Ryan’s term this December.
Seeley was a political science major at BU. He said his decision to stay and work in Binghamton stems from getting involved and living in the city as an undergraduate.
“When you’re living here, you’re invested in the community — you’re more vigilant to what’s going on and want to make sure that the community that you’re living in is clean and safe,” Seeley said. “It’s really an interesting little community that I’ve come to appreciate and love.”
Despite his love for the city of Binghamton, Seeley is aware of the negative ideas that some students might have of the Downtown region.
“There’s a big perception issue of the city of Binghamton,” Seeley said. “People believe that it’s very unsafe and there’s not a lot going on — and that’s totally false.”
Seeley hopes that as more students get involved with the community, by way of volunteering and interning, the negative perception of Downtown Binghamton will disappear as students are exposed to the culture and activities that the city has to offer.
“If this is a place that you can call home for four years, and not just a place where you party and leave, I think that you can get a lot out of school and the community,” Seeley said. “Not every place is like Long Island — there’s a lot of different things out here.”
Seeley said that living in Binghamton and delving into its unique culture have personally helped him become more open-minded.
“Coming from Middletown, Orange County, there’s a lot more diversity and culture in Binghamton,” Seeley said.
Last autumn, Seeley co-founded ChangeOver Binghamton, a project devoted to fostering a greater connection between BU students and the city. Though he is no longer involved in the project, Seeley said he received positive reactions from his work.
“For the time that we were doing it, we got a lot of people saying ‘Hey that’s great.’ People were finally pointing out the good things that are happening here because that’s a big issue,” Seeley said.
Seeley said he believes that BU students can have success similar to his if they apply themselves within the community.
“Students should really look to get involved in what’s happening throughout the area,” Seeley said. “And when they get involved, they will see that there’s a lot of things happening here that they can do.”
Despite his political background, Seeley does not have any prospects to run for office after the end of Mayor Ryan’s term. Although he does not know what he will be doing after, he is confident about staying in Binghamton and finding another job.
“We have a lot of work to do now,” Seeley said. “I’ll worry about that when the time comes. I’m not too worried.”