The relationship between the College and the Village has long been complicated. Presidents Al Brown (1965-1981) and John Van Wetering (1981-1997) achieved successes and suffered setbacks in town-gown relations. Brown dealt with negative public reactions to the campus rebellion following the Kent State shootings as well as rising tensions over unregulated off-campus student housing that was rapidly expanding due to rising enrollments. Van Wetering faced continual budget cuts and an increase in off-campus incidents as well as difficult relationships with Village officials. They also had accomplishments. Brown established a community relations board, worked well with Mayor Frank Sacheli, and pressed for construction of the first stage of Route 531. Van Wetering promoted the growth of the Village and Town by championing further extension of Route 531. American college towns are unique locales that exhibit several distinct qualities. Brockport shares some of these common characteristics as well as having unique qualities.

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