SUNY Trustees Appoint CNSE Vice President Robert E. Geer Acting President of SUNYIT
The State University of New York Board of Trustees today approved the appointment of Robert E. Geer as acting president of SUNYIT, effective August 1, 2013. Geer will succeed Bjong Wolf Yeigh, who has accepted the position of chancellor at the University of Washington Bothell effective September 1.
Geer, who holds a Ph.D. in Condensed Matter Physics from the University of Minnesota, is vice president for academic affairs and chief academic officer at the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at the University at Albany. He is also professor of nanotechnology and a founding member of the CNSE faculty.
"Dr. Geer is ideally suited to take on the role of acting president at SUNYIT, where a high-tech, on-campus learning environment and expanding array of public-private partnerships in the Mohawk Valley are shaping New York’s innovation landscape," said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. "Dr. Geer will be an excellent leader for SUNYIT’s students, faculty, and staff, and I commend the Board for appointing him to this post."
As CNSE’s chief academic officer, Geer leads the development and implementation of academic degree and outreach programs. In his role as a member of the faculty, he leads various research projects in the fields of nanoelectronics, nanomaterials, and nanometrology. At SUNYIT, he will guide the development of the Computer Chip Commercialization Center or "Quad-C," a $125 million technology complex that leverages the same multi-faceted commercial and academic partnership approach that has proven successful at CNSE. The Quad-C will create high-tech jobs and attract businesses from all over the world to conduct research and manufacturing scale-up activities, and corporate and government investment.
"I am both humbled and grateful to receive the unanimous support of SUNY's Board of Trustees and Chancellor Zimpher, and privileged to be given this wonderful opportunity to serve as acting president of SUNYIT," said Dr. Geer. "In building on the outstanding partnership between SUNYIT and CNSE through the exciting Quad-C initiative, and in support of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s innovation-driven blueprint for educational excellence and economic growth, I look forward to working closely with SUNY, SUNYIT’s students, faculty and staff, key stakeholders from the university community, and leaders throughout the region’s public and private sectors. Together, we are poised to further advance the academic excellence, high-tech workforce training and development, and economic impact of SUNYIT as a vivid illustration of the Power of SUNY.”
With its construction to begin at the end of the month, the Quad-C is one of several initiatives underway at SUNYIT. Governor Cuomo recently announced $15 million in funding for a SUNYIT-led team to support manufacturing regionally. Last week, the SUNY High Needs Program awarded SUNYIT $1.7 million, the second-largest high-needs grant in the state, to support faculty in designated programs.
Expansion of the SUNYIT campus in recent years and the launch of several new academic programs—most recently mechanical engineering—have sparked growth in institutional reputation, enrollment and scholarship support. SUNYIT was named one of U.S. News and World Report’s top 25 public schools in the "Regional Universities-North" category for 2013. Both undergraduate and graduate enrollments are expected to increase significantly this fall; the entering freshman class is projected to be the largest in SUNYIT history. A record $500,000 gift in support of scholarships, from Dr. Ted and Mrs. Melva Max, was announced in May.
SUNYIT, the State University of New York Institute of Technology at Utica/Rome, is New York’s public polytechnic, offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs in technology and professional studies. Its academic offerings in technology, including engineering, cybersecurity, computer science, and the engineering technologies, and its programs in professional studies, including business, communication, and nursing, are complemented by athletics, recreational, cultural and campus life programs, events and activities.
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