The University at Albany progressed in many areas in 2007-2008. A new undergraduate public health major was launched by the School of Public Health. A beautiful new Grand Entry Plaza was dedicated. State leaders approved funding for a new School of Business building and an expanded Campus Center, and major new public and private investments were announced for the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering. UAlbany academic programs were again ranked among the top in the nation. All these developments and many more highlight distinctive strengths of UAlbany, a university that puts "The World Within Reach."
The University at Albany's master's degree program in Africana Studies was ranked second in the nation by Diverse Issues in Higher Education magazine for the third consecutive year. Created in 1969 as a response to the Civil Rights Movement, the program attracts students from around the world.
The School of Public Health launched a new undergraduate public health major. The major is designed to prepare future public health leaders concerned with improving global public health and eliminating health disparities. Its curriculum will lend a modern vision to tomorrow's multifaceted healthcare needs and ready students for advanced public health studies and careers in related areas such as medicine, nursing and law.
The University kicked off its China Semester, "Gateways to China." The wide range of academic courses, lectures and cultural events expanded the campus's worldview by presenting new perspectives on the Asian giant.
Construction began on the Purple Path, a multi-use campus trail designed for campus and community activity, as well as easier navigation of the UAlbany campus. The concept for the path was developed by the Purple Path Planning Studio, a graduate studio within the Department of Geography and Planning. It is one of many UAlbany efforts to promote environmental sustainability and "Go Green."
Scott Tenenbaum, an assistant professor in biomedical sciences at the School of Public Health and the Gen*NY*Sis Center for Excellence in Cancer Genomics, was awarded a three-year, $2.2 million grant from the National Human Genome Research Institute to support his life-enhancing research on the organization and function of human genes.
University researchers Lawrence M. Schell and Marlene Belfort were named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for their contributions to science and the public good.
George M. Philip was appointed Interim President of the University at Albany-SUNY by SUNY's Board of Trustees. Philip, who earned both a bachelor's and a master's degree at UAlbany and who recently retired as executive director of the New York State Teachers Retirement System, extolled UAlbany's tradition of providing academic excellence at a great value to many generations of students.
School of Education doctoral programs in reading, curriculum and instruction, and educational psychology were ranked among the top 10 nationally by Academic Analytics. The index evaluates more than 7,400 doctoral programs in 172 disciplines in 375 institutions for scholarly productivity of faculty.
Three University faculty were named Fulbright Scholars for the 2007-08 academic year: Edward Schwarzschild, novelist and associate professor of English, to teach at the University of Zaragoza in Spain; Louise-Anne McNutt, associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics, to lecture at Tbilisi State Medical University in Tbilisi, Georgia; and Robert C. Howell, professor of philosophy, to instruct at Moscow State University in Russia.
A report by University at Albany researchers and colleagues in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that coronary-artery bypass grafting surgery is a more effective survival treatment than drug-eluting stents for heart patients with multiple blockages. The study's principal author was Edward Hannan, distinguished professor and associate dean for research in UAlbany's School of Public Health.
Mary Ellen Mallia was named the director of environmental sustainability, a new position designed to support UAlbany's sustainability efforts. These efforts include environmental education and the campus "Go Green" initiative, aimed at reducing the University's environmental impact and setting examples of sustainable living for the community at large.
Fiction writer Mary Gordon and poet Jean Valentine were named New York State author and poet, respectively, for the years 2008-2010, by the UAlbany-based New York State Writers Institute. The 25-year-old Institute presents and celebrates a diversity of literature, writing, and performance that enhances learning and culture across the entire state.
The National Science Foundation awarded Mary Katherine Gonder, assistant professor of biology, a $317,000 grant to study migration patterns and origins of chimpanzee populations in Nigeria and Cameroon. Gonder's research concentrations within the Department of Biological Sciences provide a strong foundation to biology majors in the areas of primate biogeography, behavior and ecology.
The latest U.S. News and World Report annual survey ranked seven programs in the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy and the College of Computing and Information among the nation's Top 10, while the School of Social Welfare jumped to 12. These rankings are one of several independent assessments that recognize UAlbany for providing excellence at a great value.
The projects approved in the 2008-09 New York State budget include a new state-of-the-art School of Business building and a 75,000 square-foot expansion and improvement of UAlbany's Campus Center.
The University at Albany completed a comprehensive marketing study which served as the basis for developing UAlbany's new brand. Faculty, staff and students came together to launch the new brand and show how UAlbany puts "The World Within Reach."
Two new distinguished cancer researchers, Martin Tenniswood and JoEllen Welsh, joined the Gen*NY*Sis Center for Excellence in Cancer Genomics and Department of Biomedical Sciences. Tenniswood and Welsh came to UAlbany from the University of Notre Dame as a result of funding from New York State's Empire Innovations initiative.
New York Gov. David Paterson and legislative leaders announced major investments by IBM and the state for three projects to advance "nano-chip" technologies, including the expansion of IBM's operations at the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering.
The campus dedicated its new $4 million Grand Entry Plaza, designed as a vibrant, central gathering space for visitors and the campus community. The three-acre plaza serves as an inviting gateway to the campus, featuring a park-like setting with expanded green space, ornamental trees and bench seating with Wi-Fi. The main focal point of the new plaza is a spectacular walk-through fountain.