Governor Hochul's proposal for UAlbany and CNSE

January 10, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you are all doing well and staying healthy—and that you have had an opportunity to take a well-deserved break and enjoy the holiday season with your loved ones. As we prepare for the Spring 2022 semester, I thought it would be important to reach out about a recent development that will significantly impact our University.

As you know, during last week’s State of the State address, Governor Hochul unveiled a set of initiatives aimed at strengthening SUNY institutions and enhancing our impact on our students, our communities, and the world. I wholeheartedly agree with the governor that public higher education is critical to New York’s success and welcome the promise of increased investment and focus on SUNY campuses, including the University at Albany.

As part of these initiatives, the governor proposes to return the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) to UAlbany. Although CNSE has been part of SUNY Polytechnic Institute since 2015, UAlbany’s international research reputation made CNSE possible in the first place and helped transform New York into a global player in nanotechnology research and development. Given that UAlbany’s forethought, investment, and sweat equity helped build CNSE into a powerful engine of economic growth, we have advocated for a thoughtful reunification that would maximize the impact of our campuses’ research. We are excited that Governor Hochul shares this vision.

I am sure many of you have questions about what this reunification could mean for UAlbany, our academic programs, and our research. In the coming days and weeks, we will be communicating with SUNY and the governor’s office regarding the details of her proposal, and we will share more information as soon as we are able.

As a Carnegie-classified R1 institution—signifying the highest level of research and doctoral program activity—UAlbany’s legacy of impactful research in the public interest predated CNSE and has continued since the separation. Every day our research is helping make New York healthier, more secure, more resilient, and more equitable. Critically, UAlbany’s remarkable global research footprint has not come at the expense of accessibility. UAlbany stands out as one of the most diverse public research universities in the nation, serving by far the highest percentage of underrepresented minority students among SUNY’s university centers.

While UAlbany’s research contributions and impact are recognized globally, offering life-changing educational and research opportunities to all New Yorkers is a critical priority for our institution. It is also fundamentally consistent with the governor’s commitment to prioritizing equity and economic mobility as part of her historic investment in public higher education. As we move into this new chapter in our history, UAlbany will continue to serve this defining role, locally and globally, with a focus on research excellence and student success.

I look forward to continuing to work closely with you in service to these important goals.


Signature of Havidan Rodriguez

Havidán Rodríguez