From the Podium and Beyond


UAlbany President Assumes Campus Compact Post

University at Albany President Robert J. Jones began serving a three-year term July 1 with the Board of Directors of Campus Compact, a national coalition of more than 1,100 colleges and universities committed to fulfilling the public purposes of higher education.

As the only national higher-education association dedicated solely to campus-based civic engagement, Campus Compact provides resources that support faculty and staff as they pursue community-based teaching and scholarship in the service of positive change. Its board guides the organizational mission of deepening higher education’s ability to improve community life and educate students for civic and social responsibility.

Strzalkowski’s Research Attracts ARL Support

Through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory’s (ARL) Open Campus initiative, Professor of Computer Science Tomek Strzalkowski has been awarded $499,930 to explore the manner in which new data-capture techniques can help advance research in such areas as psychology, anthropology, linguistics and sociology.

An expert on information intelligence and tracking of information about terrorists, Strzalkowski directs the University’s Institute for Informatics, Logics and Security Studies (ILS). His interests include natural language processing, and information processing and retrieval.

Aug. 22, 2015 Opening Convocation

Joined by family, friends and members of the University at Albany community, the Class of 2019 gathered at SEFCU Arena Aug. 22 for the first-ever Opening Convocation. More than 4,000 guests attended the event, which will be held annually on the second day of freshman move-in.


Tolle Exhibit Opens at UAlbany Museum

Brian Tolle, B.A.’86, will be bringing his sculptures to the University Art Museum this fall.

Bordering Utopia: Sculptures by Brian Tolle is the first exhibition to bring together the artist’s 1990s work, based on Colonial-American structures, with his more recent creations. His works, which include Levittown (2009) and Alice and Job (2000), have earned recognition from the Irish American Historical Society, the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation, and the Design Commission of the City of New York. Perhaps best known for his Irish Hunger Memorial in New York City, Tolle is currently working on public projects in Brooklyn, N.Y.; Calgary, Alberta; and Columbus, Ohio.

Tolle, who majored in political science at UAlbany, says the negotiation skills he acquired through his studies and a two-year internship with the New York State Assembly have helped him to achieve success in designing and executing public projects. He also holds a B.F.A. from Parsons the New School for Design and an M.F.A. from Yale University.

Bordering Utopia opens Oct. 6; a public reception will be held Oct. 9 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the museum. The exhibition runs concurrently with Oded Hirsch: Three Videos through Dec. 12.


NSF CAREER Award Presented to Rose

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has presented a $544,681 Faculty Early Development (CAREER) Award to Assistant Professor of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences Brian Rose.

Rose will use the funding to examine the role of oceans in the planetary energy cycles. In an effort to better understand how and why the planetary energy budget varies in response to oceanic processes on a variety of time scales, Rose and his research team will study ocean heat fluxes as independent climate forcings.

A major aspect of the project involves the mentoring of a new generation of climate scientists, including a doctoral student and several undergraduates.

Recent Graduate Receives Fulbright

It didn’t take Kaitlyn Gulick, B.A.’15, long to transition from college life to international educator: Shortly after graduation last May, she received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Scholarship in South Korea.

During her sophomore and junior years at UAlbany, Gulick studied in Japan and South Korea. The Japanese studies major from Cohoes, N.Y., participated in the University’s Tae Kwon Do Club and was a member of the Korean and Japanese student associations. She also helped to develop UAlbany Cultural Connections, a club created to promote cultural exploration by American and international students.   

Gulick left July 10 for her assignment in South Korea, where she will become TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) certified. She will return to the U.S. next July.

Brian Tolle

New Senior Administrators Appointed

University at Albany President Robert J. Jones has announced the following recent senior administrative appointments:

Vice Provost and Dean Harvey Charles, International Education

Charles formerly served as vice provost for International Initiatives and director of the Center for International Education at Northern Arizona University. He has also held senior leadership roles at Georgia Institute of Technology; San Francisco State University; Wheaton College; and the University of Nevada, Reno.

Vice President Joseph A. Brennan, Communications and Marketing

Brennan joins UAlbany from the University of Iowa, where he served as vice president of Strategic Communications. His previous professional experience includes executive communication roles at Ohio University, the University of the Pacific, and The University of Toledo in Ohio. 

Vice President Michael Christakis, Student Success

Christakis, who earned an M.P.P. and a Ph.D. from Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy, joined the University staff in 1999. He has held numerous positions, including an associate vice president’s post, in Student Affairs.

Dean and Professor William Alex Pridemore, School of Criminal Justice

Pridemore comes to UAlbany from Georgia State University, where he was a distinguished professor in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology and a senior researcher in the Cluster on Evidence-Based Policy. 

Dean Darrell P. Wheeler, School of Social Welfare; Vice Provost, Public Engagement

Wheeler previously served at Loyola University Chicago as dean and professor in the School of Social Work. Active in the professional community, he is president of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Social Workers.

Interim Dean Kim L. Boyer, College of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Boyer, who is also professor and chair of the new Department of Computer Engineering, formerly headed the Department of Electrical, Computer and Systems Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Previously, he served on the faculty of The Ohio State University for 22 years.

Interim Dean R. Karl Rethemeyer, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy 

Rethemeyer’s primary research interest is in social networks; their impact on social, political and policy processes; and the methods used to study such networks.

Interim Dean David L. Rousseau, College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity

Rousseau’s research interests focus on military conflict, shared identity, political development, and foreign policy. His books include Democracy and War: Institutions, Norms and the Evolution of International Conflict and Identifying Threats and Threatening Identities: The Social Construction of Realism and Liberalism.