Monthly Archives: January 2016

Chancellor announces funding in State of University Address

ESF has received a SUNY Investment Fund award to support the development of new online-enabled programs focusing on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

The funding was announced Monday, Jan. 11, 2016 by SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher during her annual State of the University Address.

The award will lay the foundation for two new avenues for ESF to deliver educational programs:

  • The ESF Open Academy will provide current and new online-enabled undergraduate and graduate courses, certificates, degree programs and informal learning experiences to students enrolled at ESF and other colleges and universities. The material will also be made available to high school students, professionals and lifelong learners throughout New York state and beyond.
  • The ESF Teaching and Learning Collaboratory will provide faculty professional development support for online-enabled education, and feature an ESF Academy of Fellows that will foster relationships with recognized scholars and organizations aligned with the college’s mission to develop online-enabled programs.

ChancellorESF President Quentin Wheeler said the new opportunity will expand the college’s ability to execute its mission while enhancing the university system’s excellence.

“ESF has a strong tradition of not only discovering new knowledge but applying that knowledge to better the world in impactful ways. Funding establishing an ESF Open Academy creates new ways to share our knowledge across the SUNY system, New York state and the world.” Wheeler said. “Through formal and informal science education programming, and objective and authoritative scientific content, ESF can further its mission to better manage forests and resources, explore nature for sustainable solutions, increase public science literacy, and provide uniquely excellent educational experiences across the environmental sciences broadly. This is the latest example of SUNY’s relentless quest to be best in the world at getting better.”

The initiative is expected to help establish a platform on which to build ESF’s undergraduate and graduate enrollments in online-enabled programming, dovetailing with efforts by both ESF and SUNY to enhance STEM-related programs. The work at ESF is part of a broader project, Open SUNY, a university-wide collaboration that opens the door to world-class online-enabled learning opportunities.

ESF has launched an assessment of its educational and technological systems to determine its current capacity for delivering material through the ESF Open Academy and to look for ways to enhance that capacity.

“We at ESF have an enduring commitment to excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, faculty development, and professional, PK-12 and public education outreach,” said Dr. Charles Spuches, assistant to the president for Outreach. “We are enthusiastic about building upon a range of technology-enabled educational initiatives, conducted over the last 20 years, that have positioned us to pursue an even more innovative and integrated organizational framework that will enable us to extend, well beyond the confines of our campus, distinct mission-based leadership within and on behalf of SUNY. At the center of this initiative is the ESF Open Academy, an innovative approach through which we will provide online-enabled undergraduate and graduate courses, certificates, degree programs, and informal learning experiences to ESF, SUNY and other college and university students, high school students, professionals and lifelong learners throughout New York state and beyond.”

Further information and questions contact Dr. Chuck Spuches, / 315.470.6810

Join us for the 2016 NYS Green Building Conference!


To register and/or sponsor, please go to

Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP)

All of us at ESF were enthused when Assistant Dean, Mary Triano, and coordinator, Eileen Baldassarre, announced that, through a competitive granting process, the Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP) will continue through to 2020. Our deepest appreciation goes to Eileen and Mary for their caring and capable leadership.

CSTEP, a national award-winning enrichment program sponsored by SUNY-ESF and the New York State Department of Education, works to increase the number of CSTEP2ahistorically underrepresented and economically disadvantaged college students who complete pre-professional or professional undergraduate and graduate programs in scientific, technical or health-related fields.

Established at ESF in 2005, CSTEP engages 50 students, first-year through graduate.  Ongoing program aspects  include, for example, faculty mentoring, graduate student mentoring, regular engagement with staff, skill building workshops, and community service and service learning opportunities. New this year, participating students will have the option to enroll in a one-credit class that offers opportunities within four tracks:

  • Study hall (required for first-year students)
  • Research/Internship
  • Career/Graduate School
  • Service Learning

Please join me in congratulating  Mary and Eileen, and please also join all of us in encouraging and supporting our student participants. Thanks to all!CSTEPPic

For more information about ESF’s CSTEP program please see What is CSTEP, CSTEP booklet, or visit the CSTEP web page at or contact Eileen Baldassarre at

New York Upstate Revitalization Initiative Presented to the MOST Board

Toni Martin, our new President of the Museum of Science & Technology (MOST) began our first 2016 BoaRob and Tonird of Trustees meeting with an invitation to Rob Simpson, CenterState CEO President, to offer an overview of the successful New York Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI).  Our thanks to Rob and Toni for their leadership and commitment to CNY.

Please join me in welcoming Toni and wishing her the very best in her new role as MOST President.

Chuck Spruces, Assistant to the President for Outreach