Category Archives: Professional Education

US DOL Visits Radiation Curing Program

We were proud to host our US Department of Labor program officer, Rochelle Layne, who recently conducted a Radiation Curing Program site visit. Thanks and congratulations to our instructional team and to some of our area business collaborators who demonstrated curing applications across a range of consumer and industrial products. ToUSDOL RCP SiteVisit learn more about the SUNY-ESF/RadTech International Radiation Curing Program (RCP) visit

Pictured here are (left to right), Dan Montoney, Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, Rapid Cure, Rochelle Layne, US DOL Employment and Training Administration, and Kevin Daley, Thomas Technology Group.

Biotechnology Symposium Shines in NYC!

Congratulations to our on- and off-campus colleagues who provided leadership and support to the recent 2015 Biotechnology Symposium. We deeply appreciate the leadership bnlof our colleagues at the Brookhaven National Laboratory. Thanks to their collaboration and hospitality, over 50% of our 7th annual Symposium participants came from the metropolitan NYC area.

 My thanks go to our program co-chairs, Drs. Tom Amidon, Lee Newman, and Art Stipanovic, to our Outreach staff, Katherina Searing and Terry Webb, as well to our entire 2015 advisory council:

  • Noel Blackburn, Brookhaven National Laboratory
  • Susumu Ikuta, SUNY-ESF (formerly, Bristol-Myers Squibb)
  • Judy Jarnefeld, NYSERDA
  • Kirk Leister, Biotechnology Consultant
  • Scott MacFarlane, SUNY Upstate Medical University
  • Tom Melninkaitis, Tosoh Bioscience
  • Susi Varvayanis, Cornell University

As we look ahead to the 8th Symposium returning to Syracuse and the ESF Campus in 2016, I invite your interest in advisory council participation.

I extend our collective appreciation to all of our sponsors and especially to our partnership with the SUNY Research Foundation. I look forward to working with our SUNY Research Foundation colleagues, sponsors, staff and advisory council to continue to strengthen the Biotechnology Symposium role in serving and advancing Biotechnology’s economic development, research and education impact for New York State and beyond.


Many thanks to all who participated and who made this year’s Symposium a success.

Dr. Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

Biotechnology Sympoisum Speakers Include Dr. Eva Cramer

Spring Cramer_000has arrived and the 7th Annual New York State Biotechnology Symposium is fast approaching!  Plan now to join us May 12 – 13, 2015 at the Brookhaven National Laboratory for plenary presentations, technical sessions and tours of Brookhaven facilities, including the Center for Functional Nanomaterials and National Synchrotron Light Source II

Featured speakers include Dr. Eva Cramer. Dr. Cramer is Distinguished Service Professor of Cell Biology and Vice President for Biotechnology and Scientific Affairs at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. She is also President of the Downstate Technology Center, Inc. as well as President of BioBAT, Inc.

To learn more and to register!

TEC Tuesday at SUNY-ESF

SUNY ESF hosted a TEC Tuesday meeting and site visit recently in its Gateway Center.  Many thanks to Fil Larosa, ESF’s Plant Utilities Engineer, for his in-depth portrayal of the Gateway Center’s combined heat and power system.  AMTEC Phil2

TEC Tuesday is a part of  the Advanced Manufacturing in Thermal and Environmental Controls (AM-TEC)  project, a collaborative initiative designed to strengthen the cluster of Central New York manufacturers of systems that heat and cool buildings, refrigerate produce, control manufacturing processes, and enable a variety of other applications. To drive regional cluster growth, AM-TEC  supports the following:

  • Innovation and commercialization acceleration
  • Export acceleration
  • Advanced manufacturing training opportunities
  • Research and development collaborations with area universities and faculty
  • Workforce development and training
  • Entrepreneurial assistance and support
  • Networking opportunities

Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

Dr. Tom Amidon / College Technology Educator of the Year

tomDr. Tom Amidon received the Technology Alliance of Central New York’s  2015 College Technology Educator of the Year award at the TACNY awards banquet on Monday, March 23rd.

Dr. Amidon, a professor in SUNY-ESF’s Department of Paper and Bioprocess Engineering, has made his mark on the paper and bioprocess industries. After graduating from ESF with a doctorate in 1974, he worked for International Paper for 23 years, concluding his service as laboratory manager for the company’s corporate research center in Tuxedo, N.Y. He brought his research skills back to ESF in 2000 as chair of what was then called the Paper Science and Engineering Department.

While chair, Dr. Amidon led the development of a bioprocess engineering curriculum, which received accreditation under the chemical engi­neering rubric. He also helped develop a SUNY Advanced Certificate in Bioprocessing that has been completed by more than 100 students over the past decade with the majority of them working at Bristol Myers Squibb.

Since stepping down as chair, Dr. Amidon has become co-academic adviser for a SUNY Advanced Certificate in Radiation Curing of coatings, paints, and inks. This technology, which con­serves energy and reduces emissions, is rapidly growing in com­mercial applications.

While at ESF, Dr. Amidon opened up new a research area in paper science, evaluating novel approaches for the disassembly of woody materials with the aim of preserv­ing current profitable uses while making new raw materi­als available. He worked with the American Forest and Paper Association to develop a new research area called new forest-based materials. He is the U.S. expert in the area, and he has presented to House Science Committee staff and numerous international gatherings.

In New York state, Dr. Amidon has been an advocate for companies to adopt the “biorefinery concept”. He is leading a consortium of New York companies to com­mercialize green chemistry technology developed by the faculty and students of ESF’s Paper and Bioprocess Engi­neering program. This technology uses water and mem­brane systems to create a sugar solution from wood that can be fermented into biofuels, such as ethanol or buta­nol, or used to create biodegradable plastics and other products.

The Technology Alliance of Central New York was founded in 1903 as the Technology Club of Syracuse. TACNY’s mission is to facilitate community awareness, appreciation, and education of technology; and to collaborate with like-minded organizations across Central New York.

Thirteen and Counting: NYS GBC


I wonder how many of us, fourteen years ago, imagined that we would be celebrating the 13th annual New York State Green Building Conference? Yet here we are.  Thanks go to our dedicated advisory council, our partners and sponsors, to our staff – and to the strong community of practitioners and educators who represent diverse contexts and roles and who have made this their preferred place to gather, share and advance this critical mission.

While the conference only concluded ten days ago, we’ll now begin planning and preparing for number 14 in 2016.

This year’s conference included an inaugural VIP Pre-conference Reception and Program. We took this opportunity to recognize many of the people who have helped develop and sustain NYS GBC for over a decade. The program included the following remarks:

  • United Nations Champion of the Earth / Rick Fedrizzi, CEO, U.S. Green Building Council and CEO, Green Building Certification Institute
  • Learning from Our Older Brothers and Sisters: Envisioning Future Buildings / Ed Bogucz, Executive Director, Syracuse Center of Excellence
  • A Building that Teaches / Dr. Neil Murphy , Professor and President Emeritus
  • Learning from Nature’s Models / Quentin Wheeler, President, SUNY-ESF

 View highlight video

In addition to a plenary session led by Rick Fedrizzi and his senior USGBC colleagues, the conference itself featured Chief Oren Lyons (Turtle Clan, Onondaga Nation Faithkeeper), Sam Rashkin (Chief Architect, U.S. Department of Energy’s Building Technologies Office), and outstanding workshops and sponsor sessions. Among the several memorable highlights were

  • CenterState CEO recognized Northeast Green Building Consulting, LLC as the first certified B-Corporation in Syracuse, and
  • USGBC recognized the ESF Gateway Center’s  LEED Platinum designation.

Please join me in expressing appreciation to all who made the 13th NYS GBC a valuable and productive experience – and please plan to join us next year!

Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost, ESF Outreach

NYS Green Building Conference: the time is NOW!

What time is it?  You mean now? / Yogi Berra

Whatever inspiration (or consternation) you take from baseball’s sage, for all of us looking forward to the New York State Green Building Conference, the time is NOW!  Take advantage of reduced online registration by this Friday, March 6th – after this registration is on-site.

The Zero Energy Ready Home Training pre- conference workshop is Wednesday, March 11th (led by Sam Rashkin, Chief Architect, U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Office, and Kevin Stack, Founder and CEO, Northeast Natural Homes, Inc.).

In addition tFedrizzio outstanding workshops  and networking breaks, lunches and receptions Thursday and Friday, March 12 – 13th,  we’re looking forward to the 360 Performance: From Design to Day-to-Day keynote presented by Rick Fedrizzi, CEO of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and CEO of the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI), along with Scot Horst, Chief Product Officer, United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and Chris Pyke, Chief Operating Officer for Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB).

We are honored to have Chief Oren Lyons, Turtle Clan, Onondaga Nation FaithkeeOren Lyonsper, join us for a keynote presentation. Among his honors and recognition, Chief Lyons has been awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Syracuse University.  He has been the recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, the National Audubon Society’s Audubon Medal, the Earth Day International Award of the United Nations, and the Elder and Wiser Award of the Rosa Parks Institute for Human Rights. He serves on the board of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development.   Register Now!

Please join us.

Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

New Year – New Opportunites

Dear Friends, Collaborators, and Participants –

The New Year is a time for reflection and planning, and an opportunity to personally thank each of you who honor us with your ongoing active partnership and support.

This past year, ESF’s outreach included educational programs and technical services that engaged the College with a broad array of constituents. ESF faculty, staff and students, along with our partners, continued to pursue a diverse range of programs and projects that include on- and off-campus, online, credit and non-credit, and formal and informal learning opportunities for professionals, elementary through high school students, ESF students, and lifelong learners. ESF’s outreach supports environmental, educational, social and economic development in ways that advance both the public good and the College’s mission.

ESF in the High School, a concurrent enrollment program, for example, entails formal partnerships between ESF and high schools in Rochester, New York City and throughout Central /Upstate New York. Last year this program enabled well over 600 students to experience college-level work and to explore STEM and related academic and career opportunities. ESF in the High School also provides high-caliber STEM professional development opportunities for participating teachers.

ESF’s several professional education conferences and workshops continue to engage participants from communities of practice and scholarship in geographical communities near and far. One ongoing four-day workshop hosted by the Sustainable Construction Management and Engineering academic program recently engaged participants from Canada and eleven states, including Texas!

Three professional educational programs last year benefited the Central New York Community by generating a combined economic impact of nearly $300,000.

One initiative, the Radiation Curing Program (RCP) represents a truly 21st Century business/academic/public sector collaboration and a fully distributed online instructional approach that serves professionals and students throughout the U.S. and around the world.

As we look ahead to this New Year, please explore with us an ever more exciting calendar of programs to be held here in Central New York, at the Brookhaven National Laboratory, and in our virtual world. And please join us in recognizing and celebrating all of our partnerships, including those with the NYS DEC, with Rick Fedrizzi and the U.S. Green Building Council, the SUNY Research Foundation, and the Syracuse Center of Excellence (to mention just a few).

I believe that, together with our ESF faculty, staff, students and alumni, we all have an opportunity to truly fulfill ESF’s outreach and service mission and, in turn, to make positive educational, professional, and economic differences in our communities and in our world.
Please contact us with your thoughts and questions – we look forward to working with you.

I wish you a productive and enjoyable New Year.

Dr. Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

13th Annual New York State Green Building Conference

March 12-13, 2015
Liverpool NY

Join us in March for exciting keynote/plenary presentations, a great exhibitor gallery, and technical sessions on topics including: Green Materials, High Performance Buildings, Resiliency, Biomimicry, Urban Design, Planning, Community Development, Renewable Energy and more!  We are happy to be partnering with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for the 2015 conference, which will feature a Plenary session hosted by Rick Fedrizzi, CEO of both the USGBC and the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI).  Find out more and register today at

See you there!

UN Champion of the Earth to Speak at NYS Green Building Conference


Rick Fedrizzi and his colleagues at the U.S. Green Building Council were awarded the United Nations Champions of the Earth award in November for their Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program.  The LEED certification program has been instrumental in the green building revolution around the globe, and certifies 1.7 million square feet of sustainable building space each day.

ESF is pleased to announce that the U.S. Green Building Council has joined the Syracuse Center of Excellence as a partner for the 2015 Green Building Conference.  Fedrizzi, CEO of the U.S. Green Building Council, will host a plenary session during this year’s conference.  Learn more about he 2015 NYS Green Building Conference and register today!