Senator Jim Alesi (R- Perinton), Senators Joe Robach, Michael Nozzolio, and George Maziarz, announced today that the Institute for Sustainability in Green Technology at RIT will receive $10 million to aid in the development and construction of the new facility. The funding was secured by the Senators in the recently approved 2008-09 state budget.
The Institute, one of the first of its kind in the nation, focuses on research and education in sustainable design, pollution prevention, remanufacturing and alternative energy development. The Institute will offer a premiere platform for universities, corporations and governments around the world to collaborate in the creation of innovative education and technology development systems related to sustainable design, life-cycle engineering and pollution prevention. The facility will not only become a global resource for research, technology transfer and workforce development, but it will also establish the greater Rochester region as the "Silicon Valley of Sustainable Technology".
"As we strive to stimulate the upstate economy our best partners continue to be school and universities like RIT," said Senator Alesi, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce Economic Development and Small Business and member of the Senate Committee on Higher Education. "In this instance, the Institute for Sustainability will accelerate education not only in the greater Rochester area and Upstate New York, but in fact, globally. This is a prudent investment of public funds that will have an exponential return on our investment."
"The Institute for Sustainability in Green Technology at RIT will not only add to the academic landscape of Rochester but will generate outside economic development and career opportunities" stated Senator Robach. "I was proud to work with my Senate colleagues and President Destler to deliver this vital capital project to the greater Rochester area - it has proven to be an optimal private-public partnership that will have an immeasurable positive impact on our community."
"We could not be more thrilled and appreciative of this outstanding commitment of State funding for the Institute for Sustainability at RIT," said RIT President Bill Destler. "We are honored to have the extraordinary commitment and support of Senators Jim Alesi, Joe Robach, Mike Nozzolio and George Maziarz for this effort, and we thank them most sincerely for their confidence in RIT and the mission and purpose of the Institute. The timeliness of this funding is also significant, enabling us to solidify in a very tangible and demonstrable manner, the readiness of RIT and the greater Rochester region to stake its claim as a global leader in this critical industry."
"This funding is a wonderful testament to the ongoing efforts of our team at RIT," said Nabil Nasr, Assistant Provost and Director of the Institute for Sustainability, "and it will significantly accelerate our ability to advance our program plans and further strengthen our outreach to business, industry and other organizations that are engaged in issues related to sustainable production. In addition to being the home of our Ph.D. program in Sustainability, the facility will be a living laboratory that will exemplify the principles that will be the focus of our educational, research and technology transfer programs. There is no doubt that this resource will be a critical economic driver for our region that will yield magnificent returns for the region and for the State as a whole".
State Senator Michael Nozzolio said, "Through strategic investment today, we are building a strong foundation that will culminate in our region being at the forefront of the cutting edge research being done in alternative energy. RIT continues to be a driving force in developing technologies that will create new jobs in the Rochester region for years to come. This is very exciting news and I was pleased to work with Senator Robach, Senator Alesi, and Senator Maziarz in securing this important funding."
Senator George Maziarz said, "The time has come for this kind of investment. The Institute for Sustainability’s focus is right where it should be--on helping us prepare for the future. New ideas and new solutions will be much closer with this key infusion of state resources, and few institutions are better positioned to make a difference in our economy and on our planet than RIT."
With the creation of the Institute for Sustainability, R.I.T will become the first technology university to provide a full spectrum of career-focused, integrated and interdisciplinary programs that embody the principals of sustainability in product development.