Monday, January 28, 2013

Report From Cornell NYC Tech VP Cathy Dove To Roosevelt Island Community, First Beta Class Of Students Begins Studies At Temporary Chelsea Campus In Google HQ - Also Science Of Ice Cream Making In Honor Of NYC Tech Campus

Cornell NYC Tech Vice President Cathy Dove

Image of Ms. Dove at December 12 CB 8 Land Use Committee Public Hearing

sends this report to the Roosevelt Island community.
I hope that everyone on Roosevelt Island had a great holiday season and a happy new year, and that your 2013 is off to a great start. This has been an extraordinarily exciting season for Cornell Tech, with major milestones on both the physical development of the campus on Roosevelt Island and the launch of our innovative new academic program.

First, I’d like to share an enormous thank you to so many of you for your ongoing support of Cornell Tech and for your participation in the public review process. As you may know, Community Board 8 echoed this support with the very positive vote at the end of December in favor of the campus plan. The public review process now continues with review by the Borough President this month, followed by the City Planning Commission and the City Council. We remain on schedule to break ground in the beginning of 2014 and to open the first phase of the campus in 2017.

The public review process – formally known as ULURP (Uniform Land Use Review Procedure) is focused on proposed land use actions that govern how the campus develops and relates to the Island through zoning. However, as described in earlier columns, we have been using this process to work with Islanders to understand what is important to the community on a broad range of topics. In this spirit, Cornell Tech has committed to a long list of voluntary actions that will benefit the entire community, from making campus space available to community groups, to preserving the Goldwater Hospital murals and working on a series of programs to bring tech education to the Island’s middle school children.

I’m very excited to share our latest news. We reached a very important milestone this week at our temporary campus in Chelsea. On Monday, our first class of students – what we’re calling the “beta class” – began their studies at our temporary Chelsea campus. The small and highly selective class is made up of Computer Science Master of Engineering students with the highest academic credentials who represent a wide range of experience and backgrounds. What they have in common is an entrepreneurial spirit and an interest in using technology to improve the world in some way.

We have some amazing faculty already on board to teach the students, including Professor Deborah Estrin, an applied sciences pioneer and member of the National Academy of Engineering. In addition, students will work with Professor Rajit Manohar, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Cornell Tech, who has significant experience in collaborations with industry, is an entrepreneur and was named one of the top 35 innovators under 35 by the MIT Technology Review, and Serge Belongie, who was named one of the top 100 young technology innovators by MIT Technology Review. These engineering faculty will be joined by leading faculty from the business school who will be teaching business and entrepreneurship to the students

The academic program is similar to a business or law school curriculum in its structure, with courses conducted on Mondays through Thursdays, and Fridays used for a novel new practicum on “Entrepreneurial Life” composed of interactive workshops and activities in topics including design and technology, social entrepreneurship and leadership skills. In addition to the formal curriculum, the program will provide numerous opportunities for engagement with industry, practitioners, and community members; each student will undertake a masters project working closely with a mentor from a company, nonprofit or early stage investor in addition to having an academic advisor.

Cornell Tech’s Dean, Dan Huttenlocher, and our Chief Entrepreneurial Officer, Greg Pass, the former CTO of Twitter, have been working hard to craft this curriculum and build the partnerships with industry that will set the Cornell Tech experience apart and benefit New York’s tech sector. We are already working with an exciting roster of organizations, from major tech companies to startups, from not-for-profits to architectural firms. The program embraces the idea that technology is prevalent in all industries and facets of our life, and our students will have the opportunity to engage in a great breadth of experiences.

As you can see, we are embracing the momentum and excitement surrounding this new campus and moving quickly to make it a reality. At the same time, we’re taking the time to be thoughtful and deliberate in how we’re proceeding, both in the creation of an academic program and in the way that we’re planning our campus on Roosevelt Island.
As reported last week,  Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer conditionally approved the Cornell NYC Tech application which is now being reviewed by the City Planning Commission with a Public Hearing scheduled for February 6.

More information on the Cornell NYC Tech Beta Class available from this January 22 Press Release:
Cornell Tech today announced the entrance of its “beta” class, the first full-time students pursuing a one-year Cornell Master of Engineering degree in computer science in New York City. The small and highly selective beta class is made up of eight students who bring a wide range of experience and backgrounds but share an entrepreneurial spirit and outstanding academic credentials. The program is being housed at Cornell Tech’s temporary campus location in Chelsea, in space donated by Google. In 2017, the campuswill move to its permanent home on Roosevelt Island.

“We couldn’t be more excited with the level of talent that has been attracted to Cornell Tech to launch this innovative new program in the heart of New York City,” said Dan Huttenlocher, Dean of Cornell Tech. “Our beta class will help shape the campus moving forward, and this group has the entrepreneurial spirit and technical talent to go out and make a difference in the world.”

“It’s hard to believe that just more than a year after being chosen to create this campus, we are already welcoming our first class of students,” said Cornell Tech Vice President Cathy Dove. “Our temporary campus in Chelsea is already buzzing with activity, even as we continue working with our future neighbors on Roosevelt Island on the development of our permanent campus.”

“When fully built, Cornell Tech will ultimately revolutionize New York City’s economy for the long term,” said Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. “But the school is also having an immediate impact, attracting the next generation of talented engineers and boosting the City’s growingreputation as a world-renowned hub of the technology sector.”

The new tech campus is offering a distinctive model of graduate tech education that fuses educational excellence with real-world commercial applications and technology entrepreneurship, rooted in the latest academic research. Students, faculty and industry experts will learn and work together to launch ideas and create new ventures that have global impact. The campus will attract the best and brightest in technology, immerse them in an entrepreneurial culture with deep ties to the local business community, and spur the creation of new companies and new industries in New York City.

Academic courses will be conducted on Mondays through Thursdays, with Fridays used for a novel new practicum on “Entrepreneurial Life”, composed of interactive workshops and activities. In addition to the formal curriculum, the program will provide numerous opportunities for engagement with industry, practitioners, and community members; each student will undertake a master’s project working closely with a mentor from a company, nonprofit or early stage investor in addition to having an academic advisor.

Future one-year Cornell professional master degree programs are planned in the fields of electrical and computer engineering, information science, and operations research and information engineering, as well as a tech-oriented one-year MBA. Planning is also underway for an innovative new two-year Master of Science dual degree offered by Cornell and its academic partner, the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. This new program will combine depth in information technology fields with domain expertise in one of the three interdisciplinary focal areas or “hubs”: connective media, healthier life, or the built environment. All degrees will reflect the mission of the campus, of technical excellence with a focus on collaborative projects, industry mentors, and entrepreneurship/business.

The launch of the beta class is another major milestone for the campus, a new world-class graduate education and research campus being created by Cornell University and its academic partner, the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, after being chosen as the winner of New York City’s Applied Sciences competition in December 2011. Cornell Tech is rapidly rolling out new academic programs, recruiting star faculty, developing a distinctive new model of tech entrepreneurship, and designing its permanent campus on Roosevelt Island.
and WNYC NY Tech City Blog interview with Cornell Dean Dan Huttenlocher

Cornell recently conducted an ice cream making food science competition for its students with a theme of the NYC Tech campus.

Perhaps the Cornell Ice Cream flavors can be sold at Roosevelt Island's own Coach Scot's Main Street Sweets shop?


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