On May 20, 2016, the CUNY Advanced Science Research Center hosted dignitaries from the New York City community to commemorate the official opening of the building and its NanoFabrication Facility and celebrate its progress to date.
The event, entitled “A New Era in Scientific Inquiry at CUNY,” afforded guests an opportunity to learn about the broad array of research that takes place at the ASRC, both by researchers housed in the building and its partners from throughout the CUNY system and the Northeast Corridor’s scientific community. Visitors were also given an opportunity to tour the building, led by several of the researchers who are part of the growing ASRC team.
“The opening of the ASRC truly signals a new era of scientific inquiry at CUNY making available state of the art core facilities, like the new Nanofabrication Facility, and research space to internationally-recognized scientists who are being recruited to CUNY to perform world-class science with real-world impact in some key and emerging disciplines,” said Gillian Small, Vice Chancellor for Research and Executive Director of the CUNY ASRC. “At the ASRC we have five key and emerging disciplines – Nanoscience, Photonics, Structural Biology, Neuroscience, and Environmental Sciences – together in one building with the goal of fostering interdisciplinary research and discovery and developing a university-wide integrated scientific research network.”
In addition to Dr. Small, speakers at the event included CUNY Trustee and Chief Executive Officer and Director of Scientific Affairs at The Cancer Research Institute, Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, Executive Vice Chancellor and University Provost Vita Rabinowitz, and Lisa Coico, President of The City College of New York. City and state officials included Gerrard Bushell, president and CEO of the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer. CUNY ASRC Nanoscience Initiative Director Rein V. Ulijn presented the keynote address about how the interdisciplinary emphasis of the ASRC is shaping the research taking place within his lab group.
“The ASRC was envisioned as CUNY’s signature response to the urgent scientific, economic, and social challenges facing our region, our nation, and the world,” said Rabinowitz, who moderated the program. “ASRC scientists and their many collaborators within and beyond CUNY are producing world-class research that contributes to our collective understanding of the scientific world and to the public good.”
The NanoFabrication Facility, the first of the ASRC’s core facilities to come fully online, was officially opened with a ribbon cutting following the program. Facility Director Jacob Trevino was joined by Rabinowitz, Small and Ulijn as well as a number of initial users, including Michal Lipson of Columbia University. Other research institutions with which the NanoFab has created affiliations include Rockefeller University, Brookhaven National Labs, Weill Cornell Medical College, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Memorial Sloan Kettering and many others.
The facility is the first of its kind within CUNY, and its opening is a major milestone for the burgeoning scientific research community that has been building over the past decade within the University. One of the leading facilities of its kind in the metropolitan region, the ASRC NanoFab offers a comprehensive set of tools to develop new micro and nanoscale devices, such as integrated circuits, nanophotonic and solid state devices, micro-electromechanical systems, and microfluidic systems.
“The industry-level quality of each piece of equipment in our NanoFab ensures that our facility will act as a catalyst for both nanotechnology-based research and the growing nanotechnology start-up community in New York,” Trevino said. “The facility positions the ASRC to become a hub for collaborative research in the field, bringing together under one roof universities, medical institutions and industrial leaders from New York and beyond.”
About the ASRC: The CUNY Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC) is a University-wide venture that elevates CUNY’s legacy of scientific research and education through initiatives in five distinctive, but increasingly interconnected disciplines: Nanoscience, Photonics, Structural Biology, Neuroscience and Environmental Sciences. Led by Dr. Gillian Small, Vice Chancellor for Research and the ASRC’s executive director, the center is designed to promote a unique, interdisciplinary research culture. Researchers from each of the initiatives work side by side in the ASRC’s core facilities, sharing equipment that is among the most advanced available. Funding for the ASRC from New York State is gratefully acknowledged.