Growing cereal grains as an energy source has been criticized for impinging on food production resources. In a plot twist, Shijie Liu, a professor of paper and bioprocess engineering at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, is looking at using wood, an energy crop, as the source of a food additive.
While exploring ways to separate the different sugars to make the fermentation more efficient, Lui realized that sugars themselves might be marketable end products. He took a closer look at the five-carbon sugar xylose, which is used to make the sweetener xylitol.
Earth Day is a perfect opportunity to recognize the role that SUNY plays in maximizing Energy Smart New York every single day of the year; after all, 97% of the state’s population is within 20 miles of a SUNY campus. As an economic driver in New York State, SUNY capitalizes on the opportunity to profoundly affect New Yorkers by instating smart, and sometimes bold, environmental goals.
Today we focus on a recent national intercampus achievement and groundbreaking systemwide initiative that both focus on the environment. And to kick off our highlighting of SUNY’s eco-friendly push, our Generation SUNY team spoke to SUNY ESF faculty expert Dr. Elizabeth Folta on how SUNY students can maximize (or minimize!) their impact throughout the year with our brand-new video series, Interview With A. Check it out after the jump!
SUNY’s Early College High School partnership with EDWorks and the State Education Department began when the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded a $6 million grant to launch New York’s Smart Scholars Initiative in late 2009. The mission was to make earning college credits accessible to traditionally underrepresented high school students and motivate students to not only graduate high school, but also pursue a higher education.
Nationally, The Early College High School Initiative has had enormous success. Serving a population encompassing 77% students of color, 57% students from low-income households and 45% first generation college goers, the average early college graduate earns 36 credits or 30% of a Bachelors degree and 60% of an Associate’s degree.
New York State’s 23 Smart Scholars programs have made it possible for over 5,100 students to earn over 8,723 transferable college credits in just two years. In honor of ECHS Week and the accomplishments Smart Scholars state-wide, we would like to highlight our longest running Early College High Schools, including the nation’s oldest, Bard High School Early College.
Numerous partners from across Upstate New York came together to make this possible. More than thirty different sponsors provided funds, volunteers, and a passion for science. Sponsors included private businesses such as Corning Incorporated, community organizations such as the Syracuse Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and institutions of higher education, including Onondaga Community College. With so many sponsors working together to serve New York’s student scientists, the fair is a prime example of harnessing the power of partnerships!