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2014 REDC Awards Set to Boost Economic Development Around SUNY Campuses

Governor Cuomo on stage announcing the 2014 REDC Awards

This week, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the awarding of $709.2 million in economic and community development funding throughout New York State in the fourth round of the Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative. These funding awards are set out to jumpstart the economy and create jobs. Started in 2011, the Councils were established to transform the New York State’s approach to economic development from a top-down model to one that is community-based and performance-driven.

SUNY is a big benefactor to the REDC Awards, both directly and indirectly. With new investment in infrastructure and development statewide, counties and cities see job growth expanding, which provides opportunities to college graduates in all disciplines. Each REDC is closely tied to the communities they impact, and with SUNY’s local presence to all communities throughout New York, quality research and innovation is on hand nearby to support these developments across the state.

The first three rounds of the Regional Council process awarded more than $2 billion to more than 2,200 job creation and community development projects across the state, supporting the creation or retention of more than 130,000 jobs. Last year brought $14.8 million near and to SUNY campuses to provide a boost to research and investment throughout New York.

“The work taking place in each region across the State is so important because it lays the groundwork that will continue to drive the economy – not just today and tomorrow, but for years to come,” Lieutenant Governor Robert J. Duffy, Chair of the Regional Economic Development Councils, said.

The projects being funded at SUNY colleges this year, totaling more than $15 million, are listed below:

Western NY:

Jamestown Community College

  • $99,998 – Jamestown Community College will train 22 long-term unemployed workers as machinists including math and reading, lean manufacturing, engineering drawing and AutoCAD, machine theory and operation, mathematics for machinists, OSHA 10 hour, computerized numerical control (CNC), manufacturing drawings and geometric dimensioning and tolerancing, and machine tool technology 2.

University at Buffalo

  • $650,000 – The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus will construct two above-ground pedestrian bridges connecting the new University at Buffalo (UB) School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences; the new Coventus Medical Office Building; and UB Research Institute on Addictions.
  • $52,710 – (RF SUNY) University at Buffalo will train 20 long-term unemployed workers in dental assisting; clinical skills/cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR); dental materials; dental office procedures; clinical patient care; pre-clinical technology lab studies; preventative dentistry; dental radiology; dental lab studies; dental sciences; chair side skills; customer service; basic Spanish for healthcare workers; medical billing/coding; medical insurance; and Microsoft Word and PowerPoint.

Erie Community College

  • $100,000 – Erie Community College of Buffalo will train 20 long-term unemployed workers in computer numerical control (CNC) mill programming/operations; technical communications/graphics; machine tools; industrial inspection/metrology; CNC lathe programming/operations; SolidWorks; Mastercam; biomanufacturing/food processing; quality control; regulatory compliance; lean manufacturing; food safety/sanitation; facility operations; biology/chemistry; computer literacy; human interaction; composition; and math.

SUNY Buffalo State

  • $100,000 – (RF SUNY) SUNY Buffalo State will train 24 long-term unemployed workers in orientation to manufacturing industries; introduction to OSHA safety training; wellness and conditioning; manufacturing environment skills; tools that are used in manufacturing; blueprint reading; shop math; introduction to lean manufacturing; materials properties; precision machining processes; numeric control systems; and provide internship opportunities.

Niagara County Community College

  • $63,375 – Niagara County Community College of Sanborn will train 80 long-term unemployed workers in front desk operations, customer service, Training for Intervention ProcedureS (TIPS), restaurant serving, and Serve Safe.
  • $99,930 – Niagara County Community College will use Tourism Marketing funding for its Niagara Falls Culinary Institute Project. Funds will be used to market a special event, an annual life-size Gingerbread House construction, as well as the community education classes in an effort to attract tourists into the region. Additionally, funding will be used to design and purchase interactive “Niagriculture” signage.

Finger Lakes:

Monroe Community College

  • $1,639,000 – Monroe Community College will retrofit two 1920’s era buildings with green roofs as the first phase of a high profile multi-phase effort, to incorporate green infrastructure throughout the campus. Green infrastructure practices will be used to reduce runoff and mitigate combined sewer overflows that contaminate the receiving waters of the Genesee River, Lake Ontario, and Irondequoit Bay.

Southern Tier:

SUNY Broome Community College

  • $2,500,000 – Broome County Community College will renovate the vacant former Carnegie Library to establish the College’s Hospitality Education Center.

Binghamton University

  • $800,000 – The SUNY Research Foundation will establish a Global Center at Binghamton University, which will include the renovation of an existing building on campus.

Cornell University

  • $2,800,000 – The Cornell Veterinary College will expand classroom, laboratory and clinical space in order to increase enrollment by 30 students.

Central NY:

Cayuga Community College

  • $100,000 – Cayuga Community College of Auburn will train 40 long-term unemployed workers in advanced manufacturing, including professional accountability, manufacturing processes and materials, machine tools 1 and 2, computer aided design (CAD), quality assurance, solid modeling, advanced CAD and computer aided manufacturing (CAM), and manufacturing internship.


  • $500,000 – The project will integrate green infrastructure into the SUNY ESF Academic Research Building (ARB) in Syracuse. Students will conduct research on water quality performance of the green infrastructure practices at the site, including a green roof, green wall, porous pavement, stormwater trees, and stormwater basins that include a bog, freshwater, brackish, and non-tidal saltwater marshes. This innovative approach to redevelopment will serve as a model across the state.

Mohawk Valley:

Mohawk Valley Community College

  • $98,967 – Mohawk Valley Community College of Utica will train 33 long-term unemployed workers in residential and commercial heating, and electric arc welding.
  • $250,000 – The thINCubator, a project of Mohawk Valley Community College, will offer a unique incubator for entrepreneurs (the name thINCubator stands for “the home for innovative new companies”) is to tap into the creativity of all segments of the regional opulation. The thINCubator works with a broad coalition of partners, with support from the Community Foundation, the Workforce Development Institute and MVCC – as well as in-kind partnerships from local colleges and expert advice and support from similar, more established projects in Syracuse.

Mohawk Valley EDGE (SUNY Poly)

  • $1,000,000 – Third major phase of site development bringing the Marcy Nanocenter site to near shovel-ready status.

SUNY Oneonta

  • $910,000 – The project will install green infrastructure, including bioretention and porous pavement, to manage stormwater runoff from a 21-acre area with a high-density mix of dormitories, classroom buildings, roads, parking lots and lawn surface.

Capital Region:

SUNY AdirondackWashington County Local Development Corporation for the  SUNY Adirondack Regional Education Center Strategic Development Plan

  • $65,000 – Develop a strategic plan of action that will lead to the creation of a Regional Educational Center that houses non-credit and credit programming, courses, and services to support agriculture, health care, and trades industries in Washington County.

The Research Foundation for the State University of New York

  • $900,000 – Build out of a comprehensive calibration laboratory for meteorological instruments and test site for advance technology to support 125 statewide weather stations.
  • $250,000 – The i518 program will provide entrepreneurial support and training in points of presence in downtown Albany, Troy, and Schenectady. This will nurture the growth of new employers in these areas that are accessible by public transportation to low-income and underserved people. Through the UAlbany SEED program, business mentorship and counseling is provided to low income entrepreneurs. Additional i518 entrepreneurial training will be provided to SEED companies in the IT-enabled, web services, or other innovation-based businesses. CEG, as a major part of its strategic plan, also focuses on workforce & education initiatives that provide a continuous pipeline of skilled STEM workers to support entrepreneurial activities throughout the region.


Purchase College

  • $765,000 – SUNY Purchase College will implement green infrastructure practices as a living laboratory for students and the general public. Bioretention and porous pavement retrofits will be used to demonstrate how green infrastructure can be incorporated through the larger campus and improve water quality in Blind Brook, which flows into Long Island Sound.

Rockland Community College

  • $100,000 – Rockland Community College of Suffern will train 60 long-term unemployed workers in medical coding.

Long Island Region

Suffolk County Community College

  • $236,000 – Acquire portable learning labs to identify skill gaps and provide training in the Wyandanch community.
  • $100,000 – Suffolk County Community College of Selden will train 56 long-term unemployed workers as welders, computer numerical control (CNC) operators, pharmacy technicians, ophthalmic technicians, health information technologists, energy auditors, and solar photovoltaic installers.

Stony Brook University

  • $1,000,000 – Establish R&D center for the cybersecurity of engineered infrastructure and utility systems creating new research jobs.


And there are many more projects laid out in this year’s awards that will impact the cities and areas surrounding SUNY campuses and all of New York State. To learn about all of them, the entire list of projects and grant amounts is available in the REDC Awards booklet.

Taras Kufel

Written by Taras Kufel

Taras Kufel is the Manager of Digital Engagement at the State University of New York.

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