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University Newsback to top

Generous Donors Jump-start Transformation Initiatives

In support of President Hultin's Future of Polytechnic initiative, University Relations and Development has received gifts and pledges totaling more than $4.5 million, since June 1, 2006. Among the gifts received and scholarships established, under the direction of Vice President Richard Thorsen, are:

  • A $1 million bequest to Polytechnic from the estates of William T. and Elva Hudtwalker has established the William T. Hudtwalker Scholarship Endowment to provide financial support to undergraduate students in electrical engineering. The bequest was part of the estate Mrs. Hudtmaker inherited upon the death of her husband in 1987. Over time, what began as a relatively modest amount grew into an appreciable sum, which was left to NYU-Poly when Mrs. Hudtwalker died in 2005 at the age of 94.
  • Jenny Proskauer, the wife of 1984 honorary degree recipient Eric Proskauer, has bequest $500,000 to the Eric and Jenny R. Proskauer Scholarship Fund to assist qualified and deserving Polytechnic students.
  • George Cha, ME '70, and his wife Assunta, fulfilled a $100,000 gift to establish an endowment named the Cha Family Endowed Scholarship, in support of a female student with a passion for the arts, sciences and community service.
  • Norma Rancken Cossey, the late wife of C. Murray Cossey, CE '47, made an unrestricted bequest of $63,000. Notwithstanding her interest in several NYU-Poly organizations, Norma decided on an unrestricted gift so as to support university wide priorities as the Future of Polytechnic initiative unfolds.
  • A total $105,000 in corporate completion gifts arising from Polytechnic's $1 million Promise Fund Dinner have been received from the General Electric Company, Motorola, MTV Networks, and Time Warner Cable.

Friends and alumni have given NYU-Poly a jump start as we begin our Future of Polytechnic initiatives. Among Poly's early stage "angel funders" investing in our future are: William Friend, Violet Jacobs, Linda Jacobs, Leonard Shustek and Donna Dubinsky, and Paul Soros. Now we need to grow our resources and invite the greater community to support our future ambitions. Given the support for "The Power of PolyThinking" from individuals and friends, NYU-Poly now needs the community-at-large to step up to the plate, alongside alumni and corporate benefactors.

If you are interested learning more about how you can help, please contact Craig Purinton, Executive Director of Development at 718 260-3575 or purinton@poly.edu

NYU-Poly Hosts Annual Fall Career Fair

Students handing in their resumes to a company representative

Students handing in their resumes to a company representative

With nearly 70 corporate, governmental, and institutional participants, Polytechnic Institute of NYU's Annual Fall Career Fair Day on October 18, 2006, drew crowds of students and alumni seeking job opportunities. At booths representing a wide array of industry sectors, recruiters spanned numerous professional fields and disciplines, including: information technology, communications, transportation, government, finance, and engineering. At booths hosted by AXA Equitable, Credit Swisse, Con Edison, Factset, MetroNorth Railroad, Turner Construction, and others, working professionals provided attendees an opportunity to learn about employer needs, as well as the skills and qualifications required to secure jobs in various fields of interest.

New Department of Financial Engineering

Photograph of Professor Chalres Tapiero

Professor Chalres Tapiero

Professor Charles Tapiero, the Topfer Chair, has been appointed the head of the newly established Financial Engineering program, a fast growing and highly-sought after engineering discipline designed to address the need for financial engineering skills and mathematically-based actuarial techniques used by the financial services industries.

Financial Engineering (FE) has been a program within the Department of Technology Management since its inception.† Over the past years, the FE program has achieved significant growth based upon an increasingly strong global financial sector in New York City.†In response, the FE faculty have developed a strategic, interdisciplinary plan that provides for even greater growth, the increased diversity of its programs into new areas such as risk management, and collaboration with other departments throughout the university.

e-Learning Workshops for Faculty and Staff at NYU-Poly

To ensure successful delivery of Poly's e-learning programs and coursework, two workshops were presented on October 4, as stipulated by NY State accreditation requirements. NY State accreditation requires that faculty teaching online courses regularly attend training workshops that address online teaching challenges and issues. An accreditation review and site visit will follow the workshops. The workshops were presented by Jeff D. Borden, a well-known e-Learning Solutions Specialist. The first workshop dealt with the technical and hands-on issues of implementing new online learning features, and the basic challenges of managing a course online. The second workshop focused on the relative challenges and issues of teaching in an online environment. In order to accommodate faculty and staff, both workshops were held twice. For more information about ePoly, contact Sunil Gupta, Executive Director, eNYU-Poly & Continuing Education, at ext. 3065, or by email at sgupta@poly.edu

President's Office Executive Update, Fall '06

Executive update cover page - Creating the Future of Polytechnic

In tandem with back-to-back faculty/administration workshops, President Hultin provided a university-wide executive update and status report on the University, based on ongoing assessments and feedback he has received over the past year from faculty, staff, students, board members and other interested parties. The President's report, a confidential internal document circulated electronically to faculty and staff, covered a wide range of issues, including:

  • Undergraduate/Graduate Full/Part-time Enrollment and Retention
  • Enrollment Plans for FY2008
  • The Appointment of Nine New Trustees
    • Glenn Britt - CEO of Time Warner Cable
    • Aviva Budd, Esq. - CEO of Aviva Realty
    • Deborah Devedjian - Managing Partner of Copernicus Learning Fund
    • Randy Frey - CEO of Frey Research
    • Patrick A. Garzillo - Vice President of Service Costs, Verizon
    • Michael O'Brien - Managing Partner of King Spalding
    • Mark Ronald - CEO of BAE Systems, Inc.
    • David Schweiger - Prof. of Strategic Management, Univ. of South Carolina
    • James Smith -  Chairman of EDO Corporation
  • Faculty Growth
    • Professor Michael Plesniak, Eugene Kleiner Chair for Innovation, ME,
    • Associate Professor Rastilav Levicky, Othmer Chair, CBE
    • Assistant Professor Jin Kim, Jacobs Chair, CBE
    • James Airozo - Honors College
    • Natasha Assa - HUSS
    • Franziska Berger - Math
    • Anne-Laure Fayard - Management
    • Valerie Giordano - CBE
    • Michael Knox - ECE
    • Nancy Kwak - HUSS
    • Jin Montclare - CBS
    • Stanley Peterburgsky - Management
    • Maurizio Porfiri - ME
    • Garrett Rose - ECE
    • Nitesh Saxena -- CIS
  • Administrative Leadership Positions Filled
    • Jane Alexander - Vice President of Research & Technology Initiatives
    • Erich Kunhardt - Provost
    • Susan Lestingi -Vice President of Marketing and Communications
    • Joy Colelli -Dean of Undergraduate Admissions & New Student Initiatives
    • Craig Purinton - Director of Capital Campaign
    • Ann Lubrano - Associate Provost/President's Chief of Staff
  • Consultants Providing “Rifle Shot” Advice and Solutions
    To augment University resources in a cost-effective manner, without incurring the expense of full-time personnel in areas where we require additional expert knowledge, NYU-Poly is employing consultants on a project specific basis in the areas of:
    • Recruitment and admissions;
    • Fundraising campaigns and development;
    • Tuition and financial aid;
    • Improved classroom teaching;
    • Increased research funding from federal agencies;
    • Technology transfer and business development;
    • Appreciative inquiry and graphic recording for large workshops;
    • Leadership coaching;
    • Improving undergraduate education and finance returns;
    • Faculty development;
    • Strategic marketing analysis for university priorities;
    • Capital structure and bond refinancing; and,
    • Development rights appraisal, legal analysis, and real estate development.
  • Poly's FY2006 Financial Status, including:    
    • An Audit Report to help increase revenue and improve cash flow;
      • Finalization of Endowment/Cy pres petition to allow the university to meet bond covenants and Title IV composite score requirement during 2006 by using endowment and not cash.  
      • Real estate negotiations to develop the approximately 800 thousand square feet of development rights based on Brooklyn's rezoning program, including Board overview/review of terms of the Letter of Intent (LOI). Ongoing discussions over the next 12-18 months are envisioned to work through details and contract terms. Polytechnic and the developer will complete a detailed design and the final financial terms of the transaction, and the University and the developer are working with CUNY's New York City College of Technology to assure architectural compatibity.
      • “Angel Fund” fundraising/development support totaling $4.5 million raised by President Hultin and V.P. Richard Thorsen from a small set of very loyal supporters.  Special thanks go to Len Shustek and Donna Dubinsky, Paul Soros, Linda Jacobs, Violet Jacobs, Michael Corey, and Bill Friend who all made major commitments.
      • Bond Restructuring to relieve burdensome cash reserve requirements that severely restrict liquidity. V.P. T.C. Westcott has been working with advisors at JPMorgan Chase to craft alternative financing techniques to refinance these bonds and reduce their financial burden.
  • A Summary of The Future of Polytechnic Action Phase, including:
    • President's Workshops - Numerous faculty, staff, students and interested parties attended two university-wide workshops in September and October to devise an action plan for Future of Polytechnic's three priorities - Urban Systems, Health and Wellness; and Information Technologies/NC3MA.  Using “appreciative inquiry” and “graphic recording” communications techniques, the workshops are designed to lay the foundation to help develop a plan that will generate new programs and initiatives in undergraduate and graduate education, faculty growth, research, marketing and branding, fund raising, and more.
    • Undergraduate Curriculum Transformation - Consensus among senior faculty has resulted in a fast-track study to design a new curriculum that provides a more appealing, exciting and valuable educational experience to NYU-Poly undergraduates.  Priorities include: giving students more flexibility and options; increasing undergraduate research projects featuring invention and innovation; service learning; and, more internships with businesses. A final recommendation to the NYU-Poly faculty is anticipated in January 2007, approval of the new curriculum design is targeted for Spring 2007.  The goal is to open classes in fall 2008 using the new design.
    • New Academic Department Heads
      • Mel Horwitch - Chair of the Management Department
      • Bruce Garetz - Head of the new Chemical Biological Sciences Department
      • Jovan Mijovic - Head of the Chemical Biological Engineering Department
      • Lorcan Folan - Head of the new Physics Department
      • Rich Wener - Head of the Humanities and Social Sciences Department
      • Bud Griffis - Head of the Civil Engineering Department, and Dean of Engineering
      • Mary Cowman - Head of the Othmer Institute
    • Westchester Campus Initiatives - NYU-Poly has hired Andres Fortino, the current dean of Marist University, to become Associate Provost of Poly's Westchester campus. Dr. Fortino will be responsible for the growth of programs at Polytechnic's Westchester campus in Hawthorne, NY.
    • Branding Banners - The faces of NYU-Poly students alongside Poly's branding statement/initiative, “Discover the Power of PolyThinking” is appearing throughout MetroTech on campus buildings and in the subway. This is the work of a collaborative union between Susan Lestingi, our new Vice President for Marketing, and Michael Gerbino, a professor of design at Pratt Institute.
    • The NYU-Poly 100 Dinner - Last April, many of Poly's most important donors joined with faculty and staff for a festive dinner in New York City to celebrate the accomplishments of NYU-Poly faculty and the generosity of Poly's donors. NYU-Poly trustee, Dr. John Schaefer, presented a highly informative briefing on the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, the major initiative he now heads.

Additional topics raised in the Presidents Fall '06 Newsletter are discussed in separate articles throughout this issue of NYU-Poly eBriefs.

Erich Kunhardt Appointed Provost

Photograph of new Polytechnic Provost Eric Kunhardt

Eric Kunhardt

Effective on October 6th, 2006, Dr. Kunhardt assumed the title of Provost, Polytechnic's chief academic officer. Dr. Kunhardt, formerly the Dean of the Imperatore School of Science and Arts, an Institute Professor, and an active member of the Physics Department at Stevens Institute of Technology, has strong Polytechnic roots. Having earned his Ph.D at NYU-Poly in 1976, Dr. Kunhardt served as the director of the Weber Microwave Research Institute from 1985 through 1992. While at Stevens, Dr. Kunhardt and his colleagues discovered and patented atmospheric plasma which became the basis for forming two companies to commercialize the discovery through invention. In addition, Dr. Kunhardt played an essential role in making "Technogenesis" a unique and transforming approach to education and research at Stevens Institute.

Read more about Dr. Kunhardt and his appointment on the NYU-Poly website. You can also download a recent Op-Ed article he wrote for the New York Times, "Necessity as the Mother of Tenure?," and his presentation entitled, "Towards a New Kind of University."

NYU-Poly Hosts FIRST Lego League Robotics Competition Information Sessions

Polytechnic Institute of NYU hosted a half-day conference to prepare middle school teachers and their students for this year's FIRST Lego League Robotics Competition. Information sessions were led by Polytechnic students who are members of the PolyBOTS Club, as well as faculty and industry professionals. Topics discussed included: team organization; developing appropriate research assignments; and, winning the Nano Quest Challenge. The event was the city-wide kickoff for the FIRST Lego League activity, which requires five months of preparation, culminating in the finals in late January 2007. NYU-Poly is the " lead university" for FIRST Lego League in New York City.

Physics Department Re-established at NYU-Poly

Photograph of Dr. Lorcan Folan

Dr. Lorcan Folan

After a 11-year hiatus, Poly's Department of Physics kicked off its first semester under the leadership of President Hultin at a luncheon on September 25, 2006. The department is comprised of physics faculty who served as faculty members in the Othmer-Jacobs Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering and the Department of Introductory Design and Science. The General Engineering program will be administered by the department, which will be headed by Dr. Lorcan Folan who joined the university in 1987.

The Physics Department will focus on achieving excellence in teaching and research. The department's service mission will be enlarged by offering electives and a physics minor. The physics major will be invigorated and other key priorities will be the fostering of advanced scholarship and funded research.

To learn more, visit the Department of Physics website.

Career Services Hosts Mentoring Dinner

President Hultin taking notes during the Mentoring Dinner

President Hultin taking notes during the Mentoring Dinner

On September 13, 2006, Polytechnic's Office of Career Services hosted its third annual mentoring dinner where first and second year students dined with top engineers from the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME). The event is designed to help students meet and benefit from mentoring opportunities which provide support, guidance and information that enhance their education and professional development. The dinner's keynote lecture, "Work Hard at Work Worth Doing: The Role of the Engineering Leader," was delivered by Frank Lombardi, Chief Engineer of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and Adjunct Lecturer in the department of Civil Engineering.

NYU-Poly Hosts NYS Science Center Conference on Innovation and Excellence in Homeland Security

Applied Science Center of Innovation and Excellence in Homeland Security emblem

The New York State Center of Innovation and Excellence in Homeland Security, an industry-led facility, functions as the core of the innovation network and as a virtual location for linking research development performed at state-owned research institutions. On September 12, the organization presented a workshop at Polytechnic Institute of NYU that concentrated on: analyzing user needs; command and control tools; and processes and technologies to create, test, integrate, select, buy and commission operationally driven solutions and systems in the first preventer/responder environment. Moderator Kenneth Morrelly, president of the Long Island Forum for Technology (LIFT), presided over discussions on: developing agile and adaptive systems and processes in sensing networks; information fusion; processing and situation awareness; command/control/information dissemination to key decision makers; and accelerated technology transfer into market-driven products and systems

Reflections on 9-11


The Office of Student Development and the Division of Student Affairs held a memorial in the Jasper Kane Private Dining Room to pause and reflect on the events of September 11, 2001. Student exhibits created immediately after 9-11 were on display and visitors were invited to help create a "Collage of Hope" in response to the events 5 years ago. A Counseling Center therapist was available for discussion, and singer-songwriter Joan Osborne performed in the MetroTech Commons as part of "The September Concert," a series of free concerts held annually on September 11 across the globe.

The Return of the Polytechnic Reporter

After a two-year hiatus, the presses are once again printing the student newspaper, The Polytechnic Reporter. In its debut re-release, the periodical includes: an in-depth interview with President Hultin; a discussion with Dr. F.H. "Bud" Griffis about his tenure as Poly's Provost; a review of Lackman Culinary Services; a report on the Rogers Hall elevators; a faculty profile on Prof. Jean Gallagher; the re-establishment of the Physics Department at Poly; an exposť on the restructuring of the Chemistry/Chemical Engineering departments; a history of Prospect Park; a review of the New York Auto Show; and, summaries of athletics at Poly. The return of the Polytechnic reporter, under the guidance faculty advisor Lowell Scheiner, is a most welcome development. According to Andrew Bacchus, the Reporter's Editor-in-Chief, "A school newspaper is not only the voice of the student body, but is also the primary means to facilitate positive change for everyone's benefit."

Teaching the Teachers, NYU-Poly Hosts Workshop for NYC High Schools

Professor Gandehari (second from left) with high school teachers

Professor Gandehari (second from left) with high school teachers

In a one-week summer course taught at Polytechnic Institute of NYU, New York City High School teachers received instruction on developing project-based course materials that generates student interest in science and engineering disciplines. Designed to assist teachers, the program demonstrates techniques that help students learn critical technology skills. Led by Professor Masoud Ghandehari, Department of Civil Engineering, and Beverly Johnson, Executive Director of the Center for Youth in Engineering & Science, the program integrates adult learning, classroom exercises and hands-on laboratory experience with field trips and short lectures. With the support of Poly's faculty and sponsoring organizations, the program assists secondary school teachers in developing pedagogies and curriculum that relate scientific concepts to the everyday experiences students encounter in the real world. According to Dr. Ghandehari, "By connecting the things kids see in the world to what they learn in class, teachers can help students understand how things work and, more importantly, why the lessons they're being taught are worth learning."

Yoshi Okamoto Named Director of Historic Polymer Research Institute

Photograph of Dr. Yoshi Okamoto

Dr. Yoshi Okamoto

Dr. Yoshi Okamoto has been appointed Director of the Polymer Research Institute, the first facility in the United States devoted to academic research in the field of polymer science and engineering. Dr. Okamoto's research interests include the synthesis, characterization, and application of new functionalized polymeric materials. In 2003, the American Chemical Society (ACS) designated Polytechnic Institute of NYU's Polymer Research Institute, established by Dr. Herman Mark, a National Historic Chemical Landmark for its contribution to advancing polymer science and training over 1500 polymer scientists and engineers who studied at NYU-Poly as students, postdoctoral fellows or visiting scholars. The ACS citation reads:

The Polymer Research Institute was established in 1946 by Herman F. Mark, a pioneer in the study of giant molecules. The Institute brought together a number of polymer researchers to create the first academic facility in the United States devoted to the study and teaching of polymer science. Scientists associated with it later went on to establish polymer programs at other universities and institutions, contributing significantly to the development and growth of what has become a vital branch of chemistry, engineering, and materials science.

Read more about Dr. Okamato's appointment on the NYU-Poly website.

NYU-Poly Bio-Nano Summer Camp

Dr. Levon explaining nanoparticles and crystalline materials to students

Dr. Kalle Levon teaching the essentials of scattering nanoparticles and liquid crystalline materials.

Under the guidance of Polytechnic professors, Dr. Victor Barinov and Dr. Kalle Levon, 20 Cardozo High School sophomores, juniors and seniors designed and conducted nanotechnology and stem cell-pc12 experiments during the 2006 summer break at Polytechnic Institute of NYU's Bio-Nano Summer Camp. The Cardozo students who signed up for the two-week course rank among the top in their class, having demonstrated an express interest in science, technology and engineering. Working under the instruction of Polytechnic scientists, technicians and PhD candidates who crafted the program to be a hands-on learning experience, the students had an opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills in real world working laboratories. The "Bio-Nano Summer Camp" program is designed to give young scientists first-hand empirical experience in the lab, and provides students with academic credentials which can be used in college applications. Most important, the experience teaches students how to think creatively. According to Dr. Levon, "America's future is in knowledge-based society. This is where the innovation happens."

Andrea Tuckett explaining a nanofiber apparatus

Chemical Engineering Doctoral student, Andrea Tuckett, demonstrates how to study nanofibers.

Read more about the Bio-Nano summer program on the NYU-Poly website

PolyThinkers to Orbit Earth One More Time

Paolo Nespoli

Paolo Nespoli

Anything worth doing well is worth doing twice. From Milan, Italy to Brooklyn, New York, to the stratosphere and beyond, Paolo Nespoli '88, '89 is set to become the second Polytechnic Institute of NYU alumnus to enter space, aboard Space Shuttle Mission STS-120. Having earned Bachelor and Masters Degrees in Polytechnic's aerospace program, Mr. Nespoli will follow the trail blazed by the University's first astronaut, Charles J. Camarda '74, in the summer of 2005. As the Italian Space Agency's mission specialist in August 2007, Nespoli is assigned to deploy the Italian-built Node 2, a major building block that will allow for further expansion of the International Space Station, and relocate of one of the four solar arrays that provide power to the multinational, extraterrestrial research vessel.

Read more about Nespoli and his assignment on his NASA bio.

New Student Orientation

With the arrival of the Class of 2010, the Department of Student Affairs hosted a wide range of New Student Orientation Activities to familiarize these future PolyThinkers with academic and administrative logistics, as well as a host of recreational extracurricular activities. In addition to obtaining photo IDs, getting set up in the Residence Hall, registering for class, and meeting faculty and staff, activities for Poly's new students included such events as:

New Student Orientation activities thumbnails

  • a private tour with President Jerry Hultin of the USS Intrepid Aircraft Carrier, a national historic landmark which houses the Sea, Air and Space Museum;
  • a Hudson River speedboat ride on "The Beast;"
  • Bodies...The Exhibition at the South Street Seaport Exhibition Centre;
  • a visit to the Hayden Planetarium & the American Museum of Natural History;
  • a Major League baseball game between the N.Y. Yankees and Poly's Namesake, the Toronto Blue Jays;
  • a field trip to Six Flags Great Adventure; and,
  • tours of lower Manhattan's historic Financial District and Greenwich Village, and the Brooklyn Bridge and Brooklyn Heights.

Symposium & Colloquium back to top

Hyperbolis 3.0: Really Useful Media

On October 19-20, 2006, Poly's Integrated Digital Media Institute held a 2-day symposium, Hyperpolis 3.0: Really Useful Media. Speakers and presentations included:

The Production of Politics

  • Jane Harrison and David Turnbull, Atopia Research Inc., SRI LANKA: the LOTUS;
  • Karen J. Hall, humanities postdoctoral fellow, Syracuse University, Now that Charlie has Learned to Surf: War in the Digital Age;
  • Dr. Jo Puri, The Bias of Hope, Information Technologies in Developing Countries;
  • Richard Rogers, director, govcom.org, University of Amsterdam; and,
  • Tom Keenan, director, the Human Rights Project, Bard College.

The Art of Work in the Age of Post-production

  • Rev. Luke Murphy, artist, VP of Technology, MTV Networks, Introducing Anxiety Tools for Anxiety Professionals;
  • Greg Van Alstyne, senior research associate, Beal Centre for Strategic Creativity, Ontario College of Art & Design, The Theoretical Primer for Emergent Media; and,
  • Ruth Ron, architect and new media artist, Visiting Assistant Professor, University of Florida, Architecture of Information.

Blogging Around the Table

  • Jodi Dean, associate prof., Hobart-William Smith colleges, Bloggers killed the msm. In Cold Blood.;
  • Geert Lovink, media theorist and activist, University of Amsterdam, Blogging, the Nihilist Impulse;
  • Prof. McKenzie Wark, author, Hacker Manifesto, Lang College, the New School, NYC; and,
  • Steven Shaviro, Money for Nothing: Virtual Worlds and Virtual Economies.

The Politics of Production

  • Katherine Carl and Sjdjan Jovanovich Weiss, School of Missing Studies, New York-Sarajevo, Looking for October and Lost Highway Expedition;
  • Michael Liegl, ethnographer, University of Munich, On the social technology of Shar(e)ing;
  • Eric Redlinger, musician, member of Share collective, New York-Montreal-San Diego-Wiesbaden, Creating Hybrid Spaces — using interactive tools to promote collaboration and dialog between online and offline communities; and,
  • Michael J. Schumacher, composer, performer, director of Diapason Gallery, NYC, Living Room Pieces.

ECE Lecture Series - Throughput of a Switch and Resultant Waste

Given a finite period of time, typical ways to increase output include: working faster; carrying a heavier load with each pass; or assigning more workers to the job. In the first case, for instance, to move more cars through the toll at the George Washington Bridge during rush hour, EZ-passes decreased transaction time and thereby increased throughput. Another way to handle the load would have been to remove the toll gates altogether and add more lanes when there's more traffic, but given the physical constraints of highway infrastructure, that's just silly.

In the IT switching community, however, just such architecture was discussed by Dr. Saad Mneimneh, of Hunter College, City University of New York on October 12, 2006. For some types of traffic patterns load balancing concerns can be addressed by intelligently applying the third method. Instead of scaling an individual switches' speed, or burden, proportional to demand, Dr. Mneimneh suggests using a single load-balanced switch with sub-switches scaled to handle throughput based on packet size. A problem however arises when large and small packets get jumbled together and then reordered, which results in wasted bandwidth the same way lag occurs when cars and trucks share a single toll gate. To quantify this concern, Dr. Mneimneh suggested using a routing algorithm that preserves the integrity of individual packets within the same flow while simultaneously optimizing throughput, and then measuring resultant waste.

ECE Lecture Series - Emerging Collective Behaviors on the Movement of Animal Groups

Getting 10 people to agree on what restaurant they what to eat at is never easy, but not all species have such difficulties when making consensus decisions jointly with all group members. For instance, honeybee swarms effectively select new nesting sites and bird flocks immediately respond en masse when faced by a single predator. What controls these coordinated activities and how we can learn from them was the topic of a presentation by Dr. Jinhu Lu, of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Princeton University, on October 12, 2006. Dr. Jinhu's research offers a novel model merging the locally neighboring reciprocal action and alignment together to investigate the mechanisms of consensus decision-making and its robustness.

Based upon this model interesting phenomena and discoveries about underlying mechanisms of the consensus decision-making and its robustness in biological systems becomes more readily apparent. Dr. Jinhu's model reveals that the shapes of the coherent flocks are limited in a common narrow interval for different group sizes and information structures and demonstrates the relationship between the proportion of informed individuals and the conflict of interests.

So, next time you find yourself debating whether to eat at the Italian or Mexican restaurant, be sure to ask upfront if anyone has eaten there before, and go with the considered opinion.

ECE Lecture Series - On Guaranteed Smooth Switching for Buffered Crossbar Switches

Standing in line at the Post Office on tax day would be significantly improved if an intelligent, scaleable queuing system could mitigate flow control in a fair and reasonable manner, thereby smoothly processing transactions without emotion and unnecessary angst. Perhaps that is too much to hope for, but when handling raw data, a systems approach employing smoothed multiplexed buffering, that allocates appropriate bandwidth on the fly, without instability and jitter, doesn't seem unimaginable, does it?

On October 12, Prof. Si-Min He, of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, presented research intended to address such chip/circuit design considerations when processing data through switches. Dr. Si-Min proposed a novel smoothed buffered crossbar switch, or sBUX, based on the concept of smoothness and the smoothed multiplexer sMUX. The smoothed multiplexer sMUX allocates bandwidth among competing flows sharing a link, and guarantees almost ideal smoothness bounds for each flow. The sBUX switch uses sMUX as both input and output schedulers, with a buffer of just three cells at each crosspoint. sBUX can utilize 100 percent of the switch capacity to provide deterministic guarantees of bandwidth, fairness, delay and jitter bounds for each flow. Coupled with a bandwidth regulator, sBUX can also support best-effort services with good performance, as shown by simulations.

Now, just imagine if we could do that at the Post Office.

Visit the ECE Lecture Series to learn more about Dr. Si-Min's research.

Morawetz Lecture Series Explores Fundamentals of Nanotechnology

Prof. Jerome B. Lando '63, professor emeritus of macromolecular science and engineering, Case Western Reserve University, presented the 12th symposium in the Morawetz Lecture Series titled "Nanotechnology Begins in One Dimension." Dr. Lando's research interests include: solid state polymerization; X-ray crystallography of polymers; electrical properties of polymers; and ultra-thin polymer films. The Morawetz Lecture Series, established and funded in honor of Professor Herbert Morawetz by his former NYU-Poly students, has explored a wide range of topics, including: Therapeutic Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease; Neuronal Replacement in the Adult Brain; How Bacteria Find Their Way; Global Warming and Climate Change; Isotopic Puzzles in Stratospheric Ozone and in the Earliest Minerals in the Solar System; and, the Architecture of Planetary Systems.

Packard Center Hosts Principal's Scholars Dinner-Symposium

The David Packard Center for Technology and Educational Alliances held its first Principal's Scholars Dinner-Symposium of the current school year on October 5th, 2006. The speaker, Prof. Jin Montclare, addressed a group of 90 high school students and teachers on "Engineering Biological Systems." This is the Packard Center's 10th year to offer this series of presentations by leading NYU-Poly faculty members to inform and encourage students and their teachers on topics of interest in science and engineering.

Secure Knowledge Management Workshop

Conference goers in dibner hallway

In association with the National Science Foundation, Polytechnic Institute of NYU presented a management workshop on safeguarding organizational knowledge, a critical area of research that has grown dramatically in recent years. Addressing questions regarding security for Knowledge Management Systems, academicians and practitioners presented issues, concerns and new directions that need to be tackled by the knowledge security community. Speakers included: Dr. Charles C. Palmer, Security and Privacy departments at IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center; Dr. Le Gruenwald, Professor, School of Computer Science at The University of Oklahoma and the Program Director of Data Management Systems at National Science Foundation; and Phil Venables, Chief Information Security Officer at Goldman Sachs.

Visit the Secure Knowledge Management Workshop website for further information on speakers, the workshop program, and how to register.

First Annual Alumni Leadership Lecture of '06-'07 Calendar Year

Photograph of William H. May

William H. May

William H. May, Senior Director of Credit Market Research at FitchRatings, kicked off Poly's annual Alumni Leadership Lectures Series on September 25, 2006. In his day job, Mr. May is responsible for accessing risk at FitchRatings, a Financial Services company covering financial institutions, banks, corporations, loan products, structured finance, insurance, sovereigns and public finance markets worldwide. Mr. May's presentation, "A Career in Financial Services," discussed how an engineering background can be parlayed into a successful career in the financial services industry, by providing fundamental tools for surveillance and analysis of a wide range of industry sectors, such as financial institutions, structured financings, municipal bonds ratings and the tax-exempt markets.

ECE Lecture Series - Wavelet-Based Image Processing with Missing Data

Unfinished jigsaw puzzle

Did you ever make a jigsaw puzzle only to find out at the very end that you were missing a piece? In IT image processing similar problems arise due to such problems as noise and missing data. As part of the ongoing ECE visiting scholar lecture series, Dr. Keigo Hirakawa, Postdoctoral Research Associate with the Statistics Department, Harvard University, presented a unified framework for coupling the EM algorithm with the Bayesian hierarchical modeling of neighboring wavelet coefficients of image signals. Relying on statistical methods and probability algorithms to make educated guesses based on data provided by the neighboring pixels, Dr Hirakawa's unified empirical-Bayes based framework offers a principled and extremely flexible approach to a wide range of pixel estimation problems, including: image denoising, image interpolation, demosaicing, or any combinations therein.

NYU-Poly Hosts Prestigious International Engineering Conference

Group photo of NYU-Poly

Conference speakers and attendees included, left to right, Polytechnic Institute of NYU President, Jerry Hultin, Bruce Niswander (Technology Transfer/Venture Capital Consultant), Deborah Devedjian (Managing Partner, Copernicus Learning Fund; Polytechnic trustee), Harold Sjursen (Department Head of Humanities and Social Sciences), and Gregory Gunn (Chief Scientist & Co-Founder, Wireless Generation).

Polytechnic hosted the "Fifth Global Congress on Engineering Education," which emphasized the various cross-disciplinary skills required of today's engineers, and the importance of raising the profile of engineering professions to meet America's growing demand for technology professionals. The week-long event drew over 100 attendees and focused on applying engineering principles to address world-wide problems, such as global warming and future energy needs.

Read more about the conference on the NYU-Poly website.

Publications & Presentationsback to top

President Hultin Addresses Defense Executives and Scientists at Naval Research Conference

At the request of the Chief of Naval Research, President Jerry Hultin delivered the keynote lunch speech at the 2006 Naval Science & Technology Partnership Conference in Washington, D.C. The conference, co-hosted by the National Defense Industrial Association and the Office of Naval Research, addressed business and university partnerships for defense research. President Hultin's address, to over 800 government, industry and academic research attendees was titled "Non-Linear, Innovative and Global: Universities in the Naval Research Enterprise," and provided key insights into how universities can best support scientific naval research.

A copy of President Hultin's presentation (PDF) is available online.

Dynamics of Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications

Professor Jovan Mijovic, Chair, Othmer-Jacobs Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, delivered a plenary lecture on the dynamics of nanoparticles for biomedical applications at the 3rd International Times of Polymers & Composites conference, which was held in Ischia, Italy, on June 18 through June 22.

Organized by Italian groups on polymer science and composites, the conference provides a forum for scientists and engineers interested in timescales of polymers and composites processing. The conference focused on recent advances in viscoelasticity; thin films; nanocomposites; organic LEDs and thin film transistors; polymer-based sensors; industrial rheology; durability and degradation; processing; biomaterials; cultural heritage; and fracture and yielding.

While in Italy, Professor Mijovic also presented at two invited seminars at the Universities of Perugia and Naples.

The Downside of the World's Greatest Baseball Team

Banned in the Bronx book cover

Dr. Michael Hutmaker, Dean of Student Affairs, together with his father Gene, has co-authored a new book, Banned in the Bronx: The Yankee Hater Memoirs 1953-2005. The book chronicles the past 50 years of Yankee baseball through the eyes of George Steinbrenner's nemesis, co-author Gene Hutmaker. Given the fact that Dr. Hutmaker works in New York City he has, however, gone out of his way to assure friends and colleagues that this is a journalistic piece of work and that he is, in fact, a Yankee Fan. Those who feel differently can purchase the anti-Yankee diatribe at Amazon.com. Given the Yankees' recent shortcomings in the 2006 playoffs, Dr. Hutmaker has more material in the next edition of his book.

Seminal Reference Volume on Environmental Science & Engineering

Encyclopedia of Environmental Science and Engineering Cover

In a comprehensive reference work 36 years in the making, Dr. Edward Ziegler, associate professor, Biological and Chemical Engineering, and his co-editor Dr. James R. Pfafflin released the 5th Edition of the Encyclopedia of Environmental Science and Engineering. Compiled from contributions of leading international authorities, the prescience of this work, which began at a time when environmental consciousness was just becoming a mainstream concern, has provided the technical foundation upon which much of today's environmental mitigation and remediation systems are built. According to Dr. Ziegler, "We wanted a reference set that could be read by environmental workers to learn about areas other than their own specialty and on a level a typical college student or intelligent layman could understand." The work of the editors, Dr. Ziegler and Dr. Pfafflini, demonstrates tremendous respect for the contribution of the sciences to the environment, by providing articles and data that all workers in the field can draw upon. Combining both scientific investigation and engineering application, the work has contributed to improving and restoring environmental conditions throughout the world since the US Environmental Protection Agency was just being formed.

The fifth edition of this monumental two-volume encyclopedia spans the entire spectrum of environmental science and engineering. Featuring expert contributors representing industry, academia, and government agencies, the 5th edition has expanded to 87 articles on topics ranging from acid rain and air pollution to environmental law, radioactive waste, and water treatment. This broad coverage features highly specialized areas as well as many other subjects that cross traditional boundaries, reflecting the interdisciplinary skills and knowledge required by the modern environmental researcher and engineer. This is the most comprehensive, authoritative reference available to the field.

Othmer-Jacobs Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering

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Professor Jose Pinto, of the Othmer-Jacobs Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, chaired the "Business Decision Support" session and delivered the following talks at the 16th European Symposium on Computer Aided Process Engineering and the 9th International Symposium on Process Systems Engineering (ESCAPE 16 & PSE 2006) on July 9th through July 13th in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany:

  • P. Chen, J.M. Pinto, "Lagrangean-based Techniques for the Supply Chain Management of Flexible Process Networks"
  • J.M.S. Natali, J.M. Pinto, "Reconstruction of Transcriptional Regulatory Networks via Integer Linear Programming"
  • S.R. Micheletto, Petrobras-Petroleo S.A., São Paulo/BR; J.M. Pinto, "Operational Optimization of the Thermoelectric System of an Oil Refinery"

Chemical and Biological Sciences

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Kalle Levon, Ph.D (klevon@poly.edu)

  • Panelist, Oct. 5 2006
    Symposium: The 2006 Intelligent Printing & Packaging Conference for Gravure
    The Gravure Association of America, Panel discussion:
    Intelligent Printing -- Innovations, Standards & The Workforce of The Future

Electrical & Computer Engineering

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Jonathan Chao, Ph.D. (chao@poly.edu)


United States Patent No.: 7,103,056
Awarded: September 5, 2006
H. J. Chao and E. Oki, "Scheduling the dispatch of cells in multistage switches using a hierarchical arbitration scheme for matching non-empty virtual output queues of a module with outgoing links of the module."

A multiple phase cell dispatch scheme, in which each phase uses a simple and fair (e.g., round robin) arbitration methods, is described. Virtual Output Queues of an input module and outgoing links of the input module are matched in a first phase. An outgoing link of an input module is matched with an outgoing link of a central module in a second phase. The arbiters become desynchronized under stable conditions which contributes to the switch's high throughput characteristic. Using this dispatch scheme, a scalable multiple-stage switch able to operate at high throughput, without needing to resort to speeding up the switching fabric and without needing to use buffers in the second stage, is possible. The cost of speed-up and the cell out-of-sequence problems that may occur when buffers are used in the second stage are therefore avoided. A hierarchical arbitration scheme used in the input modules reduces the time needed for scheduling and reduces connection lines.

Spencer Kuo, Ph.D., (skuo@duke.poly.edu)

Journal Publications

  • S. P. Kuo, "On Plasma Mitigation of Shock Waves", Phys. Scr., 74, 398-404, doi:10.1088/0031-8949/74/3/017, 2006.
  • S. P. Kuo, M. Rubinraut, S. Popovic, Daniel Bivolaru, "Characteristic Study of a Portable Arc-Microwave Plasma Torch", IEEE Trans. Plasma Sci., 34(6), Dec. 2006.


United States Patent No.: US 7,091,441
Date of Patent: August 15, 2006
Spencer Kuo, "Portable Arc-seeded Microwave Plasma Torch,"

Two views of plasma torch - with and without air flow.

Two views of Dr. Kuo's Microwave-Plasma Torch, Patent: US 7,091,441 B1. Top shows torch without air flow, bottom shows effect of air flow.

Arc plasma torch generated by a torch module installed on the bottom wall in a narrow section of a tapered S-band rectangular cavity, is used to seed microwave discharge where the microwave electric field is maximum. The microwave-enhanced discharge increases the size, cycle energy, and duty cycle of the seeding arc-torch plasma considerably. This torch can be run stably without introducing gas flow or run just using air flow. This torch may produce an abundance of reactive atomic oxygen, and therefore may be used in applications for rapidly destroying a broad spectrum of chemical and biological warfare (CBW) agents.


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Vladimir Tsifrinovich, Ph.D., (vtsifrin@duke.poly.edu)


  • "Theory of frequency shifts in the oscillating cantilever-driven adiabatic reversals technique as a function of the spin location" (with G. P. Berman and F. Borgonovi) Phys. Rev. B, 72, 224406 (2005).


  • "OSCAR frequency shift as a function of the spin location". An International Summer School Magnetic Resonance Force Microscopy: Routes to Three-Dimensional Imaging of Single Molecules, Ithaca, New York, June 21-24, 2006.
  • "Exposing undergraduates to contemporary science and technology through physics problems". 5th Global Congress on Engineering Education, Brooklyn, New York, July 17-21, 2006.

Awards, Honors, Grants & Patentsback to top

Packard Center Awarded $20,000 Grant for 2007 Future Cities Competition

The Packard Center has won a $20,000 grant from the Consolidated Edison Company to support the Future Cities Competition, which they conduct for 7th and 8th grade students, in a partnership with the American Society of Civil Engineers. The Metropolitan Regional Finals for this event will be conducted at NYU-Poly on Saturday, January 20, 2007. The top-ranked middle school team at this event will go to Washington, D.C. as the Metropolitan Region's representative at the National Future Cities Finals. Held during National Engineers Week in February, Polytechnic's team will compete for scholarships and prizes against teams drawn from around the United States.

George Bugliarello to Chair International Committees for National Academy of Engineering

National Academy of Engineering logo

George Bugliarello has been appointed chair of the National Research Council Committee on the US-Iran Workshop on Science & Technology and the Future Development of Societies, and is now chair of the Committee on International Programs of the Governing Board of the National Research Council and chair of the International Affairs Committee of the Council of the National Academy of Engineering.

Dr. Sofou Receives Wallace H. Coulter Award for Drug Delivery Research

Professor Stavroula Sofou, of the Othmer-Jacobs Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, has won the prestigious Wallace H. Coulter Foundation 2006 Early Career Award for her research on "Liposomes containing raft-switches for targeted therapy of solid tumors." This highly competitive award provides Assistant Professors in Biomedical Engineering Departments across North America with $200,000 of funding over two years. Dr. Sofou was among 23 privileged biomedical engineering researchers who received the award this year. She has also presented her work on liposomes for targeted cancer therapy at the Gordon Research Conference, and has given a talk at the Controlled Release Society annual meeting in Vienna, Austria in July 2006.

Read more about the award on the NYU-Poly website.

Blair Williams Receives Supply Chain Certification

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Industry Professor Blair Williams was awarded the Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) certification by the International Professional Society for Advancing Productivity, Innovation and Competitive Success (APICS). The CSCP was introduced in 2006 and is currently the only certification in Supply Chain Management worldwide.

Alumni Newsback to top

The Polytechnic Fund Development Update

Each year, thousands of alumni and friends of NYU-Poly contribute to the university through the Polytechnic Fund. Raising gifts, a multi-part process managed by the Office of Alumni Relations, involves soliciting support from alumni and friends of the University through mailings and other overtures. In 2006, 16% of undergraduate alumni and 12% of all alumni made contributions to Poly; the average unrestricted gift was $189. Nearly 650 individuals gave $100, Poly's most common gift, and over 440 donors participated in corporate matching gift programs.

The Polytechnic Fund provides general, unrestricted support to the university by bridging the gap between tuition and research revenue and the actual cost of university operations. These contributions support scholarships, renovations, repairs, upgrades and keeping the lights and heat on while students cram for exams and run experiments.

By making a gift to the Polytechnic Fund faculty, staff and alumni demonstrate their belief in Poly's future; but their support need not stop there. Encouraging former students to stay in touch with the University and making a contribution to the Polytechnic Fund helps NYU-Poly in a number of ways. A surprising number of alumni do not know that their gift enhances Polytechnic's ranking in U.S. News & World Report College Rankings, which is reviewed by many potential students considering enrolling at Poly.

Gifts to the Polytechnic Fund can be made in a number of ways, the quickest is to visit the on-line giving site at www.poly.edu/alumni/donate. If you would like more information about the Polytechnic Fund please contact Donald Ivanoff, director of alumni relations, at 718-260-3424 or Natalie Blake, associate director of annual and anniversary giving at 718-260-3844.

Dr. Sang-Keun Park Awarded Polytechnic Institute of NYU Sesquicentennial Medal

Dr. Sang-Keun (center) with Vice President Richard Thorsen and Professor Henry Bertoni

Dr. Sang-Keun (center) with Vice President Richard Thorsen and Professor Henry Bertoni

Dr. Sang-Keun Park ('77, '80EE) received Polytechnic's Sesquicentennial Medal from Vice President Richard Thorsen in recognition of personal and professional achievements that inspire future generations of students. Dr. Park, Senior Vice President of Samsung Electronics, is responsible for telecommunications research and development, and telecommunications network business. Dr. Park returned to NYU-Poly at the invitation of his doctoral thesis advisor, Professor Emeritus Henry Bertoni, '62EE '68EE.

NYU-Poly in the Newsback to top

Crain's New York Business Reports on Poly's Turn Around

The October 16th issue of Crain's New York Business featured an article on Polytechnic Institute of NYU and President Jerry Hultin, who talked about the university's prestigious history, recent turn around in enrollment, and future opportunities in developing tomorrow's scientists and engineers in an increasingly technologically dependant world. Polytechnic's Chairman Craig Matthews said, "Jerry was a shot in the arm, he energized us. This year, thanks to Jerry and the sweat and tears of the faculty and constituencies, enrollment is up. I couldn't be happier." Highlighting Poly's increased undergraduate and graduate enrollment, a 13-1 student-to-teacher ratio, new initiatives in urban security, health and information technology, as well as real estate development opportunities and recent fundraising successes, the article provides more than 234,000 top executives who read Crain's New York Business a fresh perspective on the university's ongoing dedication to science, technology, engineering, education and research.

Read the Crain's featured article on the NYU-Poly website

Research on Commuter Stress Gains Media Traction

9-13-06(back to top)

Photograph of Dr. Werner

Dr. Werner

Dr. Richard Wener, associate professor of psychology at Polytechnic, and Dr. Gary Evans, professor of developmental psychology at Cornell University, have received media attention for their research on how commuting impacts stress. Articles in the Newark Star Ledger, the Times Herald-Record and the Stamford Advocate, as well as a broadcast on WCBS radio (mp3 file), featured the professors' findings linking long rail commutes with increased stress.

Visit the NYU-Poly website to learn more about Dr. Werner and Dr. Evan's research findings.

NYU-Poly Featured in Time Out New York

Time Out New York

In a feature article discussing the competitive edge provided by specialized degree programs provide, Time Out New York profiled Polytechnic Institute of NYU's master of science in financial engineering program, offered by the University's Department of Technology Management. "This is a unique program that prepares students with a background in science and technology to build a successful career in the financial sector," said university spokesperson Emily Zyborowicz. Emphasizing the strategic advantage to students interested in pursuing educational opportunities in engineering, science and technology within New York City, the article highlights various degrees directly relevant to the numerous biomed, media, retail and financial services industries throughout the city.

Read more about it in the Time Out New York article.

Jobs @ NYU-Polyback to top

Joy Colelli Appointed Dean of Admissions and New Student Services

President Jerry Hultin announced the appointment of Joy Colelli as Dean of Admissions and New Student Services, in our continuing effort to increase the quality and volume of undergraduate enrollments, streamline communication, execute marketing strategies, provide highly-responsive customer service, and continuously evaluate and improve current admissions and student services practices.

Reporting to Dr. Ann Lubrano, Associate Provost/President's Chief of Staff, Joy brings twenty five years experience in higher education enrollment leadership to Polytechnic, most recently as Vice President for Enrollment Management at Mercy College in New York City where she significantly increased new and total undergraduate student enrollment, designed marketing strategies, introduced the college to new markets, created marketing campaigns, designed and implemented a college-wide imaging system for paperless student records, and increased yield rates of leads to registration through the use of a data tracking system.

Joy holds a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from Mercy College and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from the University of Wisconsin. Additionally, she holds a Certificate from the Institute of Educational Management at Harvard University. She is a member of Delta Mu Delta, the National Association of Admissions Counselors, and the American Council of Education.

Joy can be reached at ext. 5917 or via email at jcolelli@poly.edu.

Dr. Jane Alexander Appointed Vice President of Research and Technology Initiatives

Photograph of Dr. Jane Alexander

Dr. Jane Alexander

Dr. Jane A. (Xan) Alexander, a leader in executing innovative research and development programs for the federal government, has joined NYU-Poly as Vice President of Research and Technology Initiatives. With nearly two decades experience in the federal government, most recently as Deputy Director of the Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency, Dr. Alexander brings a broad array of experience in developing and managing research and development programs to Polytechnic Institute of NYU.

Working with the faculty and the University's Cabinet, Dr. Alexander will focus on: increasing funding for research; implementing new strategic research initiatives; drawing world class faculty to the University; and facilitating cutting-edge science and technology research among the faculty, students and industry.

Dr. Alexander holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She received her BS in Physics from Stanford University. Among her awards are the Arthur S. Flemming Award honoring the top ten Federal employees under 40 years of age, the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service, and the Department of Defense Distinguished Medal for Civilian Service.

Office and Room Changes

Polytechnic's senior administrative team and some of their staff have been consolidated on the 5th floor in JB555 and JB551. This physical proximity to NYU-Poly executive offices facilitates working more effectively and collaboratively as a team. The consolidation of office space also increases the accessibility of senior administrators to all members of the NYU-Poly community. The new room assignments include:

  • George Bugliarello, President Emeritus/University Professor - JB350
    • Rose Emma, Executive Assistant - JB350
  • David Chang, Chancellor - LC129
  • Provost Office - JB551
    • Michael Klidas, Executive Director, Contracts & Grants
    • Veronica Vanderpool, Operations Manager, Academic Affairs
    • Priscella Birchmore, Research Cost Accountant
  • Sunil Gupta, Executive Director eNYU-Poly and Continuing Education - RH321
  • Noel Kriftcher, Executive Director, David Packer Center - RH321
    • Susan Hermon, Administrative Assistant - RH321
  • John Kelly, Director of Media Relations, Communications - JB453
  • Michelle Kerr, Director of Communications, Communications - JB451
  • Holly Bloch, Art Director, Communications - JB453
  • Dina Cruz, Promise Fund-Administrative Coordinator, University Relations - JB452
  • Melinda Parham, Director of General Studies, Academic Success - JB352
  • Michael Gendel, Director, International Students & Scholars - RH321
    • Shirley Thomas, Administrative Assistant - RH321

Dr. Mary Cowman Named New Director of Othmer Institute

Photograph of Dr. Mary Cowman

Dr. Mary Cowman

Dr. Mary Cowman, Associate Professor of Biochemistry, has been named the Director of the Othmer Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies. Dr. Cowman, recipient of Poly's 2006 Distinguished Teacher Award, received her Ph.D. in chemistry from Case Western Reserve University in 1976 and joined Polytechnicís faculty in 1982. Cowman is well-known as an expert in the study of the structure and properties of biologically important polysaccharides.

Acting as a magnet for talent and ideas, the Othmer Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies provides a unique intellectual home for scholars from a variety of backgrounds. The Institute supports innovative, interdisciplinary research as well as educational curriculum development. Focusing on technological arenas that entail both risk and the potential for high returns. The Institute works in tandem with academic initiatives at Poly, and serves as a source of seed funding for research applications. In addition to academic program development and the creation of new and effective pedagogies, the institute aims to foster new and important areas of research that offer innovative, breakthrough results.

New Hires

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Professor Rastislav Levicky - Donald F. Othmer Assistant Professor of Chemical & Biological Engineering

Before joining Poly, Professor Levicky was at Columbia University. He earned a PhD degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota. His research interests are in the fields of biological interfaces and DNA microarrays.

Professor Jin Ryoun Kim - Joseph J. & Violet J. Jacobs Assistant Professor of Chemical & Biological Engineering

Prior to joining Poly, Professor Kim was at The Johns Hopkins University. He earned a PhD degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His research interest is in the structure and function of proteins.

Professor Stanley Peterburgsky - Department of Financial Engineering

Professor Stanley Peterburgsky received his B.A.from Brandeis University in 1999, M.Phil.from Columbia Business School in 2003, and is currently completing his PhD at Columbia Business School. His research interests are in corporate finance, and his present work deals with shareholder expropriation by top executives and the role of Rule 144.


Sarah Knepp - Development, Writer/Campaign Communications

Sarah most recently was at Carnegie Mellon University as Writer/Instructional Designer for the Information Networking Institute. She holds a Master of Arts in Professional Writing from Carnegie Mellon and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Oberlin College. A brand new NYC resident, Sarah is delighted to offer NYU-Poly her communications expertise. Sarah will create content for print and Web publications for the Office of Development. Additional responsibilities will include speechwriting, researching and writing corporate and foundation grant proposals for the University's fund raising campaign.

Sarah can be reached at ext. 3821 or via email at sknepp@poly.edu, and she is located in JB 460.

Matt Schaffer - University Relations & Development Grant Writer/Researcher

Matt will work on the Corporate and Foundation Relations team to identify key funders in the private sector, and develop grant proposals that align closely with the priority areas of the Campaign. Before coming to Poly, Matt was a Ph.D. candidate in the logic and philosophy program at Boston University. His work there included writing, research, and undergraduate teaching. He holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia, and in his free time this year he plans to take the next logical step and put the finishing touches on a Master's Degree in philosophy.

Matt can be reached at ext. 3171 or via email at schaffer@poly.edu, and he is located in JB 460.

Andrea Wilson - University Relations & Development, Development Associate

Andrea arrives from the corporate world, where, most recently, she provided support to senior executives in New York City through the staffing agency, Atrium. She is familiar with an academic setting after five years as an administrative assistant at Cal Tech in several departments, including condensed matter physics and environmental engineering. Andrea provides staff support to the Executive Director of Development/Campaign Director Craig Purinton and to other front-line campaign fundraisers. Andrea can be reached at ext. 3636 or via email at awilson@poly.edu, and her office is located in JB 458.

Susan Hermon - Packard Center Administrative Coordinator

Susan Hermon, joined the Packard Center for Technology and Educational Alliances on September 25 as administrative coordinator. Susan can be reached at shermon@poly.edu or by phone at ext. 3524. The Packard Center, which moved in July, is located in RH 321.

Toros Massarlian - Center for Advanced Technology in Telecommunications Technical Program Coordinator

Toros Massarlian has been appointed Technical Program Coordinator for the Center for Advanced Technology in Telecommunications (CATT). Toros' office is in LC-221, and he can be reached at ext. 3028, or via email address at tmassa@catt.poly.edu.

What's That!?!back to top

Answer to last edition's "What's That!?!"

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What's That image from the June 2006 edition

This image, circa 1910, was taken at the United States' first Naval Research Laboratory, the precursor of the facility that President Hultin addressed in his Sept. 3, 2006 address to Defense Executives and Scientists at the Naval Research Conference. The lab was the brainchild of one of Polytechnic Institute of NYU's earliest alumni, RADM George W. Melville (1841-1912), who received the Congressional Gold Medal September 30th, 1890 for heroism aboard the USS Jenrette's Artic expedition. A 19th century wunderkind mechanical engineer, Melville immediately set to redesigning ship hulls to withstand hostile environments. Recognized for innovation and invention, Melville established the first Navel Research Laboratory at Annapolis with a first-of-its-kind Congressional appropriation, and can thus be credited with paving the way for research and development funding in areas previously unrecognized by U.S. governmental establishments. A founding member of the National Geographic Society, Melville was responsible for the Navy's propulsion systems during an era of remarkable force expansion, technological progress and institutional change. Major technical innovations he helped introduce include: the water-tube boiler, the triple-screw propulsion system, vertical engines, the floating repair ship, and the "distilling ship." As Engineer in Chief of the US Navy, Melville superintended the design of 120 ships and put Navy engineers on a professional rather than an artisan footing. The US Navy has named two ships in honor of George W. Melville, the Destroyer Melville (1915-1948) and an oceanographic research vessel, the USNS Melville (1969 to present). Two awards have been established in Melville's name, one by the Navy and one by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, ASME, for which Melville served as the society's eighteenth president.

October 2006 WICAT Research Review and Industry Advisory Board Meeting - Fall 2006

NYU-Poly eBriefs is a publication of Polytechnic Institute of NYU.

Jerry MacArthur Hultin, President

Richard S. Thorsen,
Vice President for Development and University Relations

Christopher Hayes, Editor-Designer

Anthony S. Piris, Programmer

Dates to Remember

For information about events at Poly, please visit Poly's Online Calendar or contact the sponsoring department.

For sports schedules, go Poly's athletics website and click on the men's or women's varsity sport of choice.


October 26
The Power of Sleep - LC102, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
October 26-29
John A. Roebling Symposium and Tours
October 30
Alumni Speaker Series - The Evolving Telecom Landscape presented by Virginia P. Ruesterholz - Pfizer Auditorium, 2:00 PM
Extreme Makeover: Confidence Edition - LC 102, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM


November 1
Bloomberg L.P. information session - LC400 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Relaxation Training - LC 102, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
November 2
Extreme Makeover: Confidence Edition- LC 102, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
U.S. Public Helth Service information session - Silleck Lounge, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
November 7
FactSet Research Systems Inc. information session - LC400, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
November 8
Metropolitan Opera Madame Butterfly - NYU-Poly Price $15, 6:00 PM departure. Tickets available in JB158
November 13
Getting Things Done - LC102, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
November 15
Feel Better Fast - LC102, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
November 16
Getting Things Done - LC102, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
November 21
The Phantom of the Opera - NYU-Poly Price $30, 7:00 PM. Tickets available in JB158
November 27
Stress for Success - LC102, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
November 29
Relaxation Training - LC 102, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
ExxonMobil information session - LC 400, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
November 30
Stress for Success - LC102, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM


December 12
Radio City Christmas Spectacular - NYU-Poly Price $20, 8:00 PM. Tickets available in JB158
December 13
Relaxation Training - LC 102, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

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