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Old 12-20-2011, 01:59 PM
 
Location: Florida
1,668 posts, read 2,381,045 times
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Cornell wins bid for NYC tech campus - YNN, Your News Now

I read this news report with some interest, this is a huge investment in NYC. I don't mean to insinuate that Syracuse University or other academic institutions are planning similiar strategies, but it made me think. Granted, Cornell has had a large NYC presence for years and the Ithaca campus has been around for generations and I am sure it is safe, but could this be a future trend?

We are concerned about the relocation of manufacturing, technology, etc. to other cities, regions or countries, but are communities immune from losing major segments of locally based academic institutions? Have communities embraced a false sense of security when it comes to "meds and eds", see link.

More than 25 heart researchers leave New York to join U-M Cardiovascular Center & help form new heart-rhythm center

I certainly don't mean to be alarmist or turn this thread into a big issue, there is a big difference in moving capital vs. building university campuses. To be sure Syracuse is doing a great job transitioning its economy and collaborating with local universities and colleges. Those institutions are investing in environmental, biotechnology, and cancer research, etc. that are sure to provide future investment and jobs. However, despite reassurances by Mayor Bloomberg ("the Ithaca campus is not closing") and Cornell President David Skorton, my point is that a community should NEVER take any segment of its economy for granted.

Last edited by urbanplanner; 12-20-2011 at 02:23 PM..
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Old 12-20-2011, 02:15 PM
 
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If anything, it's probably more similar to state university systems having campuses all over state than it is a institution leaving a community. For instance, Utica College was and still is, to a degree, associated with Syracuse University. SUNY-Binghamton actually started out with or as Harpur College, which was also associated with SU initially. This was after WW2, as both were set up for returning veterans to earn college degrees using the G.I. Bill. So, institutions may expand their footprint for various reasons for the good of all of those involved.
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Old 12-20-2011, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
If anything, it's probably more similar to state university systems having campuses all over state than it is a institution leaving a community. For instance, Utica College was and still is, to a degree, associated with Syracuse University. SUNY-Binghamton actually started out with or as Harpur College, which was also associated with SU initially. This was after WW2, as both were set up for returning veterans to earn college degrees using the G.I. Bill. So, institutions may expand their footprint for various reasons for the good of all of those involved.
One could argue that Cornell could have expanded its footprint in Ithaca. Syracuse University is expanding its footprint in the City of Syracuse...as are other local colleges.

It was the following excerpt that made me start to think:

"We need to expand beyond Ithaca," Skorton said. "However, Tompkins County and Ithaca is a very important continuing focus for Cornell University and the good of our immediate community in Tompkins County could not be more important."

He said Ithaca students overwhelmingly support the project. And as Bloomberg put it...

"Ithaca isn't closing."

My initial thought was, why say that in the first place? I am not suggesting any grand plan or motive on the part of Cornell to get out of Ithaca, but they were sensitive to the issue which I thought was interesting.
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Old 12-20-2011, 03:20 PM
 
56,261 posts, read 80,427,244 times
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Originally Posted by urbanplanner View Post
One could argue that Cornell could have expanded its footprint in Ithaca. Syracuse University is expanding its footprint in the City of Syracuse...as are other local colleges.

It was the following excerpt that made me start to think:

"We need to expand beyond Ithaca," Skorton said. "However, Tompkins County and Ithaca is a very important continuing focus for Cornell University and the good of our immediate community in Tompkins County could not be more important."

He said Ithaca students overwhelmingly support the project. And as Bloomberg put it...

"Ithaca isn't closing."

My initial thought was, why say that in the first place? I am not suggesting any grand plan or motive on the part of Cornell to get out of Ithaca, but they were sensitive to the issue which I thought was interesting.
True, but in a global economy and world, I think evolving and expanding is essential in order to compete for top students, talent and in terms of research. SU also has facilities in NYC like the Lubin House: Lubin House

There's SU's footprint in places like L.A.: SU in LA

and Boston: Boston Orange -- Syracuse University Alumni Club of Boston - Home
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Old 12-20-2011, 03:31 PM
 
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Urbanplanner, you make an excellent point. There was a Crane's New York Business article that was quite negative on Ithaca's small size and lack of proximity to major cities. Two Cornell professors were even quoted as saying the expansion to New York was essential. After reading the latest issue of SU's Alumni Magazine, it seems obvious that if SU had the reputation, endowment, and resources of Cornell it too would relocate to NYC. SU recently expanded its footprint in the LA area and already has a presence in NYC and DC. Having a large concentration of very successful and affluent alumni in places like New York City and Los Angeles has tremendous influence on how universities in smaller communities evolve. Although I have no scientific proof and this is just my opinion - I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of SU faculty would rather work and live in a major east or west coast city and wish SU were located elsewhere. Such sentiments are often expoused by former Newhouse Dean David Rubin. After reading his numerous guest columns in The Post-Standard and watching his commentary on the Ivory Tower Hour on WCNY over the years, Rubin has rarely said anything postive about this area. I agree with his criticisms of the backwater politicians and the DestiNY USA tax deal, but not much else.

Last edited by RollsRoyce; 12-20-2011 at 03:40 PM..
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Old 12-20-2011, 04:18 PM
 
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If that is the case, then schools like Dartmouth, Penn State, some of the Big 10 schools, a few Pacific 12 schools and some other major schools are in big trouble due to location.
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Old 12-21-2011, 03:48 AM
 
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It does seem that college presidents are starting to get more like other CEO types. Fewer seem to want to be the big fish in a small pond.
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Old 12-21-2011, 07:27 AM
 
Location: Northeast Raleigh, NC
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Cornell, like its peers, relies on generous alumni donations to keep growing and sustaining its endowment and programs. More students = more alums = more future donations. They've had Cornell Medical College and some other programs in NYC since the 1960's or 70's and 2500 of Cornell's roughly 10,000 employees already work in places other than Ithaca. It's tough to grow the Science and Engineering program to be a lot larger in the current confines of the Ithaca campus. Add to that the fact that well heeled folks outside the US may have sons or daughter who would love a Cornell degree but also want to be in NYC for their college years.
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Old 12-21-2011, 08:02 AM
 
Location: NW District of Columb1a USA
382 posts, read 1,379,348 times
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I think there's more to this story then they are saying especially because Billionaire Bloomberg is involved. Remember the snide comments he made about Buffalo a few months ago? The man has money and connections. However, I agree with KIOEH and would even go further and say that our large universities are in fact corporations. I know of several Harvard alum who refer to their alma mater as Harvard, Inc.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RollsRoyce View Post
Urbanplanner, you make an excellent point. There was a Crane's New York Business article that was quite negative on Ithaca's small size and lack of proximity to major cities. Two Cornell professors were even quoted as saying the expansion to New York was essential. After reading the latest issue of SU's Alumni Magazine, it seems obvious that if SU had the reputation, endowment, and resources of Cornell it too would relocate to NYC. SU recently expanded its footprint in the LA area and already has a presence in NYC and DC. Having a large concentration of very successful and affluent alumni in places like New York City and Los Angeles has tremendous influence on how universities in smaller communities evolve. Although I have no scientific proof and this is just my opinion - I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of SU faculty would rather work and live in a major east or west coast city and wish SU were located elsewhere. Such sentiments are often expoused by former Newhouse Dean David Rubin. After reading his numerous guest columns in The Post-Standard and watching his commentary on the Ivory Tower Hour on WCNY over the years, Rubin has rarely said anything postive about this area. I agree with his criticisms of the backwater politicians and the DestiNY USA tax deal, but not much else.
Great points. I am not concerned when a university has a "presence" in cities like NYC, LA or DC, but it peaks my interest when a university invests $2B on a new campus, especially Science and Engineering. Whether universities like Syracuse, University of Rochester, Colgate, etc do the same remains to be seen. To be sure, Ithaca is a bit remote, but Cornell and Ithaca College have transformed that small city into a cultural and education hub of acitivity. Syracuse has advantages that Ithaca does not, particularly size. It is not a "megapolitan" area like NYC, LA or DC, but Syracuse is a mid-sized city in a region of approximately 1 million-plus (I find msa data to be outdated and poorly defined, which is my bias).

Syracuse/CNY has advantages that Ithaca does not, i.e. central location, interstate transportation-hub, major international airport and ease of access, concentration of universities and colleges, major medical centers, growing cultural amenties, expanding research and development in env., bio, and cancer, cost of living and name recognition, etc. All of these things can be built upon, making it attractive alternative to the major metros. With all that said, I agree, there is power in numbers and NYC has them.

Local leaders should take notice of this development, there is no such thing as a sure thing (i.e. meds and eds) anymore. I believe that people like Miner and Mahonney understand this, but get a short sighted County Executive from (say) Lysander and the gig is up. Those in CNY who take local academic institutions for granted and complain about SU investing in the community better pay attention to Cornell's plans. Attracting or maintaining investment may now have expanded to unversities and colleges. To be fair, Syracuse has never had a Chancellor like Nancy Cantor who believes in expanding the SU footprint through investment in the community and it is showing significant results. As you point out, it only takes one or two faculty members to stir the pot. You never know who may take over for Cantor one day and seek expanding that "footprint" beyond CNY to other areas in a major way. All the more reason the community should be working side by side with SU, etc. just in case they have any "grass is greener" ideas.

Last edited by urbanplanner; 12-21-2011 at 12:25 PM..
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