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Rhee to Speak at Reunion
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Thursday, 31 May 2012

Controversial education reformer Michelle Rhee '92 will deliver the Olin Lecture at Reunion 2012.

Rhee, who served for three years as the schools chancellor in the District of Columbia, now heads a reform organization called StudentsFirst. She was the subject of a dual interview, with teachers' union president Randi Weingarten '80, in the March/April 2011 issue of CAM.

Google Donates Space for NYC Tech Print E-mail
Monday, 21 May 2012

According to a report in Bloomberg Businessweek, Google Inc. has agreed to donate space for a temporary home for CornellNYC Tech while the campus is being constructed on Roosevelt Island in New York City.

Google CEO Larry Page made the announcement at a press conference with Cornell President David Skorton and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Architect Named for NYC Tech Print E-mail
Wednesday, 09 May 2012

Cornell has selected architect Thom Mayne and his firm, Morphosis, to design the first academic building of the NYC Tech campus on Roosevelt Island in New York City. In a press release, University Architect Gilbert Delgado stated: "Our goal is to design an iconic, landmark building that will resonate with the mission and spirit of the new campus. And we are excited that Thom Mayne and Morphosis will be leading our effort."

Mayne is the winner of the 2005 Pritzker Prize and the founder of Morphosis. "The goal here is to develop a one-of-a-kind institution," Mayne told the New York Times. "It's got to start from rethinking—innovating—an environment." Morphosis is expected to deliver design drafts in November 2012 and a schematic design in March 2013.

Former NYC Official to Lead Tech Campus Construction Print E-mail
Monday, 16 April 2012

Cornell has hired Andrew Winters, founding director of New York City's Office of Capital Project Development, to oversee the development of the CornellNYC Tech campus. "[Winters] has tremendous experience and has led or been involved in every recent significant project in the city," said Cathy Dove, the NYC Tech VP of operations, in an e-mail to the Daily Sun.

The hiring appears to be a smart move on the part of the Cornell administration, putting someone in charge of the construction who is familiar with the ins-and-outs of complex projects in the city and has a history of working with Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Winters’s past projects include the revitalization of Coney Island and the creation of Brooklyn Bridge Park, and prior to working for the Bloomberg administration he was the VP for planning, design, and development at the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, which was created after 9/11 to rebuild the neighborhood devastated by the attack.

And, according to the New York Post, "Cornell has already tapped Tishman Construction to handle preliminary work on the $2 billion, 10-acre project, where buildings are to begin rising in 2014 and open by 2017."

Moody's Upgrades Cornell ... But Has Concerns Print E-mail
Monday, 09 April 2012

The credit-rating agency Moody's upgraded Cornell's fiscal outlook from "negative" to "stable," but also expressed concern about the long-term financial impact of the NYC Tech project. As reported by, their report says that the project comes with "heightened credit risks" and that unexpected events could stress the University's credit or cash reserves.

According to the Daily Sun, Joanne DeStefano, Cornell's vice president for finance and CFO, said she was "very pleased" with the new credit rating. "I think [Moody’s has] confidence in the University's ability to strengthen our balance sheet," DeStefano said. "The fact that the full phase one of the [New York City] tech campus funding is in hand had a huge impact on the move from negative to stable."

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