Albany – State University of New York
Chancellor John R. Ryan, Business Council of New York State President Kenneth
Adams, Empire State Development Corporation Co-Chairmen Patrick Foye and Daniel
Gundersen, Economic Development Council Executive Director Brian T. McMahon and
Acting Department of Labor Commissioner M. Patricia Smith today announced a statewide
Economic Development Listening Tour, beginning February 8, 2007 in Syracuse.
Listening Tour is an opportunity for business and economic development leaders
around the State to discuss their needs, goals and thoughts regarding economic
development and the state’s workforce with SUNY leaders, state economic
development and labor officials and the business community.
goal of the Tour is to create an open dialogue and action agenda as the State
responds to the challenges of today’s knowledge economy.
Listening Tour is a dynamic opportunity for SUNY to expand its partnerships
with the businesses that surround our campuses in nearly every county of New York State,” said Chancellor Ryan. “SUNY
faculty, staff and students represent some of the greatest minds and assets
available to the business community throughout New York. I am confident that SUNY will come away from these
discussions with the knowledge needed to best leverage its existing strengths
in economic and workforce development, and I am grateful to my co-hosts for committing
themselves to this promising initiative.”
"We welcome this
opportunity to discuss ways that New York's businesses, development officials, and public
colleges and universities can collaborate more," said Kenneth Adams,
president and CEO of The Business Council. "Colleges and universities
produce the people and ideas that generate new jobs, businesses, and wealth,
and businesses must work with them to build the innovation economy that will be
New York's economic future. This listening tour will move us closer to that
"There are many ways
that SUNY can play a central role in enhancing New York's place in the
knowledge economy. The input from local leaders will be invaluable in helping
us focus our efforts," New York State Empire State Development Corporation
Co-Chair Patrick Foye said.
New York State Empire State
Development Corporation Co-Chair Daniel Gundersen added, "To fully
understand the challenges facing us as we deal with the state's economic
problems, nothing beats the first-hand knowledge one gets from talking to
people actually experiencing them. We look forward to hearing all the
suggestions from the economic leaders in the various communities."
New York State Economic
Development Council President Brian McMahon said, "The Chancellor's
listening tour provides a great opportunity to better align the resources and
policies of higher education, the business community, and economic development
and workforce development organizations with the state's overall economic
development objectives. We look forward to working with the Chancellor to
implement the recommendations that come out of the regional tour stops."
Commissioner M. Patricia Smith said, "The Labor Department welcomes the
opportunity to be a part of this important initiative with SUNY. It is our
mission to support the economic interests of the people and businesses in New York State. By working with our partners, business
leaders and state agencies, we can ensure that workforce services are an
essential part of strengthening the state's economic foundation.”
Discussion topics at Tour
stops will include: how SUNY and the State can be best positioned to address
the needs of economic and workforce development; the role of SUNY in providing
support for communities and economic developers; the role of four-year
comprehensive colleges and community colleges in economic and workforce
development; how the State’s Centers for Excellence can be better drive the
economy; how the business community can take better advantage of innovation and
invention being produced at SUNY schools; and what support emerging technology
companies need from SUNY and the State.
Dates for the Tour are
scheduled as follows:
- Central: Thursday, Feb. 8,
at SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry, from 3-5 p.m.
- Mid-Hudson: Friday, Feb. 9,
at Orange County Community
College, from 9-11 a.m.
- Long Island: Thursday, Feb. 22, at Stony Brook University,
from 10 a.m. to Noon
- Capital Region: Thursday,
March 1, at the University at Albany, from 11
a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Mohawk Valley: Thursday, March 1, at SUNYIT, from 3:30 - 5:30 p.m.
- North Country: Thursday, March 8, at SUNY Plattsburgh,
from 1-3 p.m.
- New York City: Friday, March 9, at the Fashion Institute of
Technology, from 11 a.m. to 1:30
- Southern Tier: Friday,
March 16, at Corning Community
College, from 1-3 p.m.
- Finger Lakes: Thursday, March 22, at Monroe Community College, from 3-5 p.m.
- Western New York: Friday, March 23, at Buffalo State
College, from 9-11 a.m.
Reporters and Editors please
note: Space is limited to invitees only. However, Tour participants will be
available to the media following each meeting. When meeting are scheduled to
end late in the day, participants can be made available prior to the meeting.