Statement from Chancellor Malatras on Stony Brook University’s 61st Commencement

May 21, 2021

"Stony Brook University has served as an exemplar of SUNY's values throughout the pandemic, whether it's providing much needed medical care to COVID-19 patients at Stony Brook University Hospital, leading the way in vaccinating New Yorkers, or conducting rigorous testing to keep their campus community safe. As important, Stony Brook University is a research powerhouse developing new technologies and innovations that will dramatically improve our lives.

As today's graduates prepare to enter the working world, or pursue further education, they can feel proud of all that they’ve accomplished and should celebrate the determination it took to get here. These students hold the key to a better future—they will undoubtedly use their innovation and drive to better whatever organization they work for or academic program they pursue.

I commend President McInnis on her leadership, and congratulate all of Stony Brook University's graduates and celebrate this accomplishment with them. I was especially proud to meet several dynamic Educational Opportunity Program graduates today. The world is ready and waiting for you to take your next step, and we know you will make the SUNY Family proud."

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year, is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2022, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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Holly Liapis
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