Stony Brook University’s Yacov A. Shamash to Advance STEM Education and Research as Special Advisor to Chancellor Zimpher

January 16, 2015

Albany – The State University of New York and Stony Brook University today announced that SBU Vice President for Economic Development Yacov A. Shamash will serve as a Special Advisor to SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher for STEM Education and Research Partnerships. While retaining his economic development role at the campus, Dr. Shamash will oversee the advancement of SUNY’s Strategic Partnership for Industrial Resurgence (SPIR) programs.

Shamash played a leadership role in the creation of the SPIR program in 1994. The program, which aims to utilize SUNY’s extensive engineering resources to drive a more competitive business climate, helps companies improve market posture, retain existing employees, and create new jobs. To date, SPIR has completed 2,577 projects with more than 440 companies.

“We are thrilled that Yacov will share his skills and economic development expertise at the system level, particularly at a time when our collective focus on meeting state needs in STEM fields is at its peak,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “With more than 20 years of leadership experience as Stony Brook’s Dean of Engineering and Applied Sciences and as one of the SPIR program’s initial visionaries, Yacov’s counsel and guidance is going to be incredibly valuable.”

"SPIR is an invaluable resource that SUNY offers to New York State businesses," said Dr. Alexander N. Cartwright, SUNY Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor.  "Whether they are looking to streamline manufacturing processes or adapt to new environmental regulations, SPIR provides the support necessary to keep NYS businesses competitive. I know that Yacov will do a fantastic job in building new partnerships for SPIR."

In his new role, Dr. Shamash will also expand upon his earlier contributions to SUNY’s system-wide initiatives in homeland security, cybersecurity, and energy, while focusing on new opportunities for cross-campus collaboration and new areas for academic program development that align with state workforce demand.

About Dr. Yacov A. Shamash
Dr. Shamash is Vice President for Economic Development and Dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Stony Brook University. As Vice President, a position he has held since 2000, Dr. Shamash supervises the University's three incubators, two New York State Centers for Advanced Technology, the NYS Center of Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology (CEWIT), the Small Business Development Center, and the workforce development programs of the Center for Emerging Technologies. The College of Engineering and Applied Sciences has over 1,500 undergraduate and 900 graduate students. During the past ten years, working through the SPIR program, CEAS has partnered with more than 220 companies to assist them with more than 1,150 projects. 

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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