Associate Professor Jacqueline Bennett holds an imine created using her patented process.
I’m thrilled to share the news that the Geneseo-based startup company Verdimine has signed an exclusive license agreement with the Research Foundation for The State University of New York to employ a green chemistry process invented by one of our faculty members.
Associate Professor of Chemistry Jacqueline Bennett patented a process for making imines, a class of chemical compounds frequently used in the pharmaceutical, agrichemical, fine chemical, plastics manufacturing and household product industries.
Conventional methods of imine production require boiling large quantities of toxic solvents for hours to days, and leftover solvent is later disposed of as hazardous waste. Jacqueline’s process uses a non-toxic, FDA-approved food additive as the solvent, reduces production time from hours to minutes, and requires no agitation or purification, and little to no heat. It also costs much less than traditional methods of imine preparation, and its only byproduct is water.
Jacqueline invented the new process after years of research, including projects undertaken in collaboration with SUNY Oneonta students in her research group, BLONDES (Building a Legacy of Outstanding New Developments and Excellence in Science). She received a U.S. patent for her discovery in 2014 and was named Inventor of the Year by the Eastern New York Intellectual Property Law Association in 2016.
Now, as chief scientific officer for Verdimine, Jacqueline is working with a team to figure out how her process could be scaled up for use in manufacturing things like cholesterol-lowering drugs, rust inhibitors and inorganic LEDs.
It’s exciting to see our faculty and students collaborating on cutting-edge research that could one day improve safety and efficiency in chemical manufacturing. Please join me in congratulating Jacqueline on this remarkable achievement.
SUNY Oneonta a ‘Best Value’ College
According to independent research released earlier this month by Best Value Schools, SUNY Oneonta is one of the state’s top higher education institutions. Our college sits at No. 23 on a list of the “50 Best Value Colleges and Universities in New York for 2018.”
Helping students “find the best school to fit their needs” is the mission of Best Value Schools. Its editors considered acceptance rate, graduation rate, return on investment and net price in their analysis. “Oneonta manages to provide a little something for everyone,” they wrote. “Academically, the school maintains an even blend of liberal arts and career-oriented programs.”
The Best Value Schools list echoes findings from other organizations. Both Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine and Forbes have recognized SUNY Oneonta for exceptional value in similar rankings.
College to Offer Emergency Aid for Students
Starting next semester, SUNY Oneonta will offer emergency aid to students experiencing unforeseen financial hardships or emergency situations under a new pilot program aimed at keeping more students on track toward graduation.
Oneonta is one of seven SUNY campuses participating in the program, which is supported by more than $600,000 in donations from the Gerstner Family Foundation and the Heckscher Foundation for Children.
This collaborative effort by our divisions of College Advancement, Student Development, Enrollment Management, and Finance and Administration will help students facing unforeseen challenges such as homelessness or threat of eviction, medical emergency, natural disaster, domestic violence, theft or loss of employment. The SUNY Impact Foundation will administer the program, collect data and study the effects of the emergency funding.
We are committed to doing all we can to help our students reach their goals, and we know that an unexpected financial crisis has the potential to derail a student’s college career. I’m pleased and proud that we will now be able to offer a safety net that could make the difference.
Giving Tree Serves Over 200 Children
A few of the gifts wrapped and matched to their corresponding Giving Tree tags await pickup at the Hunt College Union Ballroom.
The college’s annual Giving Tree program is a fantastic example of the caring and generosity of our campus. This year, 57 faculty and staff departments and offices, and 40 student clubs took tags, each describing the needs of a local child, from the Giving Tree. They purchased and wrapped winter clothes, toys, food and toiletry items to be given to area families.
This is a large-scale effort that requires careful organization weeks in advance and plenty of hands on deck to receive and distribute gifts. Special thanks go to Anne Winchester in the Office of Equity and Diversity, who worked with schools and preschools to create Giving Tree tags, match them to shoppers on campus, and then staff a collection point for packages and bags in the Hunt Union last week.
I am touched by the response of our Student Activities Council, which voted last week to donate funds so that any child whose tag had not been claimed from the Giving Tree would receive gifts. This ensured that every child in the program, all 210 of them, will have a brighter holiday season.
I believe strongly that SUNY Oneonta has a responsibility to invest in surrounding communities. By embracing programs such as the Giving Tree, we make a difference in the lives of our neighbors.