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College Matters 2014

A Note from the Dean


This is the first issue of College Matters, a publication of the University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences. In it we share with you some of the many accomplishments of our students and faculty, the cultural and intellectual activities of our campus life, and the meaningful and effective contributions of our alumni and donors. You can read more about the items highlighted here on the College website (

Last year, the College celebrated one-hundred years of excellence in teaching, research and service. We welcomed you to share our joy and pride in the contributions that the people of the College – our faculty and students, graduates and supporters – have made to our communities and our lives. Today the College is the largest and most diverse school at the University at Buffalo, comprising 25 departments, 16 programs and 23 centers. Our diversity and breadth of programs makes us resilient and strong. The College teaches about two-thirds of all undergraduate credit hours, includes some 470 faculty members, and is home to approximately 6000 undergraduate and graduate majors. We seek to hire 25 more faculty members this year, bringing the total new hires since 2012 to 98. This infusion of exciting teachers, researchers and scholars will add to the College’s quality and stature – now and into the future.

When the University’s radio station, WBFO, was sold to National Public Radio in 2012, President Tripathi allocated $3M from the sale to the College, to be used as a matching program for endowed professorships. This Fall, the first WBFO Visiting Professor in the Arts and the first Eileen Silvers-WBFO Visiting Professor in the Humanities are on campus. Both of these endowed professorships enable our departments to bring leading scholars to UB for extended visits. With the College Development Office, we continue to seek benefactors for additional WBFO matching endowments.

A generous benefactor has made a bequest to the College in support of experiential learning. I am working with Development and the Provost’s office to find additional support for co-curricular learning activities for our students. The College is also actively creating research opportunities for undergraduate students, and nearly all of the College’s departments currently have undergraduate students engaged in research. In the College are many wonderful students whose accomplishments we celebrate. This past spring we learned of two sophomore physics majors receiving Barry Goldwater Scholarships, a prestigious national honor established and funded by the US Congress. At the same time, five of our students received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.

In news of a different sort, the formation of the Department of Materials Design and Innovation (MDI) has been approved, and the search for a founding chair of MDI – who will also hold a newly endowed Erich Bloch Professorship – is underway.

I want to thank our students, faculty, staff, and all of you for making the College what it is – a place where people learn, create, advance knowledge and make our nation and the world better. Here’s to another productive year in making UB all it can be.

E. Bruce Pitman