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The Statesman

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    Pataki Announces Creation of 1000 New Jobs

    H. Carl McCall visited the campus last spring as he was campaigning for theDemocratic nod in the gubernatorial race. Now that the Comptroller has securedit, New York State Governor George E. Pataki is beginning to look to him asa serious challenger. Pataki made his first visit to Stony Brook Universityon the eve of the general campaign season.

    On Friday, Aug. 2, 2002, the Governor announced a $230 million Long IslandCenter for Excellence in Wireless Internet and Information Technology in theStudent Activities Center lobby. Although it was not an official campaign stop,the Center’#146;s potential to create up to 1,000 new high-tech jobs and a potentialfor thousands more down the line carried with it political undertones.

    ‘This is tremendous news for Long Island and all of New York State,’Pataki said. ‘The Center of Excellence at Stony Brook will bring thousandsof good-paying, high-tech jobs to Long Island, while further enhancing thisregion’#146;s leadership role in the field of information technology.’

    The global news and technology group, Reuters Group PLC, will be a principalparticipant in this endeavor as it plans on making New York State one of itsmajor global developmental centers.

    ‘Reuters is proud to be a part of the creation of the Center of Excellenceat Stony Brook University,’ said Glenn Wasserman, Senior VP of Developmentfor Reuters America Inc. ‘This new center illustrates New York’#146;s growingstature as a major hub of technological innovation’#133;[this] has contributedto our decision to make New York one of our major global development centersin the future.’

    Something that bodes especially well for a state that is still trying to regeneraterevenue, rebuild its business infrastructure and simply recover following thetragedies of September 11, 2001.

    Construction on a new 100,000 square foot, structure that will be built tohouse the Center may begin as early as the end of this year. The state-of-the-artfacility will contain a cyber-security lab, an emerging wireless technologieslab, a computer networking lab, a computational sciences lab, clean-rooms andworkforce training room.

    SBU’#146;s Center for Excellence will be funded by more than $130 million inprivate industry and venture capital investment, technology and support fromlocals Computer Associates and Symbol Technologies, as well as Reuters. Additionallythe state will provide $50 million in funding to support construction with anestimated $50 million in matching funds over the next five years from the federalgovernment.

    An elated Shirley Strum Kenny, SBU President, thanked Pataki for his visitand for the Center. ‘This is a great testament to Stony Brook’#146;s abilityto work together with business and industry’#151;it is a very exciting opportunityfor us,’ she said.

    The event, which took place at one pm, was attended by less than a hundredpeople most of whom were administrators and professionals. This was in partdue to the fact that the announcement was shrouded in secrecy. According tothe University’#146;s press secretary, it almost did not happen because theGovernor’#146;s camp was not sure about the exact job figures.

    Though it lasted for only an hour, Pataki did not solely focus on the announcement.He had enough time to conduct several interviews, and meet and a take pictureswith high school students from the Howard Hughes Summer Scholars Program whowere attending closing ceremonies in the nearby SAC Auditorium.

    ‘It was a nice experience for them to meet the governor. He actually hada conversation with them,’ said Jonathan Marrero, their counselor for thesummer and an undergraduate at the University. ‘He didn’#146;t have tocome over to say hello to me either. I was just happy to be there.

    Judging from the reception of the crowd, Pataki’#146;s camp should be morethan content with the reaction to the Governor’#146;s visit.

    Marrero echoed the sentiments of others attending the announcement. ‘Hewas a real nice guy,’ Marrero said. ‘I would vote for him this fall.’

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