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6 Comments by VenecianWaters

Thiele: Stony Brook rejects idea of maintaining residential campus at Southampton

Nature, Mr. Thiele graduated from this campus. He returns calls personally to parents of the students, and he visits with the students on a Sunday morning. Bishop worked a variety of jobs, including Provost at this campus, over 29 years. His wife runs a daycare center on the campus, to this day. Senator LaValle is upset because this campus "was my baby."
They are all trying to preserve a 4 year college education for the East End of Long Island, just as they did 5 years ago. So many East Enders have contributed to this college over the years, and so have their parents
More importantly, Govenor Patacki gave 35 million taxpayer dollars to Stony Brook to buy this campus and maintain it as a 4 year college. The intent of this purchase was to maintain a 4 year college on the East End of Long Island. Stony Brook is breaking that intent.
In the fall 800 students were scheduled to be attending the Southampton Campus. NY residents pay $6,489.00 a year for tuition and university fees. That yields about 5.2 million dollars. The out of state students pay more than $14,000.00. So potentially, the student population could yield about 6 million dollars. That seems very sustatinable to me. Why did Dr. Stanely have Mellucci make a new statement, when Fred Thiele and Ken LaValle threatened to file a fraud investigation? Dr. Stanley stated he was saving 6.7 million a year, by closing the campus. But Mellucci said that it could take 2 -3 years to see that savings since they still have staff ( professors) in contracts that have to be honored , so some of the current students can graduate with the majors they declared.. So there really is only a 1 - 2 million dollar a year savings, maybe. Most of the figures they site are based on 500 students, not the 800 students. You can choose any formula you like in statistics to try to prove your hypothesis. A smart person looks carefully at the original figures, to determine if the information has been skewed.
There is a global race going on in physics and Stony Brook is deeply tied to Brookhaven National Labs. A new Photon building of 200,000 Sq. Ft. is being built and Stony Brook does not want to lose any funds for its professors, or graduate students, so it can bring in as many international people as possible, to discover new technologies. It seem to me that the Southampton Campus is being cannibilized for the purposes of supporting Brookhaven National Labs. Last week in Long Island Business News, Eric W. Kaler was advertising the formatiion of a committee to decide what to do with the Southampton property. Eric Kaler wears many hats. He is the Provost at Stony Brook. He is the VP of Student Affairs at Stony Brook and he is the VP for Brookhaven Affairs at Brookhaven National Labs. Why did Eric Kaler not advertise the formation of this committee in the Southampton Press? Shouldn't our local community be involved in what happens on those 82 acres? Educational purposes can include almost anything you can imagine with the "Power of SUNY" collaborations being promoted by the new Chancellor of SUNY. Do you know if PHEEIA passes, the university does not need the approval of the State legislators to do whatever they want with State land? Do you know the Chancellor never visited this campus? She says she visited all the SUNY campuses this last year. But why did she avoid a campus with a 54% increase in enrollement? Why did she avoid a campus with a 100 point jump in SAT scores? It is not logical. It is not transparent. It is not Stony Brook's style to ask for what it wants, for very long.
" May 19, 10 8:10 PM

Activist makes fight for campus spiritual

Yes, thank you Mr. Manisalco, for taking the time and making the effort to heal the land and invoke the naure spirits. Thank you to everyone who was able to join him in this process. Thank you to Will James for reporting this story." May 24, 10 8:48 PM

Stony Brook Southampton students file suit

Fred Thiele has worked tirelessly to work with the students, parents, and alumi of Southampton LIU. He is an alum of this campus. His interest is genuine. I am thankful he quickly figured out that the 6.7 million dollar annual savings reported by Dr. Stanley, to justify closing the campus, was questionable. Sure enough a new statement came out by a Stony Brook University VP to report that savings could be realized in 2 -3 years, (So how questionable is the new estimate?) because they still have to honor employment contracts. This also tells you that they have no intention of keeping the programs, if they will not keep the staff.

To announce a month before finals that you are closing a college campus, is devasting to the students and parents who spent a great deal of time, energy and money to choose a college for a 4 year education. The emotional stress placed on the students was unbelievable, and still is present. Not everyone wants to go to an overcrowded campus with not enough sections of classes.

Some students are juniors and they are being pressured to change their major because Stony Brook no longer wants to offer it. So what you are reading in the papers and what is really happening to the students, are two very different stories.

We really appreciate the support of the community and the businesses who have helped us to raise funds for our legal battle.

If you can write a letter of support to keep the campus open, please write to Governor Patterson, State Speaker of the House Sheldon Silver, State Senator Ken LaValle, and State Assemblymember Fred Thiele.

If you multiple the 800 students who would be on this campus in the fall, by just the tuition and university fees, it generates alomst 5.2 million dollars. With tuition and fees for out of state students more than $14,000.00, this campus could generate close to if not more than 6 million dollars. This is not including dorm fees and food plan fees.

Was this campus so close to being self-sustainable with 800 students, that Stony Brook University decided to close the campus now, before the campus began to fullfill its 5 year plan? Why can't the students co-exist with whatever the VP of Brookhaven Associates ( Brookhaven National Lab) wants to do with the property? ( He is also the Provost and VP at Stony Brook, too, for student affairs, yes, 3 titles.)

Thank you Mrs. Sea. You give us hope. The East End has had a 4 year college for decades. This affects the access of adults who want to return to finish their undergraduate degrees or get additional degrees. It affects the children on the East End who do not want to go to school far from home. Also, in this economy, many students do not want to take out loans to go to college.

Keep a 4 year college education and graduate education accessible to the East End!" May 26, 10 5:45 PM

Taking another page from the commission’s report, Mr. Paterson’s proposal would also give colleges and universities the freedom to move more quickly in making purchases and signing contracts. The plan would do away with the advance approval of contracts by the Office of the State Comptroller but would provide for “post-audits” instead.

And the governor’s plan would enable institutions to generate money by using one of their greatest assets: land. If a developer wanted to lease land from a college, for example, a new three-member “asset maximization board” would decide on proposals within 45 days, as opposed to the 12 months that it can take for approval from the Legislature.

But Senator Stavisky questioned the idea of using public colleges’ land for private ends, along with the educational mission of some recent land-use proposals, from building a wind farm to housing for the elderly.

“I have a major problem permitting the lease of SUNY property,” she said, “because it’s not SUNY property; it’s taxpayer property.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/16/nyregion/16suny.html?pagewanted=1" May 27, 10 5:17 AM

Shinnecock Nation explores opening tribal college at Stony Brook Southampton site

I absolutely would support a Shinnecock Indian College. I think sustainability could be one component of what could be offered at the college. I would like the Shinnecocks to think about what they need from a college.

They are right to first concern themselves with finishing the federal proceedure to be a recognized tribe. They have gathered material for more than 30 years to prove their status.

Many people are ignorant about what it is like to live on a reservation. Many people do not know that an American Indian couple can't get a mortgage to build a home, because a home on a reservation can't be foreclosed upon and sold to the general public.

American Indians did not choose to live on reservations. In many cases they were given land that was not enough to sustain them, their animals or their crops. Basically, they were isolated, and forced to rely on the federal government for support. It is not a proud part of American history.

The state of NY was providing 7.4 million dollars of support specifically to the Southampton campus, when 500 students were enrolled, according to Univeristy Senate Meeting Minutes on November 2, 2009. I would imagine the state of NY and the federal government would be able to come up with funds to support that campus, as a Shinnecock Indian Collgege, too.

" Jun 25, 10 8:27 PM

Stony Brook Southampton committee discusses expanding arts, marine sciences programs

Is a resident who lives in the Southampton community a member of this mysterious panel? If so please tell us who. Diana Weir lives in Wainscott, not Southampton.

Long Island Housing Partnership visits Stony Brook Southampton
By Oliver Peterson, Southampton Press
Oct 3, 08 4:57 PM

Diana Weir has stated "And building new affordable homes is difficult here because “there’s no more land.”

"Mr. Berbig said he requested that Ms. Weir visit Stony Brook [Southampton] shortly after LIHP asked to put up posters advertising its programs this spring, and since then both the school and LIHP has considered how they can benefit one another. Ms. Weir said her organization is encouraging Stony Brook to participate in the Employer Assisted Housing Program, which aims to recruit and retain a skilled workforce on Long Island by helping them purchase homes. The program does this by requiring participating employers to provide a benefit contribution to help employees buy homes.Ms. Weir pointed out that young doctors don’t make a lot of money at first and they often get “sticker shock” when looking at homes on the East End. Employees of the college face similar problems, and while Stony Brook is a state school, the LIHP executive vice president said it could be funded through the Stony Brook Foundation, rather than taxpayer money."

This campus is not closing because of a lack of state funding. I have never seen anything that said the State of NY was not going to continue to fund the Southampton campus. This campus is funded separately from Stony Brook University. At least that is what the University Senate meeting minutes from November of 2009 states online.

"There is 7.4 Mil in state appropriation funded by SUNY. SUNY has specifically identified this for Stony Brook Southampton. For a copy of the financial plan please email ltheobalt@notes.cc.sunysb.edu ."

If that was not enough, the Town of Southampton offered Dr. Stanley 12 million dollars or more from the CPF program to help support the campus for the next 2 years so that it could then separate from Stony Brook and become an independent SUNY Southampton campus ( knowing that the state supports the campus with 7.4 million a year) and Stony Brook flatly refused the offer. So clearly, StonyBrook is not closing this campus for financial reasons.

I requested a copy of the financial plan as cited above. There was no response. My daughter attends this campus. We have an interest in it's continuance, since not all the majors are transferring the the main campus.

"Although some majors will be offered at Stony Brook University’s main-campus, SBS students feel slighted by the school. “I can’t even make a schedule, I don’t know what to do. This is ridiculous,” said junior Alla Villafana, who can complete her Business major at SBU, but not with a concentration in Sustainability, which was only offered at SBS."


What Stony Brook Univeristy represents in the media is cleary not the same as what the students have experienced.

So if you do your research, you can see we are not "alarmists" but concerned residents, parents, students, and taxpayers.
" Jul 28, 10 11:21 PM