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Stony Brook Southampton Expands Marine Science Center

Originally Posted: June 21, 2012

Douglas MacKaye Harrington

Christopher Gobler, Director of Academic Programs for SoMAS, Dennis N. Assanis, Provost and Sr. Vice President for Academic Affairs, Assembyman Fred W. Thiele Jr., State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, SBU President Dr. Samuel L. Stanley Jr. and SoMAS Dean Minghua Zhang at the groundbreaking cerimony.

SOUTHAMPTON - Long renowned in the field of Marine and Environmental Studies, the Southampton Campus of Stony Brook University is set to begin construction on a new state-of-the-art Marine Sciences Center for the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences (SoMAS). The new center will replace and expand the current waterfront research and teaching facilities. The projected expected completion date is fall 2013.

The new 15,000-square-foot Marine Sciences Center, made possible through $6.9 million secured in the NYS budget by State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle and Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr., is being developed to support the growth of the SoMAS undergraduate marine science and environmental science programs. The center will play a key role in the university's ability to perform groundbreaking research into a variety of issues facing Long Island and the world. The total cost of the project is projected at $8.348 million with the remaining funds coming from Stony Brook University.

At a ceremony to commemorate the groundbreaking, Stony Brook University President Dr. Samuel L. Stanley Jr. expressed gratitude to Senator LaValle and Assemblyman Thiele for their efforts in securing the funds to help make this project a reality, "The new Marine Sciences Center will play a key role in keeping this school as the premiere marine undergraduate program on the east coast," said President Stanley. "It will expand opportunities for our students and faculty to conduct waterfront marine research and play a key role in augmenting SoMAS' ability to perform groundbreaking studies in a variety of issues facing Long Island and the world today."

"This announcement begins the process to energize the Southampton campus," said Senator LaValle, during his remarks at the groundbreaking ceremony. "It's a sign that the State and Stony Brook are serious about the Southampton site and investing in the economy of this area. The new Marine Sciences Center will be recognized as a beacon by people from afar."

"The sun is shining on the Southampton campus today," said Assemblyman Thiele at the ceremony. "We've always had two particular strengths Marine Sciences and the Writing Program here at Southampton," he said. "I choose to look forward to the future of this campus and its great potential it's going to be a shining light and a gem for SUNY."

A rendering of the new Marine Sciences Center at Stony Brook Southampton.

"Stony Brook is the center of SUNY's renowned marine research efforts and this new state-of-the-art facility will give SUNY students and faculty the tools they need to advance our understanding of issues that have global ramifications," said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. "I want to commend President Stanley and his team for having the vision to bring such an important asset to SUNY, and Senator LaValle and Assemblyman Thiele for their continued support."

"The construction of the Marine Sciences Center at Southampton will ensure that Stony Brook will continue to be a world leader in marine science education and research - areas of critical importance to the world in the 21st Century, and especially to the people of Long Island," said Provost and Sr. Vice President for Academic Affairs Dennis Assanis. "I believe that the construction of the Marine Sciences Center and other Stony Brook initiatives, such as the New York Center for Computational Science and the Consortium for Interdisciplinary Environmental Research, make us a great training ground for the world's future thought leaders - people who will address and conquer the substantial environmental problems we face."

The new facility will enable SoMAS to offer more classes with rich experiential components such as Marine Biology, Marine Mammals, Ichthyology, Physical Oceanography and more, which will be taught at the new Marine Sciences Center. Currently SoMAS is ranked sixth in the United States among marine and atmospheric sciences graduate programs, according to the National Research Council.

For more information, click here.

Frequently mistaken for the "Most Interesting Man in the World" from the Dos Equis commercials and the iconic gray-bearded Sean Connery, DMH is the Senior Contributing Editor at Hamptons.com. www.hamptons.com Hamptons HamptonsOnline HamptonsOnline

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