Ever since a $100 million donation from Chandrika and Ranjan Tandon renamed the former Polytechnic School of Engineering, NYU has seemingly seen an uptick in the amount of donations coming in.
New York state recently awarded a $4.45 million grant to the engineering school to develop the Center for Advanced Technology in Telecommunications and Distributed Information Systems.
Director of Marketing & Communications Kathleen Hamilton noted that the donation to CATT, along with any from the National Science Foundation or any other funding for research, are not classified as gifts.
“We consider it in a different category because it is a grant,” Hamilton said.
Other recent grants include $575 thousand grant from the United States Department of Health and Human Services to develop the NYU Lutheran Family Health Center’s services, and a $750 thousand grant from The National Science Foundation to continue NYU WIRELESS and the Stern School of Business’s research of millimeter wave spectrum.
Katepalli Raju Sreenivasan, the dean of Tandon, plans on allocating the funding at Tandon for program growth, faculty enrollment and other student endeavours.
“Every school raises its own general funds and uses them for its own purposes; if the goals are specific, the central administration and the schools work together both to raise the funds and to determine their end use,” Sreenivasan said.
Tandon hopes to provide its students and faculty with the resources necessary to produce work that is applicable beyond the NYU engineering community.
“We would like to ensure that the best students are not prevented from pursuing their studies because of economic issues. We will continue to pursue these goals,” Sreenivasan added. “Money is a means to an end and there is no fixed goal on the funding we seek.”
Excluding the Tandon’s gift, engineering at NYU has received more than double the fundraising it previously had in the last three years, receiving nearly three dozen donations of $5 million or more in the last two years alone.
Tandon sophomore Mateusz Chrobak hopes to see general improvements in different areas within the engineering school, but does not know what to expect as a result of the recent donations.
“We have been told that the donation will be used for various initiatives including financial aid, additional programming and hiring of faculty,” Chrobak said. “These general terms have been repeated often, so far without concrete details about specific spending.”
Prior to the Tandon’s gift, incoming chair of the NYU Board of Trustees, William Berkley and his wife, Marjorie, donated a $10 million scholarship grant in September to the engineering school, supporting STEM students with financial need.
“It was the largest scholarship gift we have ever received and illustrates both the commitment by our school and the university to continuing our tradition of educating the best STEM students no matter what their family income, as well as the increasing commitment by donors to support the education of future engineers and scientists here,” Hamilton said.
“There is excitement that the gift will be transformational,” Sreenivasan said. “The gift announcement was made only recently and it will take some time for it to show the impact.”
Email Greta Chevance at [email protected]