What does it mean to be bold? Being bold means addressing the toughest challenges, while turning hard-working students into global leaders year after year. The We Are Boldly Buffalo series brings the stories of the bold students, faculty, alumni, and friends building our bright future together.
Social impact comes from innovation and at UB, we are committed to fostering that process. By taking a transdisciplinary approach, we can find solutions to some of the most pressing issues in society. The Social Impact Fellows internship program takes students from the schools of management, social work and arts and sciences, assigning them to a different organization in Western New York where they can enact social innovation. Teams work together to create different and better solutions, learning how to work toward social change, how to pitch and create buy in. It shows students that we have to come together to make this work.
Though it is changing, there is also a historic disparity in the fields women and men pursue, as well as the number of females in corporate leadership positions. At UB, we are taking actions to send cracks across that glass ceiling. Consider STEM—Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Women are underrepresented in these professions—especially in the U.S.—comprising only 25% of the industry, while being paid 20% less, for doing the same jobs.
To support our students, our graduates, like Gina Hammond, have created scholarships designed to help women pursue an education in STEM. "Back in the seventies, Computer Science was not the discipline it is today," Hammond said. "Females today who are in this field are, in some respects, rebellious."
It’s an issue not enough people are talking about. Students from underrepresented backgrounds don’t have equal access to higher education. Nor do they graduate with the same frequency. We’re amping up efforts at UB to increase diversity and making sure students of all backgrounds have the same ability to achieve and succeed. Our early efforts are showing progress. The class of 2023 is our most diverse yet, and our graduation rates are continuing to rise.
Investments like those form Tilmon Brown and his family have helped move the needle. “Education is a critical door-opener for the future,” he says. “And if our contribution helps these students improve their lives, that’s an obligation we can’t ignore.”
If the past year has taught us anything, it’s that health care workers are invaluable. And demand for nurses nationally is increasing. Since 2012, nearly 60,000 RNs have retired annually, and by 2030, all baby boomers will be older than 65, compounding the demands place on our health care system.
At UB, we’re preparing health care professionals to go out and serve the world with a renewed focus, and it is paying off. Enrollment in the School of Nursing’s top 10-ranked online nursing bachelor’s program has tripled, enhancing our rapidly growing health care and research centers, and improving not only research that becomes treatment, but also how people receive care.
How can we design more equitable cities? What does justice mean in today’s society? How do we ensure that diversity and inclusion are at the forefront of decision-making? At UB we strive to address these (and other) essential questions, instill core values in our students, and create more just communities here in Buffalo—and far beyond. As the world around us rapidly changes, so too does the law. It’s our mission to be the catalyst of that change, and provide access to education regardless of what students look like or where they come from, rooted in a strong foundation of social justice.
2020 was a disastrous year in more ways than one. In addition to a global pandemic that’s caused millions of deaths worldwide, a series of unprecedented natural disasters firmly positioned climate change at the center of our daily lives.
The world watched in horror as wildfires raged through Australia and the American West Coast, then in shock as hurricane after hurricane battered the U.S. Gulf Coast. Polar bears wandering into remote Russian villages in search of food highlighted a grim new chapter in the fight against climate change, and what is yet to come.
We all know the problem; we have for decades. Now isn’t the time for questions, it’s the time for solutions. The University at Buffalo’s Department of Environment and Sustainability was created to do just that, and together with other disciplines, they’re leading the charge for a more sustainable and safer planet.
If we were to ask you about art capitals of the world, chances are you’d say Paris or Rome. New York. Maybe even Los Angeles or Miami. Pretty soon, you’ll be able to add Buffalo to that list. There’s an urban renaissance happening in Western New York, and the University at Buffalo is driving the charge.
Lack of talent has never been the issue for Buffalo.The problem’s been keeping it here. Especially for our art students. Our Arts Collaboratory, conceived out of the Dean’s Office at the UB College of Arts and Sciences, was designed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration between the arts across campus, to build community, and, ultimately, to turn Queen City into a thriving hub for artistic expression.
This is ushering in a new chapter for Buffalo, creating opportunities for citizens and students alike, and revitalizing the city in the process.
After losing two sisters in childhood to a rare metabolic disease called homocystinuria, Margie McGlynn decided to follow in her father’s footsteps and enter the pharmacy profession. She earned her pharmacy degrees and MBA from UB, and worked in the pharmaceutical industry for decades, helping identify unmet needs, bringing new products to market and maximizing patient access.
In 2016, she established a nonprofit organization called HCU Network America to help patients with the condition and related disorders manage their disease, with the goal of one day finding a cure. Now McGlynn has endowed a professorship in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences to find holistic solutions to keep pushing towards that goal.
Bullying can transform even the best school into a forbidding environment for children who endure classmates’ taunting. The pain can last a lifetime, with hopelessness and powerlessness giving way to depression. Psychologist Jean M. Alberti, PhD ’70, EdM ’62, wants to break the cycle.
That’s why she gave the single largest gift ever made to the Graduate School of Education to establish the Jean M. Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention at UB.
Tunney Murchie (MBA ‘76, BS ‘75), Deanna Murchie (BS ‘74) and their family believe in collegiate athletics. They also understand that while UB provides an outstanding education, student athletes didn't have the space they needed to hold practice no matter the Buffalo weather.
That’s why they gave the single largest gift ever made to the athletic department to help turn the long-awaited 92,000-square-foot fieldhouse into a reality.
When Stephen Still (BS ‘76) arrived at UB, he had no idea what his future held. Along the way, he bumped into the notion that you can change the world through how vehicles move and how cities develop.
Over four decades later, he still believes UB is one of the top transportation research universities in the world—which is why he gave $4 million to support the Stephen Still Institute for Sustainable Transportation and Logistics.
Watch his story and learn more about our bold vision to shape the future of transportation.
That’s the question David Hooper, Class of 2020, asked himself after realizing he was in a negative cycle that began with his father’s death. While he didn’t quite have the answer, he knew one thing: he’d begin to build his new life by earning his bachelor’s degree. For Jim Smist, BS ’80, it was honor his late father, Felix Smist, BS ’65, a non-traditional student who enrolled at UB as a working husband and father and then graduated 16 years later. Watch their stories and learn how one man’s legacy helped shape the lives of many others.
Forty years ago, Carol Brewer went on a trip abroad with her husband. Having the opportunity to experience life in an underdeveloped country opened her eyes to a global world view and had a profound influence on what she chose to do in her career—so she created the Carol S. Brewer Global Health Fund to provide similar opportunities for today’s nursing students.
In order for us to get to the next step—the next version of Western New York—we need to develop our next generation of leaders. That’s why Daniel Alexander, MD ‘99, BA ‘95, and Gail Alexander, BS ‘87, decided to give $1 million to the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical sciences. Now, they’re helping underserved and underprivileged students achieve their educational dreams.
For 175 years, the University at Buffalo has made life better in Western New York and around the world with bold action and an unmatched tenacity. At UB, being bold means solving society's most complex challenges. Helping millions of people around the world accomplish what was thought to be impossible. And fostering more leaders to take the reins of the future. Together, we take pride in our place, celebrate our way, and build our bright future.
Boldly Buffalo: The Campaign for UB is the largest, most ambitious fundraising campaign in university history—a campaign that will transform UB in nearly every way imaginable.
Your investment in UB will make a difference for a cause that matters to you: whether you make a gift to the UB Fund, support a scholarship for one UB student, sustain the work of a professor who will inspire thousands, or fund a cancer cure that saves the lives of millions. Every gift counts!