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Programs designed to increase lifelong partnerships with alumni have enjoyed considerable success. Subscriptions to RenSource, the online alumni networking database, increased more than 70 percent to 4,500 in 2001. More than 7,500 individuals are members of the Rensselaer online directory and nearly 28,000 receive a monthly e-mail campus update. And the number of Rensselaer volunteers working on behalf of the Institute rose to 2,480 in 2002.

Programs initiated by the Office of the Provost and the Office of the First-Year Experience, described elsewhere, are also contributing to the satisfaction and well-being of Rensselaer’s students, faculty, and staff.

Rensselaer’s Arts Department

Rensselaer Arts Department: Changing the Face of Public Media
The National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture (NAMAC) has found Rensselaer’s Arts Department to be a “highly creative and enterprising digital arts department” that is “changing the face of public media in the United States.”

The NAMAC’s in-depth analysis, published in its annual study, A Closer Look 2001, stated, “Although the faculty represent enormously different disciplines (electronic music, painting, media production, Internet art, critical studies), they share a commitment to change and innovation.”

The 10-page case study added, “Virtually no other academic unit in the United States resembles it. The curriculum has grown at an unprecedented pace, responding to students, the marketplace, and changing public-media and arts-practice landscapes.”

In August, the group was joined by yet another “change artist. ”Michael Century—internationally known art-and-technology consultant, writer, musical performer, composer, software researcher, and former McGill University professor—was named chair of the Arts Department.
The City, Region, and Beyond
Greatness in a university is inextricably linked to the vitality of the region in which it is situated. Consequently, Rensselaer has undertaken several exciting new programs under the banner of “communiversity.”

In December 2001, Rensselaer received a $400,000 grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development to organize a Community Outreach Partnership Center in the City of Troy. The grant builds upon four Rensselaer projects: the Public Service Internship Program, the Troy Community Networking Project, the Neighborhood Renewal Initiative, and efforts to create Web-based, culturally oriented design tools to encourage underrepresented minorities to study math and science.

Programs in area schools seek to enrich and expand the science and technology pipeline, through projects like RAISE (the Rensselaer Alliance to Increase Student Excellence) — a comprehensive effort by area school districts, colleges, and businesses offering after-school, weekend, and summer educational and research experiences to more than 900 area middle and high school students.

Public service and volunteerism of students, faculty, and staff has been increased through events such as community service days coordinated by the Office of the First-Year Experience and the Rensselaer Union. And “communiversity” celebrations bring the Troy campus and its city neighbors into the streets to enjoy music and fun together.

Exchange programs, such as the Global Engineering Education Exchange, expose students to other worlds and cultures, while curricular and extracurricular emphases on global citizenship include new foreign language offerings.

People, Programs, Platforms

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Rensselaer Magazine: December 2002
President's View Your Mail From the Archives Hawk Talk Class Notes Features
Front Page At Rensselaer Milestones
In Memoriam Making a Difference Staying Connected
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Rensselaer (ISSN 0898-1442) is published in March, June, September, and December by the Office of Marketing and Media Relations.

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