The Bridge to the Bicentennial is a decade of celebrations and observances that pay tribute to the historical and transformative events leading up to the 200th anniversary of the founding of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, America’s oldest technological research university.

"... all of us have reason to be proud to be a part of this transformational institution which has withstood the great challenges of the past..."
- President Shirley Ann Jackson

The New Polytechnic

Join Us On The Bridge

Join us to bridge the financial aid gap at Rensselaer as we continue to attract the most talented students.

As we advance to the bicentennial anniversary of the Institute in 2024, Rensselaer is defining The New Polytechnic: a new paradigm for teaching, learning, and research - a view of the technological research university as a fresh collaborative endeavor across disciplines, sectors, and global regions that leads by using advanced technologies to unite a multiplicity of disciplines and perspectives, in order to take on large, multifaceted challenges.#RPIbridgeto2024

from Inside Rensselaer

Rensselaer Union: 125 Years

The Rensselaer Union’s 125th Anniversary programming will stretch from Grand Marshal Week 2015 to Grand Marshal Week 2016.

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The Rensselaer Union — 125th Anniversary

Union Strong - Rensselaer Alumni Magazine

Upcoming 125th Anniversary Events - Rensselaer Union Website

Rensselaer Union Kicks Off Yearlong Celebration of 125 Years - Inside Rensselaer

Marking its 125th anniversary in 2015, the Rensselaer Union gives students a significant role in decisions as immediate as when to replace lounge furniture and as long-range as when to build a new library or beef up academic offerings.

In November 1890, students formed the RPI Union to enhance athletics and clubs. The student association followed and the organizations combined in 1908 as the Rensselaer Union. The same year, trustees and a graduate committee financed the first Union building, a colonial house at the west end of ’86 Field.

Share your favorite Rensselaer Union memory and it may be included in a 125th Anniversary Celebration event.


Nov. 5 is the 190th anniversary of a letter written by Institute founder Stephen Van Rensselaer announcing the formation of a new school and declaring his intent to educate students "in the application of science to the common purposes of life." The celebration of the 190th anniversary of the founding of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is part of a decade-long series of celebrations marking a bridge to the Institute's bicentennial in 2024.

As Founders Day–the annual celebration of the founding of the Institute–approaches, Rensselaer is posing another question to its alumni, students, faculty, and other community members: How has Rensselaer changed your world?

From now through Friday, Oct. 31, share your photos, short videos, or stories explaining how Rensselaer changed your world by tweeting or posting to Instagram with the hashtag #WNCTW or #RPIFoundersDay. Select submissions will be included in a special video that will premiere at the Institute Founders Day festivities on Wednesday, November 5th.


Since its founding 50 years ago, the Lally School of Management has educated students in the role that business plays in the human experience. The Lally School is focused on the intersection of management technologies and the technology of management, entrepreneurship, and innovation.

Through rigorous analyses, relationships and teamwork, a global perspective, and the continual reinforcement of intellectual agility and leadership, the Lally School provides the academic and research tools and solutions in an interdisciplinary environment that prepares students to address the challenges of the global marketplace.


Chemical and Biological Engineering Department 100th Anniversary

Celebrating 100 Years of Chemical and Biological Engineering

Over the past 100 years there has been a substantial evolution in chemical engineering, and the Rensselaer Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering has both led and reflected those advancements. Department faculty, staff, students and alumni/ae are increasingly focused on the microscopic basis of the physical and chemical phenomena underlying the transformations of raw materials into the products upon which our world depends.

The continued impact of the Department is exemplified by an unmatched record of book publications, including the four editions of Introduction to Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics, by far the best-selling textbook in the history of chemical engineering.


Since opening in 2004, the Rensselaer Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies (CBIS) continues to be an important contributor to The New Polytechnic.

With a focus on both fundamental and applied biotechnology research, as well as ensuring that the next generation is prepared to use the latest tools and technologies, it is at the nexus of life sciences, physical sciences, informatics, and engineering basic research, and their application to solving real-world problems in healthcare and biotechnology.


Transformative Events in Rensselaer History

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