All posts by joan

#2 A Technology-Based Response to Puerto Rico Crisis

Nearly 80 Stony Brook students, faculty and staff participated in an innovative initiative called “Disaster Relief Map-A-Thon: Puerto Rico.”

Stony Brook is the first SUNY school to stage this type of technology-based response to a crisis, according to Chris Sellers, director, Center for the Study of Inequality and Social Justice and Policy.

Volunteers use laptops to map Puerto Rico disaster sites.

The Map–A-Thon took place at the Stony Brook University Libraries North Reading Room and was organized by the Center for the Study of Inequalities, Social Justice and Policy, the Geospatial Center at the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and Stony Brook University Libraries.

Using their personal laptop computers, during a three-hour period Stony Brook students, professors and employees navigated satellite maps in search of buildings not yet documented in relief efforts.

Next, they zoomed in on street maps, traced outlines of structures and then uploaded and saved them to a master file used by the Red Cross as an aid to providing relief services to hurricane victims.

Read more:

#1 Coffee for Compressions

Volunteers and participants gathered outside the Melville Library’s Starbucks on October 18 to participate in a Hands-Only CPR (HOCPR) training session.

By the end of the event, 263 people on Stony Brook University’s campus were trained.

Hundreds from the campus community participated in the Hands-Only CPR training.

Coffee for Compressions, a new community engagement program, provides an opportunity for those nearby to learn about HOCPR training and test their chest compressions on a feedback manikin to earn a Starbucks gift card.

Participants were required to do two minutes of two-inch-deep compressions to receive a two-dollar gift card.

Colby Rowe, Trauma Center Education and Prehospital Outreach Coordinator, developed the idea for this incentive-based program. The Stony Brook Trauma Center was the lead team for the management of the event. Approximately 25 volunteers came from the Stony Brook Volunteer Ambulance Corps.

Learn more:


#31 Faculty Mentors for the Siemens Competition

Stony Brook faculty and staff often go above and beyond their roles as educators and administrators to help students succeed.

One example of faculty engagement is the Siemens Competition. Five of the finalists in the 2016 Siemens Competition in Math Science and Technology — the nation’s premier research competition for high school students — were mentored at Stony Brook University.


The Garcia Center’s Research Scholar Program for High School Students offers high school teachers and students the opportunity to perform research on the forefronts of polymer science and technology together with Garcia faculty and staff.

The Siemens Foundation established the competition in 1999, and requires intensive research . The five high school students make up two teams, with both from the University’s Garcia Center.

The teams are:

  • Rose Hong (California) and Jasmin Gao (Georgia), with Stony Brook mentors Marcia Simon, Oral Biology and Pathology; Dennis Galanakis, Pathology; and Miriam Rafailovich, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Katherine Cao (Wisconsin), Alice Wu (New York) and William Hu (California), with Stony Brook mentors Miriam Rafailovich and Adriana Pinkas-Sarafova, Garcia Center

Both teams worked on research related to the use of dental pulp stem cells used for dental regeneration.

A Stony Brook-mentored student/team has won the grand prize in the Siemens Competition three times (2009, 2007 and 2001).Since 2005, Stony Brook faculty have mentored a total of 441 Siemens semifinalists.

Learn more about the Garcia Center for Polymers at Engineered Interfaces:



We hope you enjoyed learning about some of the ways Stony Brook University gives back to the community.

With unique educational opportunities, donation drives, cultural events and more, the students, faculty and staff at Stony Brook are proud to share their time, resources and expertise to improve the lives of others.

We look forward to sharing more good news next year.

– Joan Dickinson, Community Relations Director