Cree donates $3.5 million to SUNY Poly to support STEM education

Cree, the company building a manufacturing facility in Marcy, has donated $3.5 million to SUNY Polytechnic Institute for new student scholarship and faculty chair programs.

Posted: Jun 30, 2020 1:15 PM
Updated: Jun 30, 2020 1:50 PM

UTICA, N.Y. – Cree, the company building a manufacturing facility in Marcy, has donated $3.5 million to SUNY Polytechnic Institute for new student scholarship and faculty chair programs.

The new manufacturing facility will produce silicon carbide wafers, and is partnering with SUNY Poly to bring students into their workforce.

The donation will be used to establish the Cree Wolfspeed Scholarship and the Dr. John Edmond and Dr. John Palmour SUNY Polytechnic Institute endowed faculty chairs, to support expanding education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

“Establishing this education program is another important step in our broader effort to have a substantial positive impact in the local communities where we live and work,” said Cree CEO Gregg Lowe.

The two faculty chairs will be funded with $1.5 million of the donation, while the other $2 million will support the scholarship program over 10 years, beginning in August.

The scholarships will be awarded to students from marginalized communities and low-income families.

The faculty chair award is the highest honor university staff can receive, and are named in tribute to Cree founders, according to Lowe.

“This is also a spectacular and well-deserved honor for our cofounders, John Edmond and John Palmour, and it recognizes the innovative spirit and significant contributions they have made – and continue to make – to accelerating the commercialization and adoption of silicon carbide technology. These faculty chairs will allow more students to learn from and work closely with pioneering scholars in the silicon carbide space,” he said.

In November of 2019, Cree donated $25,000 to SUNY Poly to invest in STEM education.

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