Stony Brook University has been awarded more than $2 million in grants that will go toward funding mathematics, engineering, physics and other science education.
On July 26, U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley) announced the university had been awarded five grants.
“Whether it’s educating the next generation, helping us protect our planet or pioneering the future of mathematics, Stony Brook University is on the front lines of research and innovation,” said Zeldin in a press release. “Driving this critical federal funding back to some of the brightest minds of our generation, located right here on Long Island, will go a long way in helping these scientists carry out their vital work.”
Of the five grants, the university’s engineering academy will receive the most funding with more than $1.1 million going to the program.
The academy’s stated goal is to increase students’ motivation to pursue careers in fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The program will prepare middle school students for advanced science and math courses as well as potential engineering careers down the line.
“The programs we have in place targeting K-12 students, teachers and counselors, as well as undergraduate and graduate students at Stony Brook, are key building blocks in constructing a diversity pathway in STEM,” said Fotis Sotiropoulos, dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. “Targeted to middle school students and teachers, this unique program will engage them in the excitement, challenge and opportunity in engineering as a field of study and potential career.”
The remaining funds will go toward research studies. More than $365,000 will be used to study physics and climate regulation. Also, researchers will look into understanding radiative balance and precipitation changes in tropical weather patterns.
Close to $300,000 will fund a study spearheaded by Anatoly Frenkel, which will look at electro-chemo-mechanical processes at the atomic level. According to Sotiropoulos, Frenkel’s research has the potential to transform a wide range of vitally important technologies, ranging from focusing devices in the cameras of cellular phones to fuel injectors in automobiles.
In addition, more than $300,000 will be used to fund two mathematics studies through the mathematics department.
“There is no greater catalyst for scientific discovery than research universities,” said Michael Bernstein, the recently appointed Interim President of Stony Brook University. “The grants we have received allow us to address society’s most pressing challenges. As Long Island’s sole public research institution, we remain committed to advancing scientific knowledge throughout our region and around the world.”
The five grants were awarded by the National Science Foundation, an agency created by Congress in 1950, which promotes the progress of science; advances national health, prosperity and welfare; and works to secure national defense.