NEW PALTZ – The 3D printing initiative at the State University of New York at New Paltz has been awarded $1 million in economic development funding through Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative. The announcement was made today, Dec. 11, in Albany, N.Y.
The award will support the college’s goal of purchasing major state-of-the-art 3D printing equipment, leveraging $500,000 of private funding committed by Ulster County businessman Sean Eldridge of Hudson River Ventures and by Central Hudson in May to the new Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz. Hudson River Ventures has also committed $500,000 of venture capital to help launch new 3D printing enterprises in the region.
“We are very pleased that the Governor recognized the potential of this project to bring new manufacturing technology and training to our region that will help grow our economy and create jobs,” said SUNY New Paltz President Donald P. Christian. “The funding puts this project on the fast track to help accelerate the center’s growth and capitalize on building a distinctive regional identity in 3D printing and related research, design, and development. I am grateful to Governor Cuomo, the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council, Sean Eldridge, the Hudson Valley Economic Development Corporation, and Central Hudson for their tremendous support.”
The Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz integrates the college’s strengths in engineering, computer science, technology, and the innovation and creativity of the arts. It brings state-of-the art 3D printing equipment to the region, available to businesses and industry, as well as the expertise and a unique curriculum in Digital Design and Fabrication aimed at advanced-level workforce development. The initial cohort of students is completing the first semester of that curriculum. Additional elements of the initiative will include: active recruitment of 3D printing enterprises, with access to venture capital funds; a network of equipment access and collaborative educational programming at Hudson Valley community colleges and selected high schools to expand 3D printing capability in the region; and joining the START-UP New York tax-free initiative with a focus on 3D printing.
“There is a great tradition of advanced manufacturing in the Hudson Valley, and this 3D printing initiative will be a significant boost to job training, investment, and job growth in our region. It’s a big win for our students, our schools, and our small businesses in the Hudson Valley,” said Sean Eldridge, president of Hudson River Ventures and a founding supporter of the center. “I want to congratulate the Mid-Hudson Regional Council on its successful efforts to securing funding for this important initiative, and I thank Governor Cuomo, President Christian and his team at SUNY New Paltz, and HVEDC for their incredible leadership and vision in making this project possible.”
New Paltz recently submitted its application for funding through Round III of the NYSUNY 2020 Challenge Grant to build a 20,000-square-foot building to house its planned Mechanical Engineering program and to secure key equipment for that initiative. This visionary project complements the college’s 3D printing initiative and amplifies its potential contributions. The proposed building will also provide office and laboratory space to companies looking to take advantage of the START-UP New York program.
3D printing is an additive manufacturing process of layer-by-layer printing that produces three-dimensional objects using computer-aided design software. Using a number of different technologies, 3D printers can form objects out of a wide variety of plastics, metals, and ceramics, transforming many industries.