Celebratory Opening of Cornell Tech Campus in NYC


The campus will serve as the new home of the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute, and as a new hub for New York City’s growing innovation and technology sector

NEW YORK, NY (September 13, 2017): Marking a new milestone for the ever-expanding technology and entrepreneurship community in New York City, Cornell Tech today officially dedicated its new campus on Roosevelt Island. The campus will expand the mission and impact of the Joan & Irwin Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute—an academic partnership between Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and Cornell University—and directly foster technological innovation in key New York City industries.

“Today’s Cornell Tech campus opening marks the beginning of a new chapter in the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute’s ongoing work to foster innovation in New York and beyond,” said Professor Peretz Lavie, President of Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, while addressing faculty, local, city and state government officials, diplomats and press attending today’s new campus dedication. “In partnership with Cornell University, we’ve developed a model of graduate-level technology education that is unlike any other – one that’s tailor-made not only for New York City but for the challenges of the digital revolution. Drawing upon Cornell’s incredibly strong presence and network in New York, we’ve cultivated meaningful new ties between academia and industry, and developed an ecosystem that directly fosters innovation, world-class research and entrepreneurship, driving both economic growth and public good. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all Technion faculty members and staff who took part in this incredible project and worked tirelessly to make it a success. We’re incredibly proud of the work we’ve done, and we couldn’t be more excited to take this next step.”

The Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute was established in 2013 with a $133 million gift from Joan Klein Jacobs and Dr. Irwin Mark Jacobs, founding chairman and CEO emeritus of Qualcomm. Since then, it has become a catalyst for global entrepreneurship and a driver of New York’s emerging tech ecosystem and local economy. The Jacobs Institute draws upon professors, research and resources from both Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, a leading global research university that has been vital in Israel’s emergence as the “Startup Nation,” and Cornell, a longtime leader in engineering and computer science with a strong presence in New York City.

“The ultimate goal of the Jacobs Institute is not only to attract excellent students, but to give them the kind of excellent education that will ensure they are both prepared and excited to address the real-world challenges faced by professionals in their industries,” said Dr. Irwin Mark Jacobs. “This new campus directly reflects that vision, and will be invaluable in supporting the Jacobs Institute’s ongoing work to cultivate innovation and entrepreneurship for many years to come.”

“New York has long been the financial capital of the world, but the city is also home to a wide variety of other innovation-driven industries that make it particularly fertile territory for starting new companies,” said Ron Brachman, Director of the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute. “Drawing upon Technion’s rich history of innovation and its role in establishing Israel as the ‘Startup Nation,’ the Jacobs Institute is well-positioned to drive economic development in New York, particularly in the high-tech sector. In the coming years, new research, innovations and companies coming out of the Jacobs Institute will directly contribute to the thousands of high-quality jobs that are expected to be created in New York, and will help to define the city as a leader within the tech sector of the 21st century.”

The Jacobs Institute’s master’s degree programs—in Connective Media and Health Tech—focus on driving innovation in industries in which New York City has historically excelled, while always remaining anchored in technology. Graduates of these programs receive master’s degrees from both the Technion and Cornell—which, as of 2016, makes Technion the first international university to grant an accredited degree on U.S. soil. The Connective Media graduate program, the first degree of its kind in the world, is centered on computer science and engineering, the human and social impacts of technology, and entrepreneurship. The Health Tech graduate program, meanwhile, focuses on the cutting edge of transforming how healthcare is delivered and experienced, and was designed to develop innovative new products and services that address real healthcare needs.

The Runway Startup Program at the Jacobs Institute supports recent PhDs who are likewise able to draw on the resources New York City has to offer as they build on their research to develop tech companies on campus. Over the past three years, Runway postdocs have founded 16 companies—from a smart baby monitor to an urban planning analytics platform—and collectively raised $19 million in funding.

“As an alumnus of the Technion in Israel and the Jacobs Institute’s Runway Startup Program, I’ve seen just how impactful a true culture of entrepreneurship can be, and I consider my time at the Jacobs Institute to have been instrumental in much of my own success,” said Assaf Glazer, CEO of the aforementioned innovative baby monitor company Nanit, and member of the January 2014 Runway Startup cohort. “As a postdoctoral student in the Runway Startup Program, Jacobs afforded me the resources I needed for my initial research and development, brand architecture, and networking. It quickly became apparent that New York City’s unique concentration of startups and consumer-focused companies would make it the ideal place to launch my business. New York City, Cornell Tech and the Jacobs Institute are true hotbeds of innovation, and I have no doubt that the new campus will extend that innovative spirit even further.” 

Today’s dedication ceremony included Cornell University President Martha Pollack; Cornell Tech Dean and Vice Provost Daniel Huttenlocher; Technion President Peretz Lavie; Bob Harrison, Chairman of the Cornell Board of Trustees; former New York City Mayor, and Founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies Michael Bloomberg; Israel’s Minister of Science and Technology, Ofir Akunis; Consul General of Israel in New York, Ambassador Dani Dayan; New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio; and New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Watch a recording of the celebratory event in New York City