Dear Alfred University students, staff, and faculty:
Sustainability has become increasingly important here at Alfred University and around the globe. We all recognize the need to better rely on renewable sources of energy that better protect our environment.
Our commitment to sustainability is evident throughout the Alfred University community. The Renewable Energy Engineering major in our Inamori School of Engineering is one of just two such Bachelor of Science degree programs in the nation that are ABET-accredited. Our Center for Glass Innovation seeks to bolster markets for recycled glass and improve the quality of glass available for recovery throughout New York State.
A $6.5 million gift from Board of Trustees member Michele Cohen HD ’18 and her husband, Martin— made in honor of Marlin Miller ’54, HD ’89, HD ’19—is funding an energy-efficient heating system that will significantly reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. Ann’s House, underwritten through the generous support of Life Trustee Ann Moskowitz and her late husband and former trustee Joel Moskowitz ’61, is a 48-bed LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified residence hall.
Two of our alumni, both trustees—Peter Cuneo ’67 and John Edmond ’83—have played key roles in starting and leading companies focused on sustainability.
In November 2020, electric vehicle maker Arrival entered into a merger agreement with CIIG Merger Corporation, a Special Purposes Acquisition Company (SPAC) founded by Peter Cuneo, his son, Gavin Cuneo, and Michael Minnick.
Arrival, headquartered in London, England, was founded in 2015 as a manufacturer of lightweight electric commercial vehicles. Arrival offers a unique manufacturing model: instead of utilizing a single large factory, the company relies on regional “micro-factories” to robotically construct its buses, vans, and cars. Arrival’s goal is to transition the auto industry to zero emissions. After it completed its merger with CIIG, Arrival was listed on NASDAQ. At that time the deal was closed, Arrival had a total capitalized market value of roughly $13 billion, making it the largest technology initial public offering in British history.
John Edmond is the co-founder and Research Fellow at Wolfspeed, a global leader in the development and manufacture of silicon carbide power and radio frequency semiconductors based in Durham, North Carolina.
Semiconductors made from silicon carbide are more energy efficient than those made from silicon. Wolfspeed recently struck an agreement with General Motors (GM) to supply silicon carbide power devices for GM’s electric vehicles. Two years ago, Wolfspeed, then operating under the name Cree, announced that it would be constructing the world’s largest silicon carbide wafer manufacturing facility in the world in Marcy, New York. Cree was co-founded in 1987 by our alumnus John Edmond and initially focused on producing LED’s and, subsequently, LED lighting solutions. Cree changed its corporate name to Wolfspeed on October 4 and moved on that day from being listed on NASDAQ to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
In photo above, a group of Wolfspeed employees gather for the ringing of the New York Stock Exchange opening bell. Wolfspeed sent a group of approximately 50 company employees (including the management team) and their guests to the October 4 event. John Palmour (left in photo below) and John Edmond ’83, the two founders of Cree, Inc. who remain active with the company, were on hand for the NYSE opening bell ceremony.
Please join me in recognizing Peter and John for their work in making the world we live in more environmentally friendly and for all the other members of our Alfred University community who promote sustainability locally as well as around the world.