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Presidential Speeches

Remarks at the: Alternative Fuel Research Lab Announcement Press Conference at the Saratoga Technology and Energy Park, Malta

by Dr. Andrew J. Matonak, President
Hudson Valley Community College
Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2006

  • Thank you, Peter (Smith, president of the New York Energy Research and Development Authority). It is my pleasure to be here for this exciting announcement. And I want to thank you; Governor Pataki; Senator Bruno; Assemblyman McDonald; and DEC Commissioner Sheehan for your leadership on this issue.

  • I'm thrilled that Hudson Valley Community College will partner again with DEC and NYSERDA, and play a key role in the maintenance of alternative fuel vehicles.

  • With more than 60,000 alumni, Hudson Valley accounts for almost a billion dollar economic impact upon the Capital Region. We are a strong economic driver for the Capital Region because Hudson Valley has always been responsive to the workforce needs of our local employers.

  • As many of you may know, Hudson Valley has its roots in manufacturing and technology education. In fact, for the last 53 years, Hudson Valley has provided leadership for Automotive Technology training.

  • We were there through the fuel crisis of the 70s, the development of front-wheel drive cars of the 80s, and the advanced safety features standard on cars in the 90s.

  • I'm proud that Hudson Valley Community College is well-positioned to educate the next generation of automotive technicians, who will repair the hybrid cars, and vehicles that run on compressed natural gas or fuel cells.

  • Our faculty has developed an Alternative Fuels Certificate program designed to train – and re-train – automotive technicians in these emerging technologies. This new program – which we plan to begin in Fall 2007 – is just another example of Hudson Valley Community College's ongoing commitment to ensure that our curriculum meets the needs of our employers.

  • It also is evidence of our commitment to the environment. As the cost of traditional energy sources continue to skyrocket, it is incumbent upon Hudson Valley, as a key player in the economic vitality of the Capital Region, to embrace these technologies. And New York State has been with us every step of the way:

  • Support from DEC allowed the Hudson Valley to build our cogeneration facility, which allows the college to generate its own electricity by burning natural gas in combination with methane. Our air is cleaner because of it.

  • We also have partnered with NYSERDA to offer solar cell training by developing a Photovoltaic Installation Certificate program. In addition, we are exploring the creation of an energy institute, which will put Hudson Valley on the cutting-edge of alternative energy education and training.

  • I was attracted to Hudson Valley because of its ongoing commitment to providing the region's employers with a highly-skilled, well-educated workforce. I am proud that Hudson Valley Community College has such strong partners who embrace collaboration and innovation.

  • Thanks to each of you - for Hudson Valley and your community – for your leadership and vision.