President's Report Masthead
December 1, 2016

Media and Public Relations

It was another productive quarter for the Media and Public Relations Office. We recently completed production on a series of new TV spots highlighting everything from research to life at Binghamton. We also collaborated with the Provost’s Office to host a workshop for faculty interested in writing for The Conversation.

Binghamton in the news

Harvey Stenger, president, was featured in a Wall Street Journal article about companies in upstate New York. The article suggests that the Binghamton area hasn’t recovered from a big decline in electronics manufacturing despite being the home of Binghamton University. Officials say the region now has a plan to work with colleges and universities to improve workforce skills and attract firms in advanced manufacturing and agriculture. Total circulation: Over 65.4 million.

Robert G. Parkinson, assistant history professor, authored an article discussing how fake news is not a new phenomenon but something which has been around since the early days of America. The article was featured in the Washington Post, Bloomberg and others. Parkinson is also the author of The Common Cause: Creating Race and Nation in the American Revolution. Total circulation: Over 57 million.

Donald Nieman, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, is the author of an article comparing Donald Trump’s concerns about electoral fraud to those of Reconstruction-Era white supremacists that was published in The Conversation, The New Republic, U.S. News & World Report, Quartz, The San Francisco Gate, Time and others. Total circulation: Over 36.9 million.

Binghamton University students Robert Pim, Jonathan Heller, Brandon Fine and Ronnie Sanon were recognized in Forbes for coming in first place in the Ross School of Business undergraduate stock pitch competition. The students won the final round and pitched GATX Corporation as a stock to short. Total circulation: Over 31 million.

Researchers at Binghamton University were recognized by and Digital Trends for research alleging that certain processors are inherently flawed and open to attack; whereby the flaw works against a specific method used by modern operating systems, including both Windows and Mac OS, to keep systems secure. Total circulation: Over 30 million. 

Mert Moral, political scientist, was recognized in Business Insider for his expertise about politics and voter behavior. Moral believes it’s a little surprising that Americans are such unenthusiastic voters, because they are fairly interested in politics. Moral said, “If you look at the survey data, you find more Americans are equally, if not more engaged, than their counterparts [in other countries].” Total Circulation: Over 20 million.

Jessica Fridrich, electrical and computer engineering distinguished professor and Rubik’s Cube champion, was recognized in the New York Post for posting her secrets of the Cube on a primitive website on the University’s servers in the 1990s. Fridrich’s method spread and is today the most widely used technique to solve the puzzle. Total circulation: Over 15 million.

Craig Morris, research associate, was featured in Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest, Psychology Today and others for his research showing that women experience more emotional pain following a breakup, but they also more fully recover. Total circulation: Over 13.5 million.

Seokheun “Sean” Choi, director of Binghamton’s Bioelectronics and Microsystems Lab, was featured in Salon for his expertise on biosolar technology. The article mentioned his team’s success in generating the most wattage of any existing small-scale biosolar cells — 5.59 microwatts. He said, “For the short-term goal, biosolar technology can be used together with conventional energy, harvesting technologies to provide some backup energy even in a cloudy environment or at night — unlike traditional solar panels, biological solar cells can generate electricity during dark hours from bacterial respiration.” Total circulation: Over 11 million.

Celia Klin, professor of psychology and associate dean of Harpur College, was featured in Fortune magazine, Reader’s Digest and Entrepreneur for her research showing that ending a short text with a period implies you’re being short with a person. Total circulation: Over 6 million.

Stephen Ortiz, associate professor of history, was featured in a Fortune magazine article discussing the role of veterans in contesting the Dakota Access Pipeline. Ortiz said: “The sense that vets are distinctively American figures, regardless of political beliefs, always seem to have currency, even when they are working on different sides of an issue.” Total circulation: Over 6 million.

Ron Miles, chair and distinguished professor of mechanical engineering, was recognized in The Science Explorer, Tech Times and others for his research on jumping spiders and how they can hear sound without eardrums. Miles and fellow researchers found that despite not having ears — or ear drums — jumping spiders can perceive airborne sound, with the family of jumping spiders including about 5,800 species. Total circulation: Over 5.3 million.

Kenneth McLeod and researchers were featured in The Daily Mail, The Conversation,, The Albany Times Union, Medical Daily, Medical Express and others for their expertise on why so many people regain weight after dieting and how activating muscles deep in the leg that help keep blood and fluid moving through our bodies is essential to maintaining resting metabolic rate. Total circulation: Over 4.8 million.

Libby Tucker, distinguished service professor of English, was featured on (Houston Chronicle) for her expertise in urban legends. In the article, which discusses the popularity of clown costumes amid heightened fear, Tucker is quoted as saying, “At times of anxiety and transition, you’re very likely to see something like this happen, and also at times of heightened violence.” Total circulation: 2.2 million.

Julie Lee, registered dietician at Binghamton University Dining Services, was featured in Prevention and Bicycling for her expertise about almond milk. Lee said dairy milk packs about 8 grams of protein per cup, while almond milk has just 1 gram per cup. Total circulation: Over 2.4 million.

D. Andrew Merriwether, associate professor of anthropology, was recognized in ScienceDaily and Before it’s News for his research analyzing DNA from people who lived in Tonga and Vanuatu between 2,500 and 3,100 years ago. The results overturn the leading genetic model for this last great movement of humans to unoccupied, but habitable lands. Total circulation: Over 2 million.

Pamela Stewart-Fahs, professor in the Decker School of Nursing and Decker Chair in Rural Health Nursing, was featured in NDTV, Science Daily, Newsmax and Laboratory Equipment for her research on how moderately intensive walking improves cardiovascular risk factors in the short term, including changing biological markers such as cholesterol, weight and blood pressure. Total circulation: Over 2 million.

Binghamton University was featured in Women’s Health magazine for a recent study revealing that humans developed the capacity to self-generate laughter as a strategic tool in overcoming embarrassment in social situations. Total circulation: 1.6 million.

Steve Cain, senior research support specialist, and a team from Binghamton University was featured in Nature World News for research on how much damage memory units can take before becoming unreadable. Total circulation: Over 1 million.

Brett Levinson, comparative literature professor, was featured on for his expertise regarding the Cuban Revolution. In an article about Fidel Castro, Levinson points out that while hardly any of the boom’s most famous works are directly about the Cuban Revolution, the political movement left a deep impression on the writers. Total circulation: Over 500,000.

Jennifer Campbell-Smith, behavioral ecologist, was featured in Audubon for her expertise about crows. Campbell-Smith wrote, ”the idea of wild crows preferring shiny objects over others is actually a myth. Stories about crows collecting shiny things are anecdotal, and not observed by people who watch crows constantly and study them.” Total circulation: Over 430,000.

Seth Spain, assistant professor of organizational behavior, was featured in New York Magazine and Science Magazine for his research, which attempts to create a taxonomy of bad bosses, who tend to be dark or dysfunctional. Total circulation: Over 536,000.

Social media

The University saw heavy engagement on all of its social media channels, with record-breaking posts on Instagram and Snapchat. A Facebook post announcing that U.S. News & World Report had named the University the top SUNY school had a reach of more than 117,000. On Twitter, our tweets earned an average 14,400 impressions per day; and our top tweet, which announced that Binghamton had been named the best SUNY school by U.S. News & World Report, generated over 37,000 impressions. We had several highly popular Instagram posts, including a photo of the biggest and brightest supermoon in 70 years, which garnered 2,280 likes. During the quarter, the University surpassed 55,000 followers on Facebook, 25,000 followers on Twitter, 15,700 followers on Instagram and 83,000 followers on LinkedIn.

The University’s Snapchat audience continued to rise dramatically. We hosted 20-plus Snapchat Takeovers, where students manage our account for a 24-hour period. Those taking over the account ranged from junior/city of Binghamton councilman Conrad Taylor to President Harvey Stenger’s dog, Madison.


The Binghamton University Blog published 16 blog posts, on topics ranging from exciting Homecoming events to several Day-in-the-Life looks at Binghamton students.

10 places around Binghamton to enjoy the fall foliage” had a reach of over 31,000 on Facebook.

Other posts published this quarter include:
14 unique views of the Binghamton University clock tower
Best of #HumansofBinghamton
That time Binghamton’s Snapchat blew up because of a dog

Ask a Scientist

A total of 10 “Ask a Scientist” columns were published in the Press & Sun-Bulletin throughout the quarter. Faculty, staff and graduate students from across various schools and departments at Binghamton contributed answers to questions ranging from “Where does my curly hair come from?” to “How can flying fish lift off?”


We developed a series of eight new TV spots highlighting everything from research to life at Binghamton.

Additional highlights:

The sun rises and workers install some much-needed sod on the Dickinson Community Co-rec field. Watch this innovative time-lapse video.

Student engineers from Watson and SUNY Broome annually race and win with cars they build for Society of Automotive Engineers competitions all over the country.

U-Diversity | Binghamton University: Just what is a Bearcat, anyway? From Sudan to Ecuador and everywhere in between, students from around the world offer unique perspectives on what it means to be a Binghamton student. Listen as these students share their stories (and give their best growl).

The Binghamton University Scholars Program schemes a birthday surprise for President Stenger: Happy Birthday, President Stenger!

Watch Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger as he presents the 2016 State of the University Address Thursday, Sept. 8. Stenger said, “Binghamton University’s ability to collaborate will be vital to its future success.”

High-profile University/President Harvey Stenger activities

• President Harvey Stenger traveled to Albany Tuesday, Nov. 1, in his capacity as Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council (STREDC) co-chair to deliver an update on the region’s economic strategy to the governor’s Strategic Implementation Assessment Team. Stenger, along with co-chair Tom Tranter and other members of the STREDC, provided updates on projects already under way, as well as new projects for which the REDC is requesting funding under the auspices of the REDC-CFA and URI programs.

• On Tuesday, Nov. 15, Stenger welcomed Gov. Andrew Cuomo and more than 100 guests to the Goodwill Theatre for a beam-signing to mark the significant progress in construction of the new School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. The theater is located across the street from 96 Corliss Ave., where the pharmacy school is under construction. At that event, Cuomo also announced the official commitment of $21 million in Upstate Revitalization Initiative funds for the new nursing school project.

Binghamton University plans to rehabilitate the old Endicott-Johnson shoe box factory at 48 Corliss Ave. in Johnson City and move the Decker School of Nursing from the Vestal campus to this site.

• Stenger presided over the final awards ceremony for Cuomo’s 76West competition. The ceremony took place in the Rotunda of the Innovative Technologies Complex Wednesday, Nov. 30. Two Binghamton University start-up companies were winners in the competition: ChromaNanoTec won $250,000 and Charge CCCV (C4V) won $500,000. A Horseheads company won the $1 million first-place prize.

• Stenger met with the Greater Binghamton Chamber’s Government Affairs Committee Friday, Dec. 16, for an open question-and-answer forum with committee members. He updated them on current events on campus, as well as the University’s expansion plans in Johnson City with the new pharmacy school and nursing school relocation.