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RIT Big Shot #31

5 Oct

RIT Big Shot #31

The RIT Big Shot created a beautiful photo finish on October 3 at Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, in Louisville, Kentucky. The Big Shot represents one of RIT’s signature projects and is often described as “painting with light” because hundreds of community and college volunteers are asked to “paint” or shine their light source onto a particular area of a landmark while a photograph is taken. Since the Big Shot began in 1987, the event has chronicled The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian; The Pile Gate, Dubrovnik, Croatia; the Erie Canal and Schoen Place; The George Eastman House; the Alamo and many other venues. More


RIT Opens Clinical Health Sciences Center

5 Oct

Provided Photo

Rochester Institute of Technology held a grand-opening ceremony today for the Clinical Health Sciences Center in the College of Health Sciences and Technology.

The new center is home to the Wegmans School of Health and Nutrition and programs in behavioral health, diagnostic medical sonography (ultrasound) and physician assistant. Rochester Regional Health will also open a physician office in the 45,000-square-foot facility on Oct. 19.

“The new center is a concrete example of RIT’s ongoing commitment to partnering with Rochester Regional Health in order to enhance the health status of this region,” said RIT President Bill Destler. “It moves the RIT and Rochester Regional Health Alliance forward in its goal to impact the future of health care. Under one roof, we will have state-of-the art lecture rooms, simulation space and a family medicine practice that will provide hands-on experiences for students and opportunities for faculty.” More.

RIT Among Top 10 Colleges for Getting a Tech Job

28 Sep

For students hoping to secure a job in the technology field, RIT is one of the top colleges in the nation to target, according to new rankings from StartClass.

The college research website ranked RIT 10th among the top 20 schools for getting a job in the tech industry. StartClass noted RIT’s computer engineering graduates earn an average salary of $66,500, while RIT’s computer science graduates earn $66,000.

“Employers know what they are getting when they hire an RIT graduate,” said Michael Yacci, senior associate dean for academic affairs of RIT’s B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences. “Our placements provide clear evidence of the strength of our programs.”

StartClass created the rankings to help aspiring techies put themselves in a better position for gainful employment after college graduation. The education research website runs rankings on educational institutions using a large proprietary database and search engine.

To find the top schools, StartClass looked at the percentage of students studying computer science or computer engineering, the reported salary of students who graduated from those degree programs and the amount of funding the university received from the National Science Foundation for computer science projects and research.

The rankings also took into account the StartClass Smart Rating system, which is based on a school’s financial affordability, career readiness, admissions selectivity, expert opinion and academic excellence. All school data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics, a division of the U.S. Department of Education. Salary information comes from 2014 data from PayScale.

RIT/NTID Alumna Featured in CNN’s “Where Are They Now?” Series

21 Sep

Lydia Callis standing next to former NYC Mayor Bloomberg at podium.

Lydia Callis standing next to former NYC Mayor Bloomberg at podium.

Lydia Callis, RIT/NTID alumna and member of the NTID Alumni Association Board of Directors, recently was featured on the CNN series “Where Are They Now?” After gaining national attention for her interpreting skills during Hurricaine Sandy, Callis has formed her own interpreting services company in New York City. 

RIT/NTID Professor Named White House ‘Champions of Change’ Honoree

11 Sep

Talila A. Lewis, a faculty member in liberal studies at Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf, was one of nine disability advocates from across the United States selected as “Champions of Change” by the White House. A recognition event—which coincides with the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act—was held in Washington, D.C., earlier this summer.

Lewis, an activist and attorney whose research primarily focuses on creating equal access to the legal system for individuals who are deaf and for people with disabilities, created the only national database of deaf prisoners and is one of the only people in the world working on deaf wrongful conviction cases. Lewis advocates with and for hundreds of deaf defendants, prisoners and returned citizens and trains justice, legal and corrections professionals about various disability related concerns. In addition, Lewis has been the force behind social justice campaigns including #DeafInPrison, Deaf Prisoner Phone Justice, and the American Civil Liberties Union’s “Know Your Deaf Rights” campaign. Lewis is also the founder and director of Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of the Deaf, or HEARD, an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that works to correct and prevent wrongful convictions of deaf people, end abuse of incarcerated people with disabilities, decrease recidivism rates for deaf returned citizens, and increase representation of the deaf in the justice, legal and corrections professions.

“I am so very humbled to be counted among disability justice advocates who are pushing us all to challenge the status quo,” said Lewis. “Endless gratitude to those who have supported this community-led effort and to those I serve who remind me daily, the power of community accountability, resilience and love-infused activism.”

According to the website, the Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. To learn more about the White House Champions of Change program, go to