In the acronym-filled universe of Upstate NY, it is often hard to keep names straight, let alone follow and participate in groups that are making an impact and bringing people together to support a common vision. SUNY BEST stands for the SUNY Business and Education Cooperative of the Southern Tier, a group that has been tirelessly and consistently organizing efforts to connect widespread communities through topical programming and networking opportunities.
We asked our friend and SUNY BEST Catalyst Tom Kowalik to describe SUNY BEST and how people could engage with and benefit from this resource. Below is his response:
“Our group consists of business, education, economic development professionals and labor representatives who have come together to focus the resources of community partners on revitalizing the NYS and Southern Tier economy and improving quality of life in the region. SUNY BEST works to forge alliances, strengthen industry specific needs and provide information and outreach for business. There are currently over 160 members in the group which meets monthly. Visit the website to view scheduled events, scan current membership and review past presentations, several of which have been video-captured and posted on the website for you to view. Presentation topics range from Crowd Funding to Incubators, Angel Investing to Start Up Weekend, and Statewide STEM Education Initiatives to SUNY Research Foundation Support for NYS Business Development.
SUNY BEST was recently recognized throughout NYS as a best practice bringing together representatives for all sectors of the community. As a neutral community-based group, its success has garnered praise from SUNY Chancellor Zimpher who has supported replication of the model in the Mohawk Valley Region. SUNY BEST has been called an exemplary model for community engagement and Brian Hutzley, SUNY vice chancellor for financial services and CFO, feels â€œBinghamton University’s SUNY BEST is recognized as a best practice within the system and illustrates the power of SUNY to engage business, education, public and private sector entities, and the labor community,â€ The group has been receiving excellent press and is often cited throughout New York State as a source of information.
Take a look at SUNY BEST. Membership is free. If you have a passion for improving New York State’s economy, growing your business, or learning more about new initiatives in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, take advantage of membership in SUNY BEST. You have access to a great network of professionals and excellent programs, and can become part of a larger statewide community of like-minded individuals.”
To volunteer or learn more, email Tom.