RIT to launch physics Ph.D. program in fall 2024 

Rochester Institute of Technology will begin offering a new Ph.D. in physics in the fall of 2024, becoming only the second university in the greater Rochester area to offer the degree. 

RIT to launch physics Ph.D. program in fall 2024
RIT will begin offering a new Ph.D. in physics in the fall of 2024. In this photo at one of RIT’s labs, laser sheet microscopy is used to investigate the transport of micron-size colloids in a microfluidics-based model rock. (Photo Credit: Shima Parsa/RIT)

The Ph.D. in physics will provide students paths for careers in academia, industry and government laboratories. It will draw from RIT’s strengths in areas including photonics and quantum technology, biological and soft matter physics and physics education research. 

“This program will provide knowledge, training and opportunities for a diverse body of students across numerous exciting, high-profile subfields of physics,” said Michael Kotlarchyk , head of RIT’s School of Physics and Astronomy. “The program is built on a strong foundation of physics faculty who have been steadily growing their research funding, scholarly output and opportunities for students across the past decade.” 

Kotlarchyk said the program plans to enroll five Ph.D. students in the program’s first year and will grow to 31 students by year five. 

This is the second Ph.D. program offered by the School of Physics and Astronomy, joining RIT’s astrophysical science and technology Ph.D.  

It will become RIT’s 14th doctoral program, following Ph.D. programs in business administration and cognitive science that will launch in 2023.

[email protected] / (585) 653-4021 

Seth Meyers of ‘Late Night’ to headline RIT’s Brick City weekend  

Seth Meyers, comedian and host of “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” will be the guest speaker at Rochester Institute of Technology’s Brick City Homecoming & Family Weekend, which runs Oct. 14 – 16. 

"Late Night’s" Seth Meyers to headline RIT Bick City weekend  
Talk show host Seth Meyers is the headline speaker for this year’s Brick City Weekend. (Photo Credit: Worldwide Speakers Group LLC)

Meyers is speaking at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 15, at the Gordon Field House. Tickets are $15 for RIT students and Osher members and $30 for RIT parents, faculty, staff and alumni. Tickets are available at the Brick City Weekend website or at the University Arenas box office.  

Tickets for the general public are $50 and will be available through RITtickets.com or the box office. 

A 29-time Emmy nominee, Meyers began his television career in 2001 with “Saturday Night Live,” where he was a cast member for 13 years. He served as head writer for nine seasons and Weekend Update anchor for eight. 

In 2014, Meyers took over as host of NBC’s iconic “Late Night” franchise. In 2019, he released his debut standup special on Netflix called “Lobby Baby.” 

In addition to his onscreen acclaim, Meyers is a New York Times bestselling author with the publication of his first picture book, “I’m Not Scared, You’re Scared,” released in March. 

Other Brick City Weekend highlights being planned include the popular Dueling Pianos concerts, family activities, an Alumni Brewers Beer tent, RIT college programming, performing arts, RIT Sports Hall of Fame Ceremony and a 5K run. 

Go to the Brick City website for more information, updates and to register for events.  

[email protected] / (585) 653-4021 

RIT to host virtual commencement

Rochester Institute of Technology will help its class of 2020 celebrate with a virtual conferral of degrees.

Although not intended to replace the traditional commencement, the May 8 virtual event will allow the college to recognize graduates and celebrate their achievements, school officials said Thursday. RIT  announced in mid-March that it would cancel its previously planned 2020 commencement ceremonies, but the school remains committed to an on-campus ceremony as soon as it is deemed safe to host one.

Graduating students, families and friends are encouraged to view the celebration at 5 p.m. May 8 at rit.edu/classof2020. The event will begin with congratulatory messages from faculty and staff, as well as remarks from Student Government President Anika Aftab.

The celebration will be made available on the website after the event for those who cannot watch it that day, officials said.

Students can order caps, gowns and tassels free from RIT’s vendor, Oak Hall.

David Munson Jr.
David Munson Jr.

“We are so proud of this graduating class, which has had to adapt to so many changes in the last six weeks,” said RIT President David Munson in a statement. “We look forward to marking this milestone on May 8 and celebrating in person in the months ahead.”

[email protected] / 585-653-4021
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RIT announces cutbacks due to economic impact of pandemic

RIT announced a number of cost saving measures designed to help it get through the coronavirus crisis. (Courtesy of RIT)
RIT announced a number of cost saving measures designed to help it get through the coronavirus crisis. (File photo courtesy of RIT)

A week after the University of Rochester — the area’s largest employer — announced hiring and wage freezes and other cutbacks because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Rochester Institute of Technology is doing the same. 

In a letter to the RIT community Wednesday from President David C. Munson and other administrators, the university thanked faculty and staff for how they’ve worked in the face of the pandemic. But it also noted changes would be required because of loss of revenue as a result of the health crisis. 

“Updates from federal, state and local authorities lead us to believe that we may continue in our current state of altered operations and uncertainty for some time, the note said. Ellen Granberg, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, and James Watters, senior vice president for finance and administration, also signed the letter. 

The letter said that through June 30, RIT will freeze or curtail:

  • Hiring of faculty and staff, including temporary employees.
  • Purchasing and non-essential travel.
  • Salary increases, as well as additional compensation and special assignment pay.

RIT, which has more than 4,000 employees, also plans to:

  • Halt construction projects planned for this summer.
  • Hold off on merit raises for faculty, staff or administrators for fiscal year 2021, which begins July 1, 2020.
  • Reduce the use of temporary employees through fiscal 2021. 
  • Begin furloughs for employees who couldn’t carry their jobs home or perform them on campus. They will remain eligible for medical benefits and the university will offer assistance in applying for state unemployment benefits.
  • Begin planning for graduated pay cuts over an unstated income level, with the largest salaries bearing the largest cuts, should the program be necessary. Fall enrollment will be a factor. 

“These prudent steps are being taken to ensure that RIT can maintain a strong vision for the future and continue to offer the highest-quality experience to our students. Within this context, our top priority is to provide for the long-term future of our extraordinary faculty and staff, who form the core of RIT,” the statement read. “This is new territory for all, but we will succeed together. We are confident that when this period ends, RIT will emerge with a future that shines brighter than ever.”

[email protected]/ (585) 363-7275