September 2012

Golisano Children’s Hospital
Breaks Ground

B. Thomas Golisano breaks ground with children who have received care at Golisano Children’s Hospital.

September 10 marked an important step toward a new era of care for our region’s youth. With nine children who have benefitted from the care of Golisano Children’s Hospital, entrepreneur and philanthropist B. Thomas Golisano initiated construction of the new Children's Hospital at a groundbreaking ceremony.

“This is a proud day, when we can start building a world-class children's hospital for our region's children and families,” President Joel Seligman said. “We have already been delivering outstanding patient care, and this new facility is going to make Rochester a destination for pediatric care across upstate New York and the nation.”

As the Hospital's namesake, Golisano was the first called to grab a hard hat and shovel by Jennifer Johnson, 13WHAM News This Morning anchor. Shortly after, she called the names of children—each with a story of survival. Among those names was her daughter's, Grace Esposito, a 2012 Miracle Kid. Prior to calling everyone to the stage, Johnson shared the story of her daughter and the amazing staff who saved her life. Her incredibly moving testimony and the presence of the children provided a powerful representation of why this project is so important and who it stands to benefit most.

Bradford C. Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD), University senior vice president for health sciences and CEO of the Medical Center underscored what the Hospital means to Rochester and the community it serves. “This new hospital has given us a chance to take our goal of patient- and family-centered care to a whole new level,” Berk said. “Having the space to accommodate a patient’s family means they can truly be part of their child's care team. Children heal faster and more comfortably when they have their families with them while they are hospitalized.”

In its design stage, plans for the new hospital sought to put children and their families first, while instituting state-of-the-art upgrades to continue delivering “Medicine of the Highest Order.” Nina F. Schor, M.D., Ph.D., the William H. Eilinger Chair of Pediatrics and pediatrician-in-chief of Golisano Children’s Hospital, explained how the new design succeeds in accomplishing both goals. The 245,000-square-foot hospital constitutes $145 million of the Medical Center’s $650 million campaign, which supports the $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. The new hospital is set to open in 2015.

In July of last year, Golisano’s $20 million lead gift made this momentous occassion possible. More recently, Georgia Gosnell and her late husband, Thomas, committed $5 million to name the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in the new Children's Hospital. The Gosnell's philanthropy will help fund the hospital’s new Gosnell NICU, which will include 60 new beds.

Golisano and the Gosnells' tremendous generosity and leadership have given the largest capital project in University history incredible momentum. In order to sustain this progress, additional leadership and support are required. There are still many needs and many opportunities. Learn more about the new Children's Hospital and how you can give your support here.

To see photos from the groundbreaking, click here


Values and Action

Universities are in a season of beginnings. Probably the most clear among them is the new academic year. Some students are returning, while some are entering entirely new chapters of their lives. Recently, members of the undergraduate Class of 2016 gathered under the gaze of our George Eastman statue. Surrounding the Eastman Quadrangle, students participated in a new tradition: the annual Candlelight Ceremony. This is a key part of freshman orientation. The ceremony discusses the symbols, traditions, and world of which they are now a lifetime member.

Soon students will be joined by alumni, friends, parents, faculty, and staff to celebrate the bonds of our community and growth of our University at our 12th Meliora Weekend. This year also marks the return of Eastman Weekend, which is celebrated as a part of Meliora Weekend on a biennial basis.

At the Medical Center, we’ve broken ground for the construction of the new Golisano Children’s Hospital, and the pathways of the Memorial Art Gallery’s Centennial Sculpture Park have begun to take form. Between Wilson Commons and Morey Hall, Ronald Rettner Hall for Media Arts and Innovation will soon begin to take shape and it will not be long until Raymond F. LeChase Hall is alive with student activity. Later this month we will launch Chicago’s regional campaign, with Boston’s to follow soon after. It will be a busy, active, and vibrant fall.

We are also approaching the one year anniversary of The Meliora Challenge’s public launch, and with its passing, we begin a “new year.” As the Campaign moves forward, I ask you to remember this is your Campaign. We are all a part of the University community. For a comprehensive Campaign of this size to be successful, it must be “owned” and led by many. This is part of our Meliora Challenge. Thank you for your great partnership!


James D. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Chief Advancement Officer

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The Meliora Challenge Heads for Chicago

Less than two weeks remain before Chicago’s celebration of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. On September 27, the University of Rochester will launch the second in a series of regional campaign kickoffs that enable alumni, parents, and friends to learn about the University’s Campaign and its progress.

Chicago’s kickoff event will build on the success of the University’s spectacular regional campaign launch in San Francisco on June 5. At Trump Hotel, guests will enjoy conversation, dinner, and an outstanding musical performance in an atmosphere infused with the energy of The Meliora Challenge and its leaders. President Joel Seligman will join volunteers, faculty, and students to engage and inform attendees from the Chicago and Midwest regions.

The evening’s program will be highlighted by remarks from Trustee Hugo Sonnenschein ’61, chair of the Chicago Regional Cabinet and co-chair of the regional campaign, Stephen Down ’88, ’95S (MBA), co-chair of the regional campaign, and Trustee Gail Lione ’71, vice-chair of the Central U.S. Campaign efforts. Student Kelsey Burritt ’13 will speak on her University experience and Eastman School of Music students Adelaide Boedecker ’13E (MM) and Heather Goldman ’13E (MM) will reprise their musical roles after an outstanding performance in San Francisco.

It is a time to celebrate progress, meet and network with alumni from the region, and learn how to become involved. As the Campaign moves forward, regional campaign events stand to be the most exciting of the many ways in which Rochester presents opportunities for friends, near and far, to reconnect with the University. A third regional launch will be held at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston on October 29.

To register for the Chicago event, click here. If you are interested in registering for the Boston regional campaign event, click here.

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Eastman Weekend Celebrates Debussy

Eastman Weekend, the Eastman School of Music’s biennial reunion and family weekend, is here again. As part of Meliora Weekend, Eastman Weekend's activities will be held from October 11–14. Among this year’s exciting events is a three-week festival, which The New York Times has featured as part of its listing of the most compelling classical music programming for the fall season.

The Prismatic Debussy is a festival recognizing the 150th anniversary of French composer Claude Debussy’s birth. Debussy was a fiercely creative nonconformist and is, still today, one of the most significant composers in the history of Western music. Through concerts, lectures, and master classes, the festival explores a wide range of repertoire. The festival gets its start on Saturday, October 13, with a lavish multiple-ensemble concert called “Extravagant Debussy” in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre.

Events celebrate not only the spectrum of creativity Debussy has inspired, but also the artistry and scholarship of the students and faculty at the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music. Programming for The Prismatic Debussy will run until October 27. Beginning October 1, Debussy’s manuscripts and other rare materials will be on exhibit at Sibley Library. For more information on the Debussy festival click here. To read the article from The New York Times, click here.

To register for Eastman Weekend, click here. If you have questions about registration or the weekend’s events, please call 585–274–1111.

For those planning to attend Meliora Weekend, time to register is running out! Register today by visiting

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