‘Big Shot’ heading to Old Fort Niagara

Aug 9, 2018
RIT Big Shot Team

The 33rd “Big Shot” community photo project will focus on a historical site next month.

The subject of Rochester Institute of Technology’s photographic project this year is Old Fort Niagara in Youngstown, Niagara County.

The Sept. 29 event will capture a nighttime image of the fort, which has a past that spans more than 300 years.


RIT used an evening of arts and entertainment on Thursday to announce a $1 billion fundraising campaign.

President David Munson told more than 2,000 invited guests at RIT’s Gene Polisseni Center that it is the largest fundraising effort in the university’s history.

A consortium led by RIT has won a $19.5 million contract from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to continue operating the New York State Pollution Prevention Institute.

The institute is led by RIT's Golisano Institute for Sustainability.

RIT is the hub for that institute which began a decade ago, and the latest contract extends that for another five years.


RIT is holding commencement ceremonies Friday and Saturday.

Former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Tom Wheeler, was the keynote speaker on Friday. He said it’s important for graduates to work on figuring out how new technology can benefit humanity.

“We have not evolved from the industrial era, created by the railroad and the telegraph, to the information era, and we need a new set of rules. That’s the challenge you graduates inherit today.”


A technology start-up company with roots in Rochester and RIT is getting some help from New York State.

The company is called Token and it was founded last year by two RIT grads, Melanie and Steve Shapiro.

They make a special type of ring that you can wear as a device  that you would use to do everything from make mobile payments to enable ‘smart locks’ for your home or car.

Empire State Development says that through its New York State Innovation Venture Capital Fund it will invest up to $1.75 million in the company.


Among those watching the deal announced Wednesday where Fuji will gain majority control of Xerox as part of a new company called Fuji Xerox is a retired longtime Xerox executive.

Emerson Fullwood worked for Xerox for 36 years, in a variety of roles, including having been president of the company's Worldwide Customer Services Group. The Pittsford resident also is still a member of various corporate boards, including the Vanguard Group and SPX Corporation, and he has been an Executive in Residence at RIT.

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

RIT officials say an alum of the university has just given them $50 million, the largest donation ever made to that institution.

Austin McChord is a 32 year old, 2009 graduate of RIT, who started a company called Datto. That’s a Connecticut-based data protection company that also employs about 200 people in downtown Rochester.

McChord is also an RIT trustee, and he says he started his company in 2007 with an idea he had while he was a student.

The latest Paychex-IHS Small Business Employment Watch is out; we talk about the changes in job growth and wage growth in the November survey.

We also talk about some changes for the Xerox Board of Directors; One director, who has worked with activist investor Carl Icahn is resigning, but he and three others will seek to join the board next year.

And there are corporate changes for a local high-tech company, iCardiac Technologies.

A. Sue Weisler/RIT

It was inauguration day on Thursday for the tenth president at Rochester Institute of Technology.

David Munson told the hundreds who gathered at the Gordon Field House and Activities Center that RIT needs to double down on making the campus a thriving ecosystem to stimulate creativity and innovation which is the translation of an idea into a product, service or process that has economic or social value.

"Every student can be involved in creating things that never before existed and then putting those concepts into motion in an effort to improve the world."


RIT is continuing its involvement in working to help American manufacturers work more efficiently. The local university is part of a new effort aimed at using advanced robotics in industry.

RIT is a core academic partner in this new consortium, which is led by Carnegie Mellon University and includes more than 220 partners in industry, academia, government and the non-profit sector.