• Academy News

  • Putting Our Principles into Practice

    Scientific progress depends on the free flow of ideas.

    Posted 2/14/2017

    Dear Academy Members:

    On January 31st I sent a message to all Academy Members to clarify our position on President Trump's recent executive order on immigration, and to request your support for a soon-to-be-announced initiative on behalf of immigrant scientists, engineers and students working in the United States.

    The response we received has been overwhelming; over 600 of you took the time to respond with offers of personal time, financial support and words of encouragement. As the Academy embarks on its Bicentennial Year, I am frequently called upon to speak about our history and 200-year tradition of welcoming individuals from all walks of life and corners of the globe. I am moved and inspired to see that this spirit of welcome and openness to good ideas is alive and well among our current Membership. But actions speak louder than words, so today I wanted to update you on a few of the concrete steps we're taking to put our shared principles into action:

    • First, the Academy is committed to supporting the upcoming March for Science on April 22nd, at both the national and local levels, and we encourage our Members to participate. We believe that the non-partisan principles and goals of the March are wholly consistent with our values and mission as a scientific institution, and are supported by an overwhelming majority of our Members. If you'd like to participate but can't make it to Washington, we encourage you to find a regional march in your area.
    • Second, we are working to finalize details of the new initiative mentioned in my January 31 communication, which will build upon the pillars of mentorship and professional development to equip immigrant scientists, engineers and students with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in an unfamiliar cultural and institutional landscape. If you would like to be involved in this effort and haven't yet had the time to respond, please sign up to learn more here.
    • Third, within the next few weeks we will be hosting a Webinar about the changing regulatory environment for graduate students, postdocs and others conducting research in the United States. Communications about the date and time will be sent out next week, or you can monitor our Webinar Calendar for updates.

    The mission of the New York Academy of Sciences is to advance scientific research, education and policy. But this can ONLY be achieved through collaboration and collective action on the part of the scientific community and its supporters around the world. As an Academy Member we know you share this mission.  We also know that you are a busy professional and your time is limited. I hope you'll find a way to be involved in whatever form you can manage: join the March for Science, advocate for science and science-based policy through your own networks, volunteer whatever time and resources you can spare. Every contribution counts and the collective impact of all these individual actions can be enormous.

    Ellis Rubinstein
    President and Chief Executive Officer
    The New York Academy of Sciences