Meyda lights way for SUNY teams

Published Apr 16, 2017 at 9:00am

YORKVILLE — As renovations were implemented at the Marcy campus of SUNY Polytechnic Institute, the college’s engineering clubs were unclear of the fate of their 2017 season for extra curricular programs and competitions.

During “Manufacturer’s Day” at SUNY Poly, Max Cohen of Meyda Lighting met several engineering students who expressed concern for the lack of a location to build their projects. SUNY Poly is currently upgrading the machine shop and labs in Donovan Hall, removing the machines and placing them in storage -- leaving club members and other students without a place to work on their application projects, capstone projects and club competition entries. The Baja and Bridge Builders needed a place to fabricate their car and weight-bearing bridge projects.

Upon learning about the dilemma, Cohen offered space his family-owned Meyda Lighting factory and use of the state-of-the-art equipment at no charge to the students and faculty of SUNY Poly. The company is headquartered at 55 Oriskany Boulevard.

“We don’t know what we would have done without Max and Meyda Lighting,” said SUNY Poly Professor Walter Zarnoch, who also serves as a shop facilitator and mentor. “Meyda is one of the major companies that is working hard to keep jobs in the Mohawk Valley and helping to fill good-paying engineering positions and other occupations. “

“We thank Max and Meyda Lighting,” Zarnoch added, “for investing in SUNY Poly’s students’ future.”

Understanding the importance of such prgrams and the impact of American manufacturing, Cohen said he felt a responsibility to help the students and professors and support the local and progressional communities.

The ASCE Bridge Builders competition is planned for April 20-21 at Syracuse University while the SAE Baja Competition will run June 7-10 at Caterpillar Edwards Demonstration and Learning Center in Peoria, Ill. With Cohen’s help, SUNY Poly student teams will be at both events hoping to challenge for prizes with their projects.

“SUNY Poly engineering students needed a placew where they could work on bridge building and off-road vehicles for their club competitions,” said Cohen, director of hospitality marketing for Meyda Lighting. “We have made space available to the students so they could use our factory for fabrication and assembly, and provided a support staff to teach the students how to work with our new laser cutter and other state-of-the-art equipment. Students come to understand how our company provides a level of
components that are unavailable elsewhere.”

Civil engineering technology students are working to build a bridge for their competition. The ASCE Student Chapter Bridge Builders Club is creating a model bridge that will be measured for deflection, structural integrity and toehr criteria, when the team faces off against other college and university teams at the upcoming annual competition.

In addition, mechanical engineering students are wokring on the Baja Project, which is a student competition organized by the the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). The students design, fabricate and test an off-road vehicle (buggy) capable of withstanding a variety of physical obstacle courses during the four-day competition.

Club members apply the skills, theory, design and classroom practical application in the implementation of their dsign and then compete with other teams’ project designs. Projects are scored and rated, officials say, to stringent engineering rules and guidelines.

Both student teams have competed for many years, and both teams are looking forward to this year’s competition.

“American manufacturing has changed a great deal in recent years,” said Utica Assemblyman Anthony J. Brindisi, “and many companies like Meyda Tiffany offer good jobs that involve creativity and use high tech equipment.”

“Local manufacturers often tell me they would love to have more young people apply for jobs with them,” Brindisi said. “This manufacture sharing partnership gives SUNY Poly students the opportunity to work on projects at a local manufacturing facility they hopefully will consider working at some day. This program will give students exposure to one of our local high-tech manufacturers while Meyda will have a chance to interest some young people in a future career there and at other high-tech companies.”

SUNY Polytechnic Institute is a globally-recognized high-tech educational ecosystem, college officials said, formed from the merger of teh SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering and the SUNY Institute of Technology. SUNY Poly offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in emerging disciplines of nanoscience and nanoeconomics at its Albany campus and degrees in technology, professional studies and the arts and sciences at the Marcy campus.

Meyda Custom Lighting is a Meyda Tiffany Company, a leading manufacturer and designer of custom and decorative lighting and Tiffany lamps. Founded in 1974, the firm’s roots date back to the early 1900s, supplying Tiffany Studios with original lighting products, inclduing the original Coca-Cola stained glass fixtures.

With many years of designing, engineering and manufacturing expertise, Meyda develops innovations, technologies and value that transcend architectural lighting, the company said. The firm’s diverse talent creates chandeliers, pendants,wall sconces, fable and floor lamps, outdoor lighting and stained glass windows to meet its customer’s exact specifications.

For more information on Meyda Custom Lighting, call 1-800-222-4009 or go online to