Ithaca, N.Y. — Philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is scheduled to visit Cornell on October 1 to dedicate a new Computer Information Sciences building and give a public talk, according to a university press release.

Gates in 2012. (Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
Gates in 2012. (Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Cornell President David Skorton and CIS Dean Haym Hirsh will accompany Gates at the dedication ceremony for Bill & Melinda Gates Hall.

The ceremony is scheduled to take place at the plaza entrance of the new building at 11 a.m. It’s being held simultaneously with the Department of Computer Science’s 50th anniversary celebration.

$25 million of the $60 million project was donated by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Also on Gates’ schedule is a public discussion in Bailey Hall, titled “A Conversation With Bill Gates: Considering the Future of Higher Education.”

The talk will touch on “access to and affordability of higher education; student entrepreneurship; and technology and education,” according to a press statement released Thursday.

Free tickets to the event become available on Sept. 22 for Cornell students, and to the public on Sept. 25, at the Willard Straight Hall Ticket Office. A limited number of tickets will also be available at the door, which opens at 3:30 p.m.

Cornell officials say the dedication will usher in a new era of computer science at the university by concentrating the department to one location.

“Bill & Melinda Gates Hall is a real game-changer for CIS,” said Hirsh in a press release. “Being in one location facilitates research collaboration – and expands and strengthens the educational experience that we provide our students.”

More information about the event can be found here.

Gates Hall
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A senior at Cornell University, Kyle covers the affordable housing crisis for the Ithaca Voice. Reach him through e-mail: