SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — From Albany, SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras was watching as the first people were vaccinated against coronavirus at Upstate Medical University.

Malatras wants the community and state to celebrate not only the first shots in arms but Upstate’s role in developing the Pfizer vaccine.

Upstate coordinated people to be participants in the vaccine trial and its chief infectious disease doctor, Dr. Stephen Thomas, was the lead principal investigator in the study.

While the vaccination day might be the most important step to ending the pandemic, Malatras wants the community to recognize Upstate’s contributions over the past nine months.

From sending nurses downstate to treating patients in virus hotspots to Dr. Frank Middelton’s research and development of the most accurate saliva test used to test SUNY students statewide to Upstate’s testing operation at the State Fairgrounds, Malatras agreed that Upstate is meeting the moment — and then some.