Chatting With Chapey
by Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey, Democratic District Leader
CUNY: A Sound and Valuable Education
According to the news reports enrollment at the City University of New York has increased substantially for the 2003-04 academic year. Transfers from other colleges to CUNY are also up considerably. This can be attributed to the increase in unemployment in New York City as well as the academic value of a CUNY degree.
According to statistics CUNY is a valuable source of a trained workforce for employers in New York City. Ten years after graduation over 80% of CUNY graduates are working in New York City. This provides more of a tax base for the City.
There are six CUNY colleges within easy reach of residents of the Rockaways, Broad Channel, Howard Beach and Ozone Park: (1) Kingsborough Community College, (2) Brooklyn College, (3) Queensborough Community College, (4) Queens College, (5) York College and (6) Medgar Evers College.
As a tenured full professor at Kingsborough Community College, a branch of CUNY, I have the opportunity to be part of the CUNY system. The students are receiving an excellent education from a highly qualified and dedicated faculty. Employers are hiring CUNY graduates eagerly.
As this particular point in our economy we need highly trained professionals who can take their place in a global economy. CUNY offers well-regarded degrees in many areas including science, mathematics, journalism, graphic design and illustration, business, computers, nursing, teaching, office administration and technology, physical therapy assistant and so much more.
CUNY Chancellor Matthew Goldstein clearly states that "At CUNY opportunity knocks louder than ever". Goldstein points out that according to Standard and Poor’s recent polling of alumni and the school they graduated from, more CUNY graduates lead businesses and companies than graduates of any other university in the nation. This is a major affirmation as to the quality and value of CUNY degrees.
CUNY has a five point program aimed at helping students to pay for their college education. The program consists of the following: (a) Financial aid. CUNY itself sponsors numerous scholarships some of which are specifically ear marked for moderate income families. If you want to get more specific information on scholarships, student loans, financial aid and work study programs, go to the CUNY web site which is listed as cuny.edu/financial aid. This site will give you detailed and specific information to clarify your own individual needs. (b) Special seminars. CUNY offers special workshops in all of the five boroughs. The information given at these sessions includes suggestions on how to fill out the questionnaires, how to file the application and how to find out the status of your application when you are waiting for a response. (c) Interest free payment plans. CUNY has a special program set up which allows students to pay their tuition interest free in five monthly installments. There is a one-time enrollment fee of $30. Information can be found at tuitionpayenroll.com or you can call a toll free number 1-855-AMS-CUNY. (d) Student jobs. CUNY has a special web site set up to give students access to hundreds of jobs around the metropolitan area. It includes jobs from a variety of fields with varying skill levels. Look at CUNY.edu/studentjobs. (e) Free online career guidance. Students can get help with resumes, cover letters and other worthwhile advice by obtaining a password from their campus career counselor or by logging on to CUNY.edu/ studentjobs.
CUNY is a valuable resource for everyone. Go to one of their web sites or call 1-800-CUNY-YES for information.
New York State itself is getting more freshman admissions than any of the other forty-nine states in the nation.