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Statewide Plan for Higher Education 2004-2012

Appendix A - Summaries and Reviews of Sector Master Plans

The City University of New York (CUNY)

CUNY is located in New York City. It was created in 1961. CUNY has 13 senior colleges (one offering study through the doctorate level, eight offering undergraduate and master's degree programs, three offering programs to the baccalaureate level, and a school of law) and six community colleges. They operate on 24 main and branch campuses and at more than 100 other locations. In the fall of 2004, CUNY's senior colleges had a total headcount of 146,050 students; its community colleges had 72,973 students. Based on 2001-02 enrollment, this Plan projects that enrollment will total 216,607 in the fall of 2013.

CUNY is governed by a 17-member Board of Trustees: ten members appointed by the Governor, with the consent of the State Senate; five appointed by the Mayor of New York City, also with the consent of the State Senate, a representative of the student body, and a representative of the faculty. Nearly 60 percent of the funding of CUNY's senior colleges is provided by State appropriations; the balance is from tuition and fees and federal and local funds. CUNY's community colleges are funded under the same system that applies to the State University of New York's community colleges. They derive almost 35 percent of their operating income from direct State appropriations. The community colleges do not have separate boards of trustees.

Mission of CUNY

The following provisions of §6201 of the Education Law constitute its mission, according to CUNY:

  1. 1 . . . .
  2. The legislature intends that the city university of New York should be maintained as an independent system of higher education governed by its own board of trustees responsible for the governance, maintenance and development of both senior and community college units of the city university. The university must remain responsive to the needs of its urban setting and maintain its close articulation between senior and community college units. Where possible, governance and operation of senior and community colleges should be jointly conducted or conducted by similar procedures to maintain the university as an integrated system and to facilitate articulation between units.
  3. The legislature's intent is that the city university be supported as an independent and integrated system of higher education on the assumption that the university will continue to maintain and expand its commitment to academic excellence and to the provision of equal access and opportunity for students, faculty and staff from all ethnic and racial groups and from both sexes.
  4. . . .
  5. Only the strongest commitment to the special needs of an urban constituency justifies the legislature's support of an independent and unique structure for the university. Activities at the city university campuses must be undertaken in a spirit which recognizes and responds to the imperative need for affirmative action and the positive desire to have city university personnel reflect the diverse communities which comprise the people of the city and state of New York. In its urban environment this commitment should be evident in all the guidelines established by the board of trustees for the university's operation, from admissions and hiring to contracting for the provision of goods, services, new construction and facilities rehabilitation.

CUNY Master Plan

Section 6206 of the Education Law governs the development of CUNY's long-range master plan. It requires that the plan include:

  1. plans for new curricula;
  2. plans for new facilities;
  3. plans for changes in policies with respect to student admissions;
  4. potential student enrollments;
  5. comments upon its relationship to other colleges and universities, public and private, within the State; and
  6. for informational purposes only, projection standards and overall expenditure projections of capital and operating costs.

The Regents approve the long-range master plan of The City University of New York 2004-2008 and incorporate it into the Statewide Plan. In doing so, the Regents ask that CUNY continue to monitor the impact on students of the change in the requirements for admission to baccalaureate study and to continue to make data available to SED annually as it relates to student access and success, transfer rates and outcomes for each of its support programs. A review of the Master Plan indicates that it appears to meet the requirements of §6206. Following are the initiatives proposed in the Master Plan that respond to the Priorities for the Statewide Plan.

Statewide Plan Priorities

  1. Maximizing Success for all Higher Education Students

    High Educational Quality

    • Ensure and enhance the quality of undergraduate and graduate programs as well as post-doctoral training and adult and continuing education.
      • Provide community college students with significant additional full-time faculty, strengthened programs, and enhanced support services.
      • The University's Coordinated Undergraduate Education Initiative will consolidate those university projects that have been developed over the past several years to provide students with opportunities to maximize their success in college.
      • Build a solid infrastructure to support ongoing review and development of sound general education programs to provide a quality general education experience to students.
      • The Honors College will continue to strive to provide the best aspects of a small liberal arts college.
      • Each college will undergo an accreditation process for its teacher education programs.
      • Capitalizing on the strength of its faculty in American history, offer all undergraduates the opportunity to study U.S. history with the best faculty. Colleges will participate in the current U.S. history curriculum development project.
      • CUNY will continue towards its goal of ensuring that full-time faculty offer 70 percent of courses.
      • CUNY will continue to build the libraries' collections in print, digital, and other formats to support the teaching and research programs of the University. Create and explore opportunities to collaborate on the purchase of electronic databases. Develop an interlibrary lending capability within CUNY to leverage investment in print collections. Promote information literacy as an institutional-wide issue and develop tools to assess the information literacy capabilities of students.
      • The performance management process adopted in 2000 has been a key force in the transformation of leadership at CUNY. It ensures that the Trustees' long-term vision for the University forms the scaffolding for annual planning at each of the colleges, and that CUNY and college executives are held accountable for results. Accountability is achieved by measuring colleges' annual progress towards key performance targets - many tied directly to student outcomes - and rewarding performance by presidents and their leadership teams commensurate with those results. Over the next four years, the University will continue to monitor three broad sets of objectives: raising academic quality, improving student success, and enhancing financial and management effectiveness.
      • Adopt a performance-based method to monitor program success.
      • Data from the Pathway to Teaching study and other studies will be used to examine program success.
      • A survey of graduating students to determine their future educational and career plans to prepare students for a completive market place.
      • CUNY has constructed a database of student information that the colleges can access electronically to track their progress on many of the indicators related to the academic performance of students. Over the next four years, these data structures will be expanded with three goals in mind:
        • Deliver data that guide faculty and administrators at the colleges in their efforts to design and deliver improved services for students.
        • Organize information to support the assessment of learning and administrative services at the colleges.
        • Organize information to allow Central Administration and the colleges to more fully measure progress toward the University's objectives and to guide policy.
        • Improve the quality of support services (e.g., career services, health services, and day care centers) and recreational activities to students.


    • Further develop articulation agreements among and between community and senior colleges to enhance transfer options.
    • Develop articulation between the school of professional studies and master's degree programs.
    • Complete the implementation of the Internet accessible TIPPS database that details equivalencies between courses at different colleges within CUNY, and extend the database to include courses from non-CUNY institutions.
    • Continue to implement the DegreeWorks degree audit system along with the TreQ transfer articulation system at most colleges. These systems will provide CUNY students with the ability to audit progress towards completing their degrees at their current institutions, as well as to determine the effect of current course and program choices on programs they may be considering at other institutions.


    • Streamline the financial aid process.
    • Provide students with easily accessible information through a number of innovations: CUNY portal; degree audit software; and the Enterprise Resource Plan

      Closing Performance Gaps

    • CUNY is seeking to identify critical junctures where students are most likely to falter, including entry to college, move from general education to a major or specialization, and transfer between institutions. It sees these as interlocking issues; for example, transfer often entails choosing a new major. It is encouraging both University-wide and college-level strategic planning to take into account these juncture points in students' careers.
    • CUNY will provide support to retain students:
      • Continue the University Summer Immersion Programs (USIP) to build students' college preparation in reading, writing, and math.
      • Continue the summer programs (e.g., ESL, orientation sessions, math and science bridge courses) to address particular student needs.
      • Continue the SEEK (Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge) and CD (College Discovery) programs to provide academic and counseling support to students.
      • Offer academic support (i.e., advising and tutoring programs) to students.
      • Identify and apply the effective instructional strategies to help under-prepared students realize their academic potential.
    • Implement programs to help close performance gaps.
      • Implement the Chancellor's Initiative on the Black Male in Education, which seeks to enhance the retention and graduation of Black men by removing barriers affecting their academic performance, development of positive relationships, identification of career goals, employment, and health maintenance. Orientation courses/seminars will address such issues as course requirements and career planning as well as social issues relating to race, gender, and sexuality.
      • Continue the English as a Second Language (ESL) programs to offer support to ESL students.
      • Provide counseling services to special needs students, disadvantaged students, and students from special programs.
      • Develop academic literacy across the curriculum for students through the university-wide WAC (Writing-Across-the-Curriculum) initiative.
    • Other services:
      • Maintain a unified central office for international student services. 
      • Serve Veterans.

      Students with Disabilities

    • CUNY's current enrollment of over 8,000 self-identified students with disabilities reflects a significant increase in this rapidly growing CUNY population. Meeting their diverse academic and social needs by providing and maintaining high quality innovative programs, technical assistance in the classroom, transportation to classes and extracurricular activities, and CUNY-wide campus access gives students with disabilities an equal opportunity to receive a high quality, affordable college education based on individual scholastic achievements and merit.
    • The University intends to implement, to the degree possible, the following recommendations of a University Faculty Senate focus group:
      • using the CUNY Portal, establish a disability Web site that includes a disability handbook to serve as a resource guide for faculty/staff and provide access to pertinent information for all students;
      • assess the feasibility of establishing regional resource centers for learning disabilities and identify cost-effective strategies for their implementation;
      • during CUNY disability month, conduct a University-wide conference for faculty, campus administrators, staff, and security personnel on appropriate techniques for teaching and providing assistance to students with disabilities;
      • develop a marketing video in conjunction with CUNY TV for use by disability coordinators and admissions offices;
      • augment the availability of College Now programs and opportunities for high school students with disabilities;
      • expand the provisions of the New York Community Trust Transportation Grant to facilitate the participation of students with disabilities in campus student life;
      • develop a plan to provide centralized coordination for interpreter services, to reduce costs and provide expertise in selecting and maintaining quality service;
      • enhance academic accommodations for students with disabilities by providing faculty training in handling sensitivity issues and providing technical assistance in the classroom when administering exams and in teacher/student conferences;
      • ensure that all CUNY standardized examinations are fully accessible;
      • train faculty and instructors in making online instruction accessible to students with disabilities;
      • ensure that students with disabilities are represented on committees that develop technology plans on campuses and that college Technology Fees accommodate needs to purchase technology for students with disabilities;
      • ensure integration of disabled students into positions outside campus disability offices, including student aides and assistants; and
      • develop an education program on ADA compliance modeled on CUNY's sexual harassment education program.

  2. Smooth Student Transition from PreK-12 to Higher Education

    Preparation for College

    • CUNY has made college-sponsored learning opportunities for high school students an essential aspect of its efforts to better prepare students for success in college. The centerpiece of those efforts is College Now, which provides the opportunity for qualified students to take, for free, college credit courses while still in high school.
    • For those students not yet ready to take college-credit courses, College Now provides opportunities to develop the essential academic skills necessary for high school graduation and college preparedness.
    • There is evidence that College Now is making a difference:
      • More than 28 percent of public high school graduates entering CUNY in the fall of 2002 had been in College Now, and more than 32 percent in the fall of 2003.
      • While CUNY's community colleges serve the majority of College Now students, most of those students enter baccalaureate programs after they graduate. This means that those students met the more stringent requirements for admission to those programs.
      • Preliminary research indicates that College Now alumni are more likely to persist in their pursuit of a degree than other New York City public school graduates, as measured by their rates of re-enrollment for a third semester.
    • CUNY has been a co-developer and a home to public high schools for a generation. These high schools provide opportunities to many different kinds of students: English-language learners, academic high achievers, and struggling students. College faculty members frequently work with their high school counterparts on matters of mutual professional development and students are able to take advantage of a wide variety of campus resources.
    • Working with the Office of New Schools Development at the Department of Education and with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, CUNY has launched an initiative to create ten innovative early-college secondary schools across the City.
    • CUNY also has embarked on a pilot effort, in cooperation with the Department of Education and with funding from the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development, to reach out to those who have left school and bring them back. CUNY Prep, in the Bronx, offers a full-time program of college preparatory study for out-of-school youth between the ages of 16 and 18. Students prepare to re-enter high school or begin college with a high school equivalency diploma.
    • CUNY has expanded and strengthened its professional development activities for public school teachers through projects such as Looking Both Ways and the Discovery Institute at the College of Staten Island.

    Information and Assistance in Preparing for College

    • In addition to including the provision of information and assistance in preparing for college to students in all of its pre-college programs, CUNY has used its involvement in GEAR UP to refine and enhance its services in this area.
    • Getting ready for college involves a lot, and the sooner students can start, the better prepared they will be. GEAR UP is a federal initiative to promote college readiness and awareness among students in grades 6-12 from communities with traditionally low levels of participation in higher education. CUNY has responded to the initiative in a major way by establishing a systemwide consortium coordinated by the University's Office of Academic Affairs. The consortium and CUNY's overall efforts have been funded by the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation.
    • In addition, five colleges (Borough of Manhattan Community College, Bronx Community College, LaGuardia Community College, Medgar Evers College, and the College of Staten Island) have received direct grants from the U.S. Department of Education. More than 2,300 high school students from 23 high schools participate.

    • GEAR UP provides services in concert with teachers and families to engage students more fully in their high school experiences with a focus on future college success. In-class and after-school tutoring and mentoring; college awareness programs for students and their families; college visits and residential summer programs; project-based learning; and opportunities to participate in college-credit courses through College Now are among the GEAR UP offerings.
    • In 2004, CUNY GEAR UP staff took the lead role in producing a Web-based financial aid tutorial -- College $ense: How to Pay for College -- for distribution to high school students and their parents.
  3. Meeting New York's Needs through Graduate Programs and through Research

    Strong Graduate Programs to Meet the State's Needs

    • Recruit qualified, diversified, and sufficient faculty to ensure the quality of education.
      • Cluster hiring initiative to meet the goal of ensuring that 70 percent of course sections are taught by full-time faculty.
      • Recruit diverse students into Ph.D. programs to ensure diverse professoriate in years to come.
    • Enhance curriculum by promoting integration of instructional technology.
    • Implement or continue special or exemplary programs to foster academic excellence.
      • Governors Island Simulation Center (GISC) will train future science and math teachers in using computer simulation technology to enhance teaching and learning in the classroom.
      • Emerging Student Leadership Program will continue to offer workshops to campus student leaders.
      • Each college will undergo an accreditation process for its teacher education programs.
    • CUNY has committed to devote $2 million per year toward providing tuition remission to doctoral students. Additionally, the University implemented a system that will allow doctoral students at an appropriate level to be assured of teaching at its various colleges.
    • Under the University's Community College Investment Program, 250 new faculty have been hired to teach at the six community colleges.
    • As part of the University-wide Performance Management Program, colleges are required to demonstrate the steps taken to recruit and hire a diverse faculty.

    Creation of New Knowledge through Research

    • Continue the mission to enhance research activity and the research character of the entire University.
      • Foster an environment conducive to research by sustaining and enhancing campus based research facilities and opportunities.
      • Plan for a new Advanced Science Research Center to provide facilities at which faculty from all CUNY campuses may conduct advanced research.
      • Continue the interdisciplinary research on urban environment.
      • Initiate a research program on developmental education to identify and apply the effective instructional strategies to help under-prepared students realize their academic potential.
    • Provide greater institutional support for post-doctoral research students.
    • Move toward full tuition remission for doctoral students to enhance CUNY's competitiveness in attracting research oriented students.
    • Expand academic research areas that contribute to economic development. Economic development interests are most directly served by attention to applied research which itself is based on the results of basic research. Academic institutions traditionally provide assistance in solving problems as well as in developing new knowledge. It is important that CUNY continue to develop these functions.
    • Further develop Flagship initiatives in structural biology and photonics (expanding into biophotonics and nanoscience). The CUNY Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) in Photonics Applications works collaboratively with industry (in particular with New York State businesses), universities, other CATs, and other institutions to advance its scientific and economic development goals. Through such collaborative efforts, the CAT, together with its CUNY partner the Institute for Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Lasers, will increase opportunities for federal and private research dollars that further extend the research capabilities and services offered to New York State companies.
    • Develop and expand the role of Postdoctoral Fellows performing research at the University. These scholars are essential to the productivity of the scientific enterprise; as their numbers continue to increase at CUNY, their academic presence will be integrated into the research mission.

  4. Qualified Professionals for Every Community throughout the State

    An Adequate Supply of Qualified Professionals

    • CUNY's School of Professional Studies will continue to respond to the educational needs of New York City regional workforce demands.
    • The University plans to inaugurate new programs (e.g., Graduate School of Journalism, Educational Leadership programs) to meet workforce demands and challenges of the current professions.
    • CUNY will work closely with other agencies to coordinate university-wide workforce development efforts in health, education, and human services areas.

    An Adequate Supply of Qualified Teachers, School Leaders, and other School Professionals

    Teacher education will continue to be a CUNY flagship program to meet New York City's needs.

    • Continue to allocate cluster lines to hire outstanding faculty in teacher education.
    • Expand programs to prepare future educators. CUNY will focus on expanding the number of educators prepared in shortage areas including special education, mathematics, science, Spanish and bilingual education. New efforts include CUNY's $12.5 million NSF-funded Math/Science partnership that will increase the supply of math and science teachers and a Teachers Academy to attract outstanding undergraduates to teaching.
    • Implement newly revised certificate programs for school leaders that will strengthen their preparation.
    • Continue to collaborate with the New York City Department of Education on two alternative teacher preparation programs, the New York City Teaching Fellows and the Teaching Opportunity Program, that bring career changers and recent college graduates into teaching in New York City, especially in such shortage areas as mathematics, science, Spanish, bilingual education, and special education.
    • Streamline and strengthen recruitment and articulation into senior colleges for students who begin their teacher preparation at the community college level. Develop new joint programs between community colleges and senior colleges focused on the preparation of teachers for shortage areas.
    • Support and participate in the Pathways to Teaching study, which is examining the different routes into teaching in New York City. CUNY will use results of the study to improve teacher education programs throughout the university.

  5. A Balanced and Flexible Regulatory Environment to Support Excellence

    Encouraging a Highly Effective System

    • Implement a centralized planning function in the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment.
    • Expand data structures of the performance management process to guide instruction and administration.
    • Reform administrative practices and implement productivity measures to lower administrative costs.
    • Develop and implement a new model for enrollment management (creation of an enrollment management committee to bring together a wide range of students services/departments) to offer improved service to students.
    • Consolidate core research facilities across the University.
    • Improve library services, including online research resources.
    • Promote environmental health and safety.
    • Promote community outreach.

    Funding a Highly Effective System

    • As a result of commitments toward the betterment of CUNY made by the State and City government, the CUNY Board of Trustees and executive leadership, faculty, and students, CUNY is poised at the threshold of complete transformation. The movement toward an integrated university continues to engender synergies unparalleled in an urban institution of CUNY's size.
    • CUNY projects that achievement of the goals and objectives in the CUNY 2004-2008 Master Plan will require $201.7 million in additional programmatic support and $140.9 million in mandatory cost support, exclusive of future collective bargaining obligations. As it is necessary that, to become a highly effective higher education institution, there must be a commitment made toward maximizing the percentage of education delivered by full-time faculty, CUNY has dedicated 25 percent of the $201.7 million programmatic need to the hiring of 800 full-time faculty over the next four years. Another 28 percent of the programmatic funding will go toward critical academic and student support needs.
    • CUNY continues to emphasize that the State and City must provide the maximum support available to allow CUNY to meet its objectives. So dedicated, however, is CUNY to the goals and objectives identified in the Master Plan as critical to improving CUNY's stature, that it has proposed the formation of a funding partnership whereby CUNY would seek to maximize its available resources and employ revenue enhancement strategies to augment State and City support in the face of State and City budget constraints.

    • Redeployment of Existing Resources

      Some of the initiatives in the Master Plan are being accomplished in part with existing resources. For example, the cost estimates for full-time faculty assume that funding for 20 percent of the cost of the new hires will come from existing resources currently devoted to adjunct teaching. College fundraising initiatives and economic development initiatives also are expected to generate revenues in support of new and ongoing projects. The effective use of technology will generate savings and foster further productivity improvements, enabling redeployment of resources to high-priority areas.

    • Productivity Initiatives

      CUNY has initiated an effort to reform administrative practices and implement productivity measures that result in lower administrative costs. Administrative savings will then be invested in teaching and learning enhancements. Efforts in this area include the introduction of new information technologies, collaborative purchasing networks among the college campuses, and the establishment of annual "productivity targets" designed to localize at the campuses planned levels of savings that will be redirected to areas related to student instruction.
    • As part of the preparation for implementing an Enterprise Resource Planning solution at CUNY, the necessary review of almost all of the University's business functions and procedures will take place. University-wide, over the next three years, increasing efficiencies and implementing successful techniques from processes at the various CUNY units will generate $26 million in productivity savings. Savings will be transferred from administration to academic and student service areas.
    • New Resource Allocation Methodologies

      Over the past several years, the CUNY Office of Budget and Finance has developed new resource allocation systems designed to link the master planning and budget allocation processes and to efficiently deploy resources. Last year, CUNY introduced a new model for the allocation of full-time faculty. It is committed to full implementation of the new instructional resource model and to employing the new model in the allocation of the 800 new faculty positions envisioned in the Master Plan. It will continue to develop new systems for allocation of non-instructional resources.
    • Fundraising

      CUNY recognizes that, in order to fast-forward its transformation as envisioned in the Master Plan, the University must attract substantial private investments and gifts in the coming years. In 2004-05, CUNY will launch its first unified fundraising campaign encompassing all 19 CUNY colleges and graduate schools. The campaign's planned timetable will allow individual colleges to enter the campaign as their development infrastructure permits and as their foundation boards feel ready. While plans for spending the new funds will vary, common themes include the provision of scholarships, the recruitment and retention of world-class faculty members, and the enhancement of academic program quality through support for special programs and facilities.
    • A $2.6 billion "Invest in CUNY/Invest in New York" Campaign for the Colleges of The City University of New York, of which $1.2 billion is expected to come from private sources. $1.4 billion represents the capital facilities investment approved by the State and City, which provides new opportunities for matching grants from donors and other sources.
    • Facilities

      CUNY is comprised of 19 campuses on over 691 acres. It occupies 294 buildings and encompasses approximately 26.9 million gross square feet of space. The objective of the University's capital program is to provide safe and functionally adequate facilities that encourage teaching and learning, are well-designed, well-built, and operated in a cost-effective manner. Under the guidance of the Board of Trustees, the capital program incorporates these considerations along with established academic objectives.
    • Capital Budget Program and Priority Guidelines

      CUNY's capital program addresses the needs of its colleges for major new construction, rehabilitation, and capital equipment, and is developed in accordance with the University's established priority system. The capital program ensures that capital projects contribute to the achievement of CUNY's academic, research, and administrative goals, conform to University design and construction standards, and make the best use of resources.
    • Funding for CUNY's capital program is requested according to established University priorities approved by the Board of Trustees which, beginning with the highest, are assigned to projects that:
      • correct life-safety, security and code violations;
      • preserve facilities and assets;
      • address technology needs;
      • are ongoing and require the next phase of funding to bring them to completion;
      • provide greater utilization of campus space and academic program delivery;
      • meet energy conservation/performance objectives;
      • encourage economic growth for the City of New York;
      • seek development of public/private partnerships to maximize the value of the University's underdeveloped assets.
    • CUNY is engaged in ongoing efforts to update and revise the colleges' facility master plans in order to address more efficiently academic and student-related priorities and request the capital projects necessary to advance the college's missions. Facility master plans, which are developed in close consultation with the college communities, are revised in conformance with space standards approved by the Trustees, ensuring efficient use of existing and planned space.

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Last Updated: October 27, 2009