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CUNY Welcomes New Community College

April 13, 2011 | Campaign News

The New Community College, approved by the Board of Trustees on February 28th, will open its doors to 500 new CUNY community college students in July 2012 – the University’s first new community college to open in New York City in over four decades.

The college, which will initially be located at 50 West 40th Street overlooking Bryant Park, will grow to serve 3,000 students once it moves to its permanent location at 59th Street and 9th Avenue, an important step to address surging enrollment at CUNY’s community colleges.  Chancellor Goldstein initiated the push to create a new community college in 2008 not only to accommodate the growing population of community college students, but also to develop a new and imaginative model of education that would increase retention and graduation rates and could be replicated system-wide and beyond.

The new college is headed by Founding President Scott E. Evenbeck, formerly a psychology professor and dean of University College at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis.  The distinctive features of the program include a summer bridge program; full-time enrollment for the first year; a common first-year curriculum that provides twice the normal time for math; a professional studies component with worksite experience; and majors in fields with positive employment forecasts and pathways toward bachelor’s degrees.

The New Community College is benefitting from the new focus on bolstering community college success by the Gates Foundation and other leading philanthropists.  The Gates Foundation, which has announced a major commitment to funding programs designed to help raise community college completion rates, has made two grants to the new community college for planning, totaling close to $1.1 million.  The Carnegie Corporation has provided $300,000 in support.  Fund-raising for the new community college has been conducted by members of the planning team, who have led the two-year effort to create the school.