The City University of New York was intentionally created to serve the underserved people of New York City. And like the city we call home, CUNY is diverse in every way that matters—racially, ethnically, culturally, linguistically, religiously, and economically—it is who we are. CUNY has one of the most diverse student populations in the entire country. During the Fall 2017 semester, our enrollment was 30.8 percent Hispanic, 24.7 percent black, 23.7 percent white, 20.5 percent Asian/Pacific Islander and 0.3 percent American Indian/Alaska Native.
But what truly distinguishes CUNY is its record, since 1847, in holding our students to the highest academic standards, communicating that we fully expect them to meet those standards, and supporting them as they achieve their academic and career goals. That is how CUNY is reducing achievement gaps, raising its graduation rates and propelling more students from poverty to the middle class and beyond than any other university in the nation.
As CUNY seeks to meet the educational needs of an ever-more diverse student body, we continue to be inspired by the impressive array of CUNY students and alumni who have won some of our nation’s most prestigious academic prizes and achieved distinction in their professional lives. Their success makes plain that CUNY’s strength, like our nation, lies in its diversity. We welcome the Governor’s call to continue our focus on diversity and inclusion and to make sure we don’t rest on past accomplishments.