Posts tagged ‘SUNY’

April 27, 2015

The search for affordable out-of-state colleges

by Grace

It’s been a few years since I wrote about low-cost out-of-state schools, so it’s a good time to revisit this topic.

What type of students are typically interested in affordable out-of-state public schools?

  • Residents of states that lack good options for affordable public colleges.
  • Students who want to experience living in another part of the country during their college years.

Lynn O’Shaughnessy recommends avoiding most “name brand” * state flagships, which usually expect out-of-state students to pay full price.  Instead, look at other less well-known options.

The New York state universities (SUNY’s) , for instance, represent some excellent values. Unlike many states, New York state has continued to support its public universities at levels other state legislatures have long abandoned.

Another potential great buy is the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, which is a bargain compared to Michigan. I once asked a teenager why he thought that the University of Michigan is so much more popular than the U. of Minnesota, which is located in the Twin Cities. “Minnesota is cold,” he replied. I mentioned that Michigan is hardly a temperate climate. My theory is that Michigan has enjoyed a long and storied tradition of success in the Big 10 athletic conference and the Minnesota Gophers have not.

The University of New Mexico has impressive scholarships even for students with a 3.0 GPA and it’s located in a city (Albuquerque.) I am hoping that a daughter of a family friend, who is a gifted dancer, ends up at the University of Utah’s modern dance program, which is considered as good, if not better, than Julliard’s.The scholarships for nonresidents can be more generous and prices much lower to begin with at schools that have to work harder to attract nonresidents. University of Arkansas, for instance, has tons of scholarships for nonresidents. A huge plus at Arkansas is the tremendous amount of internships for students because of Walmart’s proximity. Walmart requires major corporations to maintain an office in Arkansas so there are hundreds of corporate outposts in the state.

Kiplinger’s most recent Rankings of Top Public College Values shows 54 schools with total annual costs under $35,000.  A California resident facing annual costs ranging from about $23,000 to $35,000 for in-state schools may look to an option like Arizona State University where OOS costs are about $36,000 per year.  Add in the challenges of admission and course availability that persist in some schools in the California system, and the idea of tacking on an extra $35,000 or so in costs over four years by going out of state may seem like a fair deal.

U.S. News offers a list of low-cost schools that may come out to be a better value than in-state choices.

Some regional colleges and universities are so cheap, even for out-of-staters, that they give Home State University a run for its money….

Most of these public institutions are regional colleges and universities in Midwestern or Western states​ that may not entice many 18-year-olds the way, say, New York or California do.

But a Pennsylvanian student eyeing the in-state price tags of Pennsylvania State University or the University of Pittsburgh, both topping $17,000 a year, might start to find them more appealing.

Careful research can uncover affordable options that are perfect for your child.  Here’s a College Confidential thread that can be a resource:

VERY LOW COST OOS COA universities……less than $25k COA for everything!

* UPDATED for clarity

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Lynn O’Shaughnessy, “Would You Pay $47,000 for the University of Oregon?”, The College Solution, April 20, 2015.

Susannah Snider, “Public Colleges With the Cheapest Out-of-State Tuition and Fees”, U.S. News & World Report, September 30, 2014.

February 27, 2015

So you’re interested in a career in hotel and resort management?

by Grace

What is it like to manage a hotel, and what kind of background is needed for this career?

Here’s the story of a hotel manager who does not have a college degree, but who worked his way up from his first job as a valet.

I’m in my late twenties and I work at a major 150+ room hotel in a major city in Louisiana. My official title is “Operations Manager.” I’ve been working in hotels since 2007, first as a valet and bellman for two years at a 200 room corporately-owned resort in coastal Alabama, then at the front desk at a smaller independent hotel. After that I was a front desk agent at a 300 room corporate hotel in Dallas where I was promoted to front desk manager, and finally I moved to Louisiana a year ago. I started at my current hotel as front desk manager and was promoted to Operations Manager in a couple of months. I’ve been at this hotel for one year.

A college degree may be the preferred way to enter this field, but another way is through “a beastly work ethic”.

To get my first hotel job I just walked in and applied. It’s easy to get an entry level position. To be an Operations Manager, you usually need a bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management/Business or, like me, a beastly work ethic, willingness to go above and beyond expectations, work long hours, and volunteer to take on tasks around the hotel that go outside of your job description.

A degree can offer specialization in various areas, including travel and tourism.

Hospitality management, or hospitality administration, is a large field with an array of majors. Depending on your interest and skills, you can pursue degrees centered on hotel management, travel and tourism, conference or event management, the restaurant industry and more. A course of study can cover everything from business to food science to botany, and internships and assistantships are typical components as well.

U.S. News offers information about hospitality management scholarships.

TheBestSchools.org* ranked hospitality management four-year college programs, including these top five:

  1. Cornell University, School of Hotel Administration
  2. Michigan State University, School of Hospitality Business
  3. University of Nevada at Las Vegas, William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration
  4. Fairleigh Dickinson University, International School of Hospitality and Tourism Management
  5. Virginia Tech, Pamplin College of Business, Dept. of Hospitality and Tourism Management

An associate’s degree in hospitality management is another way to prepare for a career in this field.

The bad news is that competition is tough for the best jobs.

Job growth in management positions is projected to show little or no growth over the next several years, even though growth in tourism and travel is predicted to be robust.  Like many other segments of the economy, the hospitality industry is streamlining operations, leading to scaled-back staffing.  Median salary in 2012 was $46,810.

In New York, SUNY at Delhi is a state school that offers a BBA Hospitality Management: Hotel and Resort Management.  Their students can participate in the Walt Disney College Program.

… Through this program, students work at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, for six months in a unique working/learning experience. Students can now earn SUNY Delhi course credit for the Disney courses offered as part of this program while they are working at Disney. Any student interested in this special program option should discuss it with his/her advisor early in their Delhi career. Disney courses include Communications, Leadership, Hospitality Management, Human Resources Management, Disney Marketing U, and Disney Experiential Learning.

It sounds like a good program for the right type of students, but I wonder if they are the target of jokes about their “Mickey Mouse” degree.

* ADDED:  Thebestcolleges.org doesn’t disclose its ranking method, but their list can be a starting place to find colleges that offer hospitality management major.  The College Board is another resource to use for finding and evaluating schools.

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Andy Orin, “Career Spotlight: What I Do as a Hotel Manager”, Lifehacker, January 20, 2015.

Matt Konrad, “Check Into These Hospitality Management Scholarships”, U.S. News, March 20, 2014.

May 21, 2014

Apply now for the New York State STEM full-tuition scholarship

by Grace

The deadline to apply for the newly introduced New York State STEM scholarship is August 14.

The NYS STEM Incentive Program provides a full SUNY or CUNY tuition scholarship for the top 10 percent of students in each New York State high school if they pursue a STEM degree in an associates or bachelor degree program and agree to work in a STEM field in New York State for 5 years after graduation.

The dual goals of the program include helping students pursue STEM careers and promoting the state’s economy.

Innovative programs like the STEM Incentive Awards will help students compete in academic fields essential to the future of our state and nation,” said CUNY Interim Chancellor William P. Kelly.

“Through this program, New York State is helping to foster a connection between a student’s interest in STEM and their ability to successfully pursue a STEM career,” said Elsa Magee, Acting President of New York State Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC), the state agency that will administer the program. “These awards will encourage more of our most talented students to pursue their love of science, technology, engineering and math in New York State, which benefits our State economy directly and the global economy, generally.”

Failing to fulfill the program requirements can result in significant penalties.  For example, if a recipient does not complete the STEM degree or does not follow through after graduation on the requirement to work “full-time for five years in the fields of science, technology, engineering, or math in New York State, while maintaining residency within the State”, he must pay back the award.

The full list of approved occupations includes farmers, computer programmers, web developers, actuaries, cartographers, engineers, and secondary and postsecondary science teachers.

There does seem to be some flexibility in the choice of occupations.

20140518.COCNYSSTEMScholarshipFarmer1

Related:  “Free tuition at New York state universities for top STEM students?” (Cost of College)

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 Sarah Darville, “State launches STEM scholarship for SUNY, CUNY-bound grads”, Chalkbeat New York, May 6, 2014.

February 18, 2014

Free tuition at New York state universities for top STEM students?

by Grace

The proposed New York State budget includes a provision to offer free tuition to top students who choose to major in STEM fields.

“New this year under the governor’s budget proposal, some students at the top of their classes will have a chance to skip tuition payments entirely. Those who plan to major in a field related to the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) subjects would receive free tuition to any SUNY or CUNY institution, as long as they remain in the state for five years after graduation to pursue their careers. The $8 million budget line is intended to help reverse the “brain drain” of the best and brightest from New York State.”

Students must graduate in the top ten percent of their high school class to qualify for the scholarships.

Details must be worked out.

Final budget approval is expected this spring.  Questions have been raised about how the requirement to stay in the state for five years after graduation would affect students who wish to attend graduate school.  One estimate predicts funding is only sufficient for 166 four-year scholarships, so it is possible that demand will be greater than supply.

Related:

January 16, 2014

SUNY online program aims for 100,000 new students within five years

by Grace

“Open SUNY” is the new online system for New York state universities.

BUFFALO — New York state’s 64-campus university system is undertaking a major virtual expansion, adding new online degree programs and enhancing academic and technical support for students taking classes via computer.

In what it’s calling “Open SUNY,” the State University of New York goes live Tuesday with eight new online degree programs at six campuses and plans to add more in September. SUNY currently offers more than 12,000 courses and 150 degree programs online.

Students will be able to complete degrees online or through a combination of virtual and brick-and-mortar classes.

The goal is to make the online segment of the SUNY student body grow to about 15% of its total enrollment, with a particular focus on practical career preparation.

The new offerings will be aligned toward jobs in high demand. They include a clinical laboratory technologies degree program at SUNY Broome, an electrical engineering degree program from Stony Brook and an informations systems program through Empire State College.

Cost savings is another goal of Open SUNY.

  1. Are we trying to reduce costs for students through Open SUNY?

    Yes, we are looking to reduce costs for students. These savings can come in various forms such as reduction in text book costs to students through the adoption and creation of open education resources. If we can save each of our 469,000 plus students $30 in textbook costs, we will generate over $14,000,000 in savings. Online courses also allow students to save on costs associated with commuting and child care. During the Open SUNY development process costs and cost sharing will be reviewed with the goal of creating a rich, rewarding, and affordable experience for all students.

    Additionally, we will provide technical platforms and services so that campuses and faculty can openly share the materials and courses they create with learners throughout the world.  These open environments will provide free learning opportunities for anyone in the world.

Related:

June 3, 2013

MOOCs may cut the price of a SUNY degree by one-third

by Grace

The State University of New York’s new agreement to offer massive open online courses (MOOCs) opens the possibility of obtaining a SUNY degree at about one-third discount off full price.

SUNY announced Thursday that it signed an agreement to partner with Coursera, a website with 3.7 million users that is a leader in offering what are called “massive open online courses.” Universities worldwide, including private schools in New York like the University of Rochester, upload video lectures and course materials onto the website in an effort to enhance educational access.

Starting with a course from Stony Brook University in the fall, SUNY is planning to offer some courses through the site, although how many is unclear.

Exact details are still to be worked out, but students could be granted prior learning assessment credits for MOOC courses taken through a SUNY campus or even elsewhere.  These “would essentially act as transfer credits” that would require a fee, but not a tuition charge for each course.  Presumably the credit transfer fees would be minimal, well below tuition costs.

A student might be able to get his SUNY degree at about two-thirds the cost of a traditional program.

SUNY allows only one-third of the coursework for a degree to be transferred.

“There would be a limit,” SUNY spokesman David Doyle said. “It’s not like you could get a free degree.”

This strikes me as not very different from the Advanced Placement program, which allows college students credit for up to one year ‘s worth of college courses.

Related:

March 12, 2013

Kiplinger’s best values in public colleges

by Grace

Kiplinger’s recently released its list of best values in public colleges.  Here are the top ten for in-state (IS) and for out-of-state(OOS) students.

20130311.COCKiplingerIS2

California students seeking a bargain are still paying relatively hefty costs approaching $30,000 per year, assuming they can get in to the more selective state schools.

20130311.COCKiplingerOOS2

New York stands out in offering a good value for OOS students.  Geneseo seems to attracs very few OOS students, perhaps due to its isolated rural setting.  On the other hand, Binghamton’s higher percentage of OOS students has been the target of complaints that state residents are being crowded out.  Unlike California and Virginia, New York has no formal rules on limiting OOS students.

Percentage OOS Students – School
 02% – SUNY Geneseo
18% – Univ. North Carolina Chapel Hill
12% – Binghamton University (SUNY)
27% – University of Virginia
06% – College of New Jersey
32% – College of William and Mary
07% – Univ. of California, Los Angeles
11% – Univ. of California, Berkeley
08% – Stony Brook University (SUNY)
23% – Univ. of Maryland, College Park

Kiplinger’s uses measures of “academic quality and affordability” to compile these lists.  The entire list of 100 colleges can be found here.

January 18, 2013

‘SUNY to boost online offerings, push early graduation’

by Grace

The State University of New York (SUNY) is taking a leadership position regarding online education.

For the first time, SUNY students will be able to complete a bachelor’s degree online, Zimpher announced. Three degrees in high-demand fields like information technology and health care will launch this fall, and seven more will be available in fall 2014. SUNY will be a leader in online education.

Additionally, students will be able to take online courses from any other SUNY college while earning credit and paying tuition to their home campuses.

“No institution in America – not even the for-profits – will be able to match the number of offerings and the quality of instruction,” Zimpher said. “In three years, we will enroll 100,000 degree-seeking students in Open SUNY, making us the largest public online provider of education in the nation.”

Credit for MOOCs

As part of SUNY’s online efforts, top professors will begin to provide “massive open online courses.” Many of the country’s most prestigious universities present such courses, which are online for free with the aim of extending access to education. Generally, these courses are not credit bearing.

The system will develop a system of assessing higher-learning experiences, so students who’ve taken some courses, such as free courses online from accredited institutions, can get credit for their work.

Credit for internships

SUNY will also focus on providing experiential education to students — even those enrolled only in online courses — helping them to secure internships, research or volunteer opportunities during their studies. These experiences will be recorded on an extracurricular transcript and be designated on their diplomas.

Encouraging early graduation as a way for students to save money

“We are committed to the idea that students should have the choice to graduate in three years,” she said during the speech. “We believe that by 2015, 25 percent of SUNY students will be able to do this.”…

“It allows students to reduce their student loans. It reduces their tuition because they’re only paying three years of tuition instead of four,” Stenger said. “The students can stay and get their master’s degree in an accelerated fashion and have a little extra value at the same time.”

Even assuming that online courses will cost the same as classroom courses, online students should be able to save money on transportation, housing, and other costs.

My future online scholar?
Even though she’s never taken an online course*, my high school daughter has lately mentioned that she might be interested in attending an online college.  I’m not completely sure why she’s interested and I’m not sold on the idea, but it looks as if SUNY might soon be able to accommodate her.

In related news, a hip hop music video promoting the SUNY system will be released to the public next month.

* I was recently told that our local high school expressly forbids students from taking any online course for credit, a rule that also applies to staff.  At a state level, New York does allow schools to grant credit for online courses.

September 5, 2012

Quick Takes – College scholarships by race, UVA in-state quota, managing student loans, etc.

by Grace

—  The Distribution of Grants and Scholarships by Race  (Mark Kantrowitz, FinAid.org)

This paper presents data concerning the distribution of grants and scholarships by race. It debunks the race myth, which claims that minority students receive more than their fair share of scholarships. The reality is that minority students are less likely to win private scholarships or receive merit-based institutional grants than Caucasian students. Among undergraduate students enrolled full-time/full-year in Bachelor’s degree programs at four-year colleges and universities, minority students represent about a third of applicants but slightly more than a quarter of private scholarship recipients. Caucasian students receive more than three-quarters (76%) of all institutional merit-based scholarship and grant funding, even though they represent less than two-thirds (62%) of the student population. Caucasian students are 40% more likely to win private scholarships than minority students.  http://www.finaid.org/scholarships/20110902racescholarships.pdf

(This paper has lots of data on college financial aid.)


—  In-state student quota at University of Virginia

The Commonwealth of Virginia mandates that 2/3 of the students at the University be Virginia residents.  Beyond that, there are no quotas with respect to regions, counties, or high schools.
The UVA Admission Blog

California has a system-wide cap of 10% for out-of-state undergraduate students, and the University of North Carolina limits out-of-state freshmen to 18 percent on each campus.

Related:

—  A Web Site That Aims to Help Manage Student Loans 

A new Web site called Loanlook.com aims to help current students and graduates manage their financial aid and loans with less confusion. The site allows users to access federal loans and grants, but will be expanded to include private loans in about a month. (Parents can also register to see information about PLUS loans taken out on behalf of their children.)
(The New York Times)

—  New York State pension costs ‘will rise 10.6% for state, local governments‘.

ALBANY — Public pension costs are again set to rise in the next fiscal year, with both the state and local governments facing an average increase of 10.6 percent, according to figures released Friday.

Starting April 1, the state, counties and municipalities will contribute an average of 20.9 percent of most employees’ salaries into the state’s pension system, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said. The contribution rate is 18.9 percent.


—  ‘Average people think the road to riches is paved with formal education. Rich people believe in acquiring specific knowledge.’

“Many world-class performers have little formal education, and have amassed their wealth through the acquisition and subsequent sale of specific knowledge,” he writes.
“Meanwhile, the masses are convinced that master’s degrees and doctorates are the way to wealth, mostly because they are trapped in the linear line of thought that holds them back from higher levels of consciousness…The wealthy aren’t interested in the means, only the end.”
From Steve Siebold, author of “How Rich People Think.”

21 Ways Rich People Think Differently (Business Insider)

Another one:

Average people would rather be entertained than educated. Rich people would rather be educated than entertained.

August 30, 2012

SUNY reacts to state cuts by aligning enrollment with projected job growth

by Grace

The State University of New York (SUNY) reacts to state-aid cuts by curbing growth, but plans to align future enrollment expansion with projected areas of job growth.

After surges in recent years, enrollment at New York’s public universities and colleges has stabilized, with two consecutive incoming fall classes that are slightly smaller than the ones before.

The State University of New York’s flat enrollment — preliminary headcount for fall 2012 was down 0.2 percent from 2011, or by about 750 students — does not reflect waning interest in the state institutions, SUNY officials said. Rather, it’s an effort to contain enrollment amid state-aid cuts….

The 64-campus SUNY system, which includes community colleges, four-year colleges and doctoral-granting research universities, has been cut $1.4 billion over the last six years….

Many campuses have reached “right-size” enrollment, but student applications are still flooding in, with some four-year colleges receiving 10 to 12 times the number of bids for admission than they have spots in a freshman class, Lavallee said.

Community colleges are handling the overflow students.

The enrollment controls at the four-year colleges has fueled a surge in the growth of community colleges, which also provide a less expensive option in a difficult economy, officials said.

SUNY is realistic about not expecting increased state aid.

In a recent interview, SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher said complaining that the system needs more money is not a viable solution.

“Our longer-term solution is (to) help New York,” she said.

The way to “help” New York is to produce graduates who will play a role in stimulating the economy.

As a system that not only creates jobs but trains future members of the workforce, SUNY is particularly situated to stimulate economic recovery, Zimpher said.

“New York is never going to be able to realize its former level of investment if New York doesn’t get back on its feet,” Zimpher said. “So, the altruistic part of (SUNY’s strategic plan) is that we should help New York do that — that is our obligation.

“The more selfish rationale for helping New York get back on its feet is that New York will be able to invest more in public higher education,” she continued.

The Albany-approved plan for future growth in SUNY enrollment includes stabilized state funding and tuition increases.  Using this model, Binghamton is expected to “grow by 500 students a year for the next four years”.

Enrollment expansion will be managed to align closely with projected job growth.

But the increases will be targeted at programs that teach skills that are in high demand in the workforce, Zimpher said.

Student interest does not always align with the needs of employers, Zimpher said.

“We’re an enrollment management business, so we do have to pay attention to what students say they want,” she said.

“But we also have sort of a moral obligation to say to students: ‘You know, the truth of the matter is we’re not hiring social studies teachers right now, and I know if you’re wedded to that, we want to help you get that degree, but really we should be talking to you about a double major, or a major/minor,’ ” she said.

This SUNY strategy probably does not portend strong growth in liberal arts majors.

Related:

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