By Guamacice Delice
The City University of New York is taking advantage of the momentum of remote instruction based on experience gained during the Covid19 pandemic. Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez announced on March 16 the launching of CUNY Online, a new program that aims to build “online degree capacity at CUNY,” and produce “high-quality online courses and programs that meet student needs,” according to a statement published on cuny.com.
The online program is being implemented across the 25 CUNY schools under the supervision of CUNY’s School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS), in response to a “growing student demand.” Moreover, it is in line with “the University’s commitment to expanded access, quality instruction, student support and external competition,” according to the release statement.
CUNY is using $8 million from federal stimulus funds for the online development program. These funds will help in improving capacity and resources and provide personnel to sustain academic content development and student support services.
CUNY Online’s initial phase is scheduled to start in Spring 2023 with a first set of “seven to 10 new online associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degree programs.” This number should grow to 20 by Fall 2023, according to CUNY’s projections. During its pandemic experience, CUNY SPS helped 3,400 faculty members transition from in-person to online teaching and learning. This CUNY award-winning agency is now systematizing its expertise. It has already had at its credit “24 degrees and numerous non-degree and grant-funded workplace learning programs,” according to CUNY officials.
“We are fortunate to be able to lean on the great expertise of CUNY SPS to lead this effort that makes a long-term commitment to the success of students who can benefit from the flexibility of online degree programs and courses,” Matho wrote in his statement.
“With CUNY Online, the University has made a forward-thinking investment in online education to ensure that all CUNY colleges may be able to offer more flexible and accessible online learning opportunities,” said CUNY SPS Interim Dean Jorge Silva-Puras.
With this new program, the CUNY system, which has roughly 260,000 undergraduate and graduate students and awards approximately 55,000 degrees per year, is now expanding access to higher education to students who cannot come to campus.