Governor Kathy Hochul today announced a $15.6 million state investment to expand child care access at the State University of New York and the City University of New York. The funding includes $10.8 million to address child care deserts across SUNY campuses and $4.8 million to provide additional child care services on CUNY campuses. This is the second phase of a broader initiative to ensure that students, faculty and staff on all SUNY and CUNY campuses have access to high-quality child care centers.
“Expanding high-quality, affordable child care options is an essential piece of creating a more equitable and accessible higher education system for New Yorkers,” Governor Hochul said. “My administration remains committed to ensuring all parents have access to quality child care, and this funding is a critical step toward ensuring parents have the support they need to pursue a quality education and build a better future for themselves and their families.”
At some State University of New York campuses, about 80 percent of students with dependents reported that they had trouble meeting their child care needs. The State University of New York is expanding on-site child cares services with $7.6 million for campuses with the greatest demand, which includes: Alfred State, SUNY Canton, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Jamestown Community College, SUNY Old Westbury and SUNY Sullivan.
The State University of New York system is also expected to launch a request for proposal this year to provide a child care center at the system administration location to address child care needs in downtown Albany.
State University of New York Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley said, “We have a holistic approach to student success and have made great progress in New York State thanks to Governor Hochul and our Legislature, and the expansion of child care is critical for many students and faculty alike. The second phase of this initiative addresses our remaining ‘child care deserts’ and provides much-needed relief to those college families who have told us they have trouble finding care. New York State is making a significant investment in SUNY and our students, and it is our hope that more parents join our campuses and focus on earning their college degree.”
The City University of New York is receiving $4.8 million to expand child care services on campuses that don’t have centers, including $1.2 million for a new center at Queensborough Community College, on top of the more than $3.1 million the state contributes to sustain the operation of CUNY’s existing centers. In addition to the new location, the expansion will also add 100 seats across the system to primarily serve younger children, including infants and toddlers. These additions will bolster support already provided by CUNY child care centers, which offer low-cost parent fees and do not turn away any student-parent from services.
City University of New York Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez said, “Expanding child care services at our colleges means removing a barrier that would otherwise prevent New Yorkers from pursuing a college degree or educating our students. Providing the more than 10 percent of CUNY undergraduate students who are parents with the resources they need to focus on their academic and career goals is just one way that we have their backs. We are grateful to Governor Hochul for making access to child care services a priority in the Enacted Budget, and for her continued investment in our students, faculty and staff.”
In addition to addressing child care deserts, the Governor’s initiative announced earlier this year includes the distribution of $4.5 million in federal and state funding for the State University of New York to support its current centers as well as a program to train the next generation of child care professionals.
Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick said, “Lack of access to child care should never limit potential students from receiving higher education. A college degree is the surest way toward financial prosperity, and we must make certain that all New Yorkers, especially single parents and low income families, are able to further their education and careers. I thank Governor Hochul for prioritizing access to child care and I look forward to building off this success in the coming year.”
During the 2021-2022 academic year, the State University of New York served 650 student-parents with about 4,500 child care spots across the 46 SUNY campuses that have a child care center onsite. With the additional centers, another 350 child care spots will become available. The centers also serve faculty, staff and state employees, as well as the neighboring community — each utilizing about a third of total child care spots.
The City University of New York currently operates child care centers on 17 of its 25 campuses. During the 2021-2022 academic year, these centers had 1,400 seats available. The facilities primarily serve CUNY student-parents, although approximately one-third of seats served members of CUNY’s faculty and staff or parents in the communities neighboring the campuses. The centers operate five or six days of the week, including evening hours where needed. This flexibility, along with serving school-aged children, allows CUNY students to more easily attend their courses. Most of the centers also operate during the summer.
Student-parents are also able to enroll their children in a center at a CUNY college beyond the one where they are enrolled, providing flexibility if the student goes to a CUNY college far from home, or if the home college’s center is at capacity or the student requires child care during evening and weekend hours.
About The State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2021, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit www.suny.edu.
About The City University of New York
The City University of New York is the nation’s largest urban public university, a transformative engine of social mobility that is a critical component of the lifeblood of New York City. Founded in 1847 as the nation’s first free public institution of higher education, CUNY today has seven community colleges, 11 senior colleges and seven graduate or professional institutions spread across New York City’s five boroughs, serving over 243,000 undergraduate and graduate students and awarding 55,000 degrees each year. CUNY’s mix of quality and affordability propels almost six times as many low-income students into the middle class and beyond as all the Ivy League colleges combined. More than 80 percent of the University’s graduates stay in New York, contributing to all aspects of the city’s economic, civic and cultural life and diversifying the city’s workforce in every sector. CUNY’s graduates and faculty have received many prestigious honors, including 13 Nobel Prizes and 26 MacArthur “Genius” Grants. The University’s historic mission continues to this day: provide a first-rate public education to all students, regardless of means or background. To learn more about CUNY, visit https://www.cuny.edu.