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First-year enrollment for CUNY is up 2.8% in 2019


Founded in 1847, CUNY has become the leading public university in the United States and across New York City’s five boroughs.

This can be shown by such a high increase in its applicants despite the overall decline in the enrollment nationwide, in accordance with data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center. 

CUNY freshman enrollment has seen this upward trend for five years with a rate of 2.8%
increase in the applicants enrolling at the CUNY colleges, according to a CUNY brief. The
number of students at CUNY is now 40,768.

“Since 2010, the number of freshmen enrolling in CUNY’s senior and community colleges has increased by 17 percent, while freshman enrollment nationally has been flat during the same period, both at public and private institutions,” the article said. 

The number of freshmen on the 11 senior colleges’ campuses rose to 21,911 from 21,148, and the freshman enrollment at the seven community colleges went from 18,512 to 18,857.

“The growth of our freshman classes is a product of CUNY’s high-quality academics, extraordinary affordability and the outstanding outcomes our graduates can expect,” CUNY Chancellor Félix Matos Rodríguez was quoted in the brief. 

“We are gratified that students recognize the tremendous opportunity that CUNY offers and we look forward to being part of their educational journey through graduation and beyond as proud CUNY alumni.”

This increase is said to be due to the affordability of the schools and number of various programs offered by the campuses. 

Given its relative affordability, CUNY provides a number of opportunities to lower-income students. 

The CUNY statistics mentions that “about 8 in 10 CUNY college graduates carry no federal loan debt,” thereby attracting a large number of students worldwide to become a part of the public university. 

CUNY also offers students the opportunity to participate in the Excelsior Scholarship, which combines state and federal aid to students to help students from low and middle income families pay for college. 

It is only offered for CUNY and SUNY schools. 

The fee waivers provided by CUNY to high school students for the college application also attracts more students to apply to their colleges.

In addition, the CUNY system gives students access to other programs such as the College Discovery Program and SEEK. 

Such services include financial aid, academic and financial counseling. 

Because of such, the programs encourage more applicants to study at the CUNY colleges, likely contributing to the first-year student enrollment rates.

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Amanda Salazar, Editor-in-Chief

Amanda Salazar is the Editor-in-Chief for The Ticker. 


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