City University of New York

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The City University of New York (CUNY; acronym usually pronounced "kyoo-nee" or "coo-nee"), located in New York City, is the largest urban university in the United States, with more than 208,000 enrolled in degree programs and another 208,000 enrolled in adult and continuing education courses at campuses in all five boroughs. It is the third-largest university system, in terms of enrollment, in the United States.

CUNY and the State University of New York are entirely different university systems, despite the fact that both are public institutions which receive funding from New York State.



CUNY's history dates back to the formation of the Free Academy in 1847. The school was fashioned as "a Free Academy for the purpose of extending the benefits of education gratuitously to persons who have been pupils in the common schools of the …city and county of New York." The Free Academy later became The City College, the first CUNY college. From this grew a system of seven senior colleges, four hybrid schools, six community colleges, as well as graduate schools and professional programs. CUNY was established in 1961 as the umbrella institution of the municipal colleges of New York City.


The City University is governed by the Board of Trustees composed of 17 members, ten of whom are appointed by the Governor of New York "with the advice and consent of the senate," and five by the Mayor of New York City "with the advice and consent of the senate." One trustee is the chair of the university's student senate, and finally, one trustee, without a vote, is the chair of the university's faculty senate. Both the mayoral and gubernatorial appointments to the CUNY Board are required to include at least one resident of each of New York City's five boroughs. Trustees serve seven-year terms, which are renewable for another seven years. College presidents report directly to the Board.

The Chancellor is voted upon by the Board of Trustees, and is the "chief educational and administrative officer" of the City University.

Unlike other state college systems, CUNY does not operate as a central authority to the colleges and, in fact, the central administration has limited power over the colleges. This is partly because most of the senior colleges (namely Brooklyn, Hunter, Queens, and City) predate CUNY and were thus established by mandate of the New York State Legislature, which has institutionalized the autonomy of the colleges. College presidents and faculty typically view CUNY as a loose confederation rather than a unified system.


CUNY consists of four different types of institutions: senior colleges, which grant bachelor's (and some master's) degrees; hybrid colleges, which grant associate's and bachelor's degrees; community colleges, which grant associate's degrees; and graduate/professional schools. CUNY's Law School grants juris doctor (J.D.) degrees, and Ph.D. degrees are awarded only by the CUNY Graduate Center.

The colleges are listed below, with establishment dates in parentheses.

Senior colleges

Hybrid colleges

Community colleges

Graduate and professional schools

External links

pt:Universidade da Cidade de New York


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