NYSUNY 2020: What It Means for Stony Brook and the Long Island Region
Governor Andrew Cuomo created NYSUNY 2020 as a partnership that improves access to a quality Stony Brook education and leverages the strength of the State University of New York (SUNY) system to spur economic growth and create jobs in New York State. The program enables Stony Brook University and the other three SUNY University centers to increase operating revenue through modest, predictable tuition and fee increases for five years. With passage of the NYSUNY 2020 legislation, students and families will be able to plan properly for the cost of a college education for the first time in SUNY’s history. The modest increases will help build these institutions into regional economic development generators and world-class centers of research and innovation.
A Quality Education
The additional revenue generated through NYSUNY 2020 enables Stony Brook to hire more faculty, offer more classes, and improve graduation rates for students. The infusion of additional revenue generated through higher tuition will allow 267 more faculty to be hired over the next five years and enable Stony Brook to open its doors to an additional 1,200 students during that same time period.
Every Stony Brook student will benefit because faculty will be added to every single school or college at the University. The addition of faculty also will create more undergraduate research opportunities. This investment in Stony Brook will ensure that the University maintains its status as a leading research institution and member of the elite Association of American Universities (AAU), an organization comprising the top 61 research universities in North America; and will improve its student-to-faculty ratio from the current 28 to 1 to 22 to 1, which is comparable to that of our AAU peers.
Increased Access for Students
Stony Brook University is committed to ensuring access for its most economically disadvantaged students. Under the terms of the recently enacted statute, financial assistance will be given to students eligible for the New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP). In addition, Stony Brook will fund two new financial aid programs designed to supplement TAP, both of which exceed NYSUNY 2020 statutory requirements. One offers needs-based financial aid; the other provides merit-based financial aid.
The Stony Brook needs-based financial aid program holds harmless all TAP-eligible students from families with adjusted gross incomes (AGIs) of $75,000 or less from the $300 annual tuition increase. TAP-eligible students from families with an AGI of more than $75,000 are entitled to the statutory TAP credit and may also be eligible for the second Stony Brook financial aid program—the merit-based scholarship. Some of these students will qualify for TAP, the TAP credit under the statute, and Stony Brook’s merit-based aid, although no student will receive aid in excess of the amount of the tuition increase.
Stony Brook’s merit-based financial aid program provides a $250 annual award to in-state students who maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and whose families have AGIs between $75,000 and $100,000 per year. Under the two Stony Brook financial aid programs, the University will spend an estimated 67 percent more in financial aid than what is required in the NYSUNY 2020 statute.
In essence, the two programs form the cornerstone of the most generous and comprehensive financial aid package
offered at a SUNY institution, and ensure that higher tuition does not put a Stony Brook education out of reach.
Cutting-Edge Research and Health Care
Stony Brook University will combine a $35 million State Challenge Grant with a historic and transformative $150 million gift from Department of Mathematics Chair Emeritus James Simons and his wife Marilyn and the Simons Foundation to construct a Medical and Research Translation (MART) building on our East Campus. This state-of-the-art facility will merge innovative research and patient care in an eight-level building where physicians encountering problems at the patient’s bedside can collaborate with researchers seeking solutions in the laboratory.
Vital to the future of both Stony Brook University and health care on Long Island, the MART will greatly increase the availability of outpatient cancer treatment in our region. Two floors of the building will be dedicated to cutting-edge cancer care, including a 30-room cancer clinic and a 30-station clinical infusion center.
Research space will accommodate 25 cancer biology-oriented laboratories. Stony Brook will hire 20 new cancer clinical investigators to work in the laboratories and will include a ten-person biomedical informatics department. The MART also will house “wet labs” for conducting cell, tissue, and other cancer biology research. Additional dry lab space will enable statistical research, work on biomedical informatics, and clinical study.
Spurring Economic Growth
The construction of the MART building will create both short- and long-term jobs, including 1,900 direct construction- related jobs and 2,300 indirect construction-related jobs.
Along with the faculty hires, additional revenue generated under NYSUNY 2020 will be invested in the hiring of 400 new staff and 80 clinicians. Stony Brook also will create an additional 1,000 jobs by drawing down an anticipated $50 million annually in State, federal, and private research grants, and another 1,000 jobs through research partnerships with private industries. These endeavors will bring new ideas, therapies, and products to the marketplace. The University will work to increase contracts with minority and women-owned businesses and enterprises throughout the course of the project, and our on-campus Small Business Development Center will work with vendors through mentorship and outreach programs to encourage their participation in the procurement process.
A Solid Investment
The Governor and legislature’s vision is that NYSUNY 2020 be an innovative economic catalyst, an investment that will spur growth in the near term while creating job opportunities in the long term. Under this plan, Stony Brook will be able to hire new faculty, secure its position as a leading research university, and provide opportunities for well-educated students to become the workforce of tomorrow. NYSUNY 2020 provides for the construction of the MART building, which will improve patient care and open the doors to the creation of new therapies, drugs, and cures.
This plan will accelerate Long Island’s economy now and in the years to come by expanding and enhancing all of Stony Brook University’s critical resources, enabling it to remain a vital economic engine for Long Island and across New York State.