The City University of New York received a $25 million donation from the Stella and Charles Guttman Foundation on May 1 as part of an effort to boost graduation and student retention rates.
In light of the generous donation, the CUNY Board of Trustees made a decision to rename The New Community College, The Stella and Charles Guttman Community College.
“CUNY is deeply grateful for the Guttman Foundation’s generosity,” Chancellor Matthew Goldstein said.
The donation, according to the chancellor, will help the school meet its goals of improving student’s graduation rates, maintaining academic integrity and successfully launching students into the next phases of their lives.
“The CUNY grant is the result of several years of research into how the Foundation could best advance the cause of making a college education available to the largest possible number of highly motivated, low-income public school graduates” the foundation’s president Ernest Rubenstein said.
The $25 million donation was divided into different parts. The New Community College will receive a $15 million endowment which will help it establish the Guttman Student Success and Engagement Fund. The ultimate aim is to help improve low success and graduation rates of community colleges through paid internships, scholarships and student emergency funds.
Nine million dollars will go towards helping academically qualified transfer students obtain scholarships. These transfer students are transferring from the CUNY community colleges to CUNY senior colleges.
The students coming from the community colleges will receive grants of $2,000 a year for two years to complete their bachelor’s degrees. Within five years, the $9 million endowment is expected to provide more than 200 scholarships annually.
Lastly, $1 million will be used to expand the University’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) initiative. The aim of the program is to help community college students earn their degrees as quickly as possible.
The Foundation is a New York not for profit based corporation. It was organized in 1959 by Charles Guttman, a successful New York businessman. The foundation currently has over $50 million in assets and has contributed more than $58 million to charitable organizations.