Investments in QC improving resources for students

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New York State made a large investment into all public universities for their 2014-2015 budget, adding over $3.2 billion in overall funding to CUNY, according to the CUNY 2014-15 State Adopted Budget Preliminary Analysis.

From the budget, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $55 million for the second round of CUNY 2020 awards, a competitive funding program that combines economic growth with academic excellence, which has funded a total of eight projects.

Part of this appropriation includes $1.5 million, shared by Queensborough Community College and Queens College, to develop an Advanced Manufacturing Center focused on 3D printing.

3D printing is the process of creating objects with a virtual 3D blueprint, by adding plastic, ceramics or metals, automatically, layer by layer.

Keeping the initiative and pushing forward is what QC is all about, and Vice President of Finance and Administration William Keller wants the students to benefit from their hard work.

“We are part of three winning proposals in the CUNY 2020 Program, including the creation of a new health clinic to teach allied health professions. We are in the process of writing our second grant for the next round of funding,” Keller said.

Although it is difficult to give an exact amount that QC is receiving from the State, said Keller, the administration knows they have appropriated $2 million from state Senator Avella for the chemistry lab and to add new classrooms.

In addition, QC is receiving money to finish construction on Kiely Hall and to redesign broadcasting center for the Media department, Keller said.

What is easier to quantify is the amount the city has appropriated to QC.

By having a close relationship with the city council members and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, Assistant Vice President of External and Governmental Relations Jeffrey Rosenstock was able to appropriate $5.8 million for various projects in QC.

“The biggest argument I have is this, we have amazing students, the school is very competitive to get into, we amazing faculty [and] we need the same resources as a private institution,” Rosenstock said.

By talking directly with council members during meetings and socializing at public events, Rosenstock developed a relationship with each council members, making sure money for QC was an absolute priority.

The QC administration is also upgrading the speech and hearing center, which is a $3 million dollar project stated Rosenstock. The college appropriated $1.25 million from Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, with a total of $2.75 million retrieved for the project.

“Since the speech therapy center is utilized by speech language pathologists who treat the public, they would benefit significantly with more space and more updated tools for treatment,” Katherine Salazar, a 22-year-old speech language pathology major, said.

The state Senate has also approved an additional $34 million to the Tuition Assistance Program, New York State’s financial aid program.

The program awards students based on necessity, while maintaining above a “C” average, with awards being between $500 – $5,245 every year, according to the NY State Higher Education Services Corporation.

This has been a great improvement from the last 25 years, which has seen a decrease in state funding which pushed the QC administration to pursue other means of revenue, such as opening the Department of Campus Event Services.

“We learn so that we may serve. We’re achievers and our students are going to top graduate schools. Look at our ratings. We need to make sure our students are getting the same resources as private institutions,” Rosenstock said.

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