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The City University of New York System was founded in 1847 as a way to provide an affordable education to student throughout the city's five boroughs, and eventually resulted in the formation of 24 separate institutions of higher education. Among those 24 institutions are community colleges, graduate institutes, traditional universities, and undergraduate colleges. The City College of New York is considered the "senior college" of the City University of New York university system. This allows CCNY to issue traditional B.S. and B.A. undergraduate degrees, but also several prestigious graduate and doctoral degrees. Despite the advanced nature of its many degree programs, as well as the school's nationwide prestige, the City College of New York charges some of the most affordable university tuition anywhere in the greater New York City metropolitan area. This makes it a top draw for students at the top of their graduating class, and has increased the school's size to just over 16,000 total students.

City College of New York Accreditation Details

New York's "senior college" is regionally accredited, as are all of the various colleges, institutes and universities within the City University of New York system. Regional accreditation is granted to the school by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, which reviews its accreditation status of CCNY every few years. Though this accreditation is extremely important in ensuring the school's quality and eligibility for federal aid programs, it is not the only that the City College of New York currently offers to students across its broad array of degree options.

Professional and programmatic accreditation is also featured in the City College of New York School of Education, which has been given the seal of approval by the National Council for Teacher Accreditation (NCATE) at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. This accreditation was last reviewed and affirmed in 2009. Students who are currently enrolled in the CCNY School of Engineering graduate with degrees that have been extensively reviewed and accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering (ABET) of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Finally, the School of Engineering is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), the leading body for architectural standards and education.

City College of New York Application Requirements

Undergraduate applicants to all majors must submit the CUNY online application, complete with the application fee charged to all applicants. In order to complete the application and move it to the review stage, students must also send the school an official copy of their high school transcripts and an official SAT or ACT score report. There is no minimum SAT or ACT score required of applicants, but it is worth noting that the CCNY admissions process is highly selective. A higher score may give students a better chance at receiving an acceptance letter after their application materials have been received by the undergraduate admissions committee.

Undergraduate students considering the school's prestigious programs in engineering, architecture, and physics will need to show a high school GPA of at least 3.0, though a 3.5 GPA is recommended. Additional test scores and an admission interview may also be required for these best-in-the-nation undergraduate degree offerings.

At the graduate level, students must submit all official college transcripts, at least one of which shows the receipt of an undergraduate degree. Graduate applications also must send GRE or GMAT scores, a resume, and up to three letters of recommendation to be considered. Some programs require one or two essays on work experiences and professional goals prior to admission as well.

City College of New York Tuition and Financial Aid

The City College of New York is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, which allows the school to receive federal funds and distribute federal financial aid to its students on a need-based basis. The school also participates in New York's state grants for higher education, works with the city of New York to issue additional grants to students, and maintains reciprocal grant program agreements with neighboring states like New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania, to reduce costs for out-of-state attendees. To qualify for any city, state, or federal financial aid funding, students must submit the FAFSA application prior to CCNY's priority aid consideration deadline.

Tuition costs at the school do vary based on a student's residency status. Full-time students who qualify for residency status at the undergraduate level enjoy some of the most affordable tuition at any public college in the country. These students pay just $3,165 per semester. Students who do not qualify for residency status will pay considerably more, at a rate of $560 per credit. The per-credit method of computing tuition applies to both full-time and part-time students who lack residency status when attending as an undergraduate. Graduate students with residency status pay $505 per credit, while their non-resident counterparts will pay considerably higher tuition of $870 per credit.

City College of New York Top Degree Programs

Perhaps the top degree program at the City College of New York is its B.S. degree in physics. The program itself is very prestigious and often draws the nation's top lecturers and practitioners in the field. This is not the only way that the program has achieved notoriety, however. City College of New York has the distinction of producing three Nobel laureates in physics among its large pool of alumni. This allows the school to rank near the top for the number of Nobel laureates produced in any single area of concentration, and it means that a degree in this field from CCNY will serve graduates well as they seek employment.

Another top option at the school is the B.S. and M.S. degree programs in engineering, which are both ranked near the top in the Mid-Atlantic region as well as nationally. Thanks to ABET accreditation and an all-doctoral faculty, students partake in advanced coursework, innovative simulations and labs, and unique engineering competitions on-campus. Internships in the thriving New York City business community also help engineering graduates land a rewarding job with some of the nation's top Fortune 500 employers. This program is among the most competitive at the school, however, with the admission rate of undergraduate applicants rumored to be in the high single digits. This program, along with many others at the City College of New York, position the school as one of the best in the "Empire State."

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