Posts Tagged ‘class availability’

Brittaney Thomson, Hunter College

My name is Brittaney Thompson, and I am a junior at Hunter College. I major in Psychology and Studio Art. As a student who does not receive financial aid, I have to pay for my education out of pocket. I have to work early in the mornings before attending class. There were times when I could not afford to pay my tuition and I had a hold on my account. This hold prevented me from registering for my classes on time and by the time I got  the hold off, the classes I needed were either all full or waitlisted. I usually have to settle for hard classes I did not want to take or classes at late hours.This one semester I had a hold on my account and struggled to get it off in time so I had to miss school. I had to go through the hassle of readmitting to Hunter and that process broke me. My experience with fighting to stay in school was hard, but I could not give up. Thankfully, I am still here.  I love attending school but it is hard to enjoy my time because I have to be working tirelessly to be able to afford it. Working before classes not just drains me but also affects my performance. My college experience so far has really scarred me and I hope in the future tuition can be free or at least more affordable.

Andy Huang, Hunter College

I am a senior studying chemistry at Hunter College. I chose to attend a CUNY because it was much more affordable than a SUNY or private college. I live with my parents as dorming would be too expensive. I am lucky to receive the Pell Grant and TAP, both of which help cover my tuition fees. I also receive a scholarship per semester that helps fund my transportation, school materials, and food. While I rely on financial aid, I have come close to losing it during several semesters. This semester specifically, I was stressed about financial aid because I lost TAP. I couldn’t receive it because I was not taking enough eligible credits (the classes I needed to take were locked to the spring semester). I hope to see TAP’s eligibility expand in the future so that it accepts all the classes that students take. Attending college and getting a degree should not be blocked by tuition fees. Students need to be able to focus more on studying instead of stressing about working part-time/full-time to attend their classes.

Milen Paulose, Purchase College

I am a junior at SUNY Purchase studying Literature. I hope to go to law school afterwards. My family feels pretty unstable financially, and college is both a hope and a hurdle. I moved back to New York from Texas in 2021 and I am having trouble with my residency and it is affecting my financial aid; I feel the system is too difficult to navigate by myself. Although my parents support me by helping me commute to my university and paying for my education after aid, it is becoming difficult. I have a part-time job on campus but I am looking for another job on campus. SUNY Purchase is a fantastic university and while it was one of my top schools, one of the major reasons it ranked so high was because I could commute there. With the financial aid packages, on-campus housing was simply not an option for me. I wish there were more virtual options for classes since I have to commute from pretty far and more options for classes, since few classes for my degree are actually offered in a semester. A lot of the offered classes also overlap in their timing, so I can only pick one among many classes I would have liked to take and would help fulfill my degree requirements. I have come to love many things about college here. 

Brenda Ojeda, Queens College

I am a freshman who majors in Political Science. I hope to learn more about my community and help future generations with the knowledge I acquire. I hope to attend graduate school in order to become a lawyer. I have always admired lawyers. This interest was sparked through the attendance of environmental rallies and engagement in my AP Government courses. I am able to pay my tuition through Federal Pell Grants. However, Federal Aid doesn’t cover all of my tuition expenses so I receive financial assistance through my father. Concerning the Federal Pell Grant process, it is not declared how much aid a student may initially receive. Therefore, the school selection process is deemed a bit challenging in terms of out-of-pocket pay expectancy. Aside from Federal Pell, I recommend that New York State Tuition Assistance Program aides in clarifying the application process so students could complete the application process more efficiently. I’m a first-generation college student, in result I experience the pressure to do well throughout my academic career. I live off-campus, so at times it can be confusing to virtually navigate my tuition and billing information through CUNY. I find the physical upkeep of the campus to be up to part and accessibility to classes/advisement to be convenient. However, I have received professors that experience confusion due to having to hold various amounts of classes during a semester because they are under-paid and need to teach so many classes to provide for themselves.