Search NYPIRG

Posts Tagged ‘course offerings’

Luisa Garcia, Nassau Community College

Share on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

 I am currently in my second semester at Nassau Community College, and every day I have to take 3 different busses just to get to campus, taking me almost 2 hours. Recently, the bus that comes near my house was cut so now it only runs every 5 hours, so my time to be at school and do what I need to do as a student is limited.

Right now, I am working towards becoming a physical therapist but have had issues trying to find what classes I need. I went to the advising office on campus, but was only told what classes I would need to get my general degree and not what would help me best prepare for once I transferred. The office attempted to help, but because they had to help so many other students I wasn’t able to get the advising that I need to make sure that I will be prepared for life after college.  Also, due to budget issues the school does not have all of the classes I will need to continue my education, so I will be behind when I transfer schools.

Right now, I am able to afford to go to school due to financial aid programs. I am very lucky to receive these, but what I will receive will not nearly cover the costs of the four year college that I will need to attend to receive my degree. I’m not sure how I’m going to afford it, right now I already have an on-campus job while I’m in classes full time an am stretched so thin.

Domonique Baker, SUNY New Paltz

Share on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

I first got a Medical Assisting certificate at Ridely Lowell which is a trade school which I am currently in $18,000 in debt for. l then got my Associates at Dutchess Community College in psychology.  I am now going for my Bachelors in Psychology. I didn’t qualify for any financial aid because I am independent, even though I only make $25,000 a year. I work full time to cover outside expenses like food, rent, utilities, a car.  I got a better job at a hospital recently which pays a little bit more. I take out loans for New Paltz. If I get a C or above in school my full time job gives me a grant of $2500 toward tuition. I work full time over night so I only sleep 3 hours a night. Its impossible to study.
If college was free I wouldn’t have to work so hard maybe just part time, it would greatly improve my college experience, I’d get to spend more time studying, and be able to meet deadlines. Now I record my notes to play while I’m driving. I have to take a course over because I got a D, it was a course that started at 11am but I got out of work at 9:30am and sleep deprivation made it hard to stay awake through the class. I now have to retake the class but its full. I often have trouble registering for a class because it interferes with work, especially since I live 30 minutes from campus. If the class is too close to 5pm or right after then I can’t take it. I wanted to get a concentration in organizational psychology but a lot of the required courses were at 8 am and since my job wants me to be at work that early it’s not realistic. I need the job though, so what can I do?

This limits the options I have for my future prospects of becoming a Physician’s Assistant. I am being constrained by these financial factors. I graduated in high school in 2008, I never thought I would even achieve a Bachelor’s degree. Some semesters I can only afford to go to school part time. I’ve had to keep stopping. I’m surprised I’m graduating. Even to pay for this semester I had to put it on a credit card because the tuition assistance from my job doesn’t kick in until later. I applied for the Excelsior Scholarship, one day I was on hold for 20 minutes, then 40 minutes. They said I didn’t have enough credits, I was in school for too many semesters, they said over the phone that as long as I don’t have a bachelors and meet the income eligibility I’d get it, but in the 11th hour of the last day they denied it because of credits. When I call them and talk to them no one knows anything. I spoke to a woman at the hospital who said the same thing. Financial aid said to just call the website. The website would say call TAP then you’re on hold for 40 minutes. I don’t blame the financial aid people, the people at the Excelsior office needed to be more informed.

Haley Gray, SUNY New Paltz

Share on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

 

I am currently a Senior.  When I decided that I wanted to major in art education I chose to come to SUNY New Paltz for their top rated art education program. Since the budget cuts it’s been nearly impossible for me to get all of the classes that I need in order to graduate. When I first transferred here there were so many more sections of classes offered. Making my schedule last semester was a nightmare because the classes I needed for my major and the classes I needed in order to fulfill my general education requirements conflicted in time slots. I had to repeat studio courses that I had already completed just to fulfill the requirements for my major. This semester I had the same experience. Not being able to take the studio courses in my concentration negatively impacts my educational development and my ability to teach in the future. I’m paying for a quality education but due to budget cuts out of my control, my education is being compromised.

Dennis Dontsov, Hunter College

Share on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

I am a super senior at Hunter College majoring in philosophy.  I personally have had to stay an extra year at Hunter College because I did not get one of the required courses I needed to graduate on time and now I must wait an extra year to graduate. As a result, I have run out of my TAP award because it only covers four years.  I still get the Pell Grant, but now I must buy my textbooks and other living expenses out of pocket.  Without enough classes available, without enough time with advisers to properly plan out our schedules, students suffer.   I have had classmates offer me money to hold spots in coveted bio courses when I have earlier course registration than them, because there are not enough bio course seats available to accommodate students at **the** CUNY school for students majoring in the pre-health sciences.  This is not acceptable.  Students deserve better, money is owed to education.  That is why Governor Cuomo must pass the MOE.

Momodou Jallow, Bronx Community College

Share on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

I am a first semester freshman at Bronx Community College from The Gambia looking to study International Relations.  I have four children, and my wife and I are both in school and have to work to support our family.  I drive a cab as a way to earn money.  I wouldn’t be able to go to school without the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP), the Pell Grant and the ASAP program.

I am planning to go to a four year college and am worried because I won’t have ASAP for my bachelors.  I will continue to get Pell and TAP.  But if NY isn’t giving secure funding for more course offerings, it is unclear if I’ll have the courses available to ensure that I graduate on time.  Since I have a family to support, there is no way I will be able to afford to pay out of pocket if I run out of financial aid. This is why I we must have a Maintenance of Effort from our state government.