York College, City University of New York

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York College of The City University of New York
Academic Core Building
MottoSapere Aude, Incipe!
TypePublic senior college
EstablishedOctober 24, 1966; 55 years ago (October 24, 1966)
Parent institution
City University of New York
Academic affiliations
PresidentBerenecea Johnson Eanes[1]
Location, ,
United States

40°42′07″N 73°47′42″W / 40.702°N 73.795°W / 40.702; -73.795Coordinates: 40°42′07″N 73°47′42″W / 40.702°N 73.795°W / 40.702; -73.795
CampusUrban, 50 acres (20 ha)
NewspaperPandora's Box
ColorsWhite, Red & Black    
York College, CUNY Logo.png

York College is a public senior college in Jamaica in Queens, New York City. It is a senior college in the City University of New York (CUNY) system. Founded in 1966, York was the first senior college founded under the newly formed CUNY system, which united several previously independent public colleges into a single public university system in 1961. The college is a member-school of Thurgood Marshall College Fund. The college enrolls more than 8,000 students. 35% of undergraduate students graduate within six years.[2]


York College

The college is organized into three schools: the School of Arts & Sciences, the School of Business & Information Systems, and the School of Health Sciences and Professional Programs. Through those schools, York College offers B.A. and B.S. degrees in over 44 different programs.

In addition to the CUNY Aviation Institute, York College is home to the Northeast Regional Office and Laboratory of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The college's approximately 30,000 alumni serve in practically every professional endeavor, including medicine, research, law, business and social work. Approximately 40 percent of York's students study part-time, and in fall 2008 almost 700 new students were transfer students and over 1,000 were first-time freshmen.

The academic core building is on the left.
View of rear entrance plaza and campus view.


Faculty, students, and administrative staff participate in college governance, which is conducted according to procedures outlined in the bylaws of CUNY and in the York College Charter as approved by the Board of Trustees of CUNY. The York College Senate is the chief legislative body of the college. Reporting to the Senate are various standing college committees, which oversee such matters as curriculum and academic standards.


York is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and is a member of the Association of Colleges and Universities of the State of New York, the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, (CAEP). All education programs are registered by the New York State Department of Education and lead to New York State provisional certification after passing the written parts of the New York State Teacher Certification Examination after students pass the examination. York's Occupational Therapy Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); The Physician Assistant Studies Program is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc.; York's Social Work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education; and the Nursing Program by the National League for Nursing. A degree in accounting at York College includes all the educational requirements to sit for the Uniform Certified Public Accounting.

Graduation rate[edit]

Since 1971, York College has conferred 30,000 undergraduate and graduate degrees. York students progress toward graduation at different rates. Most students combine the role of student with that of employee and/or parent which may necessitate part-time enrollment or temporary leaves from their academic pursuits. US News and World Report list an average 6 year graduation rate of 31%.[3]

Location and facilities[edit]

At the heart of the 50-acre York College campus is the Academic Core Building, which houses classrooms, lecture halls, laboratories, art studios, the library, computer facilities, academic and administrative offices, as well as dining facilities and a bookstore. On adjacent super blocks are located the 1,500 seat Performing Arts Center, the Health and Physical Education facility, which includes a gymnasium and swimming pool, Classroom and Science Buildings, Athletic Fields and parking facilities. The Performing Arts Center was renamed the Milton G. Bassin Performing Arts Center in October 2014 after the York College's second president. Milton G. Bassin, who guided the school during the period from 1971 to 1991 and was instrumental in ensuring the school's survival through the fiscal crisis of the 1970s. Also located on the campus is the Illinois Jacquet Performance Space, dedicated for the famous jazz saxophonist who lived in Addesleigh Park, a jazz enclave in Jamaica. It is on the grounds of the adjacent Prospect Cemetery in the Chapel of the Sisters, the cemetery is on the NRHP.

York College Student Activities strives to complement the academic experience with co- and extra-curricular programs that promote social and personal development. York College staff advises and assists student groups in planning social, educational, and recreational programs, and provides opportunities for the development of leadership skills. Academic, social, athletic, cultural, recreational, political, and special interest groups add additional sets of valuable learning experiences for both students and faculty.

Student Activities works closely with the Student Government Association (SGA). SGA is composed of students elected by their peers to represent and advocate for all students.


The CUNY Aviation Institute (AI) at York College was established in 2003 by a grant from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to promote high quality education and research for the aviation industry. The AI is headquartered in New York City and is located on the campus of York College.

In cooperation with local, national, and international partners the CUNY Aviation Institute develops teaching materials regarding airlines, airports, service providers, civil aviation authorities, and related industries. Furthermore, the CUNY Aviation Institute develops programs of study at all academic levels, including credit and non-credit courses.

The CUNY Aviation Institute also promotes research and academic exchange of ideas in the field of aviation and assists in the training of professional educators and researchers. CUNY Aviation Institute has a partnership network comprising the private sector, educational institutions, international organizations, trade associations, governments and other bodies with interest in aviation management.[4]

Notable programs[edit]

  • Honors Program – An academic program for advanced students with the goal of providing academic, cultural and social opportunities. The program is a member of the National Collegiate Honors Council and the Northeast Regional Honors Council.
  • Social Work – A BS (Bachelor of Science) Social Work program accredited by the CSWE and A MSW program in the process of accreditation.
  • Nursing – A BS (Bachelor of Science) Nursing program accredited by the NLNAC (National League for Nursing).
  • Occupational Therapy (OT) – The only CUNY institution to offer a BS/MS Occupational Therapy program which is fully accredited by the American Occupational Therapy Association.
  • Physician Assistant (PA) – It is the second CUNY campus to offer a BS Physician Assistant program (the first being City College of New York). As of March 2007, the York College PA Program is fully accredited by the ARC-PA (Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant). In accordance to AAPA accreditation guidelines, the PA program is currently transitioning to a Master's program, with the first class starting in Fall 2016.
  • Public Health (PH) The B.S. in Public Health (effective Fall 2016) is the first official/approved Public Health undergraduate degree in the CUNY system. The mission of York College's undergraduate public health program is to engage in teaching, learning, scholarship and service to foster and sustain a healthier New York City and to promote culturally responsive, evidence-informed solutions to reduce disparities and promote health and wellness among urban populations. The undergraduate program in public health at York College is focused on the science of protecting and improving the health and well-being of communities.
  • The B.S. in Aviation Management is an opportunity to prepare students comprehensively for management careers in the industry.

Notable faculty[edit]

  • James Como, PhD, was Professor of Speech and Rhetoric from 1968 to 2013, and is the author of several books about C. S. Lewis.
  • Daisy Cocco De Filippis, PhD, was Professor of Spanish, 1983–2002. She subsequently became Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Eugenio María de Hostos Community College, and then President of Naugatuck Valley Community College. She is currently the President of Hostos Community College, the first Dominican woman to serve as a President in the CUNY system.
  • Ron Daniels, PhD, Distinguished Lecturer in Political Science, Department of Behavioral Sciences, 2007–2018, has been active in the civil rights movement for decades and is President of the Institute of the Black World 21st century (IBW).
  • Nancy Foner, PhD, was Assistant Professor of Anthropology, 1970–1973, before joining the faculty of the State University of New York at Purchase (1973–2004), where her career spanned from Assistant Professor to Distinguished Professor. She is currently Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Hunter College and the CUNY Graduate Center.
  • Bruce Jay Friedman, novelist and playwright, was Visiting Professor of English, 1974–1976.
  • David Ignatow, poet, was Professor of English and Poet-in-Residence, 1968–1984.
  • Reatha King, PhD, was Professor of Chemistry, 1968–1977, as well as serving as Associate Dean of the Division of Natural Sciences & Mathematics, and later Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. She left York to become President of Metropolitan State University in Minnesota (1977–1988).
  • Mark Rudman, was Associate Professor of English and Poet-in-Residence, 1984–1988.
  • Eileen Southern, PhD, ethnomusicologist, was Professor of Music, 1968–1974, before joining the faculty of Harvard University, where she became the first African American woman to become a tenured professor there.

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Sal F. Albanese (1972), who was a Democratic candidate for New York City mayor in 2013 and 2017. He was elected to the New York City Council in 1982 and served until 1998, representing part of Brooklyn. After leaving the City Council, Albanese became Marketing Director for INVESCO and then Managing Director, Institutional Sales & Marketing, at Mesirow Financial.
  • Maryanne J. George (2015), American Christian musician
  • Deborah Persaud, M.D. (1981), a virologist and associate professor of pediatric infectious diseases at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, who received a $700,000 Elizabeth Glazer award for pediatric AIDS research.
  • Gerald A. Reynolds (1989), who served as Chair of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights from 2004 to 2010.
  • James Siegel (1977), author of Derailed, and Political Advisor to New York State Governor Eliot Spitzer.


York competes as an NCAA Division III member of the City University of New York Athletic Conference.


  1. ^ "CUNY Names Four College Presidents". CUNY Newswire (Press release). June 29, 2020. Retrieved November 25, 2020.
  2. ^ "City University of New York: York College | The College Board". bigfuture.collegeboard.org. Retrieved June 30, 2020.
  3. ^ "CUNY--York College | U.S. News & World Report". usnews.com. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  4. ^ "ABOUT CUNY AVIATION INSTITUTE". Retrieved January 24, 2010.

External links[edit]