STATEMENT FROM DONNA GURNETT, PRESIDENT OF NEW YORK’S ASSOCIATION OF PROPRIETY COLLEGES

“New York’s Association of Proprietary Colleges represents the interests of degree-granting colleges supporting the higher education and career pursuits of 26,000 students across the state.

We are disappointed Governor Andrew Cuomo delivered remarks today in which he underscored New York’s commitment to choice and opportunity, while advancing a budget proposal that is unfairly punitive to our New York-based, degree-granting colleges that are committed to educational excellence, access and affordability.

The measure is incredibly inconsistent, and if enacted will blunt opportunity and choices for groups the Governor frequently embraces. Such as:

• First generation college students or immigrants – many of whom, due to no-fault of their own, are undocumented;
• Women – many are seeking to break a cycle of dependency and poverty and compose 69 percent of APC member enrollment; and
• Middle-class families – who are focused on developing the essential skills required to succeed in health care, small business and technology-based occupations.

Our colleges meet the same rigorous standards imposed on all of New York’s higher education sectors, and have a rate of achievement and graduation that far exceeds those of public sector alternatives such as the SUNY and CUNY systems.

Simply put, any proposal that compromises, restricts or limits choice and opportunity in higher education neither leads the nation, nor reflects New York values.”