SUNY Chancellor John King pays visit to ESF
SUNY’s new chancellor paid a visit to the College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse Monday as part of his tour of the 64-campus system. John King has visited seven campuses since was named chancellor in early December. He says part of his role is to get the word out that SUNY is an incredible value.
"ESF is a good example of that, and not every New York student knows it," King said. "So one of the things we're working on is really an effort to make sure that every New York state 12th grader knows there's a place for them at SUNY, whether that's at a community college or at a four year institution, or at one of our university centers."
King says that network can be beneficial compared to the disconnected nature of public colleges in other states.
"Here we can make it easier for a student who's at a two year institution to transfer to a four year institution when they're ready," King said. "We can be a place that helps students get microcredentials, not a full degree, but actually a certificate that is immediately relevant to advancing in their job."
King knows the SUNY system will also be an essential part of meeting the wide-ranging and changing needs of local economies.
"As Micron comes to the central New York region, SUNY is going to play a vital role in preparing the workforce for Micron and for the semiconductor industry. More broadly, we're going to play a vital role in preparing the green jobs workforce. SUNY is the answer to our healthcare workforce challenges."
Now, he says his challenge will be convincing the governor and legislature to invest more in SUNY, and he’s excited to see where the executive budget will land when Governor Hochul unveils it Wednesday. In her state of the state address, Hochul did mention creating a $500 million matching fund for the university centers to attract a billion dollars in philanthropy to invest in research. Meanwhile, King says he'll also be focused on diversity. He says the student body and faculty don't reflect the full diversity of the state.