Best Colleges in New York

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The state of New York has a school and program for almost every college student. There are nearly 300 colleges in New York, including two state school systems, elite private schools, Ivy League universities and world-famous performing arts and religious studies centers. With so many options, picking the right school for your needs and academic interests can be challenging. To make your search easier, we have applied our rigorous methodology to the latest education data to rank the best colleges in New York, including the top four-year and two-year schools.

2016 Online Education Trends Report: Learn how online programs are changing the face of higher education.

New York’s legislators emphasize access to higher education. One prominent initiative is the Statewide Plan for Higher Education 2012-2020. This long-term program is ambitious: goals include enhancing both the accessibility and the quality of New York’s postsecondary education options, partially by strengthening partnerships between schools in the State University of New York (SUNY) and the City University of New York. The plan also endeavors to help prospective students overcome economic and social barriers to higher education, vying to create pathways for all residents to attend school.

New York’s continued focus on enticing students to attend college bodes well for students. New York State is already renowned for the breadth of its universities, and admission at many schools is highly competitive. The high-quality education they deliver comes at a cost, as the average tuition for in-state students exceeded $20,000 in 2014. Fortunately, New York state residents are offered some relief by the state’s Tuition Assistance Program and graduates can expect good job prospects upon graduation. The U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics reports that hiring is on the rise in all occupations in the state, as is the average salary. To learn more about the top four-year schools in the state, check out our rankings below.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Location Description    
1

Vassar College

 5/5N/APoughkeepsie, NY

campus_Vassar_College

Vassar has a long history of educating men and women in a supportive and engaging environment. Founded in 1861, the liberal arts college has dozens of degree programs, athletic teams, and student organizations, ensuring that students enjoy a well-rounded educational experience. Vassar also has hundreds of distinguished alumni, including Meryl Streep, Lisa Kudrow, Justin Long, and notable scientists, doctors, politicians, and musicians. Popular academic programs include political science, Russian studies, sociology, earth science, and mathematics.

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2

Columbia University in the City of New York

 5/5N/ANew York, NY

campus_Columbia_University

Columbia offers a diverse student body, a commitment to educational excellence, and a variety of academic programs. Degrees are available in chemical engineering, accounting, computer science, anthropology, and dozens of other subjects in a variety of fields. Columbia is famous for its medical school, which offers residency training in all major medical specialties. Notable alumni include Madeleine Albright, Barack Obama, Alexander Hamilton, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Warren Buffett.

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3

Hamilton College

 5/5N/AClinton, NY

campus-Hamilton-College

Hamilton was opened as a school for men, but became coed in 1978 after merging with Kirkland College. Prominent alumni include Nobel Peace Prize winner Elihu Root, several diplomats and politicians, and Paul Lieberstein, the actor who played Toby on The Office. Students can pursue degrees in a variety of subjects: anthropology, creative writing, economics, foreign languages, and public policy are among the most popular programs. In addition to several school sports, students can also participate in the actuary club, crossword club, and the Emerson Literary Society.

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4

Cornell University

 5/5N/AIthaca, NY

campus-Cornell-University

Located in Ithaca, Cornell has seven undergraduate schools and several professional colleges. Cornell is a land-grant university, which gives the school access to state and federal funding needed to operate educational missions and outreach programs. The school has graduated several Nobel Prize winners and dozens of Rhodes Scholars and Marshall Scholars. Notable alumni include Bill Maher, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Christopher Reeve, Ann Coulter, and Pearl S. Buck. Archaeology, biometry and statistics, development sociology, environmental engineering, and human development are just some of the popular programs available on campus. Cornell is also renowned for its history department.

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5

Colgate University

 5/5N/AHamilton, NY

campus-colgate-university

Located on on the banks of Taylor Lake, Colgate’s gorgeous campus has an art gallery and a museum of anthropology. The university also has an active Greek system and dozens of student organizations. Students can pursue nationally recognized programs in environmental biology, the classics, foreign languages, biochemistry, and peace and conflict studies. Every Colgate class has a class council to discuss campus issues and effect positive change.

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6

Barnard College

 5/5N/ANew York, NY

Barnard College is a private women’s college affiliated with Columbia University. Barnard prides itself as the most selective of all women’s colleges in the United States. All students participate in the student government association, and Barnard also has language clubs, music groups, community service organizations, a radio station, and a literary magazine. The college offers dozens of majors and minors: programs include Africana studies, economics, environmental studies, and history. Notable alumni include Joan Rivers, Twyla Tharp, Lauren Graham, and Jane Wyatt.

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7

Skidmore College

 5/5N/ASaratoga Springs, NY

Skidmore College originated as a women’s college, before admitting male students in 1971. The college is known for its collaborative research program, which gives students the opportunity to conduct research and co-author papers with experienced faculty members. Most graduates receive B.A. degrees, though bachelor of science programs are available in social work, business, dance, education, theater, and exercise science. Skidmore is a small, selective college with fewer than 3,000 undergraduates. The school has world-class art and theater facilities, providing students access to high-quality art shows and live performances on campus.

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8

Union College

 5/5N/ASchenectady, NY

One of the oldest colleges in the country, Union was the first higher education institution established in New York. Union is a liberal arts school with 21 academic departments. All students must take core courses in math, science, humanities, and English. Union offers degrees traditional degrees in geology, art history, neuroscience, astronomy, and dozens of other subjects. The school also boasts a strong engineering program, which is unusual for a liberal arts college. Students can pursue degrees in bioengineering, mechanical engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, along with a minor in environmental engineering.

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9

University of Rochester

 5/5N/ANY

Unlike most colleges, the University of Rochester has no required courses. All students are given the opportunity to create their own programs, giving all students the opportunity to explore their passion. Although there are no required classes, every student must take some courses in the social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences. Students must also complete a writing project. Students interested in international travel are encouraged to pursue one of the school’s many study abroad opportunities. Notable graduates include Debra Jo Rupp, Pledge of Allegiance author Francis Bellamy, and Grammy-winning singer Renee Fleming.

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10

New York University

 5/5N/ANew York, NY

NYU has more than 40,000 students enrolled in a variety of disciplines. Beyond traditional academic programs, NYU also offers several online degrees. Faculty members often use technology to supplement on-site lectures and presentations. The university offers degrees in accounting, international relations, astronomy, basic medical sciences, and music therapy, among the more than 100 majors and minors available. Students can attend Broadway shows, concerts at Radio City and Lincoln Center, and events at Madison Square Garden. Famous alums include Lady Gaga, Andy Samberg, Woody Allen, Aziz Ansari, and Adam Sandler.

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11

St Lawrence University

 5/5N/ACanton, NY

Located in Canton, St. Lawrence offers a variety of academic programs, athletic teams, and research opportunities for students. The school provides undergraduate, graduate, and pre-professional programs. Among St. Lawrence’s undergraduate majors include innovative offerings in conservation biology, Latin American studies, statistics, peace studies, and visual art. Graduate programs are available in education, educational leadership, and counseling and human development. The school’s study abroad program connects students with research and learning opportunities in China, providing them the opportunity to immerse themselves in Chinese culture.

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12

SUNY at Geneseo

 2/5N/AGeneseo, NY

Located in the picturesque Finger Lakes region, SUNY at Geneseo’s campus features a blend of ivy-covered buildings and modern learning facilities. Popular majors on campus include comparative literature, business administration, childhood education, and English literature. Students may also minor in Asian studies, conflict studies, biomathematics, cognitive science, and piano pedagogy. They can also pursue pre-professional programs in law and medicine.

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13

Bard College

 5/5N/AAnnandale-On-Hudson, NY

Originally known as St. Stephen’s College, Bard is located in Dutchess County. The school has a liberal arts college, several graduate programs, and a conservatory, providing students plenty of academic options. Bard features a range of programs, including renowned offerings in social studies, languages and literature, the arts, and science, mathematics and computing. Bard emphasizes the importance of civic engagement, personal growth, and professional development to all students, and encourages students to volunteer in their local community and around the globe.

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14

Hobart William Smith Colleges

 5/5N/AGeneva, NY

Hobart and William Smith lie on 320 acres in the beautiful Finger Lakes Region. The schools originally operated as separate men’s and women’s colleges, but are now united in a two-college system. These colleges offer students highly individualized academic programs. Students are encouraged to think critically and explore topics of interest, and can design their own degree. Many graduates have earned Fulbright, Udall, Rhodes and Goldwater fellowships. Hobart and William Smith have nearly 50 majors to suit students interested in everything from Africana studies to writing and rhetoric.

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15

University at Buffalo

 2/5N/ABuffalo, NY

The University at Buffalo is part of the SUNY system, which provides all students with access to dozens of research tools, tutoring services, and other resources. Faculty members encourage students to develop a global perspective and to have a positive impact on the world around them. In addition to on-campus programs, the college also offers students the chance to study and conduct research abroad. Students often participate in service-learning projects in other countries, which helps participants learn about new cultures and languages. Innovative undergraduate programs include computational physics, romance languages and literatures, global gender studies, biomedical sciences, and nuclear medicine technologies. Like most SUNY schools, Buffalo offers a robust online education program.

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16

SUNY at Binghamton

 2/5N/AVestal, NY

SUNY Binghamton maintains an active Greek system, an intramural sports program, and a variety of student-run organizations. The school offers more than 100 undergraduate programs for students in a variety of subjects. Available programs include architectural history, classical civilization, ecology, geography, and Hebrew studies. One of the school’s most famous students is Paul Reiser, an actor known for playing Paul Buchman on Mad About You.

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17

Marist College

 5/5N/APoughkeepsie, NY

Located in Poughkeepsie, Marist provides students a variety of on-campus and online programs. International students are welcome to enroll in one of the college’s many departments, and the school also provides additional assistance for members of the military. Although students are required to complete a core program, they can personalize these courses. Marist encourages students to develop their character, intellect, and professional skills inside and outside the classroom.

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18

Stony Brook University

 2/5N/AStony Brook, NY

Stony Brook features an excellent research program, and as a large state school, a variety of innovative and traditional majors. With a 17-to-1 student-faculty ratio, Stony Brook fosters a collaborative learning environment via small-group discussions and class projects.. Stony Brook has more than 30 sororities and fraternities, along with a student newspaper, intramural sports, and evening events to keep students busy outside the classroom.

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19

CUNY Hunter College

 2/5N/ANew York, NY

Hunter is the largest school in the CUNY system, serving more than 20,000 students each year. The school has nearly 200 academic programs, ensuring that all students can pursue their personal interests. Hunter’s administrators are proud that their school serves a diverse population, from local commuters to students from foreign countries. In addition to undergraduate programs, the school confers master’s degrees and doctorates in several disciplines. Undergraduate programs are available in archaeology, Hebrew, environmental studies, and many other innovative fields. A variety of graduate programs are also available.

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20

SUNY at New Paltz

 2/5N/ANew Paltz, NY

SUNY New Paltz is a nationally recognized college with a highly selective admissions process. The campus is located in a historic village within easy driving distance of New York City and Albany, giving students plenty of opportunities to intern with major companies and enjoy recreational activities in urban areas. The school has a reputation for hiring award-winning faculty members who have a great deal of theoretical and practical experience in their fields. Innovative programs are available in environmental geochemical science, ceramics, black studies, journalism, and mechanical engineering. Students can also to enroll in minors such as linguistics, political science, women’s studies, and industrial psychology.

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21

CUNY Queens College

 2/5N/ANY

Queens College has students from more than 150 countries, creating a diverse environment where everyone has the opportunity to create lasting friendships and professional relationships. Although the campus is located in New York City, it sits on 80 tree-lined acres and has plenty of open spaces for intramural recreation and personal fitness activities. Popular programs include undergraduate degrees in actuarial studies, applied social science, Byzantine and modern Greek studies, nutrition and exercise sciences, and religious studies. The school also offers graduate degrees and certificates in subjects like art, computer science, history, biology, and environmental sciences.

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22

Syracuse University

 5/5N/ASyracuse, NY

Syracuse University is located in New York, and also maintains satellite campuses in Los Angeles, Washington, New York City, and several overseas locations. More than 20,000 students enroll in the university’s undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs each year. The school has students from every state and more than 100 countries, creating a diverse community of learners. Most programs can be completed in four years. The university is known for its music performance programs, which include instruction in voice, strings, percussion, wind instruments, and organ.

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23

SUNY at Cortland

 2/5N/ACortland, NY

SUNY Cortland enrolled its first class of students in 1869, began offering two-year programs in 1905, and awarded its first master’s degrees just after World War II. Undergraduate students can enroll in a variety of traditional and innovative academic programs, including coaching, geographic information systems, professional writing, sports management, and fitness development. SUNY Cortland’s graduate programs include childhood education, exercise science, history, communication disorders, and adolescence education.

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24

SUNY College at Brockport

 2/5N/ABrockport, NY

At Brockport, students have access to a counseling center, volunteer opportunities, on-campus health services, work-study jobs, and a leadership-development program. The school has more than 30 different clubs and organizations; some of the most popular ones include the billiards club, Campus Ambassadors group, TEACH association, and groups interested in public relations, gender studies, history, and health sciences. Brockport offers B.A. and B.S. degrees in more than 30 subjects, including kinesiology, anthropology, marketing, adapted physical education, and medical technology.

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25

SUNY at Plattsburgh

 2/5N/APlattsburgh, NY

SUNY Plattsburgh is a four-year public university with a branch campus in Queensbury. The university serves more than 5,000 students each year, most of whom are enrolled in undergraduate programs. The average class has 22 students. SUNY Plattsburgh has dozens of undergraduate majors; popular fields include cytotechnology, art history, child care management, economics, and digital media production. There are also several programs that combine undergraduate and graduate courses.

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New York state is deeply invested in its residents’ ability to attend college after high school, particularly students considering community college. Currently, the state provides $235 million of financial assistance to students at two-year schools, and Governor Andrew Cuomo is working with the White House to provide even greater accessibility. President Obama’s free community college initiative has attracted Cuomo’s interest, and Cuomo has pledged considerable state funding to make the proposal viable. Two-year colleges have a bright future in New York, and now is an excellent time for students to pursue an associate degree in the state. To help you evaluate two-year schools, we’ve ranked the top colleges in New York below.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Location Description    
1

Corning Community College

 1/5N/ACorning, NY

campus-corning-community-college

Corning Community College boasts a high success rate for transfer students and a wide range of degree options, giving the college an excellent reputation in New York and beyond. Available programs include chemical dependency counseling, machine tool technology, computer numerical control (CNC) programming, early childhood services, and more.

Students also have the opportunity to participate in athletics and campus activities, including basketball, bowling, baseball, volleyball, and soccer teams as well as the American Sign Language Club, the Future Educators Association, and the Nursing Society. Notable alumni include Dr. Jay Hanas, Director of Mass Spectrometry for the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, and Eileen Collins, a retired colonel with the United States Air Force.

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2

Columbia-Greene Community College

 1/5N/AHudson, NY

campus-columbia-greene-community-college

In addition to associate degree programs in several disciplines, Columbia-Greene Community College also offers business training for adult learners who want to advance their careers. Programs are available in the medical assistant, nursing, medical office assistant, social sciences, and computer science fields.

The college also offers a certificate in computer graphics and an online associate degree in business. Student athletes participate in golf, track and field, baseball, cross country, and basketball. Columbia-Greene also has clubs for students interested in art, massage therapy, human services, and psychology. One of the school’s most famous graduates is Mickey Brantley, a former player for Major League Baseball.

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3

Suffolk County Community College

 1/5N/ASelden, NY

campus-suffolk-county-community-college

Suffolk County Community College offers more than 75 programs for students who want to enter the workforce right away or complete the general-education requirements necessary for transferring to a four-year college or university. The college has several notable alumni, including champion boxer Cletus Seldin, former astronaut Robert L. Gibson, and former assemblywoman Patricia Eddington.

Programs are available in culinary arts, electrical technology, hotel and resort management, information technology, and graphic design. Students can also participate in activities including chess club, meditation club, surfing club, soccer, tennis, and basketball. The school is well known for its art and theater programs.

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4

Villa Maria College

 3/5N/ABuffalo, NY

campus-villa-maria-college

Villa Maria College was founded by the Felician Sisters, a Franciscan community based on the beliefs of Saint Francis of Assisi. The college offers programs in creative writing and literature, fashion design and merchandising, integrated arts, digital filmmaking, and photography.

Students can join campus sports teams including basketball, bowling, golf, soccer, and swimming. Villa Maria also has clubs for students interested in writing, graphic design, and music. The campus has an on-site art gallery as well as a ministry to promote the spiritual growth of students and staff members. Academically talented students are invited to join Phi Theta Kappa, a national honor society.

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5

SUNY Broome Community College

 1/5N/ABinghamton, NY

campus-suny-broome-community-college

SUNY Broome Community College offers two-year programs in the disciplines of business, health sciences, science and engineering, and liberal arts. Available programs include computer security and forensics, computer science, teacher education, criminal justice, and marketing. The school also has certificate programs in business skills, casino management, desktop publishing, entrepreneurship, and office technologies, for students who need to develop new professional skills in a short amount of time.

Unique among two-year colleges is the school’s telecommunications technology program, offered specifically to Verizon employees. SUNY Broome has a Japanese animation club, an ice hockey team, and a club specifically for students interested in clinical laboratory technology.

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6

Niagara County Community College

 1/5N/ASanborn, NY

Niagara County Community College was founded in 1962, but the first students did not attend the school until 1963. The school quickly earned the nickname “Nabisco Tech” due to the use of the former Nabisco Shredded Wheat factory as the college’s first building.

NCCC now offers dozens of two-year programs and online learning opportunities to students throughout New York. Niagara also offers certificates in subjects such as digital media, local area networks, music, and baking and pastry arts. Available degree programs include brewery operations, industrial process technician, economic crime investigation, and radiologic technology. Students also participate in sports and on-campus activities.

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7

Dutchess Community College

 1/5N/APoughkeepsie, NY

Dutchess Community College offers two-year degree programs in a variety of subjects. The school has teams for students interested in baseball, softball, basketball, and soccer. Dutchess also has clubs for chess, architecture, fire science, anthropology, and criminal justice students.

Available programs include phlebotomy, foreign languages, chemical dependency counseling, human services, and engineering science. Upon graduation, students have the knowledge and skills they need to enter the workforce or transfer to four-year colleges and universities.

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8

Nassau Community College

 1/5N/AGarden City, NY

Nassau Community College’s faculty members hold doctorates at twice the national rate for teachers at community colleges. Faculty members use their extensive experience to help students develop real-world skills that are valuable in any industry. The school has a number of notable graduates, including professional golfer Arjun Atwal, actor Steve Buscemi, actor Eddie Murphy, and actor Billy Crystal.

When students are not studying, they participate in Gaelic Society, dance team, cheerleading, bowling, and other activities. Programs available at Nassau include physical sciences, paralegal, fashion buying and merchandising, economics and finance, mortuary science, and interdisciplinary studies.

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9

Rockland Community College

 1/5N/ASuffern, NY

Rockland Community College has a mix of programs for students who want to transfer to a four-year college or join the workforce immediately after graduation. Career-training programs include fire science technology, bookkeeping and office administration, fitness specialist, paralegal specialist, and culinary arts.

Programs designed to prepare students for transfer include criminal justice, communication theory, marketing, civil engineering, and psychology. The college has an active student body, and students participate in athletic events, sign up for clubs related to their academic interests, and have plenty of opportunities to socialize with classmates.

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10

Schenectady County Community College

 1/5N/ASchenectady, NY

Schenectady County Community College has degree and certificate programs for students interested in advancing their education and qualifying for new career opportunities. The college also offers specialty programs with SUNY Delhi and the Belanger School of Nursing, giving students access to a wide range of disciplines.

Some of the most popular degree programs are casino and gaming management, alternative energy technology, emergency management, nanoscale materials technology, and music audio technology. Certificates are available in computer support, computer repair, entrepreneurship, and criminal justice. Students spend their free time playing sports and participating in clubs related to education, aviation, and Spanish.

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11

Ulster County Community College

 1/5N/AStone Ridge, NY

Ulster County Community College offers degrees in fashion design, theater arts, criminal justice, environmental studies, and nursing. The school also has certificate programs available to prepare students to enter the workforce or earn promotions at their current jobs.

Police basic training, animal science office assistant, network administrator, and Sign Language interpreting are some of the career-related certificates available. Ulster County is located in the Hudson Valley, giving students easy access to Kingston, New Paltz, Woodstock, and New York City. Students also spend time participating in biology club, nursing club, chess club, environmental club, and school athletics.

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12

Cayuga County Community College

 1/5N/AAuburn, NY

Cayuga County Community College has degree and certificate programs available to meet the needs of all learners. Adult students often enroll in certificate programs to develop valuable professional skills, while recent high-school graduates complete their core courses at Cayuga before transferring to four-year schools.

Student clubs include the creative writing club, art club, judo club, and early childhood education club. Cayuga offers associate degrees in electric technology, health sciences, geographic information systems, mechanical technology, and studio art and design. The college offers certificates in event management, plastic manufacturing, computer hardware/software design, and tourism management.

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13

Jamestown Community College

 1/5N/AJamestown, NY

Jamestown Community College offers associate degrees in arts, science, and applied science, for students interesting in furthering their careers or completing core courses before moving on to four-year colleges and universities. The college has several famous alumni, including Natalie Merchant and Bryan Hodgson, a University at Buffalo basketball coach.

Available programs include medical office technology, professional piloting, adolescence education, and social sciences. When class is not in session, student athletes play basketball, baseball, and golf. The school also has swimming and diving teams. Many students enjoy participating in film club, criminal justice club, cheer and step club, and technology club.

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14

Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology

 4/5N/AFlushing, NY

For students interested in aviation, Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology offers several associate degree, bachelor’s degree, and certificate programs. Certificates are available in aviation maintenance, aircraft dispatch, safety management systems, and occupational studies.

Degree programs are classified according to whether they focus on aviation or aviation-related management. Available degrees include aviation maintenance management, airline management, airport management, and general management. The American Association of Airport Executives and the Society of Women Engineers both have student chapters at Vaughn College. Students can also join soccer, tennis, baseball, cross country, and basketball teams.

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15

Fulton-Montgomery Community College

 1/5N/AJohnstown, NY

Fulton-Montgomery Community College has more than two dozen degree programs and several certificate programs available to students of all ages. In the past, the school offered courses in secretarial sciences and leather making, but all programs have been updated to reflect the needs of today’s students and employers.

Fulton-Montgomery has certificates for students interested in careers related to business applications, HVAC maintenance, and automation systems. Available degree programs include business administration, computer technology, radiologic technology, construction technology, and fine arts. Students participate in extracurricular activities such as communications club, graphic arts club, outdoor adventure club, and film club.

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16

CUNY Kingsborough Community College

 1/5N/ABrooklyn, NY

Many students attend Kingsborough Community College to complete core program requirements before transferring, while others complete their degrees and move right into the workforce.

The college has more than a dozen degree programs, but some of the most popular include community health, biotechnology, and engineering science. Certificates are also available to students interested in maritime technology, culinary arts, and alcoholism abuse counseling. Kingsborough Community College has an art gallery and performing arts center, giving students and community members an opportunity to enjoy the arts in their free time.

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17

Orange County Community College

 2/5N/AMiddletown, NY

Also known as SUNY Orange, the college offers degree programs to prepare students for careers in several fields. Available majors include computer networking, architectural technology, dental hygiene, and exercise studies.

SUNY Orange also offers associate in applied science degrees, which help students develop the skills they need to change careers or enter the workforce for the first time. The school has campuses in Middletown and Newburgh, making it a convenient option for students throughout the state.

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18

SUNY Westchester Community College

 1/5N/AValhalla, NY

SUNY Westchester Community College has dozens of degree programs in business, communications, education, and other popular fields. The school also offers a variety of resources, providing students with a supportive environment in which they can learn and grow.

Students have access to the Harold L. Drimmer Library, a testing and assessment center, an open computer lab, and services for students diagnosed with learning disabilities. The main campus has more than 1,900 computers available for students to conduct research and complete assignments. SUNY Westchester offers degrees in digital filmmaking, global business, journalism, marketing, and environmental science.

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19

CUNY Queensborough Community College

 1/5N/ABayside, NY

CUNY Queensborough Community College has more than 16,000 students enrolled in its degree, certificate, and continuing-education programs. All students have access to career services, on-campus counseling, and academic advising.

The school also has services available to help veterans return to school after returning from basic training or active duty. The campus has an active student government association and a chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society. Available programs include accounting for forensic accounting, gallery and museum studies, chemistry, massage therapy, and nursing. Some programs are offered in conjunction with other schools in the CUNY system.

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20

SUNY College of Technology at Alfred

 2/5N/AAlfred, NY

Alfred State boasts a 99% employment and continuing-education rate. Student athletes play on NCAA Division III teams, giving them access to athletic scholarships and valuable networking opportunities. Softball, baseball, football, and wrestling are among the most popular sports at Alfred State.

The school also has more than 100 clubs and organizations, including a hockey team, drama club, commuter council, and the roleplaying guild. Associate degrees are available in agricultural business, architectural technology, drafting, court reporting, and heavy equipment operations.

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21

Belanger School of Nursing

 2/5N/ASchenectady, NY

Belanger School of Nursing offers a hospital-based program to give students the skills they need to succeed in the nursing field. Before participating in the clinical practicum, all students must receive the required immunizations to protect patients from infectious diseases. After completing the nursing program, students are able to provide care to patients in hospitals, nursing homes, and other medical facilities.

Required courses include medical-surgical nursing, nursing care of women and children, psychiatric mental health nursing, and transition into professional practice. In 2011, 97% of Belanger students were employed within six months of graduation.

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22

Adirondack Community College

 1/5N/AQueensbury, NY

Students at Adirondack Community College have access to the resources of all SUNY colleges, making it easier to find support and academic assistance. Students from Warren, Saratoga, and Washington counties make up the majority of the student body, but SUNY Adirondack also serves students in other states.

Adirondack offers degrees in media arts, radio and television broadcasting, substance abuse services, and electrical technology. Certificates are also available in commercial cooking, adventure sports, and other exciting topics.

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23

Jefferson Community College

 1/5N/AWatertown, NY

Jefferson Community College is located in Watertown, New York, making it easily accessible via Route 81. It is also located near many of the best attractions along Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and the Adirondack Mountains. Founded in 1961, the college sits on 90 acres of land and serves more than 4,000 students each year.

Unlike many two-year colleges, Jefferson Community College hosts on-campus housing for nearly 300 students. The college has degree programs designed for students interested in transferring or starting their careers as soon as they graduate. Some of the programs available include agri-business, engineering science, hospitality and tourism, human services, and liberal studies.

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24

Herkimer County Community College

 1/5N/AHerkimer, NY

Herkimer County Community College has more than 40 programs available to meet the needs of its student body. The school also has an Internet Academy, which offers three certificate programs and 20 degrees for students interested in online learning. Some of the school’s most popular programs include physical therapist assistant, crime and intelligence analysis, laboratory technology, quality assurance, and forensic investigations.

With more than 50 championship wins, the school’s athletic program has an excellent reputation. Men’s sports include basketball, cross country, soccer, and bowling. Herkimer also has women’s teams in volleyball, tennis, swimming and diving, cross country, and soccer.

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25

Boricua College

 3/5N/ANew York, NY

The programs at Boricua College are designed to meet the needs of Puerto Rican students. The college has four campuses in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, making all programs accessible to students in the five boroughs of New York City.

What sets Boricua apart from other two-year colleges in the state is its five-pronged approach to learning. All students participate in a weekly colloquium, take courses in theoretical studies, and have access to independent study, cultural studies, and experiential studies. Programs available at Boricua include business administration, childhood education, human services, and Latin American and Caribbean studies.

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If you’re thinking about applying to one of the best colleges in New York, continuing reading to learn more about living in the Empire State.

When people hear New York, they naturally think of New York City, and it’s true that the Big Apple has plenty to offer students. With dozens of college campuses scattered among the five boroughs, students can immerse themselves in a variety of cultural opportunities unequaled around the country. Students can augment their studies with visits to historic museums and libraries, and they’ll have no shortage of entertainment options when they’re not studying. Proximity to one of the world’s major centers of commerce, technology, healthcare and the arts also means that students have unparalleled internship and job opportunities. While these benefits are attractive, they come at a hefty price: the cost of living in New York City ranks among the highest in the world. Much of the cost of living reflects the city’s notoriously expensive housing; living on campus can alleviate some of the financial pinch.

Outside of the city, the rest of the state features a mixture of scenic forests, coastline, mountains and a wealth of lakes and rivers sure to please any outdoor enthusiast. Visitors to New York’s eastern border can enjoy Lake Erie, Lake Ontario and Niagara Falls, one of the original Seven Wonders of the World. Cities and towns of every size dot the 54,555-square-mile state. Living outside of the city is considerably more affordable, and the area’s extensive transit systems allow for easy travel throughout the state.

Regional Spotlight: New York City

  • Major Cities: New York City
  • Attractions: Statue of Liberty, 9/11 Memorial, Rockefeller Center, Times Square, the Met, Broadway
  • Cost of Living: New York City
  • Popular Schools: CUNY, Columbia University, Cornell University, Yeshiva University, The New School for Social Research

Regional Spotlight: Northern New York

  • Major Cities: Plattsburgh, Watertown
  • Attractions: Lake Champlain, Adirondack Park, Lake Placid
  • Cost of Living: Plattsburgh
  • Popular Schools: SUNY Plattsburgh, SUNY Potsdam, St. Lawrence University

Regional Spotlight: Upstate New York

  • Major Cities: Syracuse, Albany, Rochester, Buffalo
  • Attractions: Baseball Hall of Fame, Niagara Falls, Saratoga Race Course, Splashwater Kingdom
  • Cost of Living: Buffalo
  • Popular Schools: SUNY Binghamton, SUNY Albany, Empire State College, Ithaca College, University of Rochester, Syracuse University

Regional Spotlight: Central New York

  • Major Cities: Albany, Cortland, Seneca, Oneida
  • Attractions: Brew Central, Howe Caverns Adventure Park, Fenimore Art Museum, Landis Arboretum
  • Cost of Living: Albany
  • Popular Schools: Colgate University, SUNY Oswego, Utica College, SUNY Cortland

Residency

Attending school in New York state can be expensive, and in-state residents benefit from considerably reduced tuition rates at many schools. If you’re not a New York resident, it may make sense to establish permanent residency. Be aware that state law mandates school residency requirements and that not all schools share the same stipulations.

For Minors:

For legal purposes, a minor is an individual under the age of eighteen (18). Minors who apply to college are considered to reside in their parent’s domicile, and are expected to provide proof of address. Minors living with their parents in New York are considered state residents. Minors who live with their parents outside of New York state are ineligible for in-state tuition. If you have divorced parents, your custodial parent must live in New York. However, if you establish that you will live with a non-custodial parent who is a New York resident throughout your attendance at college, you may qualify for in-state tuition.

For Adults:

Adult students must establish New York state residency 12 months before registering for any term at a New York school. This must be the student’s permanent place of residence throughout the full calendar year, and proof of residency may be required. You must also prove financial independence; if you’re claimed as a dependent by a parent who lives in another state, you’ll be considered an out-of-state student.