Empire State College/Home/Who we are

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photograph of graduating student in gown and cap

SUNY Empire State College was established in 1971 by the SUNY Board of Trustees and then Chancellor and future United States Commissioner of Education Ernest L. Boyer as a distinctive statewide SUNY institution focused on nontraditional teaching and learning.

College faculty mentors guide learners through designing an individual degree program within 11 broad areas.

Further, the college continues its 40-year commitment to valuing learning gained from life and work experience and has a clear process for assessing and awarding credit for college-level learning gained through experience.

Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, the college serves mostly working adults pursuing associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees onsite at 35 locations in New York state and abroad, as well as online everywhere.

Whether online or face to face, or a combination of both, learners decide how, when and where to study.

The college also offers affordable SUNY tuition, degrees that can be tailored to meet individual education, career and personal goals, transfer-friendly policies and extensive support through MyESC.

Partnerships the college has with organized labor, all branches of the military, and the private and nonprofit sectors enable these organizations to educate their members and employees to meet mandates and licensure requirements, adapt to the requirements of new technology and provide paths for promotion.

Individuals benefit from education earned through these partnerships and New York benefits from a stronger workforce better able to compete in a global marketplace, which advances the state economy.

The college’s strategic plan Vision 2015 and The Power of SUNY are mutually supportive and guide the college.