Identifying Potential Students
CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies (aka “CUNY BA”) offers students the opportunity to create interdisciplinary or otherwise unique areas of concentration, leading to the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from The City University of New York. Students may complete courses in different academic departments and at a combination of the University’s undergraduate colleges, including The Graduate Center. Each student works with a faculty mentor of his or her own choosing to design an individualized course of study. The area of concentration title and the courses selected by the student and mentor form that student’s individualized learning plan. No senior thesis or capstone project is required by CUNY Baccalaureate, although many students include these in their concentrations.
How Faculty Can Identify Potential CUNY BA Students
Does the student:
• have clearly defined, viable academic and professional goals?
• demonstrate motivation, knowledge, and passion beyond the typical student?
• take advantage of academic opportunities via honors and/or writing intensive courses, academic clubs, professional memberships, reading beyond the syllabus, etc.?
• demonstrate an interest in a specializing in a specific aspect of a field of study and/or in learning across disciplines?
• readily meet or exceed expectations and deadlines?
• participate actively in class, ask questions, see you during your office hours?
• work well independently, solve problems, deal maturely with obstacles or ambiguity?
• have at least an overall 2.8 GPA? (The average GPA of recently admitted students was 3.33).
Finally, would the student benefit from completing an individualized, University-wide degree?
As Professor Ric Curtis, Anthropology, John Jay College put it, “The ideal CUNY BA student is self-directed, highly motivated, academically skilled, and socially and ethically mature.”
CUNY BA student Charles Rosenthal, with his mentor, Prof. Mary Ann Biehl, Chair of the Advertising Design & Graphic Arts Department at New York City College of Technlogy, CUNY. With Prof. Biehl’s guidance, Charles developed his degree in “Applied Digital Media in Fine Art.”