The 6 Best CUNY Schools and What Makes Them Great

What Is CUNY?

CUNY, which stands for the City University of New York, is a public university system located in New York City. It is one of the largest urban university systems in the United States, serving over half a million students across its various colleges and institutions. CUNY was established in 1961 and has since played a crucial role in providing accessible and affordable higher education to a diverse student population.

CUNY comprises several campuses and colleges spread throughout the five boroughs of New York City. These include well-known institutions such as Hunter College, Brooklyn College, Queens College, Baruch College, and City College of New York, among others. Each college within the CUNY system has its own unique identity, academic programs, and areas of expertise.

CUNY offers a wide range of degree programs, including associate, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees. The university system caters to students with diverse interests and career goals, offering programs in fields such as liberal arts, business, science, technology, engineering, healthcare, education, and more. CUNY is committed to providing quality education, fostering academic excellence, and promoting social mobility.

One of the notable aspects of CUNY is its commitment to affordability and accessibility. The tuition rates at CUNY colleges are generally more affordable compared to many other institutions, making higher education more attainable for students from various socioeconomic backgrounds. CUNY also offers financial aid options, scholarships, and work-study programs to support students in their educational journey.

CUNY is known for its diverse student body, reflecting the multicultural fabric of New York City. Students at CUNY benefit from the vibrant and inclusive learning environment, which encourages collaboration, cultural exchange, and the exploration of different perspectives.

Moreover, CUNY colleges are known for their distinguished faculty members who are experts in their fields and are dedicated to teaching, research, and community engagement. The university system has a strong focus on practical skills and experiential learning, providing students with opportunities for internships, research projects, and community service.

Overall, CUNY offers a comprehensive educational experience, combining academic rigor, affordability, diversity, and access. It has played a significant role in shaping the lives of countless students and contributing to the intellectual and social development of New York City. Whether students seek to start their academic journey, advance their careers, or pursue research and innovation, CUNY provides a supportive and enriching environment to help them achieve their goals.

The City University of New York (CUNY) is a renowned public university system comprising multiple colleges and institutions located across the five boroughs of New York City. While it is subjective to determine the "best" CUNY college, each institution has its own strengths and areas of expertise, offering a diverse range of academic programs and opportunities for students. Here is a comprehensive list of CUNY colleges, highlighting their unique characteristics and notable features:

1. Baruch College:

Known for its business programs, Baruch College is highly regarded for its Zicklin School of Business. It offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees in fields such as accounting, finance, marketing, and entrepreneurship.

2. Brooklyn College:

With a strong focus on the arts and sciences, Brooklyn College offers a wide range of programs in areas such as performing arts, media studies, psychology, biology, and computer science. It is known for its distinguished faculty and vibrant campus community.

3. City College of New York (CCNY):

CCNY is renowned for its engineering, architecture, and STEM programs. It houses the Grove School of Engineering and the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, offering rigorous academic training and hands-on learning experiences.

4. Hunter College:

Hunter College is known for its strong liberal arts programs, including humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. It is recognized for its top-notch faculty, research opportunities, and vibrant campus life.

5. Queens College:

Queens College is renowned for its diverse academic offerings, including programs in the arts and humanities, social sciences, education, and the sciences. It is known for its rigorous curriculum, dedicated faculty, and commitment to community engagement.

6. John Jay College of Criminal Justice:

As a leading institution in criminal justice education, John Jay College prepares students for careers in law enforcement, criminal justice research, and social justice advocacy. It offers programs in criminal justice, forensic psychology, criminology, and related fields.

7. Lehman College:

Lehman College is known for its strong academic programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing, and health sciences. It provides a supportive environment for students to pursue their academic and career goals.

8. College of Staten Island:

The College of Staten Island offers a diverse range of programs across various disciplines, including business, science, technology, health sciences, education, and liberal arts. It provides students with opportunities for research, internships, and community engagement.

9. Medgar Evers College:

Medgar Evers College is dedicated to providing quality education to students from diverse backgrounds. It offers programs in business, liberal arts, social sciences, education, and public administration, focusing on social justice and community development.

10. New York City College of Technology:

Known as City Tech, this college specializes in professional and technical education. It offers programs in fields such as engineering technology, computer science, hospitality management, healthcare, and design.

11. York College:

York College offers a range of undergraduate programs in liberal arts and sciences, business, health professions, and education. It focuses on providing access to higher education for a diverse student population.

12. Hostos Community College:

As a community college, Hostos offers associate degree programs and certificate programs in fields such as health sciences, education, liberal arts, and business. It provides a supportive environment for students to transition into four-year institutions.

13. Kingsborough Community College:

Kingsborough Community College offers associate degree programs and certificate programs in various disciplines, including business, science, liberal arts, and health sciences. It provides opportunities for students to pursue their academic and career goals.

14. Bronx Community College:

Bronx Community College offers associate degree programs and certificate programs in fields such as business, arts and sciences, engineering, health sciences, and human services. It emphasizes access, affordability,

Finding the Best CUNY College for You: 5 Questions to Ask Yourself

When it comes to choosing the best CUNY (City University of New York) college for you, it's important to consider various factors that align with your academic and personal goals. Here are five essential questions to ask yourself in the process:

1. What is your intended major or field of study?

Different CUNY colleges have strengths in various academic disciplines. Research which colleges offer programs that align with your interests and career aspirations. Consider factors such as faculty expertise, curriculum, and available resources in your desired field.

2. Do you prefer a small or large campus environment?

CUNY colleges vary in size and campus culture. Some colleges have larger student populations and a bustling urban campus, while others offer a more intimate community feel. Think about your preference for class sizes, student-to-faculty ratio, and the overall atmosphere that suits your learning style.

3. What location do you prefer?

CUNY colleges are located throughout New York City's five boroughs. Consider the proximity to your home, ease of commute, and the unique opportunities and resources available in each location. Additionally, think about the cultural diversity and vibrancy of the surrounding community that aligns with your interests.

4. What extracurricular activities and campus life are important to you?

Explore the clubs, organizations, and extracurricular activities offered at each CUNY college. Consider your interests outside of academics, such as sports, arts, community service, or student government. Finding a college that offers a vibrant and engaging campus life can enhance your overall college experience.

5. What financial considerations do you have?

Finances play a significant role in college decision-making. Consider the tuition costs, availability of financial aid, scholarships, and other resources at each CUNY college. Evaluate your eligibility for in-state tuition, as well as any additional expenses such as housing, textbooks, and transportation.

By asking yourself these questions and conducting thorough research, you can find the best CUNY college that aligns with your academic, personal, and financial needs. Remember to visit college websites, attend virtual or in-person information sessions, and reach out to current students or alumni to gain further insights into each college's unique offerings.


In conclusion, the best CUNY (City University of New York) schools can vary depending on individual preferences, academic goals, and career aspirations. Each CUNY college offers unique strengths and resources that cater to different disciplines and interests. Some notable CUNY schools known for their academic excellence and diverse opportunities include Hunter College, Baruch College, Queens College, and Brooklyn College. However, the "best" CUNY school ultimately depends on your specific needs and priorities. It is essential to consider factors such as academic programs, campus environment, location, extracurricular activities, and financial considerations when determining the best CUNY school for you. Conducting thorough research, visiting campuses (if possible), and speaking with current students or alumni can provide valuable insights to help you make an informed decision. Remember that the best CUNY school is the one that aligns with your personal and academic goals, providing you with the resources and opportunities necessary for success in your chosen field.