[Feburary 22, 2013]
SUNY Downstate Adopts SUNY’s Standardized Financial Aid Award Letter
SUNY Downstate Medical Center announced today that it will put in place a new, standardized Financial Aid Letter from the State University of New York, beginning this fall.
All of the SUNY System Administration’s 64 campuses will use the letter for the 2013-2014 academic year, as part of the SUNY Smart Track™ campaign, a commitment to transparency in college financing and a reduction in student debt.
The new letter will allow students and their families to see clearly the cost of attendance and financial aid offerings at each campus, including campus-specific information such as graduation rate, median borrowing, and loan default rate.
“While college students across the country are taking on more loan debt than ever before, SUNY Smart Track™ gives our prospective students the most comprehensive and transparent financial aid information available so that they can make informed decisions about how to pay for their college education,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “The standard award letter will allow prospective students and their families to easily compare colleges within SUNY and view a full outline of the financial commitment associated with their education.”
“This new award letter format will make it easier for students and parents to understand the financial aid process,” said Jeffrey S. Putman, EdD, vice president of student affairs and dean of students at SUNY Downstate. “We believe our undergraduate students in the College of Nursing and College of Health Related Professions will very much appreciate and benefit from this increased transparency.”
Development of the standard financial aid award letter was first announced when SUNY launched its Smart Track™ campaign in September 2012. With the launch, SUNY adopted the concept of transparency of financial aid and college costs, and the system began offering students the most proactive, comprehensive financial aid information and services in the country.
More recently, in her 2013 State of the University Address, Chancellor Zimpher announced that SUNY Smart Track™ would contribute to a wider system-wide goal of decreasing the loan default rate of SUNY students by at least five percent over the next five years.
The SUNY Smart Track™ Award Letter was developed by a committee of campus financial aid directors, and others, who were tasked with adopting the intent of the federal Financial Aid Shopping Sheet while creating a unique version for SUNY. Additionally, the campaign calls for an expansion of SUNY’s Student Loan Service Center, early engagement of students at risk of default, and providing new and improved online resources such as a net price calculator, chats with financial aid experts, and financial literacy materials.
About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive university system in the United States, educating approximately 468,000 students in more than 7,500 degree and certificate programs, and nearly 2 million in workforce and professional development programs, on 64 campuses. There are nearly 3 million SUNY alumni worldwide. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit www.suny.edu.
About SUNY Downstate Medical Center
SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, Colleges of Nursing and Health Related Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and an Advanced Biotechnology Park and Biotechnology Incubator.
SUNY Downstate ranks ninth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school. To learn more about SUNY Downstate, visit www.downstate.edu.