Meeting of the Board of Regents | December 2010
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
To: The Honorable the Members of the Board of Regents
From: Joseph P. Frey
Subject: State University of New York College of Technology at Delhi, Branch Campus at Schenectady County Community College: Regents Authorization to award the Bachelor of Science Degree and Master Plan Amendment for B.S. in Criminal Justice
Date: December 6, 2010
Issue for Decision (Consent Agenda)
The State University of New York seeks approval to authorize the State University College of Technology at Delhi’s branch campus at Schenectady County Community College (SCCC) to offer its first program leading to the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree, and for master plan amendment to offer a B.S. degree program in Criminal Justice, which would represent the campus’s first baccalaureate degree program in the disciplinary area of the Social Sciences.
Reason for Consideration
Required by State regulation.
The question will come before the full Board at its December 2010 meeting where it will be voted on and action taken.
SUC Delhi’s proposed upper division B.S. program in Criminal Justice builds on the A.A. program in Liberal Arts and Sciences: Criminal Justice Studies at its main campus and SCCC’s A.S. program in Criminal Justice. It provides for the seamless transfer of graduates of these programs. It will also provide for the transfer of graduates of other SUNY Criminal Justice A.A. and A.S. programs who have completed the required general education courses and a core of four criminal justice courses. These students will be able to enter this program as full juniors. Other transfer students or students who earn an A.A.S. degree may need to take additional courses before achieving junior status.
The proposed program is designed to integrate theory and practice. The curriculum will provide students with the academic foundations needed to pursue a variety of options in the study of criminal justice. Students will complete coursework in each of the six areas identified by the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, a key professional and certifying organization in the field of criminal justice studies: Administration of Justice, Corrections, Criminological Theory, Law Adjudication, Law Enforcement, and Research and Analytical Methods. Students will be required to complete both a capstone project and an internship. The location of the program at SCCC offers access to a wide array of internship opportunities and professional expertise including local police, law enforcement, and justice agencies.
Students who seek careers as police officers, investigators, juvenile justice, probation or corrections officers, as well as those interested in other work within the justice system, will satisfy distribution requirements in justice and government courses that provide the conceptual and empirical background needed for careers in those fields. Those interested in pursuing criminal investigations or forensic studies will be appropriately prepared through specialized courses. Students interested in other areas of law enforcement will be prepared for those areas or for graduate study in criminal justice, public safety, criminal investigation, private security, or political science.
Delhi anticipates that the program will serve students throughout parts of the Capital Region, Mohawk Valley, and Hudson Valley Regents Regions who have completed an associate degree in Criminal Justice or a related field. It anticipates enrolling 30 students when the program begins, growing to 60 students after five years.
Students will have access to academic advisement, support services, and financial aid expertise of SUNY Delhi staff at the branch campus. Students will also have access to the extensive resources at SCCC’s library on-site as well as Delhi’s online library resources. Classroom and office space will be provided on-site by SCCC per a formal inter-institutional arrangement. Delhi will provide a full-time program coordinator on site. It has identified four full-time faculty members who have attained either a Ph.D. or J.D. and will teach in the baccalaureate program. These include both scholars and practitioners who bring a range of experience from careers in various branches of police work, law, investigations, and security. The College will also hire an additional doctorally prepared faculty member for the program.
The need for the proposed program is closely related to the demand for persons in the criminal justice and law enforcement fields. The Bureau of Labor Statistics and the federal Department of Justice have estimated employment opportunities to be “excellent” in criminal justice and law enforcement. At the State level, the New York State Police have hired on average 200 to 300 troopers per year. The New York Department of Labor (DOL) lists employment in fields of Corrections, Police and Sheriff Patrol Officers as “favorable” through 2016 in the Capital Region and statewide. Specific to the Capital Region, DOL projects an annual employment increase of 180 in these fields. While an associate degree or equivalent has typically been preferred for entry level employment in the criminal justice field, a baccalaureate degree provides the flexibility for entry into the field as well as advancement to managerial positions. The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists a baccalaureate degree, related work experience, or a combination of both as a requirement for employment in agencies at the federal level related to this field.
The need for the program is further evidenced by students in SCCC’s criminal justice programs. Over 64 percent of SCCC’s 193 criminal justice students responding to a survey indicated that they were definitely interested in a four-year degree if offered by SUNY Delhi.
Following its usual procedure, the Department canvassed institutions in the Regents Region where the proposed program would be offered, i.e., the Capital Region. There was only one response, from the Samaritan Hospital School of Nursing, which indicated no comment on the proposed program.
It is recommended that the Board of Regents authorize the State University of New York College of Technology at Delhi’s branch campus at Schenectady County Community College to award the Bachelor of Science degree, and approve a master plan amendment for the College to offer a B.S. degree program in Criminal Justice. The amendment will be effective until December 31, 2011, unless the Department registers the program prior to that date, in which case master plan amendment shall be without term.