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Meeting of the Board of Regents | May 2010

Friday, May 7, 2010 - 11:40pm

sed seal                                                                                                 




To:                                             The Honorable the Members of the Board of Regents


From:                                        Joseph P. Frey


Subject:                                    Master Plan Amendment: Mildred Elley School Branch Campus


Date:                                         May 7, 2010







Issue for Decision (Consent Agenda)

Should the Board of Regents approve an amendment to the master plan of Mildred Elley School to allow the School to establish a branch campus in New York, New York and offer an Associate in Occupational Studies (A.O.S.) degree program in Medical Assistant?


Reason(s) for Consideration


Required by State regulation.

Proposed Handling

The question will come before the full Board for consideration at its May 2010 meeting where it will be voted on and action taken.

Background Information

              Mildred Elley School, a two-year proprietary institution located in Albany, NY, seeks approval of an amendment to its master plan to establish a branch campus at 25 Broadway, New York, NY.  A master plan amendment is necessary for both the establishment of the branch campus and the degree program proposed for the campus.  Mildred Elley proposes an Associate in Occupational Studies degree program in Medical Assistant, as the first degree program at the branch campus in the discipline of Health Professions.  In addition to the Medical Assistant degree program, the institution proposes to offer certificate programs in Medical Office Assistant and Clinical Medical Assistant, and eventually, a licensure-qualifying certificate program in Practical Nursing (LPN).  Certificate programs do not require master plan amendment.  The proposed programs are currently registered at Mildred Elley’s Albany campus. The proposed branch campus is approximately 163 miles from the main campus.

The Department conducted a canvass of all degree-granting institutions of higher education in the New York City region. There were no objections received from the nine institutions that responded to the canvass.

The Department has determined that the proposed branch campus and the Medical Assistant program meet the standards of registration set forth in the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.  A follow-up site visit will be conducted once the program begins at the branch campus.


It is recommended that the Board of Regents approve the amendment to the master plan of Mildred Elley School to allow the School to establish a branch campus in New York, NY, and to offer an Associate in Occupational Studies degree program in Medical Assistant. The amendment will be effective until May 17, 2011, unless the Department registers the branch campus and its programs prior to that date, in which case master plan amendment shall be without term.

Timetable for Implementation

If the Board of Regents approves the master plan amendment, the Department will register the branch campus and its non-licensure-related programs and the institution will proceed to recruit and enroll students.












Information in Support of Recommendation

Mildred Elley School is proposing to establish a branch campus at 25 Broadway, New York, NY.  It plans to offer the following programs in the health sciences:  Associate in Occupational Studies in Medical Assistant, certificate programs in Medical Office Assistant and Clinical Medical Assistant, and a licensure-qualifying certificate program in Practical Nursing (LPN).  The proposed programs are currently registered at the institution’s Albany campus. The registered programs have successful student outcomes with reported in-field and related placement rates for its Albany campus health sciences programs averaging 91 percent. 


              The proposed programs share a core of courses in human biology, medical terminology, liberal arts, information and digital literacy, and student success and career preparation skills.  The Medical Assistant program is the only proposed degree program.  It includes coursework in clinical medical assisting and medical office management/insurance processing skills, as well as coursework in digital literacy and productivity. 


              The Medical Assistant degree and certificate programs follow open enrollment practices, requiring a high school diploma or its equivalency.        The student body is expected to be socioeconomically diverse and be drawn primarily from the metropolitan New York area. The institution expects the majority of its students to attend full-time, with enrollment of approximately 70 students during the first semester, 300 by the end of the first year of campus operations, and reaching up to 560 students by the end of the fifth year.



              A fiscal review of Mildred Elley’s finances found the institution to be “financially healthy.”  The School has budgeted sufficient resources for the branch campus.  The total spending to date on pre-construction (architectural, engineering, etc.), furniture, equipment, lease and lease deposit expenses is approximately $1.7 million.  This amount has been split per contractual agreement between the landlord and the school. The proposed branch campus will encompass approximately 23,000 square feet on one floor of a 16-story building for instructional, student support, and administrative space.  The space is designed specifically for the proposed programs, with ten general-use lecture rooms; seven specialized laboratories, including nursing, clinical medical assisting, life sciences, computer, and other labs; a library resource room, with a collection of 1,000 volumes and office space for student services; admissions, financial aid; faculty and administrators.  Construction will be completed by May 14th with all furnishing and equipment installed by May 19, 2010.


              The institution will join the METRO library consortium utilizing the interlibrary loan and direct card access to member libraries of the consortium.  Mildred Elley’s branch will contain both physical and electronic library resources. Students will also be able to access the main campus library, providing access to 2,500 health and medical titles and 1,300 full-text journals in health sciences and related fields.  The institution has budgeted more than $100,000 for the acquisition of computing resources and instructional equipment for the first year of operations, including clinical equipment for the LPN and medical assisting programs, life sciences laboratory equipment and computer lab equipment.

              Mildred Elley has committed to fully staffing the proposed branch campus.  The campus will be headed by a President, who reports to the Vice President for Campus Operations based in Albany.  The President, who has an Ed.D., will oversee day-to-day campus operations, student services, and a Dean of Academic Affairs. The Dean of Academic Affairs oversees four Department Chairs.  Upon authorization as a branch campus, a full-time Chairperson for Medical Assisting will be hired as well as Department Chairs for General and Interdisciplinary Studies.  Additional administrators reporting to the Campus President are four Directors: (1) Financial Aid; (2) Admissions; (3) Academic Support and Advising; and (4) Career Services. Two admissions representatives, an administrative assistant for the President, a financial aid representative and a testing specialist for academic support services have been hired to date. 

              The campus will employ additional full- and part-time personnel in student services, student records, library services, and relevant support personnel. The proposed branch campus will also employ four full-time faculty members within the first year of operations, including a full-time faculty member for the proposed LPN program and faculty to teach the general education courses.  Faculty members have been interviewed and twelve for hire have been identified.  The credentials of the faculty include:


  • Baccalaureate in Nursing (two faculty members)
  • Master of Science in Nursing (three faculty members)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Education (one faculty member)


Additionally, there are six faculty members who hold master’s degrees in appropriate fields have been identified as candidates for teaching digital literacy and productivity, freshman seminar, English composition, and other courses that support the curricula offered. The full-time and adjunct faculty will be hired as identified as soon as the branch campus is authorized.

              Students will receive support services to ensure successful educational and occupational outcomes, which include academic advising and support, tutoring, special advising for students with disabilities and those in danger of losing good academic standing at the institution, career services, library services and interlibrary loans, information technology services and academic computing, access to Microsoft Campus™ student benefits and institutional e-mail, web-based student information and communication system, regular guest lectures and field trips, and lifetime assistance with employment.

Evidence of Need

              The University at Albany’s Center for Health Workforce Studies has identified medical assisting as an area where recruitment and/or retention was an issue for nursing homes and home care agencies in New York.  This field is expected to experience a growth of 34 percent nationally from 2008 to 2018 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Quarterly (Spring 2010).  The New York State Department of Labor data (2006 – 2016) estimates approximately 330 annual job openings for medical assistants due to growth and replacement needs in New York City.