With close to 70 years of bringing students a quality education at an affordable price, the State University of New York is presenting yet another option that will revolutionize higher education within New York State: an entirely new campus.
The 65th campus within the SUNY System is set to be SUNY’s shining flagship campus. And this isn’t only because it is set to be one of the largest of all the SUNY campuses, the campus will actually be a flagship. Yes, the newest campus is an educational sea vessel that will include top notch resources that truly embody the SUNY mantra of Access + Completion = Success. The campus, officially named by the Board as “SUNY Deep Blue,” will be led by long time educator and sea captain President Ahab Sparrow, and his eccentric Parrot who will serve as the mascot. President Sparrow spent two decades as a captain in the Navy before deciding to pursue his Doctorate in Educational Administration. His expertise in both areas will help to ensure that the objectives of the school are kept afloat.
“I’m honored to be named President of the new flagship SUNY Deep Blue Campus,” President Sparrow says. “This is really going to be an educational experience like no other, with the options and support that only SUNY can offer its students.”
And the options offered are pretty impressive. Students will essentially be going to school on a gigantic cruise ship that has everything a normal school would have, but amplified. The dorm rooms will be spacious suites overlooking the pristine Erie Canal and Hudson River. There will be over 6 dining halls, staffed by chefs who cater to every diet including vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free. Various gyms, pools, and athletic courts will also be strategically placed, providing ample space for exercise and fitness function, along with varsity and club athletics.
In order to eliminate unnecessary weight on the ship (so as to not repeat a disaster like the Titanic), each student will be issued a tablet computer, so that they can access their course books electronically. Students will all be enrolled in elements of OpenSUNY, a portal which provides seamless access to SUNY’s courses, degrees, professors, and rich academics, flexibly. Throughout their travels, students will always be able to connect with professors or study aids. This makes it easy for students to register and complete any class they need, even if it isn’t physically available on the ship, leading to the new ideal of CompletionShip at SUNY.
To increase SUNY Deep Blue’s sustainability standards and to keep the ship as environmentally friendly as possible, the campus will take advantage of rooftop surfaces to cultivate gardens. These areas will benefit the air quality around the ship and provide both agriculture for dining and sanctuary for birds and animals that find their way home on the vessel.
As students take comfort in the quality of the ship’s design and operations, they will also be able to be a part of both. As Chancellor Zimpher stated in her 2015 State of the University address, SUNY “unequivocally supports legislation that will mandate applied learning as a graduation requirement for every SUNY student.” And at SUNY Deep Blue, applied learning opportunities will be available for all students. Enrolled students will be able to be a part of the ship’s operations centers, from engine maintenance to culinary work, as a way to get the most out of their education and bridge the gap from college to career.
Finally, one of the most viable aspects of the flagship is that a Study Abroad opportunity is available to all students. And it is already included within tuition. Every week, the ship docks at a different location allowing for maximum cultural exposure. Long Island, Lake Ontario, Albany, Niagara Falls, and even the occasional excursion overseas, every day will simply be an adventure at SUNY Deep Blue. And it will be the most accessible campus of all time, literally picking up new students at every port of call.
Most importantly, because SUNY Deep Blue is a flagship campus, it is a campus that is available to all students no matter what part of the state they are from. With ports all around New York State, SUNY Deep Blue is set to be one of the most accessible campuses within the SUNY System.
You can easily access it and you have all the resources and options to complete your degree, which in the end will definitely help you to succeed! Interested prospective students should look out for more information in the coming weeks-and maybe someday soon you will be able to apply and call yourself a SUNY Deep Blue Parrot.
Update: 4/2/15 8:45am
Well, it turns out that the 65th SUNY flagship campus will not be coming to fruition. The planning and logistics needed to operate the giant ship will require further research. But, the offerings and opportunities that were to be a part of SUNY Deep Blue are still readily available to students across the 64 campus system, from OpenSUNY to applied learning and study abroad opportunities, Access + Completion can surely lead to Success for all students.
Atiba was an intern with SUNY's Office of New Media, who became a University at Albany graduate in English with a minor in Communications.