Syracuse University Halves Online Tuition for Health Care Workers

(TNS) — Syracuse University’s College of Professional Studies is cutting online tuition in half for local health care workers, billing the discount as an appreciation for the industry’s work during the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s also smart business, a way to tap into a substantial segment of the local population and right-size its prices for Syracuse residents.

The price currently applies to any full-time, part-time or per diem employee in the Crouse, SUNY Upstate, St. Joseph’s or Veterans Administration systems, as well as any employee of Loretto Health or KPH Healthcare Services (Kinney Drugs). Syracuse expects to expand the program regionally.

The program allows individuals to pay $350 per credit hour for all 23 of the school’s programs during the Fall 2022 semester. That rate is half of the school’s customary online rate and an 89 percent discount off full-time tuition.

“Who has taken it on the chin more than anyone? Our health care workers,” said Mike Frasciello, the Dean of the College of Professional Studies. “This is a recognition of the work they’ve done the past two-and-a-half years to keep the community safe.”

Frasciello also believes the price reduction will help make Syracuse’s rates more competitive financially with other area colleges. The price for SUNY part-time programs is $208 per credit hour for an Associate’s degree and $295 for a credit toward a Bachelor’s degree.

Frasciello said that the College of Professional Studies is Syracuse’s pathway that is traditionally taken by non-traditional students, most of whom are looking for affordable ways to improve their lives.

The use of that pathway, he said, dropped off substantially among local residents from 2005 to 2015. The school believes the drop-off corresponded directly to a price increase, something it is hoping to correct.

“Candidly, we had priced ourselves out of the market,” Frasciello said. “Our part-time tuition rate was four times the SUNY rate, and we were trying to attract a city that is struggling economically. We’re not going to have thousands of health care workers come to campus. But we will have hundreds of people, whose lives we will transform.”

Some of the programs that are likely to be especially relevant to health care workers include Healthcare Administration, Applied Data & Predictive Analytics (Data Science), Business Management, Computer Programming, Creative Leadership, Cybersecurity Administration, Knowledge Management and Liberal Studies.

Frasciello said that the college will work with workers like certified nurse’s assistants (CNAs) or licensed nurse practitioners (LPN’s) to take the education and experience they’ve already acquired and turn that into college credit to speed their process toward a degree.

©2022 Advance Local Media LLC. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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