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SU, ESF Reaffirm Commitment to Course-Offering Agreement

Agreement provides better opportunities for long-term planning

In a move that continues a long-standing, 100-plus-year relationship between neighboring institutions, leaders of Syracuse University (SU) and the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) have announced terms of a new agreement that will ensure students at both institutions continue to have access to course offerings on either campus.

The new agreement, which will provide both institutions better opportunities for long-term academic, space and fiscal planning, will take effect in fall 2013.

"SU and SUNY-ESF have a long-standing history that dates back to our earliest days," says SU Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric Spina. "Both institutions have been interested in finding a way to maintain and preserve this relationship, for the benefit of our students and the continued collaboration of our faculty, even as the environment for higher education continues to evolve and change. This new agreement ensures SU and ESF students will continue to have access to courses that help them fulfill their academic requirements and interests for many years to come. We are particularly pleased that SU students will still enjoy access to courses at SUNY-ESF, one of the premiere schools in the nation in its field."

Under the new agreement, SU students will have unlimited access to SUNY-ESF courses. SUNY-ESF students will be provided an allocation of SU credit hours they can utilize during their academic career, which will be covered by their ESF tuition and fees. The course allocation formula is based on the average number of SU credit hours taken by SUNY-ESF students in recent years. SUNY-ESF students often take SU classes to complete elective courses or general education requirements in the liberal arts.

Beginning in the 2013-14 academic year, first-year students at SUNY-ESF will receive an allocation of 16 SU credit hours. Transfer students and continuing upperclassmen will receive a prorated allocation based on class year, and graduate students will receive a 15-credit-hour allocation. All current ESF students will receive a minimum of four SU credit hours and will have a one-time opportunity to petition for additional hours that may be required to complete their degree. Beyond that, SUNY-ESF students who use their SU credit allocation and wish to complete additional SU elective courses will have an option to pay tuition for additional credit hours.

"This new agreement puts students in full control of their course selections while allowing both institutions to better anticipate the financial effects of the partnership," says SUNY-ESF Provost Bruce Bongarten. "It's great news for our students who will continue to have access to courses at a leading national university, particularly in the fields of physics, foreign language and other enrichment areas, that are not offered on our campus. SU students, meanwhile, will have access to the only institution in the nation focused on the study of natural resources and the environment."

More than 1,300 students from the two campuses take advantage of this distinctive cross-campus learning opportunity each year, with course registrations for the spring 2013 semester showing approximately 440 SUNY-ESF students enrolled in SU classes and 210 SU students completing classes at SUNY-ESF.

More specific information about the new agreement will be provided to SUNY-ESF students and faculty in the coming weeks.