Updated: Dec 18, 2020
President Hank Foley of the New York Institute of Technology is expecting an estimated revenue drop in the “$20 milllion to $30 million range,” as the result of a large decline in international student enrollment, as well as a decrease in domestic students, in the face of COVID-19.
“It’s going to have a substantial impact on the school,” Foley stated, in an exclusive interview with the Manhattan Globe, the university’s independent student newspaper. “It’s been a significant hit,” Foley explained that “next year, we’re looking at being down another 400 or more international students, and then the year after that another hundred or so.”
Due to the financial state of New York Tech, Foley acknowledged that the administration will be going to take “a closer look” at which academic programs will be offered and how many professors will be teaching. These upcoming months will hopefully give the university more clarity on these specific changes, he added.
As a result of the need to safely reopen both New York campuses, New York Tech prepared for roughly 800 to 1,000 people per day on each campus. The average number of people on the New York City campus numbered 80 to 100. In comparison, a much higher percentage of people visited the Long Island campus daily, Foley said.
The financial aspect of keeping so many buildings open for so few people is also being reviewed, Foley said. He estimated only about 14-15 percent of classes were taught in-person this semester and they were lab courses that couldn’t be taught remotely.
Foley shed some light on the reopening plan for fall 2020 and the modifications planned for the coming spring semester.
Foley said the process for planning the fall semester was slow in coming together. Working with New York Tech Vice President, Suzanne Musho, along with various deans, the majority of the planning came together in the summer. In preparation for the changing circumstances due to the pandemic, multiple reopening plans had to be devised. A massive amount of student feedback was submitted and will be taken into account when planning for the future, Foley said.
“The cost of the development and implementation guidelines are in the millions of dollars and continue to climb,” Musho told the Manhattan Globe. The costs cover numerous changes made, such as layout revisions to buildings, consultations with both safety and design professionals, installation of new equipment and adjustments to existing equipment, and testing protocols as well. “We look forward to methodically and responsibly re-engaging campus life in a more typical format, as the vaccine becomes more widely available in the Spring of 2021,” Musho said.
The aforementioned New York Tech’s Campus Life Committee, led by Musho, will research how the student experience can be improved. The administration will continue to make plans to accommodate the university’s students and staff when they are on campus.
Foley credited Provost Junius Gonzales with working hard to improve the online experience and he commended the faculty for quickly adapting to online teaching. The president said Gonzales is working companies that specialize in remote learning.
Over the summer, professors could choose whether they wanted to teach in-person or remotely. However, within the first couple of weeks of the fall semester, an unspecified number of professors switched to online after starting in the classroom, creating student confusion, Foley acknowledged.
For those who still had to be on either campus, proper security was implemented to ensure the safety of the New York Tech community.
Foley said the school is continuing to work on improving the experience for the entire New York Tech community.
PHOTO: Wenzhe Wang
Taken Thursday Dec 10th, 2020 in the afternoon.