New York State Governor Kathy Hochul recently unveiled $4 million in federal funding for underrepresented students entering or currently enrolled in mental health degree programs at State University of New York (SUNY) or City University of New York (CUNY) campuses.
"As we continue to strengthen our health care system in New York, we must ensure that we build a diverse and inclusive workforce," Hochul remarked of the funding. "This partnership will provide incentives for underrepresented students to enroll or remain in mental health programs - helping diversify our future workforce and ensure that all communities are well-served by our public health care system."
An estimated $2 million each will be distributed to SUNY and CUNY respectively with the goal of providing tuition assistance, paid internships, and direct stipends for students enrolled in the mental health degree programs.
"At SUNY we are not only educating and training the future professionals of the mental health field, but also recognizing the need for those professionals to represent the wide array of people they will be serving,” SUNY Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley stated of the funding. “Oftentimes, a barrier to care for our students and others seeking mental health care is not having access to a practitioner that can relate to or intimately understand their struggles. In New York, we know that our unique backgrounds, cultures, and languages only make our workforce stronger, which is why we thank Governor Hochul for her continued investment in providing more opportunities for underrepresented minorities and making education more accessible for all."