Overview: State University of New York (SUNY) Empire State College and the School of Nursing

SUNY Empire State College is one of the 13 arts and sciences colleges within the State University of New York, awarding associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Offices of the college can be found in more than 30 communities throughout New York state. The college also is the largest online provider in the SUNY system. SUNY Empire State College counts more than 84,000 graduates since its founding in 1971, and annually enrolls more than 17,500 adult students.

The mission of SUNY Empire State College is to provide innovative, alternative and flexible approaches to higher education through rigorous academic programs of study. The mission also includes connecting students’ unique and diverse lives to their personal learning goals, thus transforming people and communities.

The School of Nursing offers a bachelor’s degree program for registered nurses (RN to BSN) and a Master of Science (M.S.) in Nursing Education and a Master of Science (M.S.) in Nursing Administration programs. These online programs are flexible, affordable and designed for licensed registered nurses who reside in New York state. Because most students are working full time, they engage in part-time study and complete degree requirements within two to three years.

The curricula are aligned with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice (AACN, 2008) and The Essentials of Master’s Education in Nursing (AACN, 2011), as well as the American Nurses Association standards of professional performance (ANA, 2010). Clinical and capstone experiences take place in the student’s home community. Bachelor’s degree students may complete general learning requirements via online or face-to-face courses at any regionally accredited institution. In addition, requirements can be met via assessment of prior learning, independent study and successful completion of selected examinations.

Distinctive program features include access to

  • High quality baccalaureate and graduate level courses developed by teams of nursing faculty, curriculum and instructional designers, and subject matter experts.
  • An array of rich learning resources designed specifically for adult learners.
  • Opportunities to earn college-level credit through assessment of learning and independent study.
  • Curricula that involve active and collaborative learning and is relevant to contemporary nursing practice in a variety of roles and settings.

College Mission

SUNY Empire State College’s dedicated faculty and staff use innovative, alternative and flexible approaches to higher education that transform people and communities by providing rigorous programs that connect individuals’ unique and diverse lives to their personal learning goals.

SUNY Empire State College provides motivated adult learners  with access to innovative, flexible and quality academic programs that empower people and strengthen communities. We build on the diversity of our students, their work and life experiences and their individual personal and professional goals as the cornerstone for each academic program.


By 2021, SUNY Empire State College will be the leading public college for students across New York state and around the world seeking affordable and flexible, quality degrees. We will be distinguished by our outstanding faculty and staff, our record of student success, our innovative programs and personalized learning opportunities, our rich continuum of student support services, our social and economic impact, and our commitment to a diverse and engaged academic community.

Our Commitments

As a community of learners at a public institution, the college is committed to:

  • Fostering critical reflective inquiry that encourages active engagement in the local and the global community
  • Promoting social justice and a sustainable world through responsiveness to human and social circumstances
  • Ensuring a healthy democracy that recognizes and respects diversity in all its forms
  • Supporting the individual goals of our students in a collaborative mentoring environment
  • Acknowledging multiple avenues of learning and prior college-level learning through rigorous evaluation
  • Developing, implementing and assessing new approaches to learning that recognize and adapt to the diverse needs of our learners
  • Fostering respectful, creative and vibrant learning environments for students, faculty and staff
  • Supporting the scholarly, creative and professional goals of the college community
  • Serving students and the public with a high level of courtesy and effectiveness, advocating at the regional, state and national levels for the needs of our students and of higher education
  • Expanding access to affordable, high-quality educational opportunities through partnerships with  employers, unions, government agencies, the armed forces, community organizations and other educational institutions.

School of Nursing Mission and Goals

The mission of the SUNY Empire State College School of Nursing is congruent with the college’s mission in creating learning environments that promote critical thinking, social responsibility and lifelong learning. The School of Nursing prepares nurses as leaders and full partners on interdisciplinary teams in complex health care environments within a global community.

The goals of the School of Nursing are to:

  1. Provide seamless academic progression
  2. Promote collaborative and dynamic learning environments through both mentoring relationships and the use of technology
  3. Promote professional values, including lifelong learning and professional role development, allowing students to reach their full potential
  4. Provide accessible, affordable and flexible programs of study to meet the academic needs of the adult learner
  5. Facilitate faculty development related to teaching, scholarship and service to the college and community.


The college is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), which is recognized by the U.S. secretary of education to conduct accreditation activities for institutions of higher education in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. MSCHE also is recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation.

The Middle State Commission on Higher Education is located at:

3624 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Phone: 267-284-5000

The RN to BSN, the M.S. in Nursing Education and the M.S. in Nursing Administration programs at SUNY Empire State College are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Tau Kappa At-Large Chapter, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing

SUNY Empire State College School of Nursing is affiliated with Tau Kappa at-Large Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Honor Society of Nursing. The chapter’s membership works to further the mission of STTI, which is advancing world health and celebrating nursing excellence in scholarship, leadership and service. Eligible students and graduates are invited to join the chapter each year and be active participants in chapter activities throughout their professional lives.