SUNY New Paltz - Colleges of Distinction - Colleges of Distinction
SUNY New Paltz
SUNY New Paltz is an academically rigorous public university serving a diverse community of...

SUNY New Paltz

New Paltz, New York

The State University of New York at New Paltz is an academically rigorous public university in the heart of New York State’s scenic Hudson Valley, just 90 minutes north of metropolitan New York City.


SUNY New Paltz offers more than 100 bachelor’s and master’s degree programs across five academic schools (Business; Education; Science & Engineering; Liberal Arts & Sciences; Fine & Performing Arts). It is a mid-size school with about 8,000 enrolled students, where professors know their students’ names.


New Paltz is a highly selective college, admitting approximately 42% of applicants annually. Retention and graduation rates are well above national averages.


It’s also a uniquely diverse community, where people from around the world can “come as they are” and collaborate in a friendly, tolerant, and supportive environment. At New Paltz, artists work with entrepreneurs to add smart design to business plans, engineers partner with future teachers to bring technology into the k-12 classroom, and the liberal arts provide a core set of adaptable skills that make NP alumni stand out in their pursuit of post-graduation success.



Student Profile

Fall 2017 Enrollment
5,616 undergraduate students
93% of undergrad students are full time
46% male — 54% female
3% of students are from out of state

Faculty Profile

2017-2018 Academic Year
351 full-time faculty
273 part-time faculty
16 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio

Residence Life

Fall 2017
91% of first-year students live on campus
46% of all students live on campus

School Location

SUNY New Paltz sits midway between New York City and the state capital of Albany, west of the Hudson River in the southern foothills of the Catskill Mountain range. A short walk from campus is the vibrant college town of New Paltz, N.Y., which offers music venues, art galleries, and international cuisine.
People who live in New Paltz get the best of all worlds: easy access to the professional opportunities and cultural vibes of the city as well as a close proximity to some of the best rock climbing, hiking, and outdoor exploration that the northeast U.S. has to offer.

High-Impact Practices

Read more about the importance of High-Impact Practices

First-Year Seminars and Experiences X
Common Intellectual Experiences X
Learning Communities X
Writing-Intensive Courses X
Collaborative Assignments and Projects X
Undergraduate Research X
Diversity/Global Learning X
Service-Learning, Community-Based Learning X
Internships/Coops/Practicums X
Capstone Courses and Projects/Senior Experience X


86.5% of students began in Fall 2016 and returned in Fall 2017 (full-time, first-time freshmen)


72% of students graduated in 6 years


Nonresident aliens 2%
Hispanic/Latino 20%
Black or African American 6%
White 62%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%
Asian 5%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0%
Two or more races 3%
Race and/or ethnicity unknown 2%


The SUNY New Paltz Hawks are athlete-scholars who thrive on and off the field of play. The College fields competitive men’s and women’s teams in swimming, basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball, track and field, soccer, tennis, lacrosse, and field hockey, including the 2016 Division III National Champion Men’s Volleyball team. The Hawks regularly earn intra-conference awards for their ability to sustain a high level of academic success, and all New Paltz athletic programs adhere to a strong service mission, providing significant value to the campus and surrounding community.


SUNY New Paltz is home to the Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center, a worldwide leader in digital fabrication and 3D printing. It stands as a valuable resource for students in all academic programs who want to develop skills in this exciting new industry.

The innovative faculty at New Paltz work closely with students in all majors to provide hands-on, applied learning opportunities through the Honors Program, internships, student–faculty research collaborations, and study abroad. These prepare New Paltz students for rewarding careers and advanced study in their fields.

The campus is home to the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, which is one of the region’s premier art museums; the John R. Kirk Planetarium and Smolen Observatory; and the Parker, McKenna, and Studley Theatres, which host music and dramatic performances throughout the year. Together, these enable SUNY New Paltz to serve the entire Hudson Valley as a cultural and intellectual hub.

Academic Programs

New Paltz has more than 100 undergraduate programs in liberal arts, social sciences, sciences, engineering, business, communication, teacher education and fine and performing arts supporting our mission of academic excellence and innovation. You can find a list of our programs here:

More Distinctions

  • New Paltz was rated in the top 10 percent (among more than 900 schools) in the 2016 Social Mobility Index, a data-driven survey of U.S. colleges and universities that measures schools’ abilities to help students and families climb up the economic ladder.

  • New Paltz was named one of the most environmentally responsible colleges in the U.S. and Canada in the Princeton Review’s 2016 Guide to Green Colleges. It also made the 2016 Sierra Magazine “Cool Schools” list of colleges that work to protect the planet.

  • The School of Business at SUNY New Paltz is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), placing it among the top five percent of business schools internationally. Many other New Paltz academic programs are accredited, including the School of Education, School of Fine & Performing Arts, and Division of Engineering Programs.

  • New Paltz earned the Military Friendly® designation from Victory Media, publisher of G.I. Jobs, in 2016, and was honored with an upgrade to Military Friendly® Gold Status in 2017, in recognition of the College’s support of veteran, active duty, and dependent students, faculty, and staff.

  • New Paltz was rated in the top eight percent of the hardest New York schools to get into in a 2017 list published by peer review platform Niche.

Study Abroad

SUNY New Paltz is a leader in helping students broaden their worldview with international study. More than 20 percent of New Paltz students study abroad (even first-years!) at programs in Paris, Cairo, Tokyo, Prague, Melbourne, Buenos Aires, London, Madrid, Jerusalem, Seoul, Rome, and dozens of other destinations.

The award-winning Center for International Programs works tirelessly to make study abroad a reality for New Paltz students, helping them find and apply for competitive scholarships like the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship and the Boren Scholarship.

In 2015, SUNY New Paltz earned a prestigious Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education. The award recognizes New Paltz’s efforts to help win scholarship funding to support the study abroad dreams of Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) students, the majority of whom come from communities of economic and educational disadvantage.

Honors Program

The Honors Program at SUNY New Paltz is one of the biggest such programs in the SUNY system, with an enrollment of more than 225 students. Honors students gain access to a variety of benefits, including:

  • The Honors Center: A shared study and gathering space featuring seminar rooms, educational technologies, a presentation space, and complimentary tea.
  • Honors Interdisciplinary Seminars: Honors students are eligible to enroll in small, conversation-driven courses that challenge students and faculty alike to apply learning from different disciplines to solve contemporary problems. Recent examples include “Education across Borders,” “What Causes Cancer?” and “Free Speech in America.”
  • Honors Thesis: The capstone experience for New Paltz Honors students pushes them to work on and off campus—with faculty mentors, fellow students, industry experts, and employers—to produce an original thesis in their area of study. Recent Honors Thesis presentations include an examination of marketing in the National Basketball Association; a study of the relationship between memory and digital technology; and research on modern techniques for diagnosing and treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Undergraduate Research

Independent research opportunities, through which students work closely with faculty mentors to develop original scholarship, provide significant intellectual and career benefits to students. They particularly act as major differentiators for employers and graduate school admission teams.

SUNY New Paltz is committed to providing these vital experiences to students in all academic disciplines. Through the Research, Scholarship and Creative Activities Program, New Paltz students connect with faculty advisors, learn about grant and scholarship funding opportunities, participate in national and international conferences, and present their work before their peers and professors at the annual Student Research Symposium.


Campus Ministries X
Choral groups X
Concert band X
Dance X
Drama/theatre X
International Student Organization X
Jazz band X
Literary magazine X
Marching band  
Model UN X
Music ensembles X
Musical theatre X
Opera X
Pep band  
Radio station X
Student government X
Student newspaper X
Student-run film society  
Symphony orchestra X
Television station X

3D Printing and Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center (HVAMC)

SUNY New Paltz is home to the HVAMC, where digital fabrication experts work with one of the largest and most advanced collections of 3D printers anywhere in the U.S. The HVAMC partners with businesses to provide innovative manufacturing solutions, but it’s an educational resource too, offering classes in Computer-Aided Design (CAD) software and helping New Paltz students of all majors—engineers, artists, future teachers, and entrepreneurs—integrate 3D printing technologies into their education.

State-of-the-Art Facilities

The SUNY New Paltz campus has enjoyed a period of unprecedented renovation and new building in recent years, focusing on creating modern teaching and learning facilities for a rapidly changing educational landscape.

  • Science Hall: A new, two-story building opened in 2017 to support New Paltz’s growing STEM enrollment, including the majors in the brand-new Mechanical Engineering program. Meeting the U.S. Green Building Council standards for sustainable construction, it provides state-of-the-art laboratories, lecture halls, and collaborative spaces.
  • Wooster Hall: Nearly 50 years after Wooster Hall first opened on the New Paltz campus, a complete renovation was performed to update the building, all while preserving core structures and advancing sustainability. Wooster Hall houses top-of-the-line engineering laboratories, centralizes student services, hosts the psychology and anthropology departments, and is home to Element 93, one of the most popular café on campus.
  • Sojourner Truth Library: The completely renovated library opened in 2016 as a vastly improved resource for New Paltz students and faculty. Sojourner Truth Library provides a study and gathering space with expanded individual and group work stations, upgraded technological resources, rooftop solar panels, and a breathtaking view of the nearby Shawangunk mountain ridge.

The Benjamin Center for Public Policy Research

The Benjamin Center for Public Policy Research at SUNY New Paltz is a one-of-a-kind organization in which students and faculty work on policy issues that move the news cycle. It serves the New York community with applied research and evaluative studies, giving students unique opportunities to work with lawmakers, businesses, educators, and media outlets on projects that truly affect people’s lives.

The Benjamin Center also supports The Legislative Gazette, the premier public affairs-reporting internship program in New York State. Students can earn a full semester’s worth of undergraduate credits as well as a twice-monthly stipend while reporting on state government. Since its founding in 1978, the Gazette has produced hundreds of alumni who have gone onto careers in law, government, and journalism, including two Pulitzer Prize winners.

Art Museum and Performance Venues

The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz, featuring more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space and six full galleries, is one of the leading art museums in the greater Hudson Valley. It attracts multimedia artists from around the world to showcase their work and collaborate with New Paltz students, faculty, and community members.

The Museum also provides a professional environment for fine arts students to prepare and exhibit their own work. Each semester, the Dorsky hosts major thesis exhibitions of New Paltz students’ sculpture, painting and drawing, graphic design, metal, photography, ceramics, and printmaking.

The College is also home to four full-size stage theaters, providing venues for the student-acted and -produced Mainstage Productions theatre performances as well as the Concert Series of classical, jazz, and contemporary music recitals by students, faculty, and special guests.


Arts/fine arts X
Computer literacy X
English (including composition) X
Foreign languages X
History X
Humanities X
Mathematics X
Sciences (biological or physical) X
Social science X


Size 2-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-99 100+ Total
Number of Classes 35 204 373 268 51 39 4 974

New Paltz, New York

SUNY New Paltz sits 90 minutes north of New York City, halfway up the Hudson River Valley in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains. It’s one of the most scenic areas in the northeast U.S., with world-class rock-climbing and great options for outdoor exploration in every direction.

SUNY New Paltz enjoys a partnership with the Mohonk Preserve, a rich natural resource and living laboratory that enhances students’ academic and recreational lives.

The Village of New Paltz is a vibrant college town built on the foundation of a 400-year-old French Huguenot settlement that still stands today. It offers diverse cultural attractions: cuisine from around the world, music venues, art galleries, nearby vineyards, charming shops, and friendly people. It is a community that is great for a day trip, and even better to call home.

Living-Learning Communities

The Communities at New Paltz program is designed to bring together students with similar interests for shared experiences both in and out of the classroom. Students can opt in to one of these communities and gain access to a strong network of residence life staff, community mentors, and peer students, focusing on issues that can define their educations.

At New Paltz, there are living-learning communities (LLCs) that are reserved exclusively for first-year students. First-year students can choose to participate in:

  • The Leadership Community, which offers a pathway to paid leadership positions on campus, including in residence life and student affairs
  • The Health and Wellness Community, where the focus is on establishing and maintaining healthy lifestyles, positive body images, stress management, and personal responsibility
  • The Service Learning Community, designed for students who can’t wait to start making a positive impact on the regional community, placing an emphasis on civic education, social justice, and volunteerism
  • The Career Exploration Community—the newest of the bunch—which acts as an outlet for guidance in finding the career path that best suits them. This group is all about self-knowledge—students identify the passions, skills, and values that they hold most dear, discovering ways to apply them to a successful life both during and after college.


In addition to these first-year communities, SUNY New Paltz welcomes all students to apply for membership in the Sustainability LLC, which promotes engagement with environmental issues; the Rivera House LGBTQA+ LLC, where students can be part of a network of change-agents working for feminist, queer, and anti-racist causes; and the East-West LLC and the Romance Languages LLC, which each fosters cultural exchange and collaboration—the former between American, Chinese, and Japanese students, and the latter between American, French, Italian, Spanish, and Latin American students.

Student Organizations & Activities

Students who want to get involved at New Paltz have an incredible selection of clubs they can join or lead: music ensembles, social justice and leadership organizations, Greek life, the radio station and newspaper, intramural sports, and even the weeklong, all-campus Humans vs. Zombies game. If a student can’t find the club they’re looking for, it’s easy for them to get some friends together and start their own!

One stand-out example among the hundreds of student clubs on campus is the SUNY New Paltz chapter of the American Marketing Association. Run entirely by New Paltz students and a School of Business faculty advisor, the New Paltz AMA regularly punches above its weight, repeatedly taking home top 25 finishes (and beating out much teams from bigger schools and business programs!) at the annual AMA International Collegiate Conferences.

The time and energy that New Paltz students dedicate to the hundreds of campus clubs and organizations doesn’t go unnoticed. Since 2015, the College has offered an innovative Co-Curricular Transcript, which lets students keep track of their out-of-classroom activities on an official document verified with the SUNY seal of approval. It’s a powerful tool for graduates who want to show employers and graduate schools that their college experience was about more than their GPA.

Athletics & Wellness

SUNY New Paltz is home to the Hawks, a broad collective of athlete scholars who distinguish themselves by their performance in sport and in the classroom. The College fields competitive men’s and women’s teams in swimming, basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball, track and field, soccer, tennis, lacrosse, and field hockey, including the 2016 Division III National Champion Men’s Volleyball team.

Beyond intercollegiate athletics, SUNY New Paltz is committed to the health and wellness of the broader campus community. All students have access to the Athletic & Wellness Center, a state-of-the-art training facility featuring two massive fitness centers, a six-lane, 25-yard swimming pool, a 1,800-seat basketball arena, a dance studio, an indoor track, and many other resources, and students can set up free one-on-one sessions with the College’s Certified Athletic Trainers.


SUNY New Paltz is honored to support those who have served their country as members of the United States military. The Office of Veteran & Military Services works closely with hundreds of active duty, veteran, and dependent students to ensure that they succeed academically and find a welcoming community at New Paltz. These students receive the benefits that their service entitles them to.


At SUNY New Paltz, responsibility to the environment is not only a way of life, but it’s also included in the curriculum. The College has a dedicated Office of Campus Sustainability, which works with students, faculty, and administrators to protect the Earth and reduce energy costs through sustainable practices.

New Paltz is also a great place for students interested in green careers, with degree programs and concentrations that focus on sustainability in science and engineering, business, social sciences, and other disciplines.

SUNY New Paltz has won major recognition for its efforts to stay green from organizations including the U.S. Green Building Council, the Princeton Review, and the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education.


Coed dorms X
Men’s dorms  
Women’s dorms  
Apartments for married students  
Apartments for single students  
Special housing for disabled students X
Special housing for international students X
Fraternity/sorority housing  
Cooperative housing  
Theme housing X
Wellness housing X
Other housing options X


Other: The First-Year Initiative, Honors Housing, Art Program Housing, Scholars Mentorship Program Housing, East-West Living/Learning Community, Gender-Neutral Suites.

Internships and Professional Opportunities

The faculty at SUNY New Paltz show an uncommon dedication to helping students find opportunities not only to learn, but to apply what they’ve learned in ways that prepare them for successful careers.

The School of Education offers just one example. Each year, SUNY New Paltz prepares hundreds of educators for teaching positions across the state and, each year, those teachers enter the job market with a range of practical experience. During their time at New Paltz, these educators in the making work as camp counselors with the Hudson Valley Writing Project; science teachers for low-income students in the Science & Technology Entry Program; and literacy advocates serving the community at the Newburgh, N.Y. Armory Unity Center.

The Global Engagement Program, a mixed academic and internship experience for political science and international relations students, is based at multiple internationally focused organizations in New York City, including the United Nations. GEP interns earn 12-15 credits while establishing invaluable contacts in a professional, global community where they can really make a difference.

All New Paltz students, regardless of major, can find ample opportunity to expand their intellectual and professional development through the Career Resource Center, which works to help students find opportunities to prepare to thrive in their postgraduate lives.

These can take many forms: picking up a First-Year Internship with one of the many New Paltz alumni who are employed on campus; leading a team of student volunteers at a local farm during Alternative Spring Break or Saturdays of Service; or practicing interviewing and resume writing skills with an experienced counselor.

The CRC also organizes regional job listings on HawkHire, a free service to all SUNY New Paltz students searching for the next step toward their ideal career.

Thriving Alumni, Giving Back

SUNY New Paltz takes great pride in the accomplishments of its alumni—people like actor John Turturro ’79, YouTube Executive Robert Kyncl ’95, and United Nations Secretary General Jessica Faieta ’85—not only for how they have flourished in their post-college lives, but for how they go the extra mile to pass on what they’ve learned to the next generation of students.

New Paltz alumni regularly return to campus to give guest lectures, offer insights on panels, judge student competitions, create new scholarship programs, and just have casual meet-ups to talk shop with current students, helping plant the seeds of future success.

Liberal Arts in Action

SUNY New Paltz offers programs in Science, Engineering, Business, Education, and Fine and Performing Arts, but the largest academic unit and core of the curriculum is the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. Through enrollment in courses covering history, literature, languages, culture, mathematics, science, and the social sciences, New Paltz students pick up skills that can be applied in any number of professional settings.

Critical thinking; communication; problem solving; flexibility; an international worldview; the ability to quickly learn new skills—these are the abilities that employers in all fields say make the difference between a good candidate and the best candidates, and these skills define the Liberal Arts in Action at SUNY New Paltz.



 13,753 total applicants
6,092 total admissions
1,105 total freshman enrollment

44.3% of applicants admitted

Admissions Deadlines for 2018-19 Admission

Rolling admission? No

Closing date: Apr 1

Admissions Factors

Very Important
Rigor of secondary school record
Academic GPA
Standardized test scores

Application Essay

Extracurricular activities
Volunteer work
Work experience
Level of applicant’s interest

Freshman Profile Fall 2017

  25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing 560 640
SAT Math 540 620
SAT Essay    
ACT Composite 23 28
ACT Math 22 27
ACT English 22 28
ACT Writing    



Expenses In-State Out-of-State
Tuition $3,435 $8,325
Fees $692 $692
Total $4,127 $9,017
Room and Board (on campus) $6,731 $6,731
Room Only $4,431 $4,431
Board Only $2,300 $2,300
Estimated Total On Campus $10,858 $15,748