A Letter from Kim A. Scalzo, Executive Director, Open SUNY

Why Open SUNY?


Open SUNY+?


A Letter from …

Kim A. Scalzo, Executive Director, Open SUNY

May 11, 2016

Dear Colleagues:

I am pleased to issue this call for you to nominate programs to earn the Open SUNY+ designation.

By way of brief background, Open SUNY—SUNY’s commitment to grow online course and degree offerings and related student and faculty supports—was introduced in January 2013 and launched in January 2014. The Open SUNY+ designation represents the commitment to offer personalized student services to minimize time to degree and promote student success; provide engaging learning experiences based on industry-relevant content in “High Needs” or “High Demand” areas; and offer comprehensive faculty support to ensure quality in course design, development, and delivery. After two years with our Wave I and Wave II pilots, we are off and running with our Open SUNY+ partner programs. We are proud to report that 64 degree and certificate programs from across the SUNY system are now powered by Open SUNY+, a designation at the program level synonymous with high level of quality in program content and supports for both students and faculty.

Open SUNY generally has required campus leadership, faculty and staff at all levels to collaborate with the singular goal of leveraging online learning to expand access, increase completions, and ensure success for SUNY students. Open SUNY has been a great example of systemness at work. At this year’s State of the University Address, Chancellor Zimpher announced Open SUNY 2.0 with emphasis on Open SUNY as SUNY’s Online Personal Education Network, providing entrée to SUNY for learners with a wide range of educational needs.  We envision that this will require even more collaboration across the system, including collaborations of faculty for modularized course content and open education resources, multi-campus collaborations for new online programs in the high-needs areas, and employer-based partnerships in support of workforce development and continuing education needs.  We would like to see an increase in the number of Open SUNY+ programs across the system as part of Open SUNY 2.0.

Nomination Details:

  • To be eligible for nomination, programs must already be approved by the New York State Education Department to be offered online and must demonstrate that they meet the Signature Elements of Open SUNY+ programs, found at https://innovate.suny.edu/opensuny/what-does-it-mean-to-be-powered-by-open-suny/.  More information on the criteria for programs to be approved for Open SUNY+ partnership can be found at https://innovate.suny.edu/opensuny/criteria-for-the-next-wave-of-powered-by-open-suny/.
  •  We have streamlined the nomination submission and review process based on the lessons learned and feedback from our existing Open SUNY+ partner campuses.  If you have completed the Open SUNY Institutional Readiness Process and/or the Open SUNY Enrollment Planning Roundtable, you will be able to use the outcomes you produced from them in your nomination submission.  All of the information you need to nominate your program, to understand the process, and review the criteria can be found at https://innovate.suny.edu/opensuny/nominate/.
  • As we move beyond the pilots to operationalize Open SUNY, program nominations for the Open SUNY+ designation will be accepted on an ongoing basis starting May 16, 2016.

If you have questions, please send them to contactopensuny@suny.edu.  Thank you in advance for your nominations.



Kim A. Scalzo

Executive Director, Open SUNY


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