Student petition against Pathways gen ed plan gains traction, joins 4700 faculty and staff signatures

[Update] The faculty and student petitions received over 6,000 combined signatures and were presented to the Board of Trustees at its April 30, 2012 meeting.

Students United for a Free CUNY has launched a petition demanding an immediate repeal of Pathways, the general education changes approved by the Board of Trustees last spring. The petition cites a reduction in non-European culture requirements and lab science, forced by cuts in the total number of general education credits required. The petition joins faculty and staff efforts to repeal pathways, which have gathered over 4,700 signatures as of April 21, 2012.

The full text of the petition reads:

We, the undersigned students of the City University of New York, demand the immediate repeal of the Pathways Initiative as passed by the CUNY Board of Trustees and the implementation of a more effective policy for credit transfer, as created by students and professors.

We, the undersigned students of the City University of New York demand that the University Student Senate pass a resolution against the Pathways Initiative, and that any and all student government organizations at their respective campuses pass similar resolutions.

The Pathways Initiative, as it now stands, would deeply cut into the quality of education at CUNY, removing language and non-European culture requirements, which would ultimately lead to the downsizing, and in some cases, complete elimination of many departments, like Ethnic Studies, for which CUNY students in 1969 fought so hard.

In a post-Pathways CUNY it will suffice for a science lab class to simply explain the experiment rather than actually performing it. This is unacceptable for any students seeking a truly quality education.

There is a clear necessity for the transfer process to be reformed given the difficulty many students face when transferring from Community Colleges to Senior Colleges. However, there is no reason that this reform be imposed by the Administration. Curriculum decisions should be made by students and their professors alone, not by CUNY bureaucrats.

We join our professors and the Professional Staff Congress in their call for the Board of Trustees to repeal the “Pathways” resolution (“Creating an Efficient Transfer System”) at its next meeting – on April 30, 2011.

To sign the petition, visit