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Transferring from SUNY Old Westbury to SUNY Downstate made easier under pact

A view of Student Union building at SUNY

A view of Student Union building at SUNY Old Westbury. Credit: NEWSDAY STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER/David L. Pokress

Students from SUNY Old Westbury will be able to more easily transfer into programs at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn under a new arrangement between the institutions.

Up to 23 SUNY Old Westbury students each year will be given advance priority admission to SUNY Downstate — up to 15 in the undergraduate nursing program, four in the master’s-level physician assistant program and four in the undergraduate and doctorate-level physical therapy program.

Acceptance into the competitive program will be based upon academic performance and factors such as the commitment and initiative of the student, said SUNY Old Westbury spokesman Michael Kinane.

Students can begin applying later this year, with the first ones entering the program in June 2020, said SUNY Downstate spokeswoman Dawn Walker. The United States has a shortage of nurses that is expected to increase as the population ages. The new agreement, though, will not increase the number of slots in the SUNY Downstate nursing program or in the other two programs, Walker said.

Kinane said the arrangement gives SUNY Downstate “a guarantee of people who come from very diverse backgrounds. Our campus is one of the most diverse in the country, and this gives an opportunity for people from those underrepresented communities to access careers they might otherwise have a hard time getting into.”

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