Governor Hochul Announces $30 Million Empire State Teacher Residency Program to Increase Teacher Support and Retention

October 24, 2022

From the office of Governor Hochul

Funding to Subsidize Master's Degree Programs for Graduate Level K-12 Teacher Candidates  

View the New York State Department of Labor's Request for Applications Here 

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the launch of the Empire State Teacher Residency Program through the New York State Department of Labor. This program will provide matching funding for local public school districts and/or Boards of Cooperative Educational Services to create two-year residency opportunities for graduate-level K-12 teacher candidates. The program will provide $30 million in funding to subsidize master's degree or teaching certification programs for qualified residency program candidates. The program will prioritize diversity among candidates and partnering mentors, with a particular focus on high-need subject areas and geographic locations facing shortages. This will provide support for both communities in need and teachers from diverse backgrounds.

"With the tremendous responsibility of inspiring and shaping the minds of younger generations, New York's teachers deserve to be set up for success," Governor Hochul said. "This investment will ensure new teachers have the mentorship and support to adapt to a challenging and ever-changing field. New Yorkers deserve the best education, and our teachers are essential in providing that."

Teacher residency programs, in which teachers in training are given a mentor and real teaching experience under the mentor's supervision, have been proven to dramatically increase teacher retention rates and improve the experience of educators in the early, toughest years of teaching. These programs expand access to high need communities that often face barriers by reducing costs and incentivizing teachers to work in geographic locations facing shortages. This leads to increased student success due to higher teacher retention and resources.

Funded programs would involve the State University of New York (SUNY), the City University of New York (CUNY), and/or private colleges partnering with public school districts and/or BOCES to provide reduced or free tuition for teaching candidates, including books and fees, resident wages and fringe, and stipends for living expenses. These stipends allow easier access to the field for aspiring teachers, and allows the Empire State Teacher Residency Program to be a creative pathway into teaching for teachers from diverse backgrounds.

New York State Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon said, "Teachers are essential to our communities, and we need them now more than ever. We must support and empower new teachers in their careers, especially as we all adapt to a new age of education. I thank Governor Hochul for continuing to make strategic investments to help attract and retain these vital professionals."

SUNY Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley said, "SUNY has long played a key role in preparing teachers to educate the next generation of leaders in classrooms statewide. We need highly-qualified, passionate, and dedicated teachers now more than ever, as the pandemic impacted students both academically and emotionally. As the teaching profession has evolved, our colleges and universities have expanded programs and increased support to ensure graduates' success. Last year alone, about 7,500 SUNY students were awarded teacher certificates. More are needed, and from all backgrounds, as we know students who have teachers who look like them and share their life experience have better outcomes. We applaud Governor Hochul for her commitment to education and are proud of SUNY's contribution to the new residency program."

CUNY Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez said, "CUNY prepares a third of New York City's new public school teachers each year, more than any other university, and this new program will help these aspiring teachers get the support they need to become the teachers our city's students deserve. Teaching is one of the most challenging and crucial jobs in any society and I'm grateful to Governor Hochul for her ongoing commitment to helping our educators at every level."

New York State United Teachers President Andy Pallotta said, "Giving aspiring teachers an in-depth opportunity to learn on the job from high-quality mentor teachers and develop connections with students is key to setting future educators up for success. As we work to attract more people to our profession, this program shows that New York is dedicated to reversing staff shortages, helping diversify the education workforce and giving staff the tools they'll need to teach and mentor their own students. We thank Gov. Hochul for her commitment to public education and the people who are dedicated to helping our students succeed."

The Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities President Lola Brabham said, "On behalf of CICU's member colleges and universities, I thank Governor Hochul for her consistent work in strengthening pathways for new teachers. This investment will diversify and grow our teacher workforce. CICU member campuses across New York graduate 58% of bachelors and graduate students who become educators. We are excited to be a part of this solution and our campuses look forward to partnering with the State to make this program a success."

This Empire State Teacher Residency Program builds on Governor Hochul's bold and diverse education initiatives announced during her 2022 State of the State to address teacher shortages and make schooling more accessible for all New Yorkers. She followed through on these promises during her 2023 Budget announcement where she invested an unprecedented $31.5 billion in education, the highest level of State aid ever. The Budget not only created this state teacher residency program, but also includes initiatives to upskill some of the 100,000 current paraprofessionals and teaching assistants in New York State schools.

This investment also included $1.1 billion for high-quality prekindergarten, which would allow approximately 17,500 additional students to access full-day pre-kindergarten across the State and a total of $100 million of matching funds over two years to be provided to school districts and BOCES with the highest needs to address student wellbeing and learning loss in response to the trauma brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

To find more information on the program or see if your public school district or BOCES is eligible to apply, visit

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year, is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2022, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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