Chancellor Malatras Announces $3 Million Nursing Emergency Training Fund to Help SUNY Campuses Expand Healthcare Programs to Meet Critical Nursing Shortages

November 10, 2021

All SUNY Campuses with Nursing Programs are Eligible for Up To $250,000 in Grants to Increase Enrollment Needed to Address Nursing Demand Projected to Increase 15% Nationwide by 2026—Outpacing All Other Occupations; Applications to Open this Month

SUNY Also Launches Nursing Recruitment Campaign with Video "Be a Hero" Available Here; And New One-Stop Shop Website of the 70+ Available SUNY Nursing Programs Here

Albany, NY
– With projected nursing shortages as demand for nurses will significantly increase across New York State and the nation, and as college nursing programs are at capacity, State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras announced a $3 million SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund to allow more students to enroll in nursing degree programs. The fund is made possible under the direction of the Chancellor through the review and assignment of a high needs appropriation related to nursing within the annual State budget.

Across the nation, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that 11 million additional nurses are needed to avoid further shortages in the healthcare industry, and employment opportunities for nurses are projected to grow at a rate of 15 percent—faster than all other occupations through 2026. According to the American Journal of Medical Quality, there will be a shortage of more than 39,000 registered nurses in New York State by 2030. This comes at a time when U.S. nursing programs are turning away applicants—80,000 qualified applicants in 2019 alone—in large part due to a shortage of spots for available clinical placements and faculty instructors.

"The warning signs are flashing that we need to train more nurses now, and the need only grows in the future. We must do everything we can to get more people trained as nurses in order to stem the tide to make sure we have access to quality healthcare when we need it—because nurses are the heartbeat of healthcare," said Chancellor Malatras. "Our new SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund will create more capacity to graduate more critically-needed nurses by hiring additional nurse educators, expanding clinical positions and training space, and buying state-of-the-art training technology. As part of our student-centric SUNY for All program, we are making it easier for prospective students to find the right nursing program with a new one-stop shop website. As the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the nation, SUNY will do all it can to meet this critical workforce demand."

SUNY Board Trustee Eric Corngold said, "Nurses serve as the backbone of our healthcare industry, taking care of our loved ones during their time of need and serving as advocates on behalf of patients and their families as they move through the healing process. COVID-19 has further highlighted how crucial it is for our workforce to be supported by robust nursing staff throughout the state. While we are currently facing a shortage of nurses, SUNY’s Nursing Emergency Training Fund will help to close the employment gap and allow for our system to train the next generation of nurses."

New York State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky said, "The critical role of nurses in our healthcare system has never been more apparent. Right now, our state is facing a nursing shortage that studies suggest is only going to increase if we do not take action. The SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund ensures that more aspiring New Yorkers have access to the quality training and education needed to fill that employment gap and provide life-saving services within our communities."

Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick said, "New York's nurses are a foundational part of our health care system and staffing shortages have hit a critical level with these essential professionals, negatively impacting the health and welfare of all New Yorkers. I applaud SUNY for investing in the success of our future nurses and nurse educators, and working to find a solution to a need experienced across New York State."

All SUNY campuses with nursing programs—more than 70 accredited—are eligible to submit proposals for one-time grants of up to $250,000 from the SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund. However, priority will be given, and the award may be expanded for, multi-campus or cooperative submissions that can demonstrate creating significantly more enrollment capacity. Eligible programs include: licensed practical nurse to registered nurse (RN); RN to bachelor of science in nursing (BSN); BSN; and doctor of nursing practice degree programs.

Funding can be used to:

  • Offset the initial cost of hiring instructors
  • Expand clinical positions and training space
  • Purchase instructional equipment and technology

All proposals must include a plan to expand enrollment in nursing programs and have a demonstrated ability to increase capacity. Applications are expected to open this month.

SUNY also launched today a nursing recruitment campaign starting with a "Be a Hero" campaign video available here. In addition, SUNY has created a specific website with detailed information about the 70+ nursing programs at campuses or online across New York State. For more information about SUNY’s nursing programs, visit

Across SUNY, campuses are creating partnerships to train more nurses. In August, for example, Chancellor Malatras announced a partnership between SUNY Orange and SUNY Empire State College to create a new RN to BSN transfer pathway, which fills a critical hole in the Hudson Valley region where no previous public BSN options had existed. Under the partnership, interested SUNY Orange nursing graduates will automatically be enrolled in SUNY Empire State College’s BSN program and SUNY Empire will waive application fees. The partnership provides scholarship options and allows the transfer of 63 credits earned at SUNY Orange to SUNY Empire in order to reduce the time needed to complete the BSN program, saving students money over the course of their studies.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York 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 state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 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 2021, 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 opportunity, visit

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Holly Liapis
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