By Emily Drooby
When it comes to what’s going on at St. Francis College (SFC), right now, it’s a blank canvas. But in the future, it’s painting its latest masterpiece: the new school.
“We’re really taking this to the next level,” said the college’s president, Miguel Martinez-Saenz.
He took Currents News on a tour of the new space.
“We are going to be the only college, I’ll say this, in NYC, with brand new everything,” Miguel said.
Everything is brand new, from a 38-seat chapel, an auditorium, 6,600 square foot library to art galleries and an outdoor terrace.
“When you walk into our library, the latest technology is going to be available to our students,” Miguel said. “When you walk into the classroom, the faculty are going to have the latest technology to use.”
It’s still a bitter sweet moment as the school is leaving Remsen Street, their home for over 50 years. Their new school will be located just half a mile away on Livingston Street. Miguel says the move is necessary for modernization.
“These old buildings, if they’re not open floor plans, there’s a lot of work that needs to go into them,” he explained. “Students would be in a construction zone for 20 years.”
Their student population is also growing, adding 400 students in the past four years. They expect to add another 800 by 2026.
It’s no surprise about the growing student population considering the amount of aid the school provides. Ninety-eight percent of their students get some type of institutional tuition aid.
The aid even continued through the pandemic. Through their Terrier for Terrier Relief Fund, they gave out over $150,000 in grants. SFC also gave out over 2,000 emergency student financial aid awards that totaled over $2.6 million. The money for that student aid came from the federal COVID-relief legislation.
Generous financial aid options and a new, modern building, are what St. Francis students can look forward to. Students said they’ll miss the old building, but they’re also very excited about the new possibilities.
“Oh, I love the new building,” said student Gabrielle Lora. “Honestly, I feel like this new building brings new opportunities. Although this wonderful building feels like home already, I feel like sometimes, you just need a new change.”
Fall of 2022 – that’s just 15 months away. The new space will be fully redone and ready to welcome students.
“The building is nice here, but I do like the layout of the new building,” said student Mccoy Frederick. “It looks really amazing to be honest.”