Ranked List of the Best SUNY Schools

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What’s Covered:

 

Established in 1948, the State University of New York (SUNY) is the largest system of higher education campuses, schools, and colleges in the US. Today, this collection of diverse units, spanning every level of higher education, from community colleges to doctoral programs, includes 64 distinct schools.

 

From Buffalo to Long Island, SUNY has a presence across the entire State of New York. Considering attending a SUNY school? Learn which one is right for you. (NB: This post focuses on colleges with four-year-degree, in-person programs.)

 

Our Ranking Methodology

 

We focused on school quality, outcomes, and ROI. We examined data such as retention rate, selectivity, endowment per student, student-faculty ratio, median earnings, and cost of attendance, among many others. 

 

SUNY Schools Ranking

 

1. University at Buffalo

 

Location: Buffalo

Acceptance rate: 67%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1140-1310/23-29

Undergrad enrollment: 21,600

 

A top public university in New York State, UB boasts the widest range of academic programs of any public institution in its region (New York/New England), with more than 140 undergraduate programs, along with the option of designing your own major. Founded in 1846 as a medical college, the university merged with SUNY in 1962. Today, it is one of four university centers that are part of the system.

 

Learn more about UB and see your chances of acceptance.

 

2. Stony Brook

 

Location: Stony Brook

Acceptance rate: 49%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1230-1440/26-32

Undergrad enrollment: 17,500

 

Long regarded as the flagship school of the SUNY system, Stony Brook was established in 1957 as a preparatory school for math and science teachers. Today, the university is one of SUNY’s four university centers, known for programs in areas like engineering, business, and many more. In fact, there are more than 200 majors, minors, and combined-degree programs in total.

 

Learn more about Stony Brook and see your chances of acceptance.

 

3. Binghamton University

 

Location: Vestal

Acceptance rate: 43%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1290-1450/29-32

Undergrad enrollment: 14,000

 

Long considered a top value school and one of the country’s top public universities, Binghamton is comprised of six schools with more than 130 academic programs. The university is also known for a broad range of study abroad programs, a strong retention rate, and a plethora of extracurricular activities. 

 

Learn more about Binghamton and see your chances of acceptance.

 

4. SUNY Oneonta

 

Location: Oneonta

Acceptance rate: 63%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 980-1260/19-28

Undergrad enrollment: 6,000

 

Across Liberal Arts and Business; Education, Human Ecology, and Sports Studies; and Sciences, SUNY Oneonta offers an array of majors and programs. In particular, the university emphasizes career preparation. By senior year, almost three-quarters of students have participated in at least two ‚Äúhigh impact‚ÄĚ learning experiences, such as research or study abroad programs.

 

Learn more about Oneonta and see your chances of acceptance.

 

5. SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

 

Location: Syracuse

Acceptance rate: 60%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: N/A

Undergrad enrollment: 1,800

 

The oldest institution focused on the study of the environment in the country, SUNY-ESF is a specialized school offering both undergraduate and graduate programs in environmentally-related disciplines. Among other claims to fame, ESF has been ranked no. 1 among public institutions in the US for enrolling and graduating women in engineering by The Chronicle of Higher Education.

 

Learn more about ESF and see your chances of acceptance.

 

6. University at Albany

 

Location: Albany

Acceptance rate: 57%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1100-1250/22-28

Undergrad enrollment: 13,500

 

Nine colleges and schools, along with an honors college, comprise UAlbany, a university with a history dating back more than 175 years. A top-ranked institution for research, it offers programs across three campuses: Uptown Campus in Albany and Guilderland, the Downtown Campus in Albany, and the Health Sciences Campus in the city of Rensselaer.

 

Learn more about Albany and see your chances of acceptance.

 

7. SUNY New Paltz

 

Location: New Paltz

Acceptance rate: 62%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1090-1270/24-29

Undergrad enrollment: 6,600

 

Student Loan Hero ranks SUNY New Paltz no. 1 among most affordable LGBTQ+-friendly four-year schools in New York State and no. 29 nationally. But that’s not all. It’s also the no. 1 best value college in the SUNY system and no. 25 overall, as per College Census. Five schools comprise the undergraduate experience, and students can pursue Liberal Studies, an Honors Program, and other opportunities.

 

Learn more about SUNY New Paltz and see your chances of acceptance.

 

8. SUNY Cortland

 

Location: Cortland

Acceptance rate: 52%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1060-1200/22-25

Undergrad enrollment: 6,300

 

A founding member of the SUNY system, Cortland was originally established as Cortland Normal School in 1868. The school offers 68 majors, across the School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Education, and the School of Professional Studies, excelling, in particular, in teacher education and health-related programs.

 

Learn more about SUNY Cortland and see your chances of acceptance.

 

9. SUNY Geneseo

 

Location: Geneseo

Acceptance rate: 61.4%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1120-1300/24-28

Undergrad enrollment: 5,500

 

Founded in 1871, Geneseo is a liberal arts college known for the beauty of its campus. It offers 50 undergraduate degree programs and graduate programs in accounting and education. According to the college, nearly half of graduates have a double major and/or a major and a minor.

 

Learn more about SUNY Geneseo and see your chances of acceptance.

 

10. SUNY Purchase

 

Location: Purchase

Acceptance rate: 61%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1060-1270/21-28

Undergrad enrollment: 4,100

 

Considered a top value college in the country, Purchase combines liberal arts and sciences with conservatory programs in visual and performing arts. Collaboration, inclusivity, and sustainability are core values of the institution, and the Purchase seeks to foster diversity through its programs.

 

Learn more about SUNY Purchase and see your chances of acceptance.

 

11. SUNY Oswego

 

Location: Oswego

Acceptance rate: 69%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1070-1240/21-26

Undergrad enrollment: 7,000

 

For more than 150 years, SUNY Oswego has served as a center of innovation. Opportunities are abundant: students conduct research in cutting-edge laboratories, secure internships, study abroad, and participate in a range of extracurriculars. They also learn across four schools: the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, School of Business, School of Education, and School of Communications, Media and the Arts.

 

Learn more about SUNY Oswego and see your chances of acceptance.

 

12. SUNY Plattsburgh

 

Location: Plattsburgh

Acceptance rate: 59%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1050-1230/21-25

Undergrad enrollment: 5,200

 

Founded as a teaching college in 1889, SUNY Plattsburgh offers more than 69 majors, along with hands-on learning opportunities. According to the school, it also serves as a major driver of the economic and cultural well-being of the community, evidenced by its illustrious history.

 

Learn more about SUNY Plattsburgh and see your chances of acceptance.

 

13. Farmingdale State College

 

Location: Farmingdale

Acceptance rate: 60%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1010-1160/20-24

Undergrad enrollment: 9,900

 

With 40 bachelor’s degrees, five associate’s, and one master’s Farmingdale State has an array of offerings across its four schools. New and innovative programs include Applied Gerontology, Cannabis Production & Management, and Interaction Design, among others. The school is also equipped with cutting-edge facilities, including several research centers. 

 

Learn more about Farmingdale and see your chances of acceptance.

 

Discover your chances at hundreds of schools

Our free chancing engine takes into account your history, background, test scores, and extracurricular activities to show you your real chances of admission‚ÄĒand how to improve them.

14. SUNY Maritime

 

Location: Throggs Neck

Acceptance rate: 73%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1075-1260/22-27

Undergrad enrollment: 1,500

 

SUNY Maritime was the first school of its kind, established in 1874, and remains just one of seven degree-granting maritime academies in the US. Through the school, undergraduates may pursue one of 10 bachelor’s degree or an associate’s degree. Many of these programs enable students to earn a US Coast Guard deck or engine license.

 

Learn more about SUNY Maritime and see your chances of acceptance.

 

15. SUNY Brockport

 

Location: Brockport

Acceptance rate:

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1020-1180/20-25

Undergrad enrollment: 7,000

 

Founded as Brockport Collegiate Institute in 1841, one of few institutions of its kind open to all genders and people of color, SUNY Brockport today commits to values of community, engagement, excellence, and transformation. The university is made up of 23% underrepresented students. 

 

Learn more about Brockport and see your chances of acceptance.

 

16. SUNY Potsdam

 

Location: Potsdam

Acceptance rate: 71.7%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: N/A

Undergrad enrollment: 3,200

 

The oldest member of SUNY, Potsdam was founded in 1816 as St. Lawrence Academy. It was also the first institution in the US to offer training for music teachers. Today, it continues to be a leader in music education through the Crane Normal Institute of Music, one of three schools at the institution, along with the School of Education and Professional Studies and the College of Arts & Sciences.

 

Learn more about SUNY Potsdam and see your chances of acceptance.

 

17. SUNY Polytechnic Institute

 

Location: Utica

Acceptance rate: 73%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1000-1350/20-28

Undergrad enrollment: 2,200

 

From nanoscience to engineering, business to natural sciences, SUNY Polytechnic specializes in cutting-edge STEM programs and innovative majors. Five colleges make up the institute, with programs available across two campuses.

 

Learn more about SUNY Poly and see your chances of acceptance.

 

18. SUNY Fredonia

 

Location: Fredonia

Acceptance rate: 71%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 970-1170/21-27

Undergrad enrollment: 4,400

 

A leader in areas like education, communication disorders and sciences, music and the arts, communication, and humanities, SUNY Fredonia, the second-oldest institution in the SUNY system, offers more than 80 majors and 50 minors. The liberal arts university also provides opportunities in undergraduate research and interdisciplinary studies.

 

Learn more about Fredonia and see your chances of acceptance.

 

19. Buffalo State College

 

Location: Buffalo

Acceptance rate: 80%

Middle 50% SAT: 860-1040

Undergrad enrollment: 8,000

 

Across four schools, students at Buffalo State can study the arts, education, science, or professional studies ‚ÄĒ 79 undergraduate majors in total. Opportunities abound: students can participate in research, take advantage of online programs, study abroad, participate in learning communities and applied learning projects, and much more.

 

Learn more about Buffalo State and see your chances of acceptance.

 

20. SUNY Delhi

 

Location: Delhi

Acceptance rate: 72%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 920-1090/17-23

Undergrad enrollment: 3,100

 

Cyber Operations, Horticulture, Hotel and Restaurant Management, Sustainability, and Nursing Education are just some of the more than 60 programs of study at SUNY Delhi. The school welcomes both recent high school graduates and adult learners, offering flexible options to accommodate commuters, online students, and others.

 

Learn more about SUNY Delhi and see your chances of acceptance.

 

21. Alfred State College

 

Location: Alfred

Acceptance rate: 67%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 950-1170/19-25

Undergrad enrollment: 3,700

 

Formerly known as the Technical College at Alfred, Alfred State now offers both bachelor’s and associate’s degree programs with a liberal arts and career focus. The college boasts a 98% employment or continuing education rate within the first year after graduation. 

 

Learn more about Alfred State and see your chances of acceptance.

 

22. SUNY Canton

 

Location: Canton

Acceptance rate: 83%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 900-1080/17-22

Undergrad enrollment: 3,200

 

Originally chartered as a two-year college in 1906, SUNY Canton was the first institution of its kind in the state of New York. Today, in addition to associate’s degrees, the university offers bachelor’s degrees and a handful of certificate programs across the School of Business & Liberal Arts, the Canino School of Engineering Technology, and the School of Science, Health & Criminal Justice. Each program offers a hands-on curriculum geared toward career readiness.

 

Learn more about SUNY Canton and see your chances of acceptance.

 

23. SUNY Old Westbury

 

Location: Old Westbury

Acceptance rate: 78%

Middle 50% SAT: 950-1053

Undergrad enrollment: 4,700

 

Across four academic schools Arts & Sciences, Business, Education, and Professional Studies ‚ÄĒ Old Westbury offers more than 50 degree programs. The school was founded in 1965 and moved to its current site in 1971. Today, students can pursue programs in areas like criminology, visual arts, a fully online MS in accounting, and more.

 

Learn more about Old Westbury and see your chances of acceptance.

 

24. SUNY Cobleskill

 

Location: Cobleskill

Acceptance rate: 54%

Middle 50% SAT: 860-1090/

Undergrad enrollment: 2,200

 

At SUNY Cobleskill, bachelor’s programs span unique areas like Agricultural Business Management, Applied Fermentation, Canine Training and Management, Therapeutic Horsemanship, and Sports Turf Management. The university offers hands-on learning across many fields. 

 

Learn more about Cobleskill and see your chances of acceptance.

 

25. Morrisville State College

 

Location: Morrisville

Acceptance rate: 77%

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 850-1040/17-21

Undergrad enrollment: 2,900

 

With more than 50 bachelor’s and associate degree programs, Morrisville, founded in 1908 as a college of agriculture, continues to embrace its roots in the field, with programs in areas like Agricultural Business Development, Environmental & Natural Resources Management, and Horticulture Business Management. Today, however, it offers majors in other areas, too, including Applied Psychology, Information Technology, and Nursing.

 

Learn more about Morrisville and see your chances of acceptance.

 

What Are Your Chances of Acceptance?

 

The schools within the SUNY system are variable in terms of selectivity. Of course, your personal statistics, including grades, test scores, extracurriculars, and more, also contribute to your chances of admission. To learn the odds of getting into individual SUNY schools, check out our free Chancing Engine. This tool will take into account your personal profile to estimate your likelihood of admission, plus give you tips on how to improve for odds for success.

 

How to Apply to the SUNY Schools

 

The SUNY system requires a unique application, accessed through your applySUNY account. You can apply to multiple campuses using one application, but determine your campus and curriculum selections prior to starting. Some schools require supplements.

 

For more information, check out SUNY’s application instructions and application worksheet.


Short Bio
Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, where she majored in Creative Writing and minored in History. She lives in Brooklyn, New York and works as a freelance writer specializing in education. She dreams of having a dog.

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