Bachelor of Arts in Urban and Community Studies

Format: On Campus

Effective Fall 2018, the Murphy Institute will become the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and the BA in Urban and Community Studies will no longer be offered at the CUNY School of Professional Studies.

The BA in Urban and Community Studies degree program is designed for students with interests in urban, social, economic, and political issues, especially as they relate to diverse working-class communities. The program allows students to explore the dynamics of urban and community life, public policy and administration, the structure of urban government and agencies, the delivery of social services, and community and labor organizing.

Urban and Community Studies draws on sociology, economics, political science, and anthropology to analyze our global economy and culture. Students in the program have opportunities for experiential and applied learning, including fieldwork and workplace-based projects in New York City. They study with nationally known faculty from CUNY as well as with expert practitioners in the fields of public and health care administration, municipal politics, workforce development, labor, and community organizing. Additionally, students develop their special interests within the field by selecting one of three areas of concentration: Urban Studies, Community Studies, or Labor Studies.

Note: The curriculum of this program offers several electives as online courses offered in other CUNY SPS social science programs. Students may wish to choose an elective from among those online courses. In addition, CUNY SPS offers an array of General Education courses online. Some of these General Education courses may also be offered as on campus classes. Contingent upon the availability of General Education classes during a given semester, students may need to enroll in online courses to fulfill General Education curriculum requirements.

Career and Academic Prospects

The Bachelor's Degree in Urban and Community Studies opens doors to careers in government agencies, community service and philanthropy, urban planning, law, urban design, education, and business, as well as in non-profit institutions serving urban populations. Students are also prepared for advanced study in the field, including the MA in Urban Studies.

The program is offered through CUNY SPS's Joseph S. Murphy Institute for Worker Education and Labor Studies.

Articulation Agreements

Articulation agreements are formal agreements between CUNY SPS and two-year colleges and universities, allowing students to transfer the maximum number of credits with ease to our BA in Urban and Community Studies program from institutions with which we have an established transfer process in place.

Bronx Community College - A.A. in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Political Science Option (PDF)
Guttman Community College - A.A. in Urban Studies (PDF)

Diversity Scholarship

The Joseph S. Murphy Scholarship for Diversity in Labor Program is dedicated to the purpose of fostering diverse leadership in the labor movement and in the academic discipline of labor studies. Current students of and program applicants to the BA in Urban and Community Studies degree (with a concentration in Labor Studies) are eligible to apply to the Diversity Scholarship and receive a two-year scholarship of up to $20,000, pro-rated on the basis of enrollment status.  Click here to learn more about the scholarship, eligibility requirements, and application process.

Admissions Criteria

Applicants must possess at least 24 transferrable credits from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants need to demonstrate basic proficiency in reading, writing, and math.

Application Deadlines

Apply Now

Recent News About Bachelor of Arts in Urban and Community Studies

Award ceremony

The Murphy Institute Founder and Director Gregory Mantsios Receives Corporate Social Responsibility Distinction from City & State New York

October 30, 2017

Gregory Mantsios, founder and director of the Joseph S. Murphy Institute for Worker Education and Labor Studies, was recognized by City & State New York with the Corporate Social Responsibility Award for Labor and Law.

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July 29, 2016

The Last Hurrah of the Silent Majority

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May 09, 2016

Some of Bill Clinton's defense of the crime bill is true, Michael Fortner, the author of "Black Silent Majority" tells Salon

The Forgotten History Of ‘The Black Silent Majority’

May 05, 2016

The Federalist

A great many African-Americans of the civil rights era supported strong punishments against the criminals wreaking havoc in their neighborhoods, as ‘The Black Silent Majority’ shows.