Daniel Chan

Advanced Certificate in Disability Studies, MA in Disability Studies, and MS in Disability Services in Higher Education

Class of 2015, 2016, and 2017

"My CUNY SPS degrees have given me the confidence and credibility to do my job.”

Daniel served as a member of the CUNY SPS Student Association and is now assistant director for the Office of AccessABILITY at Hunter College, CUNY. 

Why did you choose CUNY SPS?

Actually, it was a former employer that suggested I go to CUNY SPS to further my education and my career.

What most appealed to you about your CUNY SPS degree program?

I was already working in the field when I came to CUNY SPS.  What the Disability Studies program did was allow me to add the academic or theoretical framework to my professional experience which gave me a bit more credibility in the field.

How did you find your online/classroom interaction with other students?  With faculty?

More than 75% of my classes were online. The rest were a mixture of classroom and hybrid.  I enjoyed all three aspects as I was surprised at the level of interaction and debate.  It was somewhat invigorating to hear about issues that I faced in NYC also being an issue in California.  Vice versa, what is important to us in NYC may not be an issue in the Midwest and so forth.  The professors were also top notch, with several being well known in our field, so it was exciting to learn from and discuss issues with them.

What were some of the most defining aspects of your time at CUNY SPS?

The defining aspect of my time here at CUNY SPS was the confidence this program instilled in me as a disability service professional in higher education.  This program gave me the knowledge and the wherewithal to pursue this career.

What is the most important thing you learned at CUNY SPS?

The knowledge I gained here at CUNY SPS is a given, but perhaps another important lesson was how important it is to build relationships with others both in and outside my field.  CUNY SPS opened up many doors for me to build those relationships and it is not an understatement to say that several of those relationships have very much influenced my career.

How has your CUNY SPS degree influenced your career?

As noted earlier, my CUNY SPS degrees have given me the confidence and credibility to do my job, especially for those who may not know me other than in a professional setting.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?

Why I came into this field in the first place:  I enjoy helping and supporting others.  While the population(s) I work with and the goals they wish to achieve have changed in the last few years, the “reward” is still the same; satisfaction in helping and supporting others.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Still doing what I love to do…perhaps in a nicer office and making a lot more bucks! With two master’s degrees from CUNY SPS, the sky’s the limit!


Outside The Classroom

  • Giants, Jets, other, don’t care?  Knicks, Nets, other, don’t care?  Mets, Yankees, other, don’t care?  Mets, Jets, Nets, and Islanders!
  • Favorite subway line?  Least favorite subway line?  I usually take the N, R, Q line also known as the Never, Rare and Quit line or sometimes I take the F and D line which I call the Fail and Dead line.  Least favorite, hard to say…All of them!

Read more about Advanced Certificate in Disability Studies, Master of Arts in Disability Studies, Master of Science in Disability Services in Higher Education