Small business owner Vitaly Filipchenko is among several mayoral candidates who responded to The Envoy’s survey on CUNY policy. The following are Filipchenko’s raw answers to the survey. To read the article about all of the mayoral candidates’ survey responses, click here.
1. What role do you believe the city and state should play in funding community colleges? Should such colleges be tuition-free?
Yes community colleges should be tuition-free. The city and state will have to fund it. We need to support educating our citizens.
2. What role do you believe the state should play in funding senior colleges?
It should fund it as much as the budget allows.
Should such colleges be tuition-free?
Senior college payment should be based on parents income. The full 4 years should not be tuition-free, but the first 2 towards an associates degree should be.
3. How would you expand job opportunities for CUNY students and graduates?
My view for jobs is that the City must create a job contract with CUNY graduates and see more of them working in City Agencies. I also plan to push for more Green tech development and jobs for new graduates.
4. Would you expand mental health and wellness funding and services for CUNY students? If so, how?
All students should have full access to mental health and wellness services for free. A healthy student body is a healthy city. I would build a small City run clinic on campus that would operate 24 / 7 for mental health, basic health needs.
5. How would you support CUNY students experiencing food and/or housing insecurity?
I would build more low income housing for students and the working class. To build the economy after the pandemic – I would contract with small restaurants to feed, at a very low cost, students. I would create a food volunteer program where students could eat meals / groceries for free at these same spaces.
6. How would you decide who to appoint to the CUNY board of trustees?
I would appoint more members that understand the inequities of some of the poorer students struggling with housing and food insecurity. I want a Board of Trustees that can creatively work together to resolve these continuing issues for low income students. The appointee would have to be an active booster for CUNY and not just a figurehead.