Borough of Manhattan Community College

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Borough of Manhattan Community College
Tribeca cuny mcc.jpg
PresidentAntonio Pérez
LocationNew York City, New York, USA
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Borough of Manhattan Community College
Tribeca cuny mcc.jpg
PresidentAntonio Pérez
LocationNew York City, New York, USA

The Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) is one of seven two-year colleges within the City University of New York (CUNY) system. Founded in 1963, BMCC originally offered business-oriented and liberal arts degrees for those intending to enter the business world or transfer to a four-year college. Its original campus was scattered all over midtown Manhattan, utilizing office space wherever available. In the mid-1970s CUNY began scouting for suitable property on which to erect a new campus of its own. The current campus has been in use since 1983. Currently, with an enrollment of over 19,000 students,[1] BMCC grants associate's degrees in a wide variety of vocational, business, health, science, and continuing education fields.

Advertising itself to potential students under the motto, "Start Here. Go Anywhere," its student body is nearly two-thirds female and boasts a median age of 24 with attending students hailing from over 100 different countries, and a faculty of nearly 1,000 full-time and adjunct professors. Another 10,000 students are enrolled in BMCC's distance education programs.


Borough of Manhattan Community College is in the heart of TriBeCa and occasionally plays host to the Tribeca Film Festival's ceremonies and films.[2] The four main campuses rest between New York City Hall and the Financial District near the Hudson River in Downtown Manhattan.

Borough of Manhattan Community College Downtown/TriBeCa Campus[edit]

Borough of Manhattan Community College Off Site Program[edit]

Fiterman Hall and the September 11 attacks[edit]

Fiterman Hall was heavily damaged from the collapse of 7 World Trade Center on 9/11.

Fiterman Hall was a 15-story building on the campus of this college at 30 West Broadway (also called 81 Barclay Street, 235 Greenwich Street and 82 Park Place) in Lower Manhattan. It opened in 1959 as an office building before owner Miles Fiterman, whom the building was named after, donated it to BMCC in 1993, which at the time was the largest private donation to a community college in U.S. history. It was renovated in 2000 to receive new windows and infrastructure. The building was owned by the State of New York Dormitory Authority.[3][4]

It was heavily damaged during the September 11 attacks in 2001, when debris from the collapse of 7 WTC compromised the structure. It became unsafe to occupy due to mold growth and asbestos exposure. Because traditional demolition would result in an unacceptable environmental impact, the building was scheduled for deconstruction and decontamination as part of the Lower Manhattan redevelopment project.[5]

Fiterman Hall was to have been replaced by a new building designed by the architectural firm Pei Cobb Freed & Partners.[6] Deconstruction was scheduled to be complete by February 2007; however, environmental impact concerns and funding issues caused numerous delays in completing the project. At a press conference, which took place at BMCC on November 13, 2008, city and state officials announced a new agreement which solidified demolition and reconstruction plans through a funding agreement with New York City, New York State, and the City University of New York. In addition, approximately $80 million will come from an insurance settlement. Under the plan, the new Fiterman Hall was completed in 2012.[7][8]


The college has won multiple awards from the CUNY system as well as other institutions for its ability to grant Associate's Degrees at an impressive rate and to foster continuing education at senior colleges. With a respectable teacher-to-student ratio, significant public and private funding, and a central location in New York City, the learning experience has been covered by many publications and studied by experts.

However, BMCC also suffers from the same problems that plague all community colleges such as an alarming rise in remedial education,[9] lack of freshman retention,[10] and overcrowding. Due to its larger base of capital compared to most other two-year colleges, expansion of new campuses during the rebuilding of Fiterman Hall was possible. Several trailers are still used as classrooms to this day in order to help expand capacity. Internal programs have also been created or expanded to help with academic advisement, provide online access for registration, transferring to other colleges, and job placement.

A diverse student base,[11] some of whom are only recent arrivals in America[12] also makes tailoring a viable solution difficult. Improving the retention and graduation rate as well as the increased financial and academic burdens of a remedial program still remain a considerable problem.


Borough of Manhattan Community College teams participate as a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA). The Panthers are a member of the community college section of the City University of New York Athletic Conference (CUNYAC). Men's sports include baseball, basketball, soccer and swimming; while women's sports include basketball, soccer, swimming and volleyball.

BMCC offers a large state-of-the-art recreation facility including a regulation basketball court, swimming pool, and weight room. There are active teams in many sports such as handball, bowling, baseball, soccer, and basketball. Sports teams compete in both the CUNY athletic system and the local NJCAA collegiate sports system. The women's basketball team has won numerous championships including the CUNY basketball championship and the regional Division III championships including placing third nationally in 2000 with a 21–3 regular season record.[13] The chess team has won national awards. One of the most successful programs at BMCC is the men’s soccer team with 6 consecutive wins at cuny soccer championships, 1 regional DIII championship and placing 3rd in the NJCAA national championship in 2005.

Western side of the main campus building, at the Hudson River

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ BMCC Quick Facts
  2. ^ 2005 Awards Ceremony
  3. ^ "Fiterman Hall". 
  4. ^ "Fiterman Hall Status Update". May 2, 2003. 
  5. ^ "Lower Manhattan Fiterman Hall". Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. 
  6. ^ "Work to Demolish Fiterman Hall may actually begin". Downtown Express. January 13, 2006. 
  7. ^ Fiterman is Funded, BMCC News
  8. ^ Ground Zero building to be razed, by Theresa Agovino, Crain's New York Business
  9. ^ At 2-Year Colleges, Students Eager but Unready
  10. ^ Changing Culture: A New Program for Liberal Arts Advisement at an Urban Community College
  11. ^ An Escape From Rwanda, Then a Struggle to Survive in New York
  13. ^ Manhattan C.C. Setting Its Sights On Being the National Champion
  14. ^ Biography of Queen Latifah at Thomson Gale Black History
  15. ^ From Rock Star To Pre-Med at CBS News
  16. ^ Omar Loves to Dance
  17. ^

External links[edit]

Media related to Borough of Manhattan Community College at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 40°43′04″N 74°00′43″W / 40.71768°N 74.01188°W / 40.71768; -74.01188