NY state target/flagship uni, why not?

It just seems unrealistic that New York does not have a flagship college/university. It's is one of the biggest states on the population and wealth side. Shouldn't there be a type of mich, UNC, ucla (target) type of public school there? (I heard Binghamton is trying to raise 1b to make the jump but unsure)

 
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I’m not sure there’s a good answer. The Northeast / New England more broadly lack top tier public schools. The Northeast is the wealthiest part of the country so perhaps a greater percentage of top students go to private school. NY State has several high quality private colleges including Columbia, Cornell, NYU, Rochester, RPI, Cooper Union, Colgate, Hamilton, Vassar (note I’m not just listing Wall Street targets). I think the point of the SUNY system was to bring affordable, decent quality education to all different parts of the state (doesn’t inherently explain why there aren’t schools near the same caliber as Berkeley, UCLA, etc.). 
 

Cornell is a private school but it has a few contract colleges that offer significant discounts to NY state residents (probably around 20k less per year). This includes programs like AEM and ILR.

 

CUNY Baruch / Fordham may give you a chance. Avoid SUNYs like the plague. All of them are mostly ass unless you want to do STEM (but do not pre-med at Stony if that's something you're considering). If you're thinking STEM, Bing / Stonybrook / Buffalo are solid.

Got into a few of the strong "private" schools mentioned above and wish I went there instead.

 

It’s a cultural thing. There are so many strong private schools in the region. It makes zero sense to turn down one of the eight Ivies, MIT, top LACs, NYU and tons of other strong schools to go to Binghamton or Stonybrook. 

Other regions in the US have fewer good schools so there’s actually demand for strong public schools.

 

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