The City University of New York is about to plunk down $3 million to hire consulting powerhouse McKinsey & Co. to draft a reopening plan for the fall.
The board of the public university system is set to vote Monday on the $2,974,800 agreement for McKinsey to work with its colleges to come up with blueprints to bring students back. CUNY has been mostly on remote instruction since the coronavirus pandemic began in March 2020.
But the system’s schools had already formulated reopening plans in anticipation of returning last fall, according to CUNY’s web site.
“CUNY campuses have individual reopening and operating plans to cover a range of scenarios that reflect engagement with campus stakeholders, administrators, faculty, staff, students, unions, alumni and community-based groups,” a notice posted in September 2020 read.
It’s unclear how the new $3 million plans would differ.
The proposed hiring agreement noted McKinsey was providing a 33 percent discount for the project.
CUNY was in such dire financial condition last year that Chancellor Felix Matos Rodriguez in November ordered furloughs for hundreds of top staffers.
CUNY spokesman Frank Sobrino said “McKinsey will contribute extensive logistics expertise and experience to the task of safely re-opening our campuses to in-person instruction this fall.”
The Cuomo Administration brought on McKinsey in April 2020 to address issues leading up to the state’s eventual reopening. The consulting firm worked with Department of Health officials on a controversial report on nursing home deaths that was later rewritten by Cuomo’s aides to hide the number of fatalities, according to a report.
Another McKinsey pandemic-related effort in Florida’s Miami-Dade County was panned by an official there as nothing more than the firm “compiling data for us. And putting it in pretty formats,” according to a report by ProPublica.
McKinsey agreed in February to pay $600 million to settle allegations that it fueled the opioid epidemic when it helped Purdue Pharma boost sales of the drugs.