The CUNY Office of Student Advocacy and Referral was inaugurated on July 1, 2007. COSAR provides support to students who need assistance or guidance in matters concerning University regulations, policies and procedures.

The office acts as a source of information on University rules, regulations, policies and procedures, as well as federal, state and local laws which impact students. It serves as a student advocate by ensuring university college compliance with appropriate policies and procedures and/or legal mandates and also functions in an ombudsman role to resolve student complaints. Options for resolving and managing conflicts and providing help for students in pursuing those options are identified and evaluated. When appropriate, students are referred to the appropriate persons on campus in order to resolve the problem.