New York Student Grants for College
Fund Your Education with Free Grant Money
With college costs continuing to rise, students and their families need to look for a variety of ways to fund their education. Personal savings only go so far, and loans can be costly and prohibitive. Fortunately, college-bound students in New York state have access to an impressive array of state-sponsored grants designed to help them achieve their educational and professional goals. These grant programs have been designed to provided financial support to state residents who might not otherwise be able to afford to pursue a college education.
The New York state government understands that increasing access to higher education is vital to building and maintaining a thriving local economy, and to that end has developed a wide range of grant opportunities for college-bound students within the state. These programs are funded by the state of New York, and are administered through the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation.
College Grants and the FAFSA
Students applying for any state-sponsored financial aid, including grants, scholarships or loan forgiveness plans, must first fill out and submit their Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The FAFSA is used to assess a student’s financial status, and to determine their eligibility for any state or Federally supported financial assistance. The FAFSA is also used by most colleges and universities, as well as the majority of independent scholarship and grant programs, in determining a student’s eligibility for financial aid. Students should make the FAFSA priority number one in their search for grants or scholarships to help them pay for college.
Grant Opportunities in New York State
New York state supports a wide range of grant opportunities for resident students struggling to meet the rising costs of a college education. These programs are designed to make a college education more accessible to the residents of New York state. Eligibility for any state supported grants in New York is determined by a combination of financial need, academic achievement, course of study and college of attendance.
The following grant programs are currently being offered by the state of New York for its resident college-bound students.
- The Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) – The New York State Tuition Assistance Program is available to state residents who are enrolled at an approved state college or university. Applicants must be legal residents of New York state, and must be enrolled full time at a participating college or university. Eligible students must have a solid academic history, and must meet the state’s minimum income requirements. The maximum annual award is $5000. Final award amounts are determined by financial need, course of study, and school of attendance.
- The Part-Time TAP Program – The Part-Time TAP Program is designed to provide financial assistance to students who are enrolled for a minimum of 6 credit hours per semester at a participating state college. To be eligible, students must maintain a minimum ‘C’ average, and must meet the state’s minimum income requirements. Award amounts vary, and are determined by financial need and the number of credit hours undertaken per semester.
- The New York State Aid for Part Time Study – The Part Time Study Program provides financial assistance to eligible part-time students enrolled in an approved undergraduate course of studies. Eligibility is based on state and Federal taxable income. To participate in the program, students must be enrolled at an approved state college or university for a minimum of 3 credit hours per semester. The maximum annual award is $2000.
- The New York State Educational Opportunity Program – The Educational Opportunity Program is funded by the state, and administered through the financial aid departments of participating colleges. The program is designed to provide assistance to economically and academically disadvantaged students. Priority is given to students from historically disadvantaged backgrounds. Students accepted into the program will receive academic and career counseling, as well as tutoring and supplemental instruction.
Student Specific Awards
In addition to the state’s general grant programs, which are open to all resident students, New York also provides a number of student-specific grants. These programs are designed to address the needs of students from particular backgrounds, and in specific life circumstances.
The following student-specific awards are currently being offered by the state of New York.
- New York State Aid to Native Americans – This program provides tuition assistance to state residents who are members of a recognized Native American Tribe in the state of New York. Eligible Native American students can receive up to $2000 in tuition assistance per year, for up to four years. Students must be enrolled full time at a participating state college or university.
- The New York State Regents Award for Children of Deceased or Disabled Veterans – This program offers financial aid for college to the dependent children of armed service personnel who have been killed, or disabled, in the service of their country. The maximum award amount is $450 per year.
- The Segal AmeriCorps Education Award – This is an award-for-service program that provides grant money for college in exchange for community service. To be eligible, students must successfully complete a term of service working with AmeriCorps State and National, AmeriCorps Vista or AmeriCorps NCCC. The award amount is equal to the current maximum Pell Grant allowance. Grant money can be used to pay for college tuition, or to repay outstanding college loans.
- The Veterans Tuition Award – This program provides tuition assistance to eligible combat veterans who are enrolled at an undergraduate or graduate degree granting institution, or at an approved vocational or technical school. The current award amount is set at $5,595 per year, or total cost of tuition, whichever is less.
Resident students in the Empire State have access to some of the most impressive financial aid programs in the country. In addition to the grants discussed here, the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation also administers a wide range of scholarships and loan forgiveness programs for college-bound students within the state. For more information on financial aid for New York residents please refer to our section on Scholarships for Resident Students in New York State.