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College Funding from the State of New York

The New York State Higher Education Corporation administers a wide array of state supported grants, scholarships and loan-forgiveness programs for resident students of the Empire state. Like many states, New York is working hard to make higher education more accessible to its residents. Many of the programs offered by the state of New York are general scholarships and grants, while others are specifically designed to address certain workforce shortages within the state.

Resident students of New York State will find a large selection of financial aid programs based on merit, financial need, and professional ambition. Students in the Empire state have access to some of the best college aid programs in the country.

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The FAFSA

Students applying for any state, or Federal, supported financial aid programs must first fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The information provided on the FAFSA will be used to compile the applicant’s Student Aid Report, which will outline the level of financial aid for which the student is eligible. All state and Federally funded financial aid programs require a FAFSA to be submitted, and students should make this a priority before beginning their search for any financial aid.

General Scholarships and Grants

The state of New York offers its residents a wide variety of general scholarships and grants, designed to help students from all backgrounds gain access to a college education. The combination of merit-based and need-based financial aid programs are meant to encourage and support the resident students of New York state in their pursuit of a college degree.

The following sampling of state-based financial aid programs will illustrate the diverse opportunities available to New York’s students.

  • The New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) is the state’s largest education grant program. Grant awards are determined by the student’s  family’s combined state and Federal taxable income. Eligible students must be enrolled full time at an accredited state college or university. Annual award amounts are capped at $5000 per academic year.
  • The NYS Part-Time TAP Program is available to students who are enrolled part-time at an accredited state or city college. Award amounts are determined by state and Federal taxable income. Eligible students must maintain a minimum C average to be considered for a grant.
  • The NYS Aid for Part-Time Study offers up to $2000 in grant money per academic year to eligible part-time students. Awards are based on income levels, and students must be enrolled for at least 3 credit hours at an accredited state or city college.
  • The NYS Scholarship for Academic Excellence is a merit-based scholarship for outstanding high school graduates. 8000 awards are given annually, ranging from $500 to $1500. Eligible students must be enrolled full time in an approved undergraduate program.
  • The NYS World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship provides full scholarships for the dependents of victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on United States of America. The scholarship covers full tuition costs at an accredited state college or university for four years. Students must be enrolled full time, and must maintain a minimum GPA.
  • NYS Aid to Native Americans provides $2000 grants to eligible resident students with a Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood that proves an ancestral connection with one of New York state’s indigenous tribes.
  • NYS Memorial Scholarships are offered to the children and spouses of firemen, police officers and emergency medical service workers who have died in the line of duty. The award covers up to four years of study at an accredited state or city university.

Career Specific Financial Aid

Like many states today, New York faces critical shortages in certain high need professions. In an effort to address these state wide shortages, New York offers a selection of grants, scholarships and loan- forgiveness programs designed to encourage and support resident students pursuing careers in critical need professions.

  • The NYS Math and Science Teaching Incentive Scholarship is designed to encourage students to pursue careers as secondary(grades 7 – 11) math and science teachers. This is an award-for-service scholarship, and recipients must agree to serve a five year term of service as a math or science teacher at a critical need facility. Maximum award amounts are $5,295 per academic year.
  • The Senator Patricia K. McGee Nursing Faculty Scholarship is designed to increase the number of qualified teaching nurses in New York State. Maximum award amounts are $20,000 per academic year. Applicants must agree to a four year term of service teaching nursing at a state university or teaching hospital.
  • The NYS Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program is offered by the state to increase the number of qualified social workers working in a number of critical fields, including mental health, child services, HIV/AIDS and substance abuse. Eligible student loans can be forgiven in whole, or in part, in return for licensed service within the state of New York.
  • The NYS District Attorney and Indigent Legal Service Attorney Loan Forgiveness Program is available to qualifying law students who serve as district attorneys, assistant district attorneys or indigent legal service attorneys within the state immediately following graduation. Qualifying applicants may have their loans forgiven in whole, or in part, depending upon service contracts.

This is just a sampling of the financial aid programs supported by the state of New York for its resident students. Students are encouraged to refer to the New York State Higher Education Corporation for information on other state, Federal and private financial aid programs.