Excelsior Scholarship

Tuition-free scholarship for eligible New York state residents

The Excelsior Scholarship is a “last dollar” scholarship and will cover the cost of tuition not met by the eligible New York state resident student’s other federal, state, institutional, and private sources of grant assistance.

Steps to apply for the Excelsior Scholarship

  1. File your FAFSA at fafsa.gov. List JCC’s federal school code 002869 under "Schools to Receive Information" so we receive your FAFSA results.
  2. Complete the NYS TAP application at hesc.ny.gov.
  3. Apply for the Excelsior Scholarship at hesc.ny.gov.
Eligibility Requirements
  • Students must attend a public institution, either SUNY, CUNY, or a SUNY community college.
  • Students must file an annual FAFSA at fafsa.gov and NYS TAP and Excelsior Scholarships applications at hesc.ny.gov

  • Eligibility is restricted to students pursuing their first associate’s degree, or their first bachelor’s degree.Certificates are not eligible for this scholarship.

  • If a student was previously enrolled in college, he or she must have completed at least 30 credits per year, in the program of study, to qualify. If previous credits were completed at a private college, at least 30 credits per year must be accepted upon transfer in order to qualify.
  • After acceptance in the program, students must complete at least 30 credits per year and enroll in at least 12 credits per semester in the program of study. HESC can prescribe limited exceptions to this requirement in regulation. 
  • In a student's last semester, he or she must complete at least 12 credits, with at least one course needed to meet graduation requirements.
  • The state Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) will announce modified criteria for students with disabilities.
  • Students must meet federal adjusted gross Income limits as follows:
    • Enrolled 2017-18:  $100,000 per 2015 federal tax returns
    • Enrolled 2018-19:  $110,000 per 2016 federal tax returns
    • Enrolled 2019-20:  $125,000 per 2017 federal tax returns
  • Awards are limited to the length of the program (2-year, 4-year, or 5-year).
  • Students must have their grade point average (GPA) certified by their institution to indicate that they are eligible to successfully complete their coursework.
  • Students must agree to live in New York state for a continuous number of years equal to the duration of the award received. There is no requirement that the student be employed during that period, but he or she cannot work in another state. If a student fails to meet these requirements, the award will be converted to a student loan.
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800.388.8557 x1009 or 716.338.1009

Cattaraugus County Campus
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