New York State Aid Programs

Sponsored by the State of New York, the TAP grant provides tuition assistance for full-time degree (matriculated) students (that is, students enrolled for 12 or more credits and/or equated credits) and is based on the family’s New York State net taxable income described below.  You should apply for TAP each year by completing the FAFSA and clicking on the link on the FAFSA Confirmation Page to go to “TAP on the web”. If you exited the FAFSA before completing the TAP application – and you filled in your New York State address and a New York State college on the FAFSA – HESC will automatically receive your information in about three days.  HESC will then send you an email or postcard with directions to complete the TAP application online. This application starts with the Fall semester and ends with the Spring. Students whose applications for TAP are approved will receive an award certificate from HESC, which states the amount of the grant. The amount of the TAP award is scaled according to the level of study, tuition charged, and the net taxable income, as well as the number of TAP payments already received.

 

TAP Eligibility Requirements

  • Be a legal resident of New York State (NYS) and have resided in NYS for 12 continuous months
  • Be a U.S. citizen, eligible noncitizen or hold an I-94 visa as a refugee, paroled refugee or conditional entrant
  • Have a high school diploma from a U.S. high school, earned a high school equivalency diploma through Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) formally known as GED, or receive a passing score on an approved ability-to-benefit
  • If your diploma was not from a U.S. high school, you must take a state-approved ATB test to qualify for NYS aid even if you were admitted as a regular student. ATB tests are administered through the college’s Testing Office and must be taken before classes begin in order to qualify for New York State tuition assistance)
  • Study at an approved postsecondary institution in New York State
  • Be matriculated (enrolled in a program leading to a degree)
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student taking twelve or more credits applicable toward the degree program, per semester
  • Meet income eligibility requirements
  • Be in good academic standing for New York State financial aid programs by meeting Academic Progress standards and demonstrating Program Pursuit each semester you receive TAP (see the NYS Good Academic Standing Charts).
  • Not be in default on any state or federal student loans and not be in default on any repayment of State awards
  • Be in compliance with the terms of any service condition imposed by a NYS award

What are the income limits for TAP?

 

Dependent Total family NYS net taxable income limit $80,000.00
Independent & Single With No Tax Dependents Total family NYS net taxable income limit $10,000.00
Independent & Married With No Tax Dependents Total family NYS net taxable income limit $40,000.00
Independent With Tax Dependents Total family NYS net taxable income limit $80,000.00

The Excelsior Scholarship is a New York State funded grant program that, when combined with other types of financial aid (grants and scholarships), will allow eligible full-time students to attend Guttman tuition free. The goals of this program are to lower student out-of-pocket tuition costs, promote on-time degree completion, increase graduation rates, lower student out-of-pocket tuition costs, and reduce the need for student loan borrowing.

Excelsior Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for Excelsior, you must:

  • Be a resident of NYS and have resided in NYS for 12 continuous months prior to the beginning of the term
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Have a high school diploma from a U.S. high school, earned a high school equivalency diploma through Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) formally known as GED, or receive a passing score on an approved ability-to-benefit
  • If your diploma was not from a U.S. high school, you must take a state-approved ATB test to qualify for NYS aid even if you were admitted as a regular student. ATB tests are administered through the college’s Testing Office and must be taken before classes begin in order to qualify for New York State tuition assistance)
  • Have a combined federal adjusted gross income of $125,000 or less
  • Be pursuing an undergraduate degree at a CUNY college
  • Be enrolled in at least 12 credits per term and complete at least 30 credits each year (successively), applicable toward your degree program
  • Have earned at least 30 credits each year (successively), applicable toward your degree program prior to applying for an Excelsior Scholarship if you attended college prior to the 2019-20 academic year
  • Be in a non-default status on a student loan made under any NYS or federal education loan program or on the repayment of any NYS award
  • Be in compliance with the terms of the service condition(s) imposed by a NYS award that you have previously received
  • Execute a Contract agreeing to reside in NYS for the length of time the award was received, and, if employed during such time, be employed in NYS.

How Does Excelsior Work?

The Excelsior Scholarship is a “last dollar” tuition only scholarship which means it will make up the difference in tuition if the other financial aid grants, waivers and scholarships (TAP grant, Pell grant, other tuition based scholarships, waivers) you receive do not cover the full tuition charge. The amount of the Excelsior Scholarship depends on how much other grant aid you receive each semester. You must apply for and accept any grant assistance offered before you may be considered for an Excelsior Scholarship award.

If you are an eligible Excelsior recipient and you are not receiving any other grant or scholarship assistance, the Excelsior Scholarship will cover the entire tuition charge. You must apply for all sources of funding and accept grant assistance from any source offered before you can receive the Excelsior Scholarship. Please note that the Excelsior Scholarship is a tuition-only award which means it does not cover other costs of college such as mandatory school fees, room and board, transportation, textbooks, and other costs of attendance.

You may receive the Excelsior Scholarship for up to 2 years (4 semesters) as an associate degree student. After completing an associate’s degree, you can receive an additional 2 years of funding to earn a bachelor’s degree at a CUNY or SUNY college.

How Do I apply for Excelsior?

As part of the eligibility requirements, you must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and a New York State TAP application each year. You must also submit an Excelsior Scholarship application by an established deadline to be considered for your first Excelsior award.  The Spring 2020 Excelsior Scholarship application deadline was January 30th, 2020. The Excelsior Scholarship application deadline for the Fall 2020 semester is August 31st, 2020. Please note that current Excelsior Scholarship recipients do not need to reapply.  New York State’s Excelsior Scholarship website will give you more information about the application process and alert you to the application period to request an Excelsior Scholarship.

For additional information please visit the Excelsior Scholarship page.

FINANCIAL AID FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS

The José Peralta New York State DREAM Act allows undocumented and other students access to New York State‐administered grants and scholarships that support their higher education costs. If you attended or graduated from a NYS high school, attended an approved NYS high school equivalency program, or received a NYS equivalency diploma, you may be eligible for state financial aid. The DREAM Act provides access to the Excelsior Scholarship, the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) and other state‐administered scholarships.

To apply and review the eligibility requirements, please visit https://www.hesc.ny.gov/dream/. You can also access the Step-by-Step User Guide to Completing the NYS DREAM Act Application.