Main content

Excelsior Scholarship

The Fall 2020 application is OPEN until August 31st 2020. 

Click here to apply

If you have submitted the Excelsior Scholarship Application for Fall 2020, we must wait for the NYS Higher Education Service Corporation (HESC),  that processes this application, to determine your eligibility for the Excelsior Scholarship Program.

Please note: The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically reduced state revenues and the processing of new applications is pending on Federal assistance, which has been delayed since April. Excelsior Scholarship awards may have to be reduced and/or prioritized for current recipients as provided under the program. We will update you as more information becomes available.

Current Excelsior Scholarship recipients: do not need to re-apply. Just be sure to complete the 2020-2021 FAFSA and TAP applications.

Visit the NYS Excelsior Scholarship website.

Purchase College has a commitment to higher education access, student success, and college completion.

And now, through New York State’s Excelsior Scholarship program, a greater number of New York students and families will be eligible to earn free tuition at Purchase College.

The first-of-its-kind in the nation plan will be phased in over three years for New Yorkers who earned up to $125,000 annually (as filed on your 2018 New York State Income Tax Returns).

How to Calculate the Excelsior Scholarship Awards Estimate

To determine a student’s estimated annual Excelsior Scholarship award amount, the 2016–17 resident tuition rate charged by SUNY ($6,470 at four-year colleges) or the current resident tuition rate (for freshmen) will be reduced by the amount of all other student financial aid awards which an applicant has or will receive for the 2020-2021 academic year, excluding any awards for college work study or federal or private student loans made by a lending institution.

In addition, no deduction should be made for any award that is exclusively designated for a non-tuition expense, such as housing, books, computer equipment. The Excelsior Scholarship and Excelsior Tuition Credit will cover any remaining tuition liability up to $6,470 (2016-17 tuition rate). An Excelsior tuition credit will cover any remaining tuition liability that exceeds $6,470.

If a student receives any of the following assistance (and such financial aid has not been designated exclusively for non-tuition expenses such as housing, books, computers, etc.), the amount of the aid received must be subtracted from the 2016-17 annual tuition:

  1. Pell Grant
  2. Supplemental Opportunity Educational Grant (SEOG)
  3. Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
  4. Federal Scholarships
  5. TAP (Tuition Assistance Program) Grant
  6. SUNY Tuition Credit
  7. Scholarship of Academic Excellence
  8. NYS Regents Awards for Child of Deceased and Disabled Veterans
  9. NYS Achievement and Investment in Merit Scholarship (NY-AIMS)
  10. Private Grants/Scholarships

Note: Student loans are not deducted from the annual tuition.

Example 1

An Excelsior recipient attending a SUNY four-year college receives a $500 Pell Grant, a $500 TAP award, and $750 in College Work Study.

The calculation for the annual Excelsior Scholarship award will be as follows:

2016-17 Tuition: $6,470

Federal Pell Grant: ($500)

TAP Grant: ($500)

College Work Study: $1,000

Excelsior Award: $5,470 (leftover amount of $6,470 tuition not covered by the Pell and TAP Grants)

Note: Student loans and work study are not deducted from the annual tuition

Example 2

A student attending a SUNY four-year college who receives no grant or scholarship aid, but receives a $1,500 Federal Direct Student Loan.

2016-17 Tuition: $6,470

Federal Pell Grant: ($0)

TAP Grant: ($0)

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan: $1,500

Excelsior Award: $5,500

Excelsior Tuition Credit: $970 (leftover amount of $6,470 tuition not covered by the Pell and TAP Grants)

Note: Student loans and work study are not deducted from the annual tuition

Example 3

A student attending a SUNY four-year college who a large portion of grant or scholarship aid as well as Federal Direct Student Loans.

2016-17 Tuition: $6,470

Federal Pell Grant: ($6,195)

TAP Grant: ($5,165)

SUNY Tuition Credit: ($1,830)

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan: $3,500

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan: $2,000

Excelsior Award: $0

Excelsior Tuition Credit: $0

The amount of the Pell Grant, TAP and SUNY Tuition Credit are more than the tuition amount of $6,470. There is no Excelsior award in this scenario as the tuition is covered through other grant funds.

Note: Student loans and work study are not deducted from the annual tuition