UNIVERSITY POLITICS

Syracuse University opts out of New York state tuition aid program

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The Enhanced Tuition Award program would give aid up to $6,000 to New York state residents enrolled in a private college or university in the state.

Syracuse University announced Friday it will opt out of a New York state initiative to provide tuition aid to students at private colleges and universities.

SU Vice Chancellor and Provost Michele Wheatly said the university will consider the program in the future, but it will not be implemented in the 2017-18 school year.

“The University has carefully reviewed the ETA program and made the decision not to participate this year,” Wheatly said in an official statement. “Moving forward, as the program matures, we will annually re-evaluate this decision, consistent with Syracuse University’s longstanding commitment to opportunity and access.”

The provost said in the statement that SU provides more than $255 million in financial aid each year to undergraduate students. She added that more than 20 percent of the SU freshman class are first-generation college students, “a testament to the competitive financial aid packages we provide and our commitment to broad accessibility.” Almost half of this financial support, Wheatly said, goes to students from New York state.

The Enhanced Tuition Award program would give aid up to $6,000 to New York state residents enrolled in a private college or university in the state. As part of New York’s newly implemented Excelsior Scholarship, the program will begin fall 2017.

Wheatly announced the decision to opt out Friday, but did not give any further details other than what was included in the official statement as to why the university will not participate in the program.

Enhanced Tuition Awards will be given as grants in exchange for the student living and working in the state for the number of years equal to grants received. If the student does not fulfill those requirements, the grant will convert to a loan the student must repay.

It will first be available to residents making up to $100,000 annually, then expanded in 2018 to those making $110,000 and in 2019 to those making $125,000.

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