Community colleges in three local counties will receive a total of $5.2 million to expand their affordable education program, announced Governor Kathy Hochul on Tuesday.
According to a press release from the Governor’s Office, the State University of New York’s (SUNY) Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) has expanded to include Cayuga County Community College, Corning Community College, Tompkins Cortland Community College and downstate Rockland Community College.
NY’s Educational Opportunity Program
As stated on the SUNY website, New York’s EOP “provides access, academic support and financial aid to students who show promise for succeeding in college but who may not have otherwise been offered admission.”
The additional $5.2 million increase to the FY 2023 state budget will open 1,000 more EOP spots for students and increase the financial aid award for every EOP student.
Reaction from college leadership
“The Educational Opportunity Program’s impact on accessible higher education is undeniable. Through this landmark program, thousands of students from disadvantaged backgrounds pursued a college degree with the proper academic and financial support,” said Cayuga Community College President Dr. Brian Durant. “The program’s continued expansion to Cayuga and other institutions is a reminder of SUNY’s tireless commitment to ensuring fair access to higher education.”
Corning Community College President William Mullaney said, “Corning Community College is extremely excited to join the SUNY EOP family. The ability to expand our reach to even more students who might not otherwise have access to a college education and provide them with the resources and services to be successful is at the heart of everything we do. We are grateful to SUNY for inviting us into this program that truly transforms lives.”
‘“We are thrilled to finally be able to offer the Education Opportunity Program at Tompkins Cortland Community College. As a campus, we aim to align the programs we offer with proven models of success, such as EOP. That said, we know EOP will benefit enrolled students and provide value for students who transfer after graduation. Ultimately, EOP allows us to build on the history of our mission to serve all students,” said Tompkins Cortland Community College Associate Vice President of Student Affairs & Senior Diversity Officer Seth A. Thompson.
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