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Regents Professional Opportunity Scholarship

The following program provides financial assistance on the basis of academic achievement. Recipients are selected by the New York State Education Department and the Awards are paid through HESC.

This scholarship program is subject to an annual appropriation determined by the New York State Legislature. The number of awards available each year can vary depending on legislative action.

Scholarships are awarded by the New York State Education Department and are paid through HESC.

Categories of Candidates

Priorities for selecting scholarship recipients are:

  1. candidate who is economically disadvantaged and a member of a minority group that is historically under-represented in the profession for which the scholarship was awarded

  2. candidate who is a member of a minority group that is under-represented in the profession for which the scholarship was awarded

  3. candidate who is enrolled in or is a graduate of a state-sponsored opportunity program such as SEEK, College Discovery, EOP or HEOP

If the number of candidates with the same priority exceeds the number of available scholarships in an award area, SED awards scholarships by random selection.

Eligibility Criteria

To receive the scholarship the student must:

  • meet one of the United States citizenship requirements;

  • meet New York State residency requirements;

  • enroll as a full-time student;

  • have a matriculated status;

  • be in good academic standing; have at least a cumulative "C" average after two annual payments;

  • not be in default on any guaranteed student loan HESC administers; and

  • enroll in a program in a field of study leading to Regents licensure as designated by the New York State Commissioner of Education. (Designated fields of study can be at the undergraduate or graduate level and are listed in the State Education Department application booklet for this scholarship program in a New York State institution.) Approved fields of study for this scholarship are listed in Appendix B.

  • First-time recipients of an award as of the 1996-97 academic year must have graduated from high school, have a GED or other equivalent of a high school certificate, or have received a passing grade on an approved ability-to-benefit test.

Duration

The scholarship will be available for a total of seven years beginning with the first academic year. During the seven-year period, students are entitled to payments for up to four academic years or the equivalent.

Award Calculation

The maximum annual award of $5,000 is reduced by $1 for every $4 of total family income exceeding the established income figure for the economically disadvantaged. The minimum annual award is $1,000. However, no award can exceed the student's cost of attendance. If the student also receives a TAP award, the combined award cannot exceed cost of attendance. In these cases, HESC would reduce the TAP award accordingly.

Application Procedure

Students must submit an application to the State Education Department by the deadline established for this program, which is normally January preceding the academic year for which assistance is sought. Those students selected to receive a scholarship must submit an application to HESC by May 1 of the academic year for which assistance is being sought.

Concurrent Awards

A scholarship winner who receives any form of aid that the New York State Commissioner of Education has determined cannot be held concurrently with the scholarship is not eligible to receive payment while receiving such aid. However, HESC does not revoke the scholarship, and if the concurrent aid is later not available to the student, HESC will pay the scholarship. If otherwise eligible, a student who receives concurrent aid may still receive a TAP award. However, the combined award cannot exceed cost of attendance. In these cases, HESC would reduce the TAP award accordingly.

Revocation

HESC can revoke the scholarship for any of the following reasons:

  • The student is enrolled at an out-of-state institution during the first academic year of eligibility. The student loses all future eligibility for the award. The scholarship cannot be reinstated even if the student later enrolls in a program of study in a New York State institution.

  • The student does not comply with the rules, regulations or conditions of the institution.

  • The student does not comply with the New York State Education Commissioner's regulations or with any of HESC's provisions for using the award.

  • The scholarship is awarded through error or contrary to law.

  • The student is enrolled in a program of study not approved for this scholarship.

Reawards

If a recipient declines a scholarship, HESC will reaward it to the next-highest ranking candidate up to January 31 of the academic year for which the scholarship was originally awarded. The same conditions that apply to original scholarship recipients also apply to recipients of reawarded scholarships.

Service Requirements

HESC requires scholarship recipients to practice their profession for which the scholarship was awarded in New York State. HESC requires 12 months of service for each annual payment received. Within one year of completing their programs of study, scholarship holders must forward to HESC for approval a plan for completing their service obligation. Recipients who fail to provide the required service will be required to repay twice the amount of assistance received plus liquidated damage and interest at the maximum prevailing rate within a five-year period. Repayment can be excused on grounds of extreme hardship.

For additional information and applications, you may contact HESC’s Grants and Scholarships Unit at the address and telephone number listed below.

New York State Higher Education Services Corporation
99 Washington Avenue
· Albany, New York 12255 · (888) NYS-HESC
www.hesc.com

 

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