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State offers free tuition to top students

May 6, 2014
Updated 10:20 p.m.
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The state launched a program Tuesday that will provide a full-tuition SUNY or CUNY scholarship to top high school students pursuing a career in science and technology.

The New York State Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Incentive Program will give students in the top 10 percent of their high school class free tuition if they major in a STEM field and work in a STEM-related job in New York for five years after graduation. Students who drop out of college, can’t maintain a 2.5 grade-point average, don’t get a STEM job after graduation or leave the state before five years are up will have to repay the scholarships with interest.

“By helping New York’s best and brightest students launch their careers in-state and in STEM fields, we are laying the foundation for a truly world-class workforce,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement. “This program offers a tremendous step forward to the top 10 percent of our high school students, and it will open doors not just for them but for our state as a whole.”

The scholarship will be available only for students who attend a State University of New York or City University of New York school. Applications for the 2014 graduating high school class are due by Aug. 15.

SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher touted the program as a great way to fill the high-tech skills gap in New York and provide tech companies with qualified job applicants.

“This program gives top-of-their class students a world-class education in high-need fields while creating a pipeline of elite talent for the state where our workforce and economy need it the most,” she said in a statement. “At SUNY, we are looking forward to getting this innovative program up and running.

Applications for the tuition scholarship program can be found on the state Higher Education Services Corporation’s website at http://HESC.ny.gov.

 
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