Overall Rating Reporter
Overall Score
Liaison Mark Bremer
Submission Date March 30, 2021
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

State University of New York Polytechnic Institute
PA-7: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete Reporter Mark Bremer
Lecturer & Green Team Chair
Arts & Sciences
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have policies and programs to make it accessible and affordable to low-income students?:
Yes

A brief description of any policies and programs to minimize the cost of attendance for low-income students:

The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at SUNY Polytechnic Institute is a grant-funded initiative that focuses on access and equity. In 1970, the New York State Legislature approved funding for EOP to address the needs of those New York State residents who are bypassed by higher education.

Since the inception of the program, more than 40,000 students have received degrees statewide. Specifically, EOP is designed to seek out educationally under prepared and talented students, and to provide them with tutorial services, counseling, advisement, and financial assistance. Students are encouraged to take advantage of any and all of the program's support services.

EOP is the quintessential means to fulfilling SUNY's policy that "every student capable of completing a program of higher education shall have the opportunity to do so.


A brief description of any programs to equip the institution’s faculty and staff to better serve students from low-income backgrounds:

An article is provided on the website to introduce the Six Signature Traits of Inclusive Leadership.


A brief description of the institution’s programs to guide and prepare students and families from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

EOP is a New York State grant-funded initiative that focuses on academic, counseling, advisement, and financial assistance. At SUNY Polytechnic Institute, EOP coordinates resources from the Learning and Counseling Centers to help students complete their degree requirements. All candidates for the program must have been enrolled in either EOP, the Higher Educational Opportunity Program (HEOP), the Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge (SEEK) Program, or College Discovery (CD), a program similar to EOP. Admissions procedures are the same for EOP candidates as other students. However, additional supplemental application materials are sent by the EOP Office that must be returned by candidates to determine their eligibility. The program has a limited number of openings for eligible students; therefore, individuals without prior EOP sponsorship may find it difficult to enroll in the program at the upper-division level.


A brief description of the institution's scholarships for low-income students:

The Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP) is a New York State Department of Education funded program developed to increase the amount of under-represented and economically disadvantaged students who are pursuing professional licensure and careers in science, technology, engineering, math, and health related fields. CSTEP provides structured services which contribute to the academic and professional success of STEM students.

Who is Eligible for CSTEP?
To be eligible for SUNY Poly's CSTEP Program, students must be:

A U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident
A New York State resident (for at least 12 months)
Enrolled full time at SUNY Poly
African-American, Latino/Hispanic American, Alaskan Native, Native American or demonstrate
economic disadvantage (based on State income eligibility criteria)
Have a required 2.25 GPA
Interested in pursuing a career in STEM or a New York State Licensed profession

NYSED CSTEP and STEP Income Eligibility Criteria 2017-18

2020-2021 Eligible Household Income

# Of HH dependents - 1 = $23,107
# Of HH dependents - 2 = $31,284
# Of HH dependents - 3 = $39,461
# Of HH dependents - 4 = $47,638
# Of HH dependents - 5 = $55,815
# Of HH dependents - 6 = $63,992
# Of HH dependents - 7 = $72,169
# Of HH dependents - 8 = $80,346
For 2020-2021, add $8,177 for each family member in excess of 8


A brief description of the institution’s targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)
Goals
To provide an enriched learning environment with programs designed to foster academic achievement, leadership and a positive adjustment to academic and student life at the Institute.
To promote and create structured experiential learning opportunities, and encourage graduate school and career exploration.
To raise the visibility of EOP at the Institute to historically underrepresented and economically disadvantaged students at two-year colleges.

Objectives
To promote the improvement of grade point averages (GPA’s) with an eye toward attaining academic excellence.
To encourage students to become involved in on-campus leadership opportunities.
That incoming students will experience a favorable transition to the Institute.
That students graduate and enroll in graduate school or become gainfully employed in a field related to their course of study.
To assist with the enhancement of the Institute’s minority and economically disadvantaged student recruitment initiatives.


A brief description of the institution’s other policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

The Excelsior Scholarship program, in combination with other student financial aid programs, allows students who are New York State residents, and whose families earn $125,000 or less annually to attend a SUNY or CUNY college tuition-free.

Eligibility Requirements
To receive the Excelsior Scholarship, an applicant must:

Submit the Excelsior application when it opens (only required for initial consideration; once the scholarship is awarded, the Excelsior application does not need to be completed again);
Be a resident of NYS and have resided in NYS for 12 continuous months prior to the beginning of the term;
Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen;
Have either graduated from high school in the United States, earned a high school equivalency diploma, or passed a federally approved "Ability to Benefit" test, as defined by the Commissioner of the State Education Department;
Have a combined federal adjusted gross income of $125,000 or less (as reported on the FAFSA);
Be pursuing an undergraduate degree at a SUNY or CUNY college;
Be in a non-default status on a student loan made under any NYS or federal education loan program or on the repayment of any NYS award;
Execute a HESC issued Excelsior contract.
Award Information
Excelsior is a “last-dollar” award, meaning if a student is eligible for other financial aid assistance (i.e. a federal Pell grant, a state TAP award, a private or institutional merit scholarship) those dollars will be counted first against the tuition bill and the Excelsior Scholarship will be applied after all other aid is counted. If the amount of grants and scholarships exceeds the cost of tuition, the Excelsior award will be zero.
The award cannot be applied to non-tuition costs such as room and board.
The award cannot be used for summer or winter session tuition costs.
Students who fail to complete 30 credits within 365 days will receive the first payment (typically fall), however, they will forfeit the second payment (typically spring), and all future payments. Review of a student’s credit and determination of their eligibility to continue with the award takes place at the conclusion of the fall and summer semesters. The student will then be billed for the retroactive tuition for the forfeited term if the 30 credits have not been completed at the end of the 365 days.
Requirements to Maintain the Award
Must attend college full-time, be enrolled in at least 12 credits per term, and complete at least 30 credits per year (defined as 365 days). All credits must be applicable toward the degree program through continuous study with no break in enrollment. (Students are strongly encouraged to register for 15 credits per semester to maximize their ability to retain their eligibility for the program.)
Can use credits earned during summer or winter terms to meet the annual 30 credit hour requirement.
Non-credit courses cannot be counted, nor can remedial coursework.
College-level credits earned in high school (such as AP, College Now, SUPA, etc.) can be counted toward the 30-credit requirement, and can be “banked” for use throughout the matriculated student’s studies.
Bachelor’s degree candidates must complete all degree requirements in four years.
Bachelor’s degree candidates who change their major may continue to receive the Excelsior award if they remain on track for graduation in 4 years. Double majors are allowed if this does not extend the time to graduation.
Students are strongly encouraged to consult academic advisors and financial aid staff before withdrawing from classes, changing majors, or selecting courses not required for their degree to understand the impact that these actions may have on their ability to maintain the Excelsior award.
Must remain in good academic standing (there is no specific GPA requirement to maintain the award).
Repeat coursework can only count towards the credit hour requirement if the previously received grade is inadequate for the requirements of the major.
Must complete the FAFSA and TAP application each year.
Note: Once eligibility is lost due to academic reasons, it cannot be regained.

Exceptions to the Guidelines
EOP students must complete 24 credits per year and have five years to complete their degree.
Students with a disability who are within the definitions of the American with Disabilities Act, and who have been in contact with the SUNY Poly Disabilities Service Office are exempt from the full-time attendance requirement, both the 12 credits per fall and spring semester, and 30 credits per year. To maintain Excelsior eligibility, students meeting this criteria are required to complete all courses they are enrolled in each term.
A temporary leave from school that might cause a student to fall below the 30 credit requirement are allowed due to the death of a family member, a medical leave, military service, service in the Peace Corps, parental leave, or another reason approved by the Higher Education Services Corp.
Post-Graduation Requirements
When the scholarship ends, a recipient must continue to live and work in New York State for the same amount of time the scholarship was received.
If the recipient does not meet this obligation, the scholarship immediately converts into a 10-year, interest-free student loan that must be repaid.
Students can get a residency requirement deferral for graduate school, a medical school residency or other undergraduate study out-of-state on at least a half-time basis, or if they can demonstrate extreme hardship as a result of a disability, labor market conditions or other circumstances. When the out-of-state academic program/obligation is complete, students must come back and work or reside in New York State.
Disclaimer: The Excelsior Scholarship guidelines are set by NYS and are subject to change at any time. Students should always consult with the Financial Aid Office to determine the impact of the Excelsior Scholarship program on their financial aid award.


Does the institution have policies and programs to support non-traditional students?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:
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A brief description of the institution’s on-site child care facility, partnership with a local facility, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:
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A brief description of the institution’s other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Policy
SUNY Polytechnic Institute is committed to conforming to all aspects of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) approved in 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. We are dedicated to ensuring reasonable access to our campus programs and facilities. The Disability Services Office is the designated office that coordinates services for students who self -disclose the presence of a disability along with the submission of documentation. In order to receive disability-related services and accommodations as a student with a disability at SUNY Poly, you must follow the procedures outlined below:

Present the Disability Services Office with documentation that describes the student’s disability (as defined by state and federal regulations), that the disability substantially limits a major life activity including a statement of the nature and extent of the limitations and a statement of what accommodation(s) is recommended. This documentation must be provided by the professional(s) with the appropriate credentials to diagnose, treat, and monitor each diagnosed disability (see Documentation Guidelines).
Directly contact the Disability Services Office at 315-792-7170, email ds@sunypoly.edu or stop by Kunsela Hall B101 to pick up the registration forms. You may also use the following links for the Disability Declaration form and the Student Information form. Once the forms are completed and returned you need to set up an appointment to discuss your documentation and appropriate services and accommodations for each course or activity. The determination is made by the coordinator of Disability Services. Feel free to ask if you have questions about the approved accommodations.
Sign an Accommodation Plan if applicable, give a copy to each instructor- as needed, and follow all pertinent disability-related policies and procedures necessary to implement the plan.
Online students taking courses should set up a phone appointment. Once the accommodation plan has been determined, the student sends a copy to each of the online instructors/as needed.
Residence Hall accommodation requests should be made through the Residential Life Application and also by contacting the Disability Services Office.
Maintain regular, ongoing communication with the Disability Services Coordinator regarding the services and accommodations you’re receiving, and notify the DS Coordinator immediately if any additional needs or problems arise.
Contact the Disability Services Coordinator at the start of each subsequent semester to provide necessary updates and obtain copies of your Plan.
All other students with questions who would like to learn more about accessibility and related information and services should contact Disability Services at 315-792-7170


Students Self-Reporting to the Disability Services Office
When requesting accommodations, it can sometimes be helpful to provide additional information about your disability based on your personal perspective. You may be able to provide further explanation of what your documentation states, allowing the Disability Services Coordinator to better determine the most appropriate accommodations for you. The DS Office requires documentation in order to determine accommodations. It is important to receive information from you including a description of your disability, how it affects you in school, and what accommodations you are interested in receiving. Also, if it is taking a great deal of time to acquire the documentation; a student’s Disability Declaration form may allow the approval of some provisional accommodations until the documentation is ready and reviewed. This would depend on each unique situation and individual student. The Disability Declaration form can also be used when requesting specific disability-related accommodations in the Residence Halls or for Allergy related accommodation requests. Submitting the Disability Declaration form does not exclude you from also having to submit the appropriate documentation as outlined by our guidelines. The determination of accommodations for students with disabilities is done together with the information provided by professionals and the students own report of their accessibility needs.

Veterans Benefits - New Students
For Chapters 30, 33, 1606 and 1607 if you have not applied for Veterans education benefits you will need to do so by completing VA Form 22-1990 which can be completed online. Using VONAPP is faster than completing a paper application. If you prefer a paper application refer to VA Forms and Resources.

For Chapter 35 you will need to complete VA Form 22-5490 which can also be done on line. If you prefer a paper application refer to VA Forms and Resources.

For Chapter 31 the application students must fill out is VA Form 22-1900. However, it is advised they call the VA rehabilitation counselor first. To learn more about or apply for Chapter 31 benefits in NYS, call the following number 1-800-827-1000.

What to send SUNY Polytechnic Institute's VA Certifying Official

Copy of completed application for (Veterans education benefits)
Copy of member 4 DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty)
Copy of Kicker Program documentation (if applicable)
Notice of basic eligibility(NOBE) if you are in the Reserves
Certificate of Eligibility (you will receive this from the Buffalo Regional VA office once a determination on your eligibility is made). You MUST have this for Chapter 33 Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Copy of Veterans Fact Sheet refer to VA Forms and Resources.
Please note that Veterans Education Benefits at this time are considered a resource in the Financial Aid package and adjustments to other aid will be made as required by law. To find out what education benefits you qualify for and an application for VA benefits, please visit: www.gibill.va.gov. The Registrar's Office at SUNY Poly certifies Veterans Benefits. All paperwork must be submitted to the Registrar's Office, Second Floor - Kunsela Hall, SUNY Polytechnic Institute, 100 Seymour Road, Utica, NY 13502 or by FAX (315) 792-7802.

Scholarships and Awards for Veterans
For further information about scholarships and awards for veterans and to apply please visit the Military Corner. Questions may be addressed to 1-888-697-4372 or e-mail at militarycorner@hesc.com.

Chapter 30 (Veterans GI Bill)
Educational assistance program available to fully honorably discharged veterans who meet the eligibility criteria explained in detail on the Department of Veterans Affairs website Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty (MGIB-AD)

Chapter 33 (New Post 9/11 GI Bill)
This educational assistance program is effective August 1, 2009 and is available to fully honorably discharged veterans who meet the eligibility criteria explained in detail on the Department of Veterans Affairs website. The site includes an eligibility chart to estimate your coverage. www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/benefits.htm#CH33 A brochure explaining the Post 9/11 GI Bill is also available at: www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/docs/pamphlets/ch33_pamphlet.pdf

Chapter 1606 (Reserves/National Guard)
This program may be available if you are a member of a selected reserve. More eligibility information on Chapter 1606 is provided on the Department of Veterans Affairs website www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/benefits.htm#MGIBSR

Chapter 1607 (Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)
www.gibill.va.gov/pamphlets/CH1607/REAP_FAQ.htm

More eligibility information on Chapter 1607 is provided on the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) website www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/benefits.htm#REAP

Chapter 35 (Survivor's and Dependents Educational Assistance program; DEA)
The spouse, child, stepchild or adopted child of a veteran who is deceased (service-connected) or who is 100% disabled (service-connected) may qualify for Chapter 35 benefits. Visit the Department of Veterans Affairs website: www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/benefits.htm#DEA

Chapter 31 (Vocational Rehabilitation)
Any veteran receiving at least 10% permanent, service-connected disability from the DVA can apply for this benefit. Approval is made on a case-by-case basis and is managed at the state level. To learn more about or apply for Chapter 31 benefits in NYS, call 1-800-827-1000.

Certification of Enrollment
For all chapter benefits (with the exception of Chapter 31) our certifying official must notify the DVA of your enrollment each semester. It is your responsibility to contact our office at which time you are fully registered for a term. Your enrollment will be certified with the DVA shortly thereafter. Each month that you qualify for benefits, you must contact the DVA for enrollment certification. This should be done on the last day of each month, online at WAVE - (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs) Follow the WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment) link to complete electronic certification or via phone at 1-877-823-2378. If your enrollment certification has been submitted and you would like to check on the status of your payment, you can call the NYS regional office at 1-888-442-4551.

IMPORTANT: IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO NOTIFY THE VA CERTIFYING OFFICIAL WHEN WITHDRAWING OR ADDING A COURSE THAT CHANGES YOUR STATUS (Ex: 12 dropping down to 9 credits goes below full time). You can stop at the Registrar's Office to make changes to your schedule and should inform the VA Certifying Official at that time. Also if you plan on attending SUMMER courses, you need to contact the VA Certifying Official as well. meghan.getman@sunypoly.edu

Please note that Veterans Education Benefits at this time are considered a resource in the Financial Aid package and adjustments to other aid will be made as required by law. To find out what education benefits you qualify for and an application for VA benefits, please visit: www.gibill.va.gov. The Financial Advisement Office at SUNY Poly certifies Veterans Benefits.

Students who had been receiving veteran's benefits at another college must complete a Change Program/Place of Training form (VA form 22-1995 for Veterans, Servicepersons, & Members of the Selected Reserve or VA form 22-5495 for Survivors' & Dependents' Education Assistance) to receive benefits at SUNY Polytechnic Institute. These forms can be completed online by using VONAPP vabenefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/main.asp. A copy of this form needs to be sent to the VA Certifying official at SUNY Poly.

Certification of Enrollment
For all chapter benefits (with the exception of Chapter 31) our certifying official must notify the DVA of your enrollment each semester. It is your responsibility to contact our office at which time you are fully registered for a term. Your enrollment will be certified with the DVA shortly thereafter. Each month that you qualify for benefits, you must contact the DVA for enrollment certification. This should be done on the last day of each month, online at WAVE - (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs) Follow the WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment) link to complete electronic certification or via phone at 1-877-823-2378. If your enrollment certification has been submitted and you would like to check on the status of your payment, you can call the NYS regional office at 1-888-442-4551.

What to send SUNY Poly's VA Certifying Official

Copy of member 4 DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty)
Copy of Change of Program/Place of Training form
Copy of Certificate of Eligibility
Copy of Veterans Fact Sheet (refer to VA Forms and Resources)

Continuing Students are asked to contact the VA Certifying Official immediately when they have registered for classes not only for the FALL and SPRING semesters but if they are planning on taking any SUMMER classes as well! It is your responsibility to complete a Veteran Fact Sheet once you are fully registered for a term and submit to the VA Certifying Official in the Registrar's Office.


Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (tracking accessibility and affordability)? (If data is not available, select 'No'):
No

The percentage of entering students that are low-income (0-100):
---

The graduation/success rate for low-income students (0-100):
---

On average, the percentage of need that was met for students who were awarded any need-based aid (e.g. as reported to the U.S. Common Data Set initiative, item H2) (0-100):
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The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt or for whom no out-of-pocket tuition is required (i.e. the percentage of graduates who have not taken out interest-bearing loans) (0-100):
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Estimated percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students (0-100):
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.