SUNY Announces $2.4 Million in Education Opportunity Program Awards for Campuses

February 11, 2016

Investment & Performance Fund Expands Access to EOP at 16 Colleges Throughout NYS

Chairman McCall and Chancellor Zimpher To Join Students, Black & Puerto Rican Legislators in Albany for Caucus Weekend

Albany – State University of New York Chairman H. Carl McCall and Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher today announced nearly $2.4 million in Investment and Performance Fund awards for 16 SUNY campuses to establish an Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) or expand existing programs and provide access to nearly 800 new students. These awards mark the completion of allocating New York State’s $4.4 million investment in the 2015-16 Enacted Budget.

The SUNY announcement is made as Chairman McCall and Chancellor Zimpher prepare to join EOP students and New York State legislators at the 45th Annual Caucus Weekend of the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, Inc. this weekend in Albany.

"It is only fitting that we announce these awards today, as we celebrate the success of SUNY’s EOP program with our students and the New York State legislators who have made these awards possible," said Chairman McCall. "Congratulations to all of the campus communities receiving support for the expansion of this critically important program, which broadens access and increases completion and success for some of New York’s neediest students. Thank you to our partners in the State Legislature for their continued advocacy and support of EOP and SUNY."

"The Educational Opportunity Program at SUNY is one of our most successful and sought after programs, with more than 30,000 students applying for 2,500 available seats every year," said Chancellor Zimpher. "Bringing programs like EOP to more students – that’s what our completion agenda sets out to do, and it is precisely what the Investment and Performance Fund can accomplish. We are thrilled to be sharing these awards with our campuses today in recognition of their excellent work, and we hope to continue expanding this impactful program to better meet the tremendous need throughout New York State."

Campuses receiving awards to expand or enhance existing EOP programs are: University at Albany ($158,000), Broome Community College ($37,500), SUNY College at Brockport ($50,000), SUNY Buffalo State College ($407,000), University at Buffalo ($207,000), Fashion Institute of Technology ($93,250), Finger Lakes Community College ($63,750), SUNY Maritime College ($55,500), SUNY Morrisville ($44,500), SUNY New Paltz ($290,000), SUNY Plattsburgh ($122,500), and Stony Brook University ($350,000).

Campuses receiving awards for first year costs of implementing new EOP programs are: SUNY Adirondack ($144,000), Jefferson Community College ($116,000), Niagara County Community College ($129,500), and SUNY Orange ($114,750).

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said, "The Assembly Majority has been a longstanding advocate of the need for accessible and affordable higher education. The opportunity programs at SUNY campuses around the state have been tremendously successful at helping students and families achieve a college education and we fought to guarantee this funding as a cornerstone of our Higher Education Road to Success Initiative. We will continue our efforts to strengthen this important investment so that the promise of higher education can be within reach of every student."  

Senate Majority Leader John J. Flanagan said, "Our SUNY campuses are filled with exceptional students from diverse backgrounds who deserve the great opportunities a college education can provide. The Senate is proud to help support the expansion of EOP programs that will give even more New Yorkers the support they need to reach their full potential and create brighter futures."

Senator Ken LaValle, Chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee said, "The Education Opportunity Program has a solid record of success.  It provides an atmosphere for those students in need and provides the tools necessary for them to achieve their educational goals."

Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick, Chair of Assembly Higher Education Committee, said, "The Educational Opportunity Program has been one of the most successful vehicles for students challenged both economically and educationally. I am pleased that the Legislature could increase funds so that SUNY could have the opportunity to expand or establish programs that will provide this same pathway of success to other students."

Currently active on 43 SUNY campuses across New York State, SUNY’s EOP program provides access, academic support, and financial aid to more than 10,000 academically and economically disadvantaged students, helping them prepare for and succeed in college.

SUNY’s EOP program has a six-year baccalaureate graduation rate of 65 percent, far exceeding the national rate of 56 percent for all public institutions. In 2014-2015, more than 3,000 EOP students achieved a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or greater.

In concert with the EOP program, SUNY’s Educational Opportunity Centers (EOC) and Advanced Technology Training and Information Networking (ATTAIN) Labs deliver community-based, academic and workforce development programs and services to more than 20,000 adult learners at more than 40 locations across the state. EOCs assist students in re-entering the education pipeline who may have dropped out of school, are underprepared for the workforce or higher education, or who are seeking new or different skill sets in order to take advantage of new employment opportunities. As institutions with a dual focus on both academic and workforce development, EOCs provide tuition free programs for those who meet residency, academic, and economic criteria.

In celebration of the EOC 50-year anniversary, SUNY EOCs and the ATTAIN project will host a student exhibit as part of Caucus Weekend in the Well of the Legislative Office Building between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday. 

About the Investment and Performance Fund
The SUNY Investment and Performance Fund was first established by an $18 million allocation in the 2015-16 New York State Budget. In an effort to grow the Fund and extend eligibility to its community colleges, SUNY also pooled from existing resources – the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), Open SUNY, the Empire Innovation Program, and $55 million from the NYSUNY 2020 Challenge Grant Program – to create a $100 million Expanded Investment and Performance Fund.

SUNY previously announced awards generated by the $18 million State investment as well as $4.6 million awarded to SUNY campuses in the North Country region. All of the Investment and Performance Fund awards announced to date can be found online at

All funding is designed to support commitments campuses have made in their individual Performance Improvement Plans, part of the SUNY Excels performance management system.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2023, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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