Friday, August 6, 2010

NY State Scholarships For Smart Kids

In today's competitive job market, a college education is a must, but college is expensive and many families can't afford it. New York State scholarships are governed by the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation, or the HESC. This system runs all the state-funded scholarships and grants, and also overlooks federal funding, making sure it is properly disbursed. From upstate to Long Island, and even in Manhattan, the HESC helps students all over the state achieve a higher education.

Thousands of academic scholarships are awarded to gifted students every year through the New York State Scholarships for Academic Excellence. This scholarship offers $1500 to students as an incentive to study at in-state schools, and is renewable for up to four years. The Scholarship for Academic Excellence is offered through high schools to teens who scored highly on their "regents exams”.

The New York Lottery also funds a scholarship program for leadership and community involvement. The New York Lottery Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarship is awarded to one graduating senior from each New York public schools every year. This funds the student $1000 for each year of study for up to four years at a state school.

Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarships are also available for talented students, but they are not dependant on the student studying in state. Like the New York State Scholarship, the Byrd Scholars receive $1500 that is renewable for up to four years. This scholarship is offered to students all over the country, and students are chosen based on their ACT/SAT scores, GPA, extracurricular interests and class rank.

There are many other scholarships offered through the state of New York for academic achievement. The state offers State Aid for Native Americans, children of veterans and to gifted students with disabilities. There are many options for a smart student in New York State and no child should be without a college education for lack of provision.

Despite the recent turn in the economy, there are still a plethora of available scholarships for all types of students from different backgrounds. Never automatically assume that you are not eligible for scholarship! Instead, take some time out and look at websites like,, and to see what you are eligible for.

Even if a scholarship deadline seems far away, be wary of how you spend your time. There are countless stories of how eligible students got locked out of scholarships because too many applicants applied for the same spots (causing the scholarship providers to push back the deadline or completely prevent any new students from applying). The faster you get organized and seek out opportunities, the faster you can win money and prepare for college in the months and weeks ahead.

Frances Kweller, J.D. Is the founder of Kweller Prep Tutoring and Educational Services, Intense Prep for Intense Kids. Please visit for more or email

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