*COVID-19 Updates on HESC.
Tuition Assistance Program (TAP):
The Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) Grant and other New York state grants and scholarships are administered by the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation (NYS HESC). Students (and the parents of dependent students) must be legal New York State residents1 and must have resided in New York State for at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately preceeding the semester of their award. For a complete list of New York State grants and scholarships, go to New York State Grants, Scholarships and Loan Programs.
To be eligible for a TAP award, undergraduate students must be enrolled each semester as a full-time student. This means a student must be enrolled for at least twelve (12) degree required credits. However, it is recommended that students complete at least 15 credits per semester in order to graduate in four years. A student who decides to take only twelve (12) credits per semester may run out of TAP eligibility before they have earned the required number of credits for graduation, usually 120 credits.
Courses will only be counted toward full-time study if they are applicable toward a degree, as described in the City College Bulletin. Electives are acceptable when taken in accordance with published degree requirements.
Last Semester TAP Exception:
Full-time study is required during the final term in the same manner as for any other term, even if not necessary in order to complete graduation requirements. If a student needs fewer than 12 credits in a final semester, additional courses beyond those contributory toward their program of study can be included in the determination of full-time status. A student will be deemed to meet the full-time requirement in their last semester of eligibility if the student takes at least one course needed to meet their graduation requirements and the student enrolls in and completes at least 12 credits.
We urge all students to monitor their degree progress via DEGREE WORKSTM (an online advisement and tracking system) and consult with their academic advisor.
Aid for Part-time Study (APTS):
Undergraduate students who enroll at a CUNY college for 3-11 credits may qualify for Aid for Part-time Study (APTS), which is also a New York state grant.
To be considered for APTS, student must:
- Complete a TAP application.
- Complete the CUNY Supplement Form located in their "To Do List" on CUNYfirst.
Ability to Benefit (ATB)
The New York State legislature has mandated an additional eligibility requirement (Ability to Benefit or ATB Exam), that could affect a student's eligibility for TAP award and other state awards.
- The regulation affects students who earned their high school diploma outside of the United States and who are scheduled to receive their first TAP award in Fall 2006 or later.
- The ATB Exam has to be taken by a specific deadline for each semester.
- Failure to do so will affect your TAP eligibility status and may result in denial of your TAP award and potential tuition liability.
You should contact the City College Evaluation and Testing Office to make sure you take the test before the deadline.
City College of New York Evaluation and Testing Office:
Wille Administration Building - Room 213
160 Convent Ave, New York, NY 10031
Telephone: 1(212) 650-6488
How to apply for TAP
- Complete a FAFSA at: http://www.fafsa.gov and include at least one college located in New York State.
- After completing the FAFSA, click on the link provided to be transferred to the NYS HESC website.
- Follow the instructions to create or use your HESC PIN to complete your application online.
- In approximately ten business days, you will receive an email with instructions on how to check on the status of your TAP application.
Note: If you do not use the link provided when you complete your FAFSA, it will not be available at a later date. You will need to go directly to: TAP on the Web.
Income limits for TAP
1. New York State Taxable Income = $80,000
This limit applies to all dependent students
or independent students who are married and have tax dependents,
or independent students who are unmarried and have tax dependents,
or beginning with the 2014-15 academic year, students who qualify as an orphan, foster child or ward of the court.
2. New York State Taxable Income = $40,000
This limit applies to independent undergraduate students who are married and have no other tax dependents.
3. New York State Taxable Income = $10,000
This limit applies to single independent undergraduate students with no tax dependents.
Dependent or Independent?
The basic conditions are:
- Has not resided and will not reside with parents for more than six weeks; and
- Has not and will not receive financial assistance or support valued in excess of $750 from parents; and
- Range from $500 ($250/semester) to $5,165 ($2582.50/semester).
TAP Payment Maximums
- Undergraduates may receive up to eight (8) semesters of TAP. Each TAP payment uses six (6) TAP points for a maximum of 48 points. (Graduate students are not eligible for TAP.)
- At City College there are two approved five-year programs at City College. Students in the SEEK program or the Bachelor of Architecture (B-Arch) major may receive up to 10 semesters of TAP, which equals a maximum of sixty (60) points.
- Students who are working on their second undergraduate degree may use remaining semesters of TAP if they were not all used when the student was earning their first undergraduate degree.
To be eligible for each TAP payment
Each semester at least 12 of your credits be contributory toward your program of study as described in the City College Bulletin.
- You must have completed a specific number of credits in the previous semester.
- You must have accumulated a specific number of credits towards your degree.
- You must maintain a specific minimum GPA (Grade Point Average).
- You must have declared a major by the time you complete 60 credits. (If you are repeating a course in order to earn the “C” required for your major, you must declare your major even if you have not yet completed 60 credits.)
New York State Residency
Students (and the parents of dependent students) must be legal New York State residents and must have resided in New York State at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately preceeding the semester of their award.
You are not considered to be a New York State resident, for New York State financial aid purposes, if:
- Your parents moved out of New York State and continue to claim you as their dependent
- Your parents moved out of New York State and provided you with $750 or more in financial support
- You established residency in New York State less than 12 months before applying for a New York State award
- You only moved to New York State to attend college
Review more information regarding residency criteria from CUNY's webpage.
You may be granted a one time "waiver" to receive a TAP payment, even though you are not meeting the academic requirements. To qualify:
- Students must be able to document that there were "circumstances beyond their control" which resulted in a semester with poor academic performance.
- Waivers are granted with the strong expectation that a student will meet all academic requirements in the future.
- For questions regarding the appeal process to request a waiver, please contact a Financial Aid Office representative.
You may become TAP ineligible due to one or more of the following reason(s):
- You have not declared a major. Students who have accumulated 60 credits must file a major to remain TAP eligible.
- You are not taking at least 12 credits that are applicable to your major (also known as your "program of study"), in a given semester.
- You are repeating a course that cannot be used toward full-time enrollment for TAP eligibility.
- You have failed to complete the required amount of credits on your last TAP supported semester.
- You have not earned the required amount of credits for the specific TAP payment granted.
- You do not have the GPA (Grade Point Average) required for your next payment.
Other situations that will effect eligibility:
Repeated Courses: Repeated courses in which you have already received a passing grade cannot be included in meeting the TAP full-time study requirement. The only exceptions for are:
- You repeat a degree required course that you had previously failed.
- You have received a passing grade that is unacceptable in a particular curriculum. For example, your major requires a "B" grade or better for a course and you received a "C" grade.
Dropping a class: If you are confirmed as being enrolled for 12 credits and you subsequently drop below 12 credits, you will be eligible for your TAP payment as long as you incurred full-time tuition. However, you may not be eligible for TAP for your next semester if you did not earn the minimum number of credits for that particular TAP payment (according to the SAP chart).
Satifactory Academic Progess (SAP)
Students must make progress toward earning their degree or risk losing their eligibility to receive a TAP award. Generally, award recipients are required to accumulate a prescribed number of earned credits from successfully completed courses and maintain a minimum grade point average each term. Generally, at the beginning of the Junior year, students are required to maintain a "C" average (2.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale) and earn the required credits to ensure progress toward earning their degree. The maximum time frame requirement typically limits eligibility to no more than four years for a bachelor's degree. Be advised, any previous TAP payments received at another New York State college will reduce the number of TAP payments available during your attendance at City College.
The following link shows the three charts used to determine whether or not a student is meeting the TAP "Satisfactory Academic Progress" (SAP) requirements.
The first chart will apply to most students. The second chart should be used by all SEEK students as well as students who received their first TAP award before Summer 2006.
Americans with Disability ACT (ADA) - Part-time TAP
Education Law section 661(4)(g) provides that for students who are disabled as defined by the Americans with Disability Act of 1990, "the full-time attendance requirement is eliminated. Such disabled students may be in part-time attendance, as defined by the commissioner in order to be eligible to receive payments. . ."
Students who believe they should be eligible for ADA consideration should contact The City College AccessAbility Center/Student Disability Services (AAC/SDS) Office.
Beginning with the 2015-16 academic year, an ADA student attending part-time will have two or more terms before they need to be evaluated at the next level of the SAP chart.
Veterans Tuition Award
Vietnam, Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, or other eligible combat veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York State are eligible for awards for full or part-time study.
For full-time study, veterans are eligible for an award equal to the amount of undergraduate tuition for New York State residents charged by the State University of New York, or actual tuition charged, whichever is less.
For part-time study, awards are prorated by credit hour. Part-time study for Veterans Tuition Awards is defined as at least three but fewer than twelve semester hours (or the equivalent) at degree-granting institutions or six to twenty-three hours per week in a vocational training program.
Awards are available for up to four years of undergraduate study, or five years for enrollment in an approved five-year program, and up to three years of graduate study at degree-granting institutions and for a maximum of two years of study in approved vocational training programs.
For more information go to: Veterans Tuition Awards