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Lt. Governor Returns with Answers on Free Tuition

Lt. Governor Returns with Answers on Free Tuition


New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will return to SUNY Cortland’s campus Friday, May 5, to help answer questions from students, parents, staff, faculty and area families about SUNY’s new free tuition program.

Hochul will talk about how Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Excelsior Scholarship program will be implemented in the Fall 2017 semester and answer questions from members of the campus and local community at 4:45 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

“In addition to the SUNY Cortland campus community, this is a wonderful opportunity for parents and high school students in Central New York to learn how this unique and innovative program can impact their lives,” said SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum, who will host the event.

Members of SUNY Cortland’s Financial Aid Office will also be on hand.

Under the program, the first of its kind in the nation, middle-class families and individuals making up to $125,000 a year will eventually qualify to attend college tuition-free at all public universities in New York state, including SUNY Cortland. This year, the income limit is set at $100,000. It will grow to $110,000 in 2018 and $125,000 in 2019.

The measure, which requires participants to commit to working in New York state immediately after graduation, has raised numerous questions about the implementation. Hochul is one of several representatives of the governor’s office who are traveling across the state in an effort to answer some of those questions.

That makes this week’s campus visit by Hochul very different from her March 22 appearance on campus. Then, the Excelsior Scholarship was still an ambitious proposal from the governor that needed legislative approval and public support. Now that free tuition is a reality, she is returning to Cortland to explain the details.

The event is free, and all members of the Cortland community are invited to attend.