New York State Free Tuition Comparison

Offices Services / Financial Aid and Scholarships / Scholarships and Grants / New York State Free Tuition Comparison

The One Stop Services office is open remotely. Drop into our Zoom meeting room  9 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday during office hours or request an appointment by emailing us at [email protected].

This slideshow is not enabled

At Rider, we are committed to making our educational opportunities accessible and affordable to you and your family. You'll find an innovative and personalized approach to financial aid that responds to your changing needs from freshmen to senior year.

Ninety-nine percent of students receive Rider-funded scholarships and financial aid.

New York State's 2018 budget includes funding for the Excelsior Scholarship, a program providing free undergraduate tuition at any State University of New York (SUNY) or City University of New York (CUNY) institution for students whose families earn up to $100,000 per year.

While we recognize and support the excellent education available to students who attend these institutions, it is important to compare the costs of public and private education to make the most beneficial financial decision for your future.

NYS Excelsior Program and Rider Financial Aid Comparison

The Excelsior Scholarship is not guaranteed for all applicants.
State budget funding is limited and is unable to accommodate the number of eligible students throughout New York State.
All institutional aid offered by Rider, including scholarships and grants, is guaranteed for eligible students.
Program participants must be a New York State resident for 12 continuous months prior to the beginning of the term and must maintain permanent residency in the state throughout the duration of the award period. There is no residency requirement for merit-based (scholarship) aid.
Families must have a combined federal adjusted gross income of $100,000 or less.
Students will lose program eligibility if their family exceeds the annual maximum.
There is no income requirement for merit-based (scholarship) aid.
The Excelsior Scholarship covers tuition costs only.
Room, board, student fees, and other expenses are the responsibility of the student and their family. At the SUNY institutions, these fees are approximately $18,000 per year.
Rider merit awards are applied to the cost of tuition. Room, board, student fees, and other expenses are the responsibility of the student and their family. At Rider, these fees are approximately $19,000 per year.
Recipients enrolling in a bachelor's degree program may only receive the award for up to 4 years.

Program participants are required to enroll full-time. To remain eligible, students must enroll in at least 12 credits per semester and successfully complete 30 credits per year. Failure to complete 30 credits in any year deems students ineligible for future year payments.

Rider awards $95.3 million in scholarship and financial aid annually. Students are eligible to financial aid for each of year of attendance.

Scholarships are renewable for up to 4 years (8 semesters) as long as students remain full-time (12 credits per semester) and they maintain their GPA.
Students participating in the program are not permitted any leave of absence.
Students who are not attending college directly from high school, or who need to take a semester off from school, lose eligibility to remain in the program.
Students who may require flexibility in enrollment due to personal circumstances have the opportunity to request reinstatement of their scholarship.
Students must graduate on time or see a portion of their scholarships convert to loans.
Students who remain in college beyond the standard duration of the program in which they are enrolled will be required to pay back the amount awarded for each additional year.

The four-year graduation rates at SUNY and CUNY are 52.6% and 25.9%, respectively.
Students are eligible for financial aid for each year of attendance as long as they maintain financial eligibility. Scholarships are renewable for up to 4 years as long as students remain full-time (12 credits per semester) and they maintain their GPA.

The four-year graduation rate at Rider is 56.9%.
Graduates are required to live and work in New York State for the same number of years that funding was received.
Graduates who move out of New York State, and/or are employed out of New York State prior to the end of that term will have their Excelsior Scholarship convert to loans on a prorated basis.
There are no limitations to residency and career mobility, success, or promotion with your Rider degree. Students have the freedom to pursue any career opportunity throughout the world.