Le Moyne College’s First Year of Promise NY


Dina Cavallaro

Sarah Buck, first-year Biology student and Promise NY scholarship recipient, does homework in the library on Thursday, Oct. 18.

Le Moyne College commenced the Promise NY scholarship this Fall 2018 in response to the Excelsior Scholarship for SUNY and CUNY schools.

This semester, Le Moyne initiated a program called Promise NY, benefiting the majority of the incoming freshman class. According to the Le Moyne website, it is “a scholarship and career-readiness program for all students across New York State.”

Promise NY works to make a Le Moyne education more accessible while also offering assistance to students along their path to graduation.

The scholarship consists of five core promises to full-time first-year students: $10,000 over the course of four years, assistance in staying on track to graduate on time, a mentor who is relevant to each student’s area of study for the full four years, a guaranteed internship opportunity, and a practice interview with an alum before graduation.

“Promise NY was something that Le Moyne did strategically to answer the Excelsior program,” said Dr. Tim Lee, Vice President for Enrollment Management. “They [the Excelsior scholarship] say free tuition, but very few students qualify for it.”

According to the Le Moyne website, Promise NY is on top of any other merit and need-based aid students have already received.

“Promise NY is just for New York residents, but students not residing in New York will receive the Dolphin Award, which has the same benefits,” Office of Admission reported. There is no limit to the number of scholarships given out. “All students accepted will automatically receive either Promise NY or the Dolphin Award,” according to the Office of Admission. “With the exception of a few on an athletic scholarship, all students in this year’s first-year class received the benefits of Promise NY.”

Le Moyne Office of Admission said that “the sticker [tuition] price is $34,840 but virtually no one pays that price, as more than 95 percent of our students receive some sort of financial assistance.” The average financial aid for the freshmen class is $25,030, which includes Le Moyne scholarships, need-based grants from the College, and federal and state grants and loans, according to the college’s website.

“The funds for Promise NY comes from the College’s Financial Aid budget,” according to the Office of Admission.

Unlike the Excelsior scholarship, Promise NY does not require recipients to remain in New York State for any amount of time after graduation as part of the conditions of the grant.

Le Moyne Office of Admissions said that the program has received a positive response. “We believe it has been successful, as it made a significant impact on this fall’s incoming first-year class, which was the second largest in our history,” said Le Moyne Office of Admission. “Students have been very receptive to not only the additional scholarship dollars but also how it will help them better prepare for their future beyond Le Moyne.”

Sarah Buck is one of the many incoming first-year students in the program. Buck reported that Promise NY impacted her decision when choosing between schools. She received an academic scholarship on top of Promise NY. “It was by far the cheapest school for me. It [Promise NY] definitely had an impact on my decision to come here.” Buck reported that she has not been matched with a mentor yet and has not heard anything about it.

Mary Fallon, a Le Moyne freshman, also received Promise NY. “It was an amazing addition to the other benefits of coming to Le Moyne, and it was a major reason I chose Le Moyne,” Fallon said. Fallon said she did not receive a mentor yet either.