Opportunity Programs


Say Yes

The mission of the Say Yes Buffalo partnership is to strengthen the Western New York economy by investing in the education of Buffalo’s future workforce.  Say Yes Buffalo partners with over 90 institutions, including SUNY Erie, to provide tuition-only scholarships to eligible graduates of Buffalo public and charter schools.  SUNY Erie also has dedicated staff who provide enrolled Say Yes students with one-on-one academic, personal, and financial aid support.
  • Resides in the city of Buffalo;
  • At minimum, completed grades 9-12, in consecutive years at a public or charter school in the city of Buffalo (Or is legally designated as having McKinney-Vento status, having refugee status on an Arrival-Departure Record (I-94) from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) or is an otherwise eligible noncitizen);
  • Graduated from a public or charter school in Buffalo beginning in June 2013;
  • Enrolled full-time at a Say Yes Buffalo partner college within one year of high school graduation; and
  • Applied for and was deemed eligible for federal and state financial aid (FASFA and TAP), including Selective Service, as required by law, every academic year.
  • Say Yes tuition scholarships are for eligible students during the Fall and Spring semesters. Say Yes does not assist with winter or summer course tuition.

The Say Yes scholarship at SUNY Erie will cover or go towards a student’s remaining tuition charges (not fees or books) after all federal, state, and institutional grants and scholarships are applied.  The amount of the tuition-only scholarship is dependent on the number of consecutive years a student attended a Buffalo public or charter school through grade 12.

Kindergarten  / 100%
1st, 2nd or 3rd grade / 95%
4th, 5th or 6th grade / 80%
7th, 8th or 9th grade / 65%

Courtney Bauer, Case Manager
M-W, City Campus, O146-B
Th-F: North Campus, B300
(716) 270-4470, bauerco@ecc.edu
Booker Piper, Case Manager
City Campus, O146-A
(716) 851-1174, piperb@ecc.edu

SUNY Erie Say Yes Summer Success Academy

Offering BPS and Buffalo charter school June 2021 graduates an opportunity to earn 3 college credits before they start at SUNY Erie in the fall 22! 

The program is 3 credit College success skills course.

Starts Tuesday, July 5, 2022 - Thursday, August 4, 2022: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday: 9am-12pm at SUNY Erie City Campus, 121 Ellicott Street.

  • Career exploration and planning
  • College first-year experience seminars
  • Fun team-building and leadership activities
  • Earn and learn: students who apply and are eligible for Mayor's Summer Youth receive a stipend of 20 hours per week
  • 5 week program (early July to early August)
  • Participants receive a bus pass
  • Earn 3 college credits if you pass the course and complete the program.
  • Partner with the SUNY Erie Pathways program for students who need support in EAL and or Math/English.

If you are a senior in high school and plan to attend SUNY Erie in the fall after your high school graduation, contact our office and/or your high school guidance counselor for more information.


Deadline to apply to the SUNY Erie Summer Success Academy: May 1, 2022.
Deadline to apply for the Mayor’s summer youth program: April 15, 2022.
*Note: These are two separate applications

Mayor's Summer Youth Internship Program Application 2022

2022 SUNY Erie Summer Success Academy Application

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)

The State University of New York Educational Opportunity Program (SUNY-EOP) assists traditionally underrepresented students by providing access to higher education and additional supportive services. As part of the SUNY Erie Opportunity Programs & Services (OPS) unit, EOP provides first generation, first-time/full-time students with academic, personal, and financial support, while guiding them through their academic career.
  • Students who show both the ability and the motivation to complete college despite the effects of economic and academic struggles.
  • Individuals holding a high school diploma or a high school equivalency (HSE).
  • Individuals who have been residents of New York State for a minimum of 12 months prior to enrollment.

  • Counseling and financial assistance beyond those services available to the general student population.
  • Program counselors assist with academic and personal concerns, academic advisement, career exploration, and transfer options.
  • EOP maintains a computer lab and provides tutorial services.
  • The program offers several supplemental orientation workshops to assist students transitioning both to college and college life.

Applicants must:
  • Be first generation college student (neither parent earned a bachelor's degree)
  • Be a first time college student in their first semester of college
  • Enrolled full-time
  • Enrolled in a degree program of study, not just certificate programs


  • Students must have resided in New York State for a minimum of 12 months prior to enrollment

Academic Qualifications:

  • Students must be a high school graduate with an average of 82 or below, OR
  • Have a high school equivalency certificate (HSE)

Financial Guidelines:

  • The State University of New York (SUNY) has established guidelines to determine financial eligibility, based on the federal income guidelines. Applicants are required to submit income information directly to the EOP office so financial eligibility can be confirmed.
  • Accepted documentation includes:
    • Federal 1040 tax form
    • Federal form 4506-T to verify non-filling status
    • Social Security, or Social Security Income benefits statements
    • Public Assistance/Department of Social Services (DSS) budget sheet
    • Unemployment Benefits statements
    • Disability Benefits statements
    • Notarized letter or statements that support unusual circumstances/claims
    • Permanent Resident ID card for non-citizens
    • Completed EOP Financial Information Form

Space is limited; therefore, interested students must complete the application and submit required eligibility documentation by the deadline.

Household Size

Annual Income

















* For each additional member, add $8,732. Unborn child(ren) can be counted as a member of the household.

EOP applicants must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) applications.

  • The student's family is the recipient of Family assistance or Safety Net payments through the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance; or through a county Department of Social Services; or Family Day Care payments through the New York State Office of Children and Family Assistance;
  • The student lives with foster parents who do not provide support for college and the student’s natural parents provide no such support;
  • The student is a ward of the state or county.

City Campus, Room 512
(716) 851-1140

EOP Pre-Freshman Summer Bridge Program

The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) is now accepting applications for incoming SUNY Erie Freshman for the EOP Pre-Freshman Summer Bridge Program. This program offers a unique experience and an opportunity to grow and develop. Participants will meet fellow EOP peers and take an English and Math course to prepare them for the rigors of college coursework. The application progress is comprised of three parts: 1) Complete application and submit all supporting documentation 2) Participate in prospective participant interviews 3) Attend and complete the mandatory EOP Pre-Freshman Summer Bridge Program. EOP only accepts in new participants during the fall semesters.

The program offers a Reading & Writing Skills Workshop and a Mathematics Skills Workshop for those students in need of foundational support to prepare them for the rigors of college-level coursework. There is also the opportunity to enroll in a credit-bearing course.

This year’s program ran from Thursday, July 1th through Friday, August 12, 2022. Stay tune for next year’s program information.

  • An opportunity to get to know the SUNY Erie City Campus environment and facilities ahead of the fall semester
  • The ability to take college preparatory classes and strengthen math, reading and writing skills
  • An opportunity to learn study skills, organizational skills, critical-thinking and note-taking strategies
  • Mentorship and support from fellow EOP upperclassmen
  • Participation in career assessment inventories
  • Opportunities to explore degree programs
  • Participation in the SUNY Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)
  • Assistance with the financial aid process
  • The opportunity to participate in educational enrichment, team building and leadership activities
  • Upon completion of the program, student is accepted into the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)

The deadline to apply for the 2022-2023 Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) has passed. Information on next years recruitment will be updated during the Fall semester, at which time the application will become available.

Note: EOP is not a scholarship, but a college access granting program. New participants are only accepted during the Fall semesters and must be first generation, first-time/full-time incoming freshman with no prior college experience. Space is limited, therefore, interested students must apply and submit the required eligibility documentation by the deadline stated above.

Men of Merit

The mission of the Men of Merit Program is to provide ambitious men with opportunities to maximize academic success and to enhance their life skills personally and professionally to become confident, valued, successful, productive, and respected men of vision in their college and community.
I am a man of Excellence, a lifelong learner, open to learning in and outside of the classroom.
I am a man of Distinction, an aspiring professional, carrying myself with dignity and pride.
I am a man of Integrity, dedicated to my community, giving back whenever I can.
I am a Man of Merit.

The Men of Merit Program is developed based on 6 guiding principles. They are:

  • Accountability: We empower each other to demonstrate responsible behavior by taking the ownership necessary to achieve desired results.
  • Distinction: We provide community and professional networking opportunities, and assistance in crafting and adhering to individualized plans for future career success.
  • Diversity: We value diversity in all forms and seek to create an environment where all are recognized for their intrinsic ability, unique capabilities, and individual contributions.
  • Excellence: We provide the chance to pursue excellence through a wide variety of services designed to maximize personal and academic success.
  • Integrity: We help to develop good character, honor, decency, honesty, and selflessness who give back to their college and community at any opportunity.
  • Learning: We assist in developing and acquiring the skills needed to support intellectual, career and personal growth.
  • Understanding: We provide a safe environment that treats everyone with respect, sensitivity, dignity, and decency.

1. Mentoring

  • Training Sessions for Mentor and Mentee
  • 37 Mentors from 20 Organizations
  • Job Shadowing
  • Internship Opportunities

2. College Exploration

  • Buffalo State College
  • Medaille College
  • University at Buffalo 

3. Health & Wellness

  • Alcohol & Substance Abuse Awareness Grant
  • Partnership with SGA
  • Connections with Community Organizations

4. Community Service

  • The "Give Back" Principle
  • Development of Personal Integrity
  • Empowering Students to Achieve Excellence

5. Speaker & Workshop Series

  • SUNY Erie Trustee John Elmore
  • City Court Judge Craig Hannah
  • Success Workshops
  • Networking & Internships

6. Leadership Opportunities

  • Men of Merit Conference at Buffalo State
  • Men of Color Summit – SUNY Fredonia
  • Student Leadership Conference at Nazareth College

Dr. Marvin Wilson, Program Coordinator
716-270-6439, wilsonma@ecc.edu

Moving our Mothers from Education to Employment (MOMs)

The MOMs Program is an initiative of the WNY Women's Foundation in partnership with SUNY Erie. The program aims to improve the retention, graduation and employment rates of single mothers enrolled at SUNY Erie and move them into high demand, high wage fields such as health, tourism and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). As such, this collaborative program is a catalyst to the economic growth in Erie and Niagara Counties.
The program offers special programming to low-income single mothers attending community college. In concert with the colleges, the WNYWF has designed a holistic, integrated and comprehensive program that incorporates distinctive features including case management/navigation, career readiness/placement and support for logistical and skill-based barriers. The model includes mentoring that empowers students to both visualize and achieve movement and sustainable, transformative change in their lives. Best of all, the children of these mothers see their moms getting an education and succeeding.
Education and career development are the most powerful for developing a secure, sustainable life for individuals and families. MOMs enables these tools, all while providing a pathway out of poverty for mothers and their children. SUNY Erie Community College and WNYWF are committed to assuring this pathway is safe and conducive to family-related scheduling needs, while supporting enrolled students achieve their educational goals.

Mayra Lopez-Perez
City Campus, Oak Street Room 146
(716) 270-4615, singlemoms2work@ecc.edu

Independence Bound/Youth Engagement Services

The Independence Bound/Youth Engagement Services Program helps prepare foster care youth for a successful educational career path beyond high school, offering exceptional academic, social, personal and career readiness programs.

Independence Bound/Youth Engagement Services supplements the resources provided to New York State’s foster care youth who are interested in pursuing academic and career goals beyond high school.

Independence Bound/YES serves foster care youth and young adults ages 16-23 years who are in foster care, aged out, under kinship guardianship, or adopted.  Independence Bound/YES serves all other identified cohorts under the Chafee Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 (former IV-E Independent Living legislation).

  • College Preparation - Assist with the admissions, financial aid, ETV, and scholarship application process.
  • Laptop and school supply distribution for program participants who are enrolled in an academic program (high school and college).
  • Provide linkage to additional student support service departments.
  • Job Readiness Training and paid internship opportunities.

Terry Kirby, Project Director

SUNY Erie Community College
City Campus, Room 205 
121 Ellicott Street 
Buffalo, New York 14203