Foster Youth College Success Initiative

The Foster Youth College Success Initiative (FYCSI) is a state program specifically for foster youth who are either already in college or about to enter college and is designed to provide them with the necessary supports and financial assistance to help them achieve academic success and meet college expenses. First established in 2015, FYCSI has now helped nearly 600 individual students attend college


All students – regardless of immigration status – are eligible to access funding and resources through FYCSI, if they meet the eligibility criteria defined below:

  1. Are currently a resident of New York State;
  2. Became a foster youth, orphan or ward of the court at any time after your 13th birthday. Students will have to present official documentation from the family court, a school official, a caseworker, or a foster care agency or death certificates in order to confirm they are/were a foster youth, orphaned or a ward of the court; and
  3. Are admitted and enrolled in a SUNY or CUNY college or university, or at a private college or university that participates in the FYCSI program. It is recommended that you check with the Financial Aid and/or the Opportunity Program Office to determine if the college that you are interested in attending participates in FYCSI.



For 2019, FYCSI was awarded $6 million to distribute to students on campuses across New York State. While the deadline has passed to receive funding for the 2019-2020 school year, students should reach out to the Opportunity Program or Financial Aid offices of their school or the schools to which they are applying to get more information.

FYSCI was designed to remove financial barriers that may prevent students from completing college as attending college can be very expensive.  Funding through the Foster Youth College Success Initiative is provided based on need and supports the costs necessary for eligible students to attend college including, but not limited to:

  • Tuition and Fees
  • Meals & Housing, including recess/intersession housing
  • Books & Supplies
  • Transportation
  • Advisement, Tutoring, and Academic Support
  • Personal Expenses

For additional information or questions relating to FYCSI, please contact us at: or (212) 949-4929.