Our Approach

Say Yes Syracuse was the first community-wide chapter of Say Yes to Education. Say Yes supports students (and their families) on the path to high school graduation — with a goal of their being prepared for a post-secondary education, and able to afford its expense.

Say Yes Syracuse is a landmark collaboration that brings together the Syracuse City School District, Syracuse University, Onondaga Community College, partner colleges and universities, the Central New York Community Foundation, the Syracuse Teachers’ Association, the Syracuse Association of Administrators and Supervisors, the City of Syracuse, Onondaga County, the American Institutes for Research, the national Say Yes organization and a diverse group of Syracuse area corporate, non-profit, and philanthropic organizations.

Say Yes Syracuse seeks to develop the full potential of every child, particularly students from low-income and other backgrounds historically underrepresented on the nation’s college and university campuses. In the long run, Say Yes believes its efforts will have a positive impact on the local economy by arming the program’s students with a post-secondary degree or certificate — and the qualifications to excel in a range of occupations.

Say Yes provides comprehensive support to Syracuse City School District students to eliminate predictable barriers to academic achievement. Those efforts culminate with access to financial aid (FAFSA/TAP) assistance for college. Syracuse City School District graduates who meet residency and other requirements, and who have been admitted to an in-state public college or university, are eligible to receive “last dollar” tuition scholarships (after Pell Grants and state aid) to that institution, from the local Say Yes Scholarship Fund, regardless of annual family income. In addition, depending on family income, Say Yes Syracuse Scholars may be eligible to receive scholarships to one of our more than 100 college and university partners.

Download the Say Yes Theory of Change Flow Chart: Leveraging Collective Impact for City-Wide Transformation


Contact Us

Are you inspired by the goals and approach of Say Yes or have questions about scholarships? We invite you to subscribe to our mailing list, set an appointment, or reach out to and learn more about how you can get involved.

Ahmeed Turner, Executive Director

Dana Lyons-Canty, Officer, Scholarship and Student Support