How It Works

Say Yes Syracuse strives to help young people realize the possibilities of higher education. By providing services for elementary, middle, and high school students and their families, Say Yes works to ensure students have the opportunity to secure scholarship dollars toward a college degree or certificate. We believe every Syracuse City School District student can become a successful member of the workforce.


Say Yes Syracuse believes every student has the potential to succeed, so equal opportunity drives our scholarship distribution process. All graduates of the Syracuse City School District are eligible for scholarships to any State University of New York (SUNY) and City University of New York (CUNY) school to which they are admitted. In addition, scholarships are available to more than 100 private colleges and universities based on financial eligibility. Additional funding opportunities are available in the form of opportunity and choice grants. Click here to learn more about the types of scholarships and their eligibility.

Student Responsibilities

To remain eligible students will need to complete a FAFSA application and a New York State TAP application (if attending a college in New York State) each year and complete the financial aid process at their college. Students must also maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress. For Say Yes, this is defined as successfully completing a minimum of 12 credit hours a semester and maintaining a GPA of 2.0 or better.

What happens if a student does not meet the student responsibilities?

A student’s academic record will be reviewed at the end of each semester. If a student completes less than 12 credit hours in any given semester, or does not have a 2.0 GPA, they can make up for it by taking additional credits in the following semester and/or complete the semester with a GPA of 2.0 or better.

If a student has not completed the required 12 credit hours and does not have a 2.0 or better for 2 consecutive semesters, the student will not be eligible for Say Yes awards the following semester.

Students who do not meet the standards of academic progress at the end of an academic year can enroll over the summer to make up their deficiencies. Remember that no Say Yes funding is available to students over the summer.


If you have scholarship questions, check out our Frequently Asked Questions. If you don’t find the answers you need there, get in touch – the Say Yes staff is happy to help!

Dana Lyons
Phone: 315-883-5555
Email: dlyons@sayyessyracuse.org

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, Manager, Post-Secondary Scholarship Access and Completion