New York State World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship

The NYS World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship provides access to a college education for children, spouses, and financial dependents of innocent victims who died or were severely and permanently disabled as a result of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States of America—at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and on airline flights 11, 77, 93, and 175—and the resulting rescue and recovery efforts.

Eligibility (from NYS HESC)

An applicant must:

  • Be either a survivor, who is severely and permanently disabled as a result of injuries sustained in the attacks or subsequent rescue and recovery operations, or a child, spouse or financial dependent of a deceased or severely and permanently disabled victim
  • Have graduated from high school in the United States, earned a high school equivalency diploma, or passed a federally approved "Ability to Benefit" test as defined by the commissioner of the State Education Department
  • Study at an approved postsecondary institution in New York State
  • Be matriculated in an approved program of study
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student taking 12 or more credits per semester applicable toward the degree program
  • Be in good academic standing
  • Be in a non-default status on a student loan made under any NYS or federal education loan program or repayment of any NYS award
  • Be in compliance with the terms of any service condition imposed by a NYS award

Note: To be deemed severely and permanently disabled, one must be unable to engage in any occupation for payment or profit because of a severe or permanent disability sustained as a direct result of the September 11, 2001, attack on the United States or while engaged in the subsequent rescue and recovery efforts. For purposes of this award, someone who is able to work and earn money, even on a part-time basis or light duty, is not considered to have a severe and permanent disability.

How to Apply

Complete and submit the NYS World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship Web Supplement. Be sure to print the online supplement confirmation, sign, and submit it, along with the required documentation (including the Total and Permanent Disability Verification Form), according to the instructions.

Note: You should complete an application for every member of the family that will use this scholarship (even if they are not old enough to attend college at this time, no matter what the age). This will save having to retrieve and send proof of eligibility at a later date when that child is old enough to attend college.

Once you have established your eligibility and are assigned an account number by Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC), you must do one of the following by June 30 of each academic year to request payment:

Award Amount

World Trade Center Memorial Scholarships provide funds to help meet the cost of attending college. The award covers up to four years of full-time undergraduate study (or five years in an approved five-year bachelor's degree program) and includes the following components:

  • Tuition: An amount equal to your actual tuition or the State University of New York's (SUNY) in-state tuition, whichever is less.
  • Non-tuition Costs: These include room, board, and allowances for books, supplies, and transportation up to the average cost at SUNY colleges. The Commissioner of Education sets the non-tuition cost allowances each year.
  • Residence: A student living on campus will receive a higher room and board allowance than a commuter student. If housing is not available for students on campus, they will receive the same allowance as students living on campus.

The maximum total annual award for students living on campus for the 2024–2025 academic year is $26,830, and the maximum total annual award for commuter students is $16,500. Note: Students choosing to live off campus when housing is available will be paid at the lower commuter rate.

Receipt of other grants and scholarships may reduce the WTC award. The total of all aid received cannot be greater than the student's Title IV cost of attendance.

Award Payment

HESC will make payments to schools on behalf of students upon certification of eligibility and submission of appropriate financial aid applications.