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Skidmore College

Skidmore’s Opportunity Program receives $5 million+ state grant

March 11, 2024

Skidmore College’s Opportunity Program has received a more than $5 million grant from New York state to continue its efforts to provide a high-quality liberal arts education to talented and motivated students who otherwise would be unable to attend the College. 

The New York State Education Department grant, totaling $5,265,044, formalizes Skidmore’s continuing partnership with the Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) for five more years — until 2029.  Skidmore has been part of HEOP since its inception, and the College celebrated five decades of the Opportunity Program last year. 

“We are grateful to be part of this program that is changing lives year after year,” said Opportunity Program Director Kelli Rouse. “After finding a family in the Opportunity Program and exploring their potential in ways they never thought possible, our students and alumni have enriched our Skidmore community and go on to make enduring contributions to their communities and to Skidmore.”

President Marc C. Conner expressed the College’s appreciation for the grant and noted that it reinforced Skidmore's broader commitment to inclusion. 

“Our continued participation in HEOP reflects Skidmore’s longstanding values of inclusion, diversity, and access, all of which contribute to the educational experience of all our students,” Conner said. “Skidmore is excited about the future of the Opportunity Program at Skidmore and the hope and opportunity that it embodies for our students and our broader community.” 

In addition to the HEOP grant, Skidmore recently announced a new partnership with QuestBridge, a national nonprofit that connects exceptional youth from low-income backgrounds with leading institutions of higher education and further life opportunities. 

Other College inclusion initiatives include the annual Discovery program, which brings admitted students who have historically faced barriers to accessing higher education to campus each spring. 

In addition, the Skidmore Scholars in Science and Mathematics program (S3M) seeks to increase the number of students pursuing careers in the sciences and mathematics who come from lower socioeconomic backgrounds or who may have had fewer resources and support on the path to studying science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in higher education. 

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