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Skidmore College
Opportunity Program (OP)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

What is the New York State Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program?

Answer: The New York State Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) was established by the State Legislature in 1969 to provide access to independent college and universities for economically and educationally disadvantaged students from New York State. Economic eligibility is based on state-mandated low-income guidelines. Academic criteria are determined by each HEOP institution: a student enrolled in HEOP does not meet the institution's traditional admissions profile, but are the top performers from their high schools and academies. HEOP students must demonstrate that they are able to be successful at Skidmore. There are no compromises in the admission process. The program offers an avenue for students who meet both the academic and economic guidelines to obtain a college degree.

What is the Skidmore College Academic Opportunity Program?

Answer: The Skidmore College Academic Opportunity Program runs parallel to the Higher Education Opportunity Program. AOP Scholars are students who are ineligible for HEOP because they do not meet its economic or residential criteria. The Academic Opportunity Program scholars are entirely funded by Skidmore College. Scholars hail from all over the United States and can include eligible international students.

How do I know if Skidmore is right for me?

Answer: We encourage all prospective students to research their top choice schools before starting the application process. We highly recommend that students make a visit to campus and conduct an interview with the Skidmore Admissions Office. If interested, students can also request an on-campus meeting with staff in the Opportunity Program Office.

Can I apply for an AOP or HEOP scholarship at Skidmore College?

Answer: There is no additional application for AOP/HEOP scholarships at Skidmore College. All applications are screened for AOP/HEOP eligibility, and all students submit a common application through Early Decision I or II or Regular Decision by the appropriate deadline. Eligibility for AOP/HEOP is determined by the strength of a student’s academic standing and financial need.

What can I do to strengthen my application?

Answer: Take note of all our application deadlines and read more about “What we look for” Recommendations and senior year grades are carefully reviewed along with formal transcripts. Also, it is very important to submit all financial documents as quickly as possible to determine your financial need. Without those forms, it is more difficult to determine eligibility for programs like AOP/HEOP. These forms can be found here: Skidmore College Required Financial Aid Forms.

Why should I interview with Skidmore College?

Answer: Contact with our college admissions team is important. Students should show a demonstrated interest in their top choices. Here are some interview tips directly from our Admissions office to help you prepare for a good interview! Demonstrated interest will enhance your application.

What are the minimum scores for students applying to AOP/HEOP?

Answer: The minimum ACT score is a 22. The minimum SAT score is a 1050. Please note that Skidmore College is a test optional school. Students are not required to submit their test scores.

Please note that Skidmore is a Test-Optional Institution, because of this, students are not required to submit their test-scores

Are all students in the Opportunity Programs students of color?

Answer: Opportunity Programs is not a diversity program. This academic program is designed for students from all ethnic groups whose academic profiles do not fit the traditional Skidmore student profile, but who demonstrate an ability to compete at this institution. Opportunity Program students are provided a structured and supportive environment that facilitates degree attainment. Program services include comprehensive needs and skills assessment, academic and career counseling, academic support, advocacy and some assistance with books and travel.

How many students are in Opportunity Programs?

Answer: The number varies depending on the incoming class. Students are part of Opportunity Programs for their four years at Skidmore. There are currently more than 160 students in the program.

What leadership roles have Opportunity Program students held?

Answer: Opportunity Program students hold leadership roles as research assistants, resident advisors, EMTs, admission ambassadors, and Student Government Association representatives. They also serve on the executive boards of organizations such as: HAYAT, Hip Hop Alliance, El Club Español, Raices, Skidmore Pride Alliance, UJIMA, Chinese Cultural Club, African Heritage Club, Asian Cultural Awareness, ISU, Chess Club, SCEMS, Skidmore Investment Club, Women in Business your college experience and also the beginning of your relationship with the Opportunity Programs office. You will continue to work through a program protocol during your four years at Skidmore.

Do Opportunity Programs students get the chance to study abroad?

Answer: Yes. If a student is interested in studying abroad, Skidmore College as well as the Opportunity Programs office will encourage the student to take part in a semester abroad. More than half, 56 percent, of Opportunity Programs students participate in study-abroad programs.