Excelsior Proposal

An important message to Hartwick colleagues, students, and friends from President Margaret L. Drugovich

Many of you have heard or read about Governor Cuomo’s proposal for “free tuition” at state colleges and universities. The Governor proposes the Excelsior Scholarship program to provide free tuition for New Yorkers making up to $125,000 per year who attend State University of New York (SUNY) or the City University of New York (CUNY) schools.

This benefit would not be provided to students who attend Hartwick or other private colleges and universities across the state.

In fact, the proposal would be harmful to the College and, more importantly, the greater Oneonta community. Hartwick is one of the largest employers in our region.

Like independent colleges across the state, we are a key economic driver in the area:


As you may have seen, the College has taken an active role in addressing the potential pitfalls of the Excelsior Plan. Below you will find recent media interviews we have given on the issue:

To truly affect change, however, legislators need to hear from their constituents on this issue. I know from first hand conversations that they want to hear from you.

The Council of Independent College and Universities (CICU), the organization in New York that represents and advocates for private college education, has created a robust website about Excelsior, Limitless Learning NY. There you will learn about how the plan ultimately limits student choice, and see first-hand how it will negatively impact communities like ours.

You will also find an easy way for you to contact your local legislators about the proposal.

When you click the link below, you will be taken to a page with a brief introduction. Fill out your information, click submit, and then you will be taken to a form letter that you can fully modify, or submit as is. When you provide your zip code, your specific legislators will be chosen to receive the letter. Be sure to select Hartwick College and indicate your association with the College before you submit (at the bottom of the letter). The letter will not be submitted until you click “submit” on the letter page.

CICU suggests that if you live out of state please enter our campus address (1 Hartwick Drive, Oneonta, 13820). Here is the direct link to “take action:”

Limitless Learning NY

Please take a moment to visit the link, and reach out directly to your local legislators. This is a crucial issue that will affect the future of not only Hartwick College, but New York State.

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