New York State Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP)

Economic Eligibility


The following shall be acceptable documentation of economic eligibility:


  • Documentation of all income, earned dividends and interest: signed copies of the appropriate year’s tax return (IRS forms 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ; or 4506).
  • Documentation of a sole worker’s income from two or more employers: W2s for the appropriate year or similar documentation acceptable to the Commissioner. 
  •  Documentation of no income: a copy of IRS form 4506 which has been filed by the student or family with the Internal Revenue Service or a copy of IRS 4506T Request for Transcript of Tax Return or non-filing affidavit, indicating that the student (if independent) or parent did not file a return. 
  •  Documentation of pension, annuity, or unemployment benefits: letter from the applicable agency showing appropriate year's total award (if not reported on IRS forms 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ or 1099). 
  •  Documentation of Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, or Veterans Administration non educational benefits: a letter from the applicable agency showing applicable year's total award for each member of the household including Medicare premiums or IRS form 1099 for each member of the household. 
  •  Documentation of social services payments: verification from the local department of social services showing the year that benefits were received and the names of recipients including the applicant. 
  •  Documentation of child support and/or alimony: a court order, affidavit, or student's Free Application for Federal Student Aid form (FAFSA). 
  •  Documentation of additional members in household: birth certificates, marriage certificates, third party verification, or similar documentation acceptable to the Commissioner, along with proof of income or lack of income for each such member. 
  •  Documentation of zero household contribution: the needs analysis output form from one of the United States Department of Education’s approved needs analysis systems.   


The HEOP Income Eligibility Criteria/Economic Guidelines can be reviewed here.



Will my tuition and living expenses be entirely covered by HEOP? 

No. In many cases, the HEOP grant and HEOP-institutional funds are sufficient for meeting the educational cost of attendance at Ithaca College for 4-5 years but not a 100% guarantee.  Nearly all financial aid at any college or university is based on demonstrated financial need. Each HEOP student is awarded financial aid (grants and loans) based on their specific financial need.

Your financial need is based on all of the financial documents collected during the admission process.  Through the Student Financial Services review and financial aid packaging process you or your parent(s) may need to apply for a student loan(s) to help meet the cost of attendance.  Your family's expected family contribution (EFC) should be requested from SFS before you decide to attend Ithaca College. 

Please be sure to read ALL documents before accepting student or personal loans. ***Please ensure that the correct or appropriate person(s) signs any and all loan forms as instructed. As an example, under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Student Loan Program it reads:

WARNING: Any person who knowingly makes a false statement or misrepresentation on this form or accompanying documents is subject to penalties that may include fines, imprisonment, or both, under the U.S. Criminal Code and 20 U.S.C. 1097.


Before and during your four or five years at Ithaca College, it is your ongoing responsibility to know what will be covered by financial aid before you decide to attend each semester. You must sign all financial aid related documents in a timely manner to ensure your financial aid package is completed.  


***If you have any questions about your educational expenses and HEOP financial aid, please contact Julie Hickman-Godoy in Student Financial Services.


We strongly encourage all applicants to visit the campus for a tour.