The Foster Youth College Success Initiative (FYCSI) is a state-funded program that connects youth in foster care, eligible orphans, or wards of the court, with academic support services and financial assistance to help enroll in, pay for, and successfully complete college.

While participation in one of the other Opportunity Programs (OP) is not a requirement, you may qualify for another OP and can be a part of both. New students qualifying for FYCSI are offered the opportunity to take part in our Empire Promise Program, which provides academic coaching, support, programming, and intensive advisement.

FYCSI has played a crucial role in my academic journey, transforming the obstacles I face into chances for growth and inspiring me to succeed. Their unwavering support has helped me explore my true potential, enhance my critical thinking skills, and develop the resilience needed to overcome any difficulty. I am thankful for FYCSI’s immense impact on shaping the confident and accomplished person I have become today. 

 - Carmen Ruiz, FYCSI Student 


Support Icon 2Financial

Support Icon 4Laptop

Support Icon 5Basic

  • • You are a New York State resident
  • • You are an orphan or ward of the court
  • • You meet the federal Higher Education Act definition of a foster youth or orphan
  • • You have spent time in foster care after your 13th birthday
  • • You were adopted from foster care after your 13th birthday
  • • You are living with a relative or kin under a kinship guardianship foster care agreement

Key Program Component

Students can receive funding to cover educational and personal expenses.