The Science and Technology Entry Program is designed for New York State residents (including permanent resident aliens) in grades 7 through 12 who belong to groups historically underrepresented in scientific, technical, health-related, and licensed professions, or who are economically disadvantaged.
1. For the purpose of STEP, a student is considered a New York State resident if he or she resides in New York State and has lived in New York State for the last two terms of school prior to entry into the STEP program or resided in New York State for at least 12 months immediately preceding the first term for which he or she is seeking participation in the STEP program.
2. For the purpose of STEP, individuals historically underrepresented in the scientific, technical, health-related, and licensed professions are African-American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, or Alaskan Native.
3. For the purpose of STEP, a student is economically disadvantaged if he or she meets the eligibility requirements described in item 4A: Income Eligibility Criteria
1. Institutions approved for funding are required to develop an application for STEP participants. Students must also complete an application prior to participation in the program. Funds may not be expended on behalf of students for whom an application and required documentation are not available. The project is responsible for having each student’s previous and current report cards on file for the duration of their participation in the program.
2. Documentation confirming economically disadvantaged status is required only for students who are not African-American, Hispanic/Latino, or American Indian/Alaskan Native. The racial/ethnic identification indicated by students on the STEP application is acceptable documentation.
3. Student documentation must be kept on site at each respective project site and must be readily available for review by State Education Department (SED) staff.
C. Economically Disadvantaged Eligibility Requirements
1. Economic Eligibility Criteria for First-Time Students: A student is considered economically disadvantaged if he or she is a member of a household supported by one parent if dependent, by the student or by a spouse if independent, whose total annual income is not more than the applicable amount see chart below: Income Eligibility Criteria
2. Exceptions: Reference to the household income scale need not be made if the student falls into one of the following categories, and documentation is available:
a. The student's family is the recipient of: (1) Family Assistance Program Aid; or (2) Safety Net Assistance through the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, or a county department of social services; or (3) family day-care payments through the New York State Office of Children and Family Services Assistance, or a county department of social services;
b. The student is a ward of the State or a county.
3. Documentation: The following shall be acceptable documentation of economic eligibility:
- Documentation of all income, earned dividends and interest: a signed copy of 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 Letter 1722 indicating that the student 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 services payments: verification from a branch of the State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, Office of Children and Family Services Assistance, or a county department of social services showing year that benefits were received and names of recipients including the applicant.
- Documentation of child support and/or alimony: a court order, affidavit.
- 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.
4. Eligibility Documentation:It is the responsibility of the program director to verify that all first-time program students are economically eligible and the student should not be enrolled into the STEP program until qualifying economic documentation has been provided.
a. STEP/CSTEP Income Eligibility Criteria / 2008-09 through 2010-11
|Number of Household Members
Add $5,570 for two workers or for one worker as sole support of a one-parent family*
Add $2,790 for a household supported by one member working two or more jobs at the same time.
Add $5,570 for each family member in excess of 7
The amount shown for this add-on allowance includes a circumstance where one parent is working one or more job