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Occupational Therapy Program

Financial Support for Occupational Therapy Students

The SUNY Downstate Office of Student Financial Aid - works closely with students to identify relevant sources for scholarship and/or loan packages for students. SUNY Downstate Occupational Therapy students have been particularly successful in achieving scholarship awards from Burke Rehabilitation Center and the New York City Board of Education, described on our Financial Aid web page.

The Empire State Diversity Honors Scholarship (Formerly the "Empire State Minority Honors Scholarship Program"). The purpose of this program is to recruit students from a broad range of backgrounds that will contribute to the diversity of the student body in their campus or academic program. To be eligible, applicants must be U.S citizens or permanent resident aliens, New York State resident, and be in good academic standing. Applicants also need to have a FAFSA on file. Award amounts vary and will not exceed $3000.00. If you should have any questions, contact the Downstate Financial Aid Office.

In addition, the American Occupational Therapy Association provides information about scholarships and loans available to occupational therapy students.

There are several scholarships offered to permanent residents of various regions of New York State by the Districts of the New York State Occupational Therapy Association (NYSOTA): Students who live within the geographic boundaries of NYSOTA's Hudson Taconic, Long Island, and Rochester districts should consider applying for these scholarships. There is also a scholarship offered by the New York Black Occupational Therapy Caucus. Applications for these scholarships are available through Professor White, who serves as our program's scholarship coordinator.

New York City Health and Hospital Corporation - Kings County Hospital Department of Rehabilitation Medicine and Education and Training offer a "Forgivable Loan Program". The Forgivable Loan Program is a program that will pay tuition. The requirement is a GPA above 3.0 and a student commitment is 2 years of paid service for each year that is funded. Contact Carol Wilson-Smith or Tel: (718) 245-7298/7297

The Arthur W. Pense Scholarship is offered by NYSARC, Inc., formerly known as the New State Association for Retarded Children, Inc. It is awarded to a student who intends to pursue practice in the area of mental retardation and developmental disabilities.

Kennedy Fellows Scholarship and Careers Mentoring Program is a non-profit organization that supports the higher education and career advancement of frontline workers in health, education, and human service. The overall goal of the program is to improve the quality of services to individuals and families by educating and strengthening the frontline workforce. To be eligible a candidate must have at least one year of continuous satisfactory employment as a frontline worker with an agency the provides health, education or human services to New York residents and enrolled in CUNY or SUNY and taking at least six course credits each semester.

The Black Caucus Spouses (CBC) education scholar program includes the CBC Spouses Education Scholarship Program and the CBC Spouses Cheerios Brand Health Initiative Scholarship for students pursuing a career in the medical, food service and/or health-related fields. Applicants can be graduate or doctoral student with a minimum 2.5/4.0 GPA. Applications are available on the Congressional Black Caucus.

Genesis Rehabilitation Service offers a New Grad Scholarship. Recipients can apply in their 2nd to the last year or the last year of their program. The new grad agrees to work for Genesis Rehabilitation Service s for 3 years as full-time registered therapist. Contact University Relations Recruiter Mark Worley or Tel:1 (866) 406-8190.

Atlantic Health, a hospital consortium consisting of Morristown Memorial Hospital and Overlook Hospital, is offering a scholarship for Occupational Therapy students. The Professional Development Program (PDP) has been instituted to assist students who are within two years of graduation. It provides help with tuition costs, up to a maximum amount of $5,000.00 per semester, in exchange for a commitment to work in either Morristown Memorial or Overlook Hospital. This work commitment is at full pay with complete benefits and offers the professional graduate an opportunity to work at an outstanding health care faculty.

The application and additional brochures can be downloaded from the Atlantic Health website at To: Careers, then Careers for RN graduates, Click onto the PDP link. Lynn Freeland, RNC Professional Development Program, Human Resources. Tel: (973) 971-5473 or (908) 522-2835, Fax: (973) 290-7147 or (908) 552-4866.