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Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP)

In 1969, the New York Legislature mandated the creation of theStudents out on a spring day Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP). The purpose of these Programs is to provide students who demonstrate potential for academic success with the educational supportive services and supplementary financial assistance they need to become successful college students. Since its inception in 1969, HEOP has been an integral part of Fordham University. The support services of HEOP are partially funded by a grant from the State Education Department of New York.

HEOP Guidelines

Students must meet academic and economic guidelines to be admitted into the Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP).  For economic eligibility, please refer to the economic guidelines table.  HEOP is only available to New York State residents

The program seeks to enroll students who demonstrate potential to succeed at Fordham, but are not traditionally admissible to the University.  Students interested in HEOP can apply to the following colleges:

  • Fordham College at Rose Hill
  • Gabelli School of Business at Rose Hill
  • Fordham College at Lincoln Center

HEOP is not available for students applying to the Gabelli School of Business at Lincoln Center.

How to Apply

There is no separate application for HEOP; students should submit the Common Application and the required admission materials.  See what’s required here.  

On the Common Application, students should indicate interest in HEOP by answering “Yes” to the question: “Do you wish to be considered for the Higher Education Opportunity Program?”

We encourage students to apply Early Action (November 1 deadline) if they feel ready to apply, as this allows the HEOP review process to begin earlier.  Alternatively, students may apply Regular Decision (January 1 deadline).  Admission decisions for HEOP are released between February-April.  
Transfer students should contact the HEOP Office directly for information on the transfer admission process and space availability.

Admission Process

After the application has been received, Fordham’s Office of Undergraduate Admission will determine if the applicant is admissible to the University through general admission.  Students who are not academically admissible may be considered for admission through Fordham’s Higher Education Opportunity Program.  If the application is selected to proceed with the HEOP review process, the student will receive a letter inviting them to come to campus for an interview.  Given the constrained size of the program, only a select group of students are invited for an on-campus interview. 


Fordham’s Higher Education Opportunity Program provides students with educational support services and supplementary financial assistance. 

Summer Program

HEOP students attend a six-week summer program before the start of their first year.  This helps students get adjusted to the demands of college.  

Academic Support

HEOP students have access to a variety of tutoring services, including a writing specialist.  With the Writing Specialist, students have the opportunity to work on essay drafting and revision, creative projects, and professional/academic application materials. The Writing Specialist also oversees the Tutoring Services Program and ensures that students have access to a tutor from any academic field they request.   

HEOP students receive tailored guidance and advising during their time at Fordham.  Students are assigned a counselor by class, whom they are required to meet with frequently.  

Financial Aid 

HEOP students receive a financial aid package which typically consists of funds from HEOP, Tuition Assistance Program, PELL, college grant, campus-based aid, Stafford Loans, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, College Work Study Program, and educational loans. Self-support in the form of summer savings and a limited amount of part-time work may also be part of the financial aid package. See our Financial Aid page for more information about applying for aid.