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Second Chance Scholarship Foundation

... provides deserving students a second chance at a college education. Second Chance Scholars are individuals who, for a variety of reasons, did not attend or graduate from college immediately after high school.

Our Mission is to provide individuals who have demonstrated the initiative and desire to achieve self-sufficiency through education the opportunity to return to school with the help of needed financial awards.

Providing financial support to Second Chance Scholars is our top priority. Each semester the current endowment supports approximately 50 students at five colleges and universities in the Albany and Binghamton areas, distributing more than $100,000 each year. Since 1987, the Second Chance Scholarship Foundation has awarded nearly $1.5 million in awards – helping more than 500 students complete over 1350 semesters of higher education. Second Chance Scholarship recipients have earned more than 400 Associates Degrees and 50 Bachelor degrees!

Recently, we set out to determine the impact of the Second Chance Scholarship Foundation. Through conversations with representatives from participating institutions, interviews with Second Chance Scholars, and a survey of more than 100 Second Chance Alumni, we’ve learned that we are having a positive impact:

  • 92% of our Scholars graduate from college.
  • 88% are employed, many in helping professions such as Nursing, Teaching, Foster Care Worker, and Counseling.
  • Of those who are employed, a majority earn more than $20,000 per year.
  • Our graduates give back to the community through their work, their volunteer activities, and in countless other ways.

The Second Chance Scholarship puts a “twist” on the traditional scholarship process. Awards to Second Chance Scholars are based on performance—the higher the GPA, the greater the award the student receives. Students can receive up to $1750 each semester. We hear time and again from our students that this fantastic incentive motivates them to work harder.

What is the result? Second Chance Scholars consistently have grades higher than the school average. This leads to better academic performance and more importantly, the potential for higher quality job opportunities after graduation.