NEIU presents a ‘Golden Opportunity’ for incoming freshmen students next Fall 2019


Rebecca Denhem

President Gloria J. Gibson addressing the Eagle Fest crowd.

Leslie Hurtado, News Editor

NEIU’s new Golden Opportunity Scholarship will cover full tuition and fees for prospective full-time first-year students in fall 2019. Students who qualify for the scholarship will receive an award package of $3,000 for the school year.

In a conference call with Executive Director of Financial Aid Maureen Amos and Director of Scholarships Dr. Michelle Morrow, Amos said the Golden Opportunity Scholarship was part of an initiative through the state of Illinois.

“Legislators (in Illinois) wanted to address the issue of providing more financial assistance to Illinois residents,” Amos said. “Through the Illinois Student Assistance Commission, an initiative called AIM-HIGH grant program was created to allocate funds to (Illinois) universities.”

NEIU Freshmen Jennifer Hernandez expressed disbelief when she found out there was a way for freshmen to pay full tuition.

“I love to hear opportunities like the (Golden Opportunity Scholarship) because It was hard for me to look for (scholarships),” Hernandez said. “I did not know a lot about the financial aid process since I am a new student, so I had to inform myself on my own.”

NEIU Junior Stephanie Gonzalez was not aware of the new scholarship that applied for incoming students. Gonzalez said the scholarship would have benefitted her if the scholarship was available to current students.

“I think the Golden Opportunity Scholarship would have helped me stay in school,” Gonzalez said. “Now that I’m older, tuition costs more. I would have applied for the scholarship if I had the chance.”

To qualify for the scholarship, incoming students should apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students who are eligible for the scholarship will receive a notification that the award was posted to their financial package.

To be eligible for the Golden Opportunity Scholarship, incoming first-year students must be Illinois residents who attended a high school in Illinois and be enrolled for 15 credit hours. First-time freshmen are required to have a 3.0 GPA and maintain a 2.5 GPA for three consecutive years. Students cannot exceed an annual gross income of $61,000 or less after their first year.

For scholarship information visit: or contact the Scholarships Office at: [email protected] or (773)-442-4606.