Educational Opportunity Scholars/EOF


Educational Opportunity Scholars/EOF

About the Program

The Educational Opportunity Scholars (EOS) Program, which also goes by the name Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF), is a New Jersey state-funded program centered on the success of students. The Drew EOS office provides access for motivated state residents from underrepresented populations/areas that meet the income criteria and exhibit the potential for high achievement. By providing academic services, we work to help participants reach their full personal, intellectual, spiritual and academic potential.

The Educational Opportunity Scholars Program is a partnership between the NJ Commission of Higher Education and Drew University. Within this partnership, the program provides access to higher education and support for highly motivated students who exhibit the potential for success. The program provides direct services designed to promotes persistence through degree completion. Furthermore, the program supports innovative educational initiatives and leadership development activities to enhance the students’ chance for academic success. The office provides for the holistic care of the student. We render immediate and comprehensive academic, career, and student development support strategies to encourage personal and college success. The office also makes referrals to appropriate university and community offices when necessary.

All New Jersey residents may apply to the program if they fall within the financial guidelines. Citizens and permanent residents are required to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and students who qualify for DACA are required to complete the New Jersey Alternative Financial Aid Application

Eligibility and How to Apply

Additional Information

History of the New Jersey Educational Opportunity Fund

In November 1967, in the aftermath of the previous summer’s riots in Newark, New Jersey’s newly-appointed Chancellor of Higher Education, Ralph A. Dungan, directed a memorandum to the presidents of all of the state’s institutions of higher education. In it he outlined a proposed program of special assistance to young men and women from economically and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds. The presidents’ response was immediate, widespread, and overwhelmingly favorable. Enthusiasm was particularly marked at those institutions that were participating in the federally supported Upward Bound Program, which sought to help high school students from disadvantaged backgrounds prepare for entry into college.

The following February, the Select Commission on Civil Disorders (the Lilly Commission, established in response to the events in Newark) made its report to Governor Richard Hughes, who subsequently submitted his Moral Recommitment message to the New Jersey State Legislature. The message called for the establishment of a broad range of programs to address the basic conditions the Commission had cited as contributing to the summer’s unrest. Among those programs was the Educational Opportunity Fund, established by legislation sponsored by then – freshman legislator Thomas Kean.

EOF set the pace for many initiatives which today are widely incorporated into college life. Among the many powerful strategies implemented by EOF are precollege articulation, basic skills testing and remediation, systematic retention efforts, peer counseling and peer tutoring, academic support courses, multicultural curricula and human relations programming, student leadership development, and outcomes-based program evaluation.

EOF has also been a leader and a linchpin in the higher education system’s effort to increase diversity. While participation is not limited to minority students, EOF sponsors more than one-third of the African American and Latino students at the state colleges and New Jersey’s independent institutions, and over one-quarter of the African American and Latino students enrolled at New Jersey colleges and universities participate in the EOF program. EOF enrolls about 12.5% of the first-time, full-time New Jersey freshmen who enter the state’s colleges and universities each fall.