SUNY Application Tips: How to Apply, Deadlines, and More

When Is the SUNY Application Due?

The SUNY application deadline varies depending on the school and program you are applying to. Generally, the deadline for fall admission is around February 1st, but it's best to check with the specific SUNY school you're interested in to confirm the exact deadline. Some schools also offer rolling admissions, which means they accept applications until all spots are filled. It's important to submit your application as early as possible to increase your chances of admission and eligibility for scholarships and financial aid.

What Test Scores and GPA Do You Need for SUNY Schools?

SUNY schools have different admission requirements for test scores and GPA, depending on the individual college or university within the system. Generally, most SUNY schools require a high school GPA of at least 80 (on a 100-point scale) and SAT scores of at least 1000 (combined score of math and reading/writing) or ACT scores of at least 21. However, some of the more competitive SUNY schools may require higher GPAs and test scores. It's important to check the specific admission requirements for the SUNY schools you are interested in applying to.

What Should You Know About SUNY Essays?

The SUNY application requires a personal essay that provides insight into who you are as a student and person. The essay prompts vary depending on which SUNY school you are applying to, so it is important to review the specific requirements for each school. Generally, the essay is an opportunity to showcase your writing skills, demonstrate your motivation for attending the school, and highlight any experiences or achievements that make you a strong candidate. It is important to follow the instructions carefully, stay within the word limit, and proofread your essay before submitting it.

Schools That Require or Recommend Supplemental Essays for Freshmen

Here is a list of SUNY schools that require or recommend supplemental essays for freshmen:

1. Binghamton University - Requires the Common Application essay and a separate "Why Us" essay.

2. Purchase College - Requires a personal essay as well as a portfolio or audition depending on the major.

3. Stony Brook University - Recommends a supplemental essay on the Common Application.

4. SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry - Requires an essay or personal statement.

5. SUNY Geneseo - Requires a supplemental essay on the Common Application.

6. SUNY Maritime College - Requires an essay or personal statement.

7. SUNY New Paltz - Recommends a supplemental essay on the Common Application.

8. SUNY Oswego - Recommends a supplemental essay on the Common Application.

9. SUNY Plattsburgh - Requires a supplemental essay on the Common Application.

10. SUNY Polytechnic Institute - Requires a supplemental essay on the Common Application. 

Note that requirements and recommendations may change, so it's always best to check with each individual school's website for the most up-to-date information.

Schools That Require or Recommend Additional Essays for Transfer Students

Here are some SUNY schools that require or recommend additional essays for transfer students:

1. Binghamton University: Requires a personal statement and a supplemental essay.

2. University at Buffalo: Requires a personal statement.

3. Stony Brook University: Requires a personal statement.

4. Purchase College: Requires a personal statement.

5. SUNY Geneseo: Requires a personal statement and an essay on a specified topic.

6. SUNY New Paltz: Requires a personal statement and an essay on a specified topic.

7. SUNY Oneonta: Recommends a personal statement and an essay on a specified topic.

Note that the requirements may vary depending on the program or major you are applying to. It's important to check the specific application requirements for each school you are interested in.

How to Answer the SUNY Essay Prompts

To answer SUNY essay prompts effectively, follow these tips:

1. Understand the Prompt: Carefully read and understand the prompt before beginning to write. Note the question being asked, the tone, and the context. Understand the purpose of the prompt and the audience you are writing for.

2. Brainstorm Ideas: Think about what you want to communicate in your essay. Brainstorm ideas and jot them down. Select the ideas that align with the prompt and support your overall theme.

3. Develop a Thesis: Once you have an idea, develop a thesis statement that explains your perspective on the topic. Ensure that your thesis is clear, concise, and answers the prompt question.

4. Create an Outline: After developing your thesis statement, create an outline to organize your thoughts and ideas. This will help you to write a well-structured essay that is easy to understand.

5. Write Your Essay: Use your outline to write your essay. Start with a strong introduction, followed by the body paragraphs, and end with a conclusion. Ensure that your essay is well-organized, flows well, and is easy to read.

6. Edit and Proofread: After writing, edit and proofread your essay for grammar and spelling errors, typos, and punctuation mistakes. Get feedback from others and make necessary revisions.

7. Submit Your Essay: Once you are satisfied with your essay, submit it before the deadline.

Remember to be honest, authentic, and unique when answering the SUNY essay prompts. Show the admissions committee who you are and what you can contribute to the campus community.

What Does SUNY Look for in Students?

SUNY looks for a variety of qualities in students, including strong academic performance, leadership skills, extracurricular involvement, community service, and personal qualities such as character and resilience. Admissions committees also consider factors such as the rigor of a student's high school curriculum, letters of recommendation, and test scores. SUNY schools are looking for well-rounded students who will contribute to the campus community and succeed academically. It's important to demonstrate a strong commitment to your academic and personal goals in your application materials.

SUNY Application Checklist

Here is a general SUNY application checklist:

1. Personal Information: Make sure you have all your personal information handy, such as your full name, address, phone number, email, and Social Security number.

2. Academic Record: You'll need to provide your high school transcript or GED, as well as transcripts from any colleges or universities you have attended. You should also have a record of any standardized test scores you've taken, such as the SAT or ACT.

3. Application Fee: Be prepared to pay the application fee, which is currently $50 for undergraduate programs. Some schools may waive the fee for certain students, so be sure to check if you qualify for a waiver.

4. Essays: If you are applying to a school that requires essays, make sure you have thoroughly read and understand the prompts. Write clear and concise essays that highlight your strengths and demonstrate your interest in the school.

5. Letters of Recommendation: Some SUNY schools require letters of recommendation, so make sure to gather them from teachers, counselors, or other individuals who can speak to your academic abilities and personal qualities.

6. Extracurricular Activities: Make a list of your extracurricular activities, such as sports, clubs, volunteer work, or other hobbies. This can help you in writing your essays and demonstrate your interests and passions.

7. Deadlines: Be aware of the application deadlines for the schools you are applying to. Some SUNY schools have rolling admissions, while others have specific deadlines.

8. Double-Check: Before submitting your application, double-check all your information to ensure accuracy and completeness.

9 SUNY Application Tips

Here are some tips for the SUNY application process:

1. Start early: Give yourself plenty of time to gather all necessary information and complete the application. Don't wait until the last minute, as you may encounter unexpected problems.

2. Read the instructions carefully: Make sure you understand what is required of you before you begin the application process.

3. Know the deadlines: Check the application deadlines for the SUNY schools you are interested in and make sure to submit your application and required materials before the deadline.

4. Keep track of your application status: After submitting your application, check your application status regularly to ensure that all required documents have been received.

5. Personalize your essay: When writing your essay, make sure to personalize it and make it specific to each school you are applying to. Use specific examples that relate to your experiences and goals.

6. Ask for help: If you have questions or need assistance with the application process, don't hesitate to reach out to the SUNY admissions office or your high school guidance counselor.

7. Proofread your application: Before submitting your application, make sure to carefully proofread all materials, including your essay, to ensure that there are no errors or typos.

8. Be honest and authentic: SUNY values authenticity in its applicants. Be honest in your application and show your genuine interests, passions, and experiences.

9. Follow up: If you have not heard back from a school after submitting your application, don't be afraid to follow up with the admissions office to ensure that your application is being reviewed.


In conclusion, applying to SUNY schools requires careful planning and attention to detail. It is important to keep track of application deadlines, GPA and test score requirements, and any supplemental essays that may be required. By following the tips and checklist provided, prospective students can improve their chances of being accepted into the SUNY school of their choice.