Student walking on the Brooklyn College campus for College initiative providing free comprehensive social, legal, and financial services to CUNY students.

Single Stop College Initiative logo

Over 46 million Americans live in poverty. The Single Stop College Initiative provides free comprehensive social, legal and financial services to students at several CUNY colleges.

Program Features/ Eligibility

On each of the participating CUNY college campuses counselors use a computerized screening tool that condenses thousands of pages of eligibility rules into a 15-minute question-and-answer session. Single Stop counselors interview students (and, in some circumstances, immediate family members) and provide them with information about which federal, state or local benefits they are eligible to receive. This screening tool identifies public benefits (e.g., health insurance programs, nutrition programs, housing assistance, subsidies for childcare, energy assistance) as well as tax credits. The campus-based Single Stop counselors then use this information to guide students through the process of applying for benefits.

In addition, The Single Stop College Initiative provides free, on-site tax preparation services during tax season (January – April); one-on-one financial counseling services throughout the year; and legal services.

Campus Programs

Single Stop helps communities break the intergenerational cycle of poverty one family at a time. Working through food pantries, schools, criminal justice and health care centers, senior centers, and libraries, Single Stop connects families to the resources they need to thrive.  Improvements in family finance have been shown to keep families in their homes and put food on the table. This also helps their children stay healthy and do better in school. In fact, parental income is the #1 predictor of college graduation.