SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – SUNY Chancellor Kristina Johnson is calling the Excelsior Scholarship a success despite statistics that show it was used by only 3.2% of SUNY students to help pay tuition costs in its first year. According to the New York State Higher Education Corporation, just over 20,000 students were awarded the scholarship in the 2017-2018 school year. Johnson wants to drill down in those numbers though. She said there are some very positive impacts from the scholarship, specifically when it comes to a lower dropout rate. “The retention rate is 10% higher with Excelsior students, with scholarships which are Excelsior, than for students that don’t have an Excelsior Scholarship,” Johnson said. “And 15% higher for community colleges where a lot of our students get their start.