The state of Tennessee introduced the Tennessee Promise Scholarship in 2015. This scholarship provides two years of tuition-free attendance to a community or technical college in Tennessee. The main goal of this scholarship is to remove the financial burden from incoming students. The award has been called a “last-dollar” scholarship, meaning it will cover all the tuition and mandatory fees left unpaid from other awards like the Pell Grant, the HOPE scholarship, or other state assistance funds.
In addition, South College offers The South College Opportunity Grant (SCOG). The SCOG is a last resort grant for students who are eligible to participate in the Tennessee Promise Program.
The SCOG will be awarded if any amount of tuition and fees charged for a term of study is not covered by the Federal Pell Grant, Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarship, or the Tennessee Student Assistance Award. The SCOG will only be applied to the remaining outstanding institutional charges as long as the student maintains eligibility in the Tennessee Promise program.
Not all Tennessee Promise eligible programs are eligible for the South College Opportunity Grant. Please see the Office of Financial Aid or speak with an Admissions Staff representative for more details.
South College wants to help make education achievable for our students by giving them opportunities to make keeping their Tennessee Promise Scholarship simpler. “We give our students the opportunity to get service hours done here at the campus rather than going out and trying to find something. It makes it easy for them to come in and be able to complete those,” says Ansley South, High School Coordinator at South College.
tnAchieves is the partnering organization to the TN Promise Scholarship in 84 of the 95 counties in Tennessee. Its mission is “to increase higher education opportunities for Tennessee high school students by providing last-dollar scholarships with mentor guidance.”
Who is eligible?
Potential recipients of the scholarship must be residents of the state of Tennessee and begin their college education quickly – for example, students graduating in May must start college by Fall.
To maintain your eligibility for the Tennessee Promise Scholarship, you must complete and submit 8 hours of community service for each term that you’re enrolled and maintain at least a 2.0 GPA. At South College, we provide access to tutoring to help make this GPA goal achievable for our students.
Where can you use the Tennessee Promise Scholarship?
The scholarship can be used at eligible colleges and universities offering an associate degree program, as well as the 13 community colleges and 27 colleges of applied technology in Tennessee. South College is happy to be included on this list of eligible institutions!
How does the scholarship work?
The Tennessee Promise is focused on increasing the number of students that attend college in the state of Tennessee, but it is also focused on helping students become better people with brighter futures. This focus is evident in the mentoring program that goes hand-in-hand with the scholarship. Everyone who receives the Tennessee Promise will be assigned a mentor who will assist the student as he or she begins to apply for different colleges. After acceptance, recipients will be required to attend mandatory meetings to remain eligible for the scholarship. Students must also complete eight hours of community service each term and remain in good academic standing (2.0 GPA), as mentioned earlier.
How do you apply?
Students who wish to apply for the Tennessee Promise Scholarship must complete the Tennessee Promise application, which can be found here.
After completing the application, you must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) found at fafsa.gov.
Next, you’ll attend a meeting about the Tennessee Promise Scholarship, coordinated by your assigned partnering organization. You can find when and where your meeting will be on the tnAchieves website.
Now, you’re ready to apply to the institution of your choice and complete your first 8 hours of community service! Don’t forget to submit your community service documents to tnAchieves.
If you are graduating from high school and plan on attending college in Tennessee, then this is a great opportunity for you. Learn more about the programs we offer at South College that are TN Promise eligible!
Editor’s Note: This blog was originally published on 3/15/17 & has been updated to include new information.