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Maryland Community College Promise Scholarships

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On May 8, 2018, Governor Hogan signed into law the “Near Completers and Maryland Community College Promise Scholarships” act to help eligible students afford community college.

More detailed information will become available as the Maryland Higher Education Commission develops the regulations, but here are some key points:

  • Starting with the 2019-2020 academic year, there will be a $15 million annual appropriation.
  • This “last dollar” scholarship will cover tuition and mandatory fees after other financial aid (grants and scholarships) is calculated.
  • The maximum annual award will be $5,000 per recipient, or the actual tuition, whichever is less.
  • Applicants must have an annual income of not more than:
    • $100,000 if the applicant is single or resides in a single-parent household, or
    • $150,000 if the applicant is married or resides in a two-parent household
  • Applicants must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Applicants must enroll within 2 years of high school or GED completion, have an overall minimum 2.3 (on a 4.0 scale) high school GPA, and maintain a minimum 2.5 GPA at CSM.
  • Recipients must complete at least 12 credits per semester.
  • Recipients may receive the award for a maximum of 3 years or until they are awarded an associate’s degree.
  • Recipients must agree to complete a service obligation for each year they receive the scholarship.

We are excited to have the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship as another way of helping families like yours afford college. 

Learn More on the Maryland
Higher Education Commission Website

Frequently Asked Questions

When does it start?

  • The program is expected to begin in fall 2019, pending approval of the $15 million appropriation required by law to fund the scholarship awards.

Who is eligible?

  • Applicants must:
    • Apply annually to MHEC to receive the scholarship
    • Enroll within 2 years of high school graduation or completion of a GED in Maryland
    • Have a high school GPA of at least 2.3 on  a 4.0 scale
    • Enroll as a candidate for a vocational certificate (non-credit), a credit certificate, or an associate degree
    • Have an annual adjusted gross income of not more than:
      • $100,000 if the applicant is single or resides in a single-parent household, or
      • $150,000 if applicant is married or resides in a two-parent household.
    • Enroll full-time in 12 credits per semester, minimum, or enroll for a vocational certificate

How much aid do you receive?

  • For those who qualify, scholarship awards are limited to $5,000 per recipient per year, or actual tuition (whichever is less). Tuition means the basic instructional charge for courses offered and includes mandatory fees. Initial tuition awards will be provided to recipients based on greatest financial need.

Why is this a "last dollar" scholarship?

  • Students must complete the FAFSA or any other applications for state or federal financial aid
  • All other financial aid is to be calculated before the Promise scholarship is awarded
  • If ineligible to submit a FAFSA, students must qualify for in-state tuition

How do you stay eligible?

  • Students must apply annually and may hold the award for three years after enrolling, with priority given to recipients who remain eligible.
  • Students must be enrolled continuously and maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.

What is your obligation if you receive the award?

  • Students are required to maintain employment in Maryland for at least one year for each year the scholarship is awarded.
  • Scholarships convert to loans if the recipient fails to fulfill the service obligation.