The HOPE Scholarship, developed in the state of Georgia, is a merit-based student scholarship for higher education. Many states offer similar programs to help prospective college students achieve their dreams of getting a higher education.
Education in Action
In 1993, the Georgia state legislature created a university scholarship program they called the HOPE Scholarship. The word HOPE became a reverse acronym for helping outstanding pupils educationally. The scholarship is funded 100% by lottery revenue in the state of Georgia. It is administered by the Georgia Student Finance Commission.
HOPE Scholarship Details
The HOPE Scholarship is a merit based scholarship that provides educational support to students based on their own academic performance and not on their social or financial situations. Students who score well on their SATs, ACTs and carry a strong GPA as well as receive recommendations from their instructors on their hard work and ethical standings are all qualified for the HOPE scholarship.
The scholarship program seeks to provide academically achieving students an opportunity for college they might not otherwise have. The Georgia scholarship program also seeks to encourage students who achieve academically and attend Georgia state universities to remain in the state of Georgia to counter their academic drain with students relocating out of state.
Students interested in applying for the HOPE scholarship must:
- Be residents of the state offering the scholarship
- Graduate or have graduated high school with a 3.0 GPA
- Maintain 3.0 GPA throughout college
What Does the Scholarship Pay?
Applicants who successfully receive the scholarship will have their tuition paid in full as well as a $150 per semester book allowance. The mandatory fees associated with attending a public university will be paid up to the student's 127th academic hour. The scholarship administration committees do check a student's GPA. If a student's GPA drops below 3.0, the state is within its rights to revoke the scholarship. In 2005, the Georgia governor's office was criticized for increased vigilance on student GPAs due to a dip in lottery funds.
States with a HOPE scholarship or similar merit based program include:
- New Mexico Lottery Success Scholarship
- West Virginia Promise Program
- Georgia HOPE Scholarship Program
- Nevada Millennium Scholarship Program
- South Carolina HOPE Scholarship Program
- Oklahoma Higher Access Learning Program
- Alaska Scholars Award
- Florida Bright Futures Scholarship
- Kentucky Educational Excellence
- Louisiana Tuition Opportunity Program for Students
- Michigan Merit Award Scholarship
- Mississippi Eminent Scholars Program
- Missouri Higher Education Academic Scholarship Program
Please note that each state may have slight differences in their programs. You should investigate any associated costs, payments and requirements with your state's HOPE scholarship program.
Financial Aid and Other Support
Students seeking financial aid via scholarships, education incentives and loans should be prepared to fill out their FASFA in order to maximize their benefits and financial support. FASFA stands for Free Application for Student Financial Aid. The site is administered by the U.S. government and the Department of Education. All details submitted here are covered under privacy laws and are used only to determine eligibility for student financial aid.