“College in Maryland is free now?” Not quite. But the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship is a great way to attend a Maryland community college without taking loans.
If you’re eligible, you only have to do two things to apply:
- Submit the FAFSA (or MSFAA) by March 1, 2020 and list AACC or your local Maryland community college on the FAFSA/MSFAA.
- Respond to follow-up requests for additional information from MHEC.
About the Award
The Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship Program will be available for the 2020-2021 school year.
The Promise Scholarship provides up to $5,000 in tuition assistance to help eligible students attend one of Maryland’s 16 public community colleges. As a “last dollar” scholarship, it covers any remaining tuition and mandatory fees after other grants and scholarships are applied.
Initial awards are prioritized by the greatest financial need, but renewal awards will be prioritized over all others.
More information is available from the Maryland Higher Education Commission.
You’re eligible for the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship Program if you:
- Graduated from high school or successfully completed a GED in Maryland
- High school applicants must have earned an unweighted cumulative GPA of at least a 2.3 or its equivalent:
- At the end of the first term of their senior year in high school; or
- At the end of their senior year in high school
- Applicants currently or previously enrolled at a community college must have earned either:
- A cumulative GPA of at least a 2.5 from the community college; or
- A high school unweighted cumulative GPA of at least a 2.3 or its equivalent at the end of the first term or end of their senior year in high school
- Are eligible for in-state tuition, as determined by the community college
- Are enrolled in a public community college and are seeking:
- A credit-bearing vocational certificate
- A credit-bearing certificate
- An associate degree program
- A sequence of credit or noncredit courses that leads to licensure or certification
- A registered apprenticeship program
- Complete at least 12 credits per term at the community college
- Have not been awarded another educational grant or scholarship that covers your full cost of attendance at the community college
- Have an annual adjusted gross income of not more than:
- $100,000 if you’re single or reside in a single-parent household
– or -
- $150,000 if you’re married or reside in a two-parent household
- Have not already earned a bachelor’s or associate degree
How to Apply
- Submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at https://studentaid.gov/ by March 1 and list a Maryland Community College on the application.
- For any applicant who is ineligible to receive federal aid but is eligible for in-state tuition, submit the Maryland State Financial Aid Application (MSFAA) online through MDCAPS by March 1 and list a Maryland Community College on the application.
- Check your email after the March 1 deadline. Eligible students will be notified by email of the required documentation to submit for further consideration of the Promise Scholarship. You can also login to your MDCAPS and check your "To Do List" for a complete listing of all required documentation.
- Submit all required documentation by the stated deadline to MHEC.
Renewing an Award
The Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship is renewable for up to two consecutive years. Renewal awards will be prioritized over others.
You will need to submit the FAFSA or MSFAA by March 1 each year you wish to receive the scholarship.
You remain qualified by:
- Remaining eligible for in-state tuition
- Completing at least 12 credits per semester
- Maintaining a cumulative college GPA of at least 2.5
- Making satisfactory academic progress toward a certificate or associate degree
- Meeting the income requirements
IMPORTANT: The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. Please visit the MHEC website for updates regarding regulations and deadlines.