Baton Rouge - Louisiana students who are near completion of a degree in a high-demand field, such as healthcare and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), may be eligible for additional financial aid under the new Completers Grant. The grant will provide scholarships to students who are within 30 credit hours of completing a degree at a Louisiana public two- or four-year postsecondary institution.
The Completers Grant will also be used to incentivize enrollment in and completion of short-term credential programs at two-year institutions. The grant will not provide more than two consecutive semesters of funding. Each academic institution will determine the award amount.
“Louisiana cannot afford to have students defer their higher education dreams. Completers Grants will help those who have graduation within sight, but may have run out of the funds needed to cross the finish line,” said Commissioner Kim Hunter Reed. “The pandemic has certainly impacted the plans of many near-completers. These funds can help get students back on track, aiding them to finish what they started and become graduates.”
To be eligible for a Completers Grant, students must 1.) be a Louisiana resident, 2.) complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the academic year in which the award will be received, 3.) meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) benchmarks for credit programs, 4.) successfully and sufficiently complete courses to continue in the selected course of study for non-credit programs, 5.) be enrolled through the 14th day of classes, and 6.) meet one of the priority guidelines.
Priority each semester will be given to students who are within 30 hours of completing a degree in a STEM or health care field, or students who will complete an on-ramp credential or credential of value as identified by the Louisiana Workforce Commission. Priority selection criteria for recipients are as follows:
· First, those students who are expected to complete their program of study/graduate in the fall who have significantly depleted or have no other source of financial aid;
· Third, those students who are expected to complete their program of study/graduate in summer who have significantly depleted or have no other source of financial aid.
The Completers Grant is funded through one-time Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) dollars, available through September 30, 2022. The Louisiana Board of Regents approved the framework for the grant. The Louisiana Office of Student Financial Assistance (LOSFA) will administer the program.
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