1. Who is eligible?
Maine residents who graduated high school (or earned the equivalent of a high school diploma, like a GED or HiSET) in 2020, 2021, or 2022 are eligible for the Free College Scholarship. The same will be true for graduates of the class of 2023.
2. What does the Free College Scholarship cover?
The scholarship covers up to two years of tuition and mandatory fees, after federal and state grants have been applied. If students qualify for grants that exceed tuition and mandatory fees, those grant funds can be used to cover the cost of books, supplies, travel, and living expenses.
3. How do students apply?
There is no specific scholarship application that needs to be completed. Instead, students simply need to do the following (in either order):
Apply for admission to one of Maine’s seven community colleges. If students are unsure where to start, they can visit the Maine Community Colleges website, fill out the “Tell Me More!” form, and a community college advisor will be in touch.
File the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at FAFSA.gov. This is how students apply for federal and state grants. FAME’s Get Ready to File the 2022-2023 FAFSA checklist outlines what’s needed to file the FAFSA and answers some of the most commonly asked FAFSA questions.
4. What if students need help filing the FAFSA?
FAME’s FAFSA help is always free, and students can get information and assistance in a number of ways:
Use FAME’s online help.
For information, handouts, short explainer videos, and FAQs to help students get ready to file, go to FAMEmaine.com/FAFSA.
Attend a free Virtual FAFSA Help Session.
These sessions are free but do require registration. To learn more and to register for an upcoming session, go to FAMEmaine.com/events/categories/fafsa/.
Contact a FAME expert
Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM-4:30 PM
5. What if students are unable to file the FAFSA?
If students are unable to file the FAFSA due to citizenship status or other reasons, they’re still eligible for the Free College Scholarship. Students just need to contact the community college they wish to attend and work with an on-campus advisor.