The following information is from the TELS website. For additional information go to www.TN.gov/CollegePays
TENNESSEE EDUCATION LOTTERY SCHOLARSHIP
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to reapply each year to receive my award?
Yes. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year. This can be done at www.fafsa.gov.
Do I need to maintain a minimum grade point average (GPA) to retain my award?
Yes. To retain the HOPE Scholarship, you must maintain satisfactory academic progress and achieve a cumulative GPA of 2.75 after attempting 24 and 48 semester hours.
After reaching the 72 hour benchmark and beyond, a student may retain the award in one of two ways:
• achieve a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 or
• if your cumulative GPA is between 2.75-2.99 and your semester GPA is 3.0 or above in the prior semester then you may retain the award on a semester-to-semester basis.
Under these guidelines, students must maintain full-time enrollment and
their eligibility is checked after each semester except for the summer. However, students who meet these guidelines and enroll full time for the summer will have their eligibility checked at the end of the summer term.
Students who receive the HOPE Access Grant will receive the award for each semester until they have attempted 24 semester hours. If students meet the HOPE Scholarship renewal criteria listed above then their award will convert to the HOPE Scholarship.
Students who receive the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills Grant and are pursuing a certificate or diploma must maintain satisfactory academic progress and must be continuously enrolled each term until earning a certificate or diploma from the Tennessee Technology Center.
How will my eligibility be affected if I decide to drop a course(s)?
You should never drop a course without talking to the financial aid office at your institution. Your full-time (12+ hours) or part-time (6-11 hours) enrollment status, as of the institution’s census date, is the enrollment status you must maintain throughout the semester.
Dropping a course(s) without a documented medical or personal reason may cause you to permanently lose your HOPE Scholarship eligibility.
If I decide to take a semester off, how will my award be impacted?
All award recipients must maintain continuous enrollment at an eligible postsecondary institution. This means that students must be enrolled at least part time for the fall and spring semesters to continue to receive the award. Enrollment in the summer semester is not required. Students enrolled in less than six (6) credit hours will maintain continuous enrollment but do not qualify for an award.
Students receiving the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills Grant should check with their institution regarding continuous enrollment requirements as enrollment in the summer term may be required for their program of study.
If I lose my award, can I regain it?
Yes. Students, who fail to meet the academic renewal requirements and lose the HOPE Scholarship, can regain the award one time by meeting the renewal criteria listed above at a benchmark. Students cannot appeal to regain the HOPE Scholarship if their GPA falls below the renewal requirements.
Students, who lose the award due to a nonacademic reason such as not maintaining continuous enrollment or changing their enrollment status from full time to part time, or part time to less than part time, are not eligible to regain the award unless an appeal is approved by the postsecondary institution or TSAC. For further information regarding the appeal process, contact your school.
Students who lose the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills Grant shall not be eligible to receive future awards.
In addition to a lottery scholarship, I’m eligible to receive other state financial aid. Where can I go on-line to review the state financial aid I’m eligible to receive?
You may visit our website at www.TN.gov/CollegePays and click on the “TSAC Student Financial Aid Portal”. The Student Financial Aid Portal provides a summary of all state financial aid programs available to the student along with award amounts by semester. Also, the student may transfer his financial aid package from one postsecondary institution to another.
How long can I receive the HOPE Scholarship?
Students who first received the HOPE Scholarship in fall 2009 and thereafter and meet all criteria to retain the HOPE Scholarship may receive the award until the student has earned a baccalaureate degree, five (5) years have passed from the date of the student’s initial enrollment at any postsecondary institution or student has attempted 120 semester hours; whichever comes first. Exceptions can be
provided up to 136 attempted hours to students enrolled in a degree-seeking program that exceed the 120 attempted hour limit.
However, students who first received the HOPE Scholarship prior to fall 2009 and meet all criteria to retain the HOPE Scholarship may receive the award until five (5) years from the date of initial enrollment at any postsecondary institution or until the student has earned a baccalaureate degree; whichever comes first.
How will my grade point average be calculated for purposes of the HOPE Scholarship?
All college courses attempted after high school graduation shall be used in calculating the grade point average. Students may repeat one (1) course one (1) time and use the higher grade achieved. However, both courses attempted shall be used in the attempted hours total.
How do I qualify to receive the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills Grant each year?
Students must apply by completing the FAFSA each year, maintain continuous enrollment in a certificate or diploma program at an eligible Tennessee Technology Center and maintain satisfactory progress. No minimum number of enrollment hours is needed to maintain the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills Grant. Prior HOPE Scholarship recipients are not eligible to receive this grant. Wilder-Naifeh recipients who complete their diploma may qualify for a HOPE Scholarship if initial eligibility requirements were met upon high school graduation. For a complete list of eligible institutions, please visit http://www.tn.gov/CollegePays/mon_college/eligible_instut.htm.
If I enroll less than full time, will my award be reduced?
Yes. HOPE Scholarship recipients who are enrolled less than full time will receive a reduced amount. Students enrolled in 9-11 hours will receive ¾ of the award and students enrolled in 6-8 hours will receive ½ of the award. Students enrolled less than 6 hours will not receive an award. Your enrollment status is determined as of the institution’s census date.
Students receiving the Wilder-Naifeh Technical Skills grant will receive a reduced award if they are enrolled less than full time or enroll for less than a full academic term.
Where can I use the HOPE Scholarship?
The HOPE Scholarship must be used at an eligible postsecondary institution in the state of Tennessee. For a complete list of eligible institutions, please visit http://www.tn.gov/CollegePays/mon_college/eligible_instut.htm. Students who choose to attend an out-of-state institution are not eligible to receive the award.
If I change schools, how do I transfer my award?
If you transfer to another eligible postsecondary institution, you can transfer your award in one of three ways. You may create a student account to transfer postsecondary institutions by accessing the Student Financial Aid Portal located on our website at www.TN.gov/CollegePays. You may complete a Change of Institution Request Form which can be found at the “Students and Parents” link. You can also list your new institution as the first choice on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). NOTE: Changes made to your FAFSA will overlay any changes you provide to TSAC via the Change of Institution Request Form. If you transfer your award via the FAFSA, you may be selected for verification.
If you have a question that is not addressed here, please visit the lottery’s website at
You can also find additional information at www.TN.gov/CollegePays about other
grant and scholarship programs administered by TSAC such as the Tennessee Student Assistance Award (TSAA).
Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation
Parkway Towers, Suite 1510
404 James Robertson Parkway
Nashville, TN 37243-0820