Are we accepting [matching] Tennessee Promise?
Yes, Southern will receive TN Promise funding for a student pursing an AS degree. Keep in mind that Tennessee Promise is a last dollar award, meaning if the student is eligible for Pell Grant, Tennessee Grant, and/or Tennessee HOPE Scholarship, those will be awarded first. The short version of what this means is based on the estimated Tennessee community college tuition rate for 2015-2016 of $4,158, any Tennessee Promise-eligible student will receive a $4,158 through a combination of the Federal Pell Grant, Tennessee Grant, Tennessee HOPE, and/or Tennessee Promise. Tennessee Promise students will receive the same funding through those three programs if they are pursuing an AS degree at Southern as well. In addition, incoming freshman could also receive our renewable freshman merit based scholarships and/or Southern need-based funding, provided they meet the requirements.
If a student attends a community college in Tennessee and then transitions to Southern, how would that affect the Tennessee Promise?
Students can transfer between schools that are eligible for Tennessee Promise and continue to receive those same dollars. However, by transferring into Southern the student would not be eligible for Southern's renewable freshman scholarships program. We do offer scholarships to transfer students, but typically it would not be the same amount as for an incoming freshman.
What about the Hope Scholarship?
Without knowing the specifics of an individual student, we can only provide a quick recap of the Tennessee HOPE program. A student must have a minimum 3.0 high school GPA or a 21 ACT (980 SAT Critical Reading and Math Score combined) to receive the Tennessee HOPE Scholarship. Freshman and sophomore (and AS degree seeking) students will receive $3,500 per year, and juniors and seniors will receive $4,500 per year. After a student's first year, there are GPA and continuous enrollment criteria that must be meet in order to receive it each year.