September 4, 2007

Arkansas launches new need-based grants for late-bloomers

Posted in Grants, Student Loan News, The Financial Aid Process at 12:11 PM by Joe From Boston

The Arkansas News Bureau carried a really interesting article yesterday.  The state is creating a new grant for late bloomers who want to go to college.

Governor announces need-based college grants
Wednesday, Aug 29, 2007

By Rob Moritz
Arkansas News Bureau

NORTH LITTLE ROCK – Gov. Mike Beebe on Tuesday announced a college grant program designed to attract late blooming high school students of limited financial means.

The GO! Opportunities Grant is the first state-funded college grant program in Arkansas based solely on financial need, Beebe said.

“This is for youngsters of very limited income families, and they don’t perform outstanding in the classroom,” the governor said during a news conference at Pulaski Technical College.

The Legislature this year approved $18.4 million for the scholarship grants over the next two years.

The state already has several other scholarships available for high-achieving students, Beebe said Tuesday.

“For some kids, their light bulbs don’t come on until they are seniors or juniors,” Beebe said. “Some kids don’t get serious until their last year. Some kids don’t test well … and yet they can do the college work, they can get into colleges and they would be productive citizens and our country would benefit from them if they were able to access higher education.”

Obtaining a college degree significantly raises a person’s economic potential, he said, noting that just 19 percent of Arkansans over 25 have a bachelor’s degree.

The grant program offers $1,000 a year to qualified freshmen who are full-time students, and $500 to part-time students.

To qualify, a student must have lived in Arkansas for at least 12 months prior to application, and have graduated from an Arkansas high school or obtained a General Education Development degree.

Applicants with GED degrees must be between 16 and 18 years old.

The student also must meet all college entrance requirements and maintain a 2.0 grade-point average once in college.

The student’s family must make $25,000 a year or less. The income limit is raised by $5,000 annually for each additional dependent child.

Beebe said virtually every student eligible for the GO! Opportunities Grant also would probably qualify for other financial aid programs, including the federal Pell Grant program.

“The other forms of aid taken with this program will provide the opportunity” to go to college, Beebe said.

Steve Floyd, interim director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education, praised the new grant program, saying it will allow more people who have the ability, but fear they can’t afford a college degree, to further their education.



  1. Hi Cassandra,

    I’m not sure what you mean by “the single parent scholarship fund” but there are millions of dollars of scholarships out there. Have you spent time looking into other scholarships? Use Google, look for scholarships in your field and appropriate to you circumstances. For example, don’t look for scholarships for black single parents on welfare. Look for scholarships for black women, look for scholarships for women, look for scholarships for single parents, etc. It’ll take time but I guarantee they are out there. Also, talk to your advisor and your financial aid office – they may have heard of things that you haven’t. I myself got a scholarship for women in the sciences because my department head had heard of it and passed on the information.

    Also use free scholarship search tools such as to look up scholarships.

  2. Cassandra Anthony said,

    I am a single parent. I have tried to get the single parent scholarship fund, only to be denied. I am currently in college trying to make a difference in my life. But I have learned that it is much harder for someone of my statue to continue on with my education unless there are some immediate funds to help me continue. I am a African American student who has been out of school for 20 plus years. I find that it is very difficult being on section 8 housing program, food stamps, TEA, while trying to complete school. It is difficult because none of these programs allow you to work and actually be able to save your money to get established. They count every dime and go up on your rent, decrease your food stamps, which in return makes things even harder. Not to mention the other expenses that you have such as utilities, personal items, car maintenance, emergency monies, extra food, clothing, medical expenses. All these things add up when you are on a fixed income. However, I am determined to finish college. Please Help! Please feel free to e-mail me in regards to this. Thanks.

  3. […] Original post by moniqueleonard […]

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