Community College Promise Scholarship

The Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship Program will become available to applicants beginning with the 2019-2020 academic year.

The Promise Scholarship creates opportunities for students to attend one of Maryland’s public community colleges by providing tuition assistance for any student eligible for in-state tuition.

Who May Apply:

Education Article §§ 18-3401 – 18-3407 of the Annotated Code of Maryland states that an individual may be eligible for a Promise Scholarship if the individual, within two years after graduating from high school or successfully completing a GED in the State, enrolls in a public community college as a candidate in a credit-bearing vocational certificate, a credit-bearing certificate, or an associate degree program.

How to Apply:

An individual must:

  • Apply ann​ually with MHEC by the established date; and
  • Timely submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.fafsa.gov or a separate State application provided by MHEC for any applicant who is ineligible to receive federal aid but is eligible for in-state tuition.

Eligibility Criteria:

An applicant is eligible for a scholarship if the applicant:

  • Is enrolled in a public community college as a candidate in a credit-bearing vocational certificate, a credit-bearing certificate, or an associate degree program within two years after graduating from a high school or successfully completing a GED in the State;
  • Completes at least 12 credits per semester at the community college;
  • Is eligible for in-state tuition, as determined by the community college in accordance with Education Article, Title 15, Annotated Code;
  • Earned an overall high school grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.3 or its equivalent;
  • Had an annual adjusted gross income of not more than:
    • ​​​​​$100,000 if the applicant is single or resides in a single-parent household; or
    • $150,000 if the applicant is married or resides in a two-parent household for the most recent tax year as defined by MHEC;
  • ​Has not earned a bachelor’s degree or an associate degree; and
  • Has not been awarded another educational grant or scholarship that covers the applicant’s full cost of attendance at the community college.

Award Amount:

Students can receive an award of up to $5,000 to cover any remaining tuition and mandatory fee expenses at the community college after all other non-loan aid has been applied.

Renewing an Award:

The Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship is renewable for up to two years as long as the student remains qualified by:

  • Applying annually with MHEC by the established deadline;
  • Remaining eligible for in-state tuition;
  • Completing at least 12 credits per semester;
  • Maintaining a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5;
  • Making satisfactory academic progress toward a credit-bearing vocational certificate, credit-bearing certificate, or associate degree;
  • Meeting the income requirements; and
  • Submitting timely the FAFSA or Separate State Application for students ineligible to receive federal aid but eligible for in-state tuition.

Service Obligation Requirements:

Recipients of the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship Program must sign an agreement to work full-time in the State within one year after earning the credit-bearing vocational certificate, credit-bearing certificate, or associate degree.

Any recipient who received the award for more than one year must work full-time in Maryland for each year they received the award.  If the student fails to fulfill the service obligation and secure employment within the State, the award will convert into a loan payable to the State.


​IMPORTANT: The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only; it is not intended as legal advice and does not have the force of law. MHEC has endeavored to make the information accurate and up-to-date, but if there is any variance between this website and applicable statutes and regulations, the statutes and regulations shall prevail.