Howard P. Rawlings
Guaranteed Access (GA) Grant​

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What is the Guaranteed Access (GA) Grant?

The Howard P. Rawlings Guaranteed Access (GA) Grant is a grant that provides postsecondary financial assistance to eligible in-state students currently enrolled as high school seniors who will complete a college preparatory program or a student who has obtained a General Educational Development Diploma (GED), and is under the age of 26. The amount of the GA Grant equals 100 percent of the student’s financial need and a student may receive an award for up to $18,600.

    How do I become eligible for the GA Grant?

High School Seniors:

  • You must be eligible for in-state tuition;
  • You must file a separate State financial aid application if eligible for in-state tuition, but ineligible to receive federal aid;
  • You must file your FAFSA by March 1;
  • You must demonstrate need and meet certain income requirements;
  • You and your parents (if you are a dependent student) must meet the in-state tuition requirements per your institution;
  • You must enroll at a two-year or four-year Maryland college or university as a full-time (12+ credits per semester; audited courses cannot be used to reach the minimum credit hours required for full-time status), degree-seeking, undergraduate student;
  • You must have an unweighted cumulative 2.5 high school grade point average (GPA);
  • You must be under the age of 22 at the time of graduating high school; and
  • You must submit all required verification documents no later than April 1.

General Educational Development Diploma (GED) Recipients:

  • You must be eligible for in-state tuition;
  • You must file a separate State financial aid application if eligible for in-state tuition, but ineligible to receive federal aid;
  • You must file your FAFSA by March 1;
  • You must demonstrate need and meet certain income requirements;
  • You and your parents (if you are a dependent student) must meet in-state requirements per your institution;
  • You must enroll at a two-year or four-year Maryland college or university as a full-time (12+ credits per semester; audited courses cannot be used to reach the minimum credit hours required for full-time status), degree-seeking, undergraduate student;
  • You must have scored a minimum of 165 per module on the diploma (GED) examination;
  • You must be under the age of 26 years at the time of receiving the first award; and
  • You must submit all required verification documents no later than April 1.
    

     Income Requirements

      All students being considered for the Guaranteed Access Grant for the 2019-2020 academic year,
      must meet the following income requirements.

Family Size 130% OF POVERTY LEVEL
(NEW) 
150% OF POVERTY LEVEL (RENEWAL)
1 $15,678 $18,090
2 $21,112 $24,360
3 $26,546 $30,630
4 $31,980 $36,900
5 $37,414 $43,170
6 $42,848 $49,440
7 $48,282 $55,710
8 $53,716 $61,980
For each additional person add $5,434 $6,270


    How can I be considered?

To be considered, click here for an overview of the application process.

For additional information on how to complete the GA verification forms, please see the links below:

How to Complete the Required Verification Forms for the GA Grant program

How to Complete the Low Income Form


How Do I Obtain a 2017 IRS Tax Transcript:

MHEC may ask students that are selected for the verification process to confirm their eligibility for the GA Grant by submitting a 2017 IRS Tax Transcript​. This includes as applicable, a copy of the student's, or student's spouse, and or parent(s) 2017 IRS Tax Transcript or State return.  

Transcripts provide taxpayers with a computer-created record of their tax return which includes most of the line-items filed with the IRS, including any accompanying forms and schedules. 

To obtain a copy of the 2017 IRS Tax Transcript​, please visit the IRS website.  

 
        Is the GA Grant a Renewable Award?
  • To renew an award, you must maintain satisfactory academic progress at the college you are attending;
  • You must file the FAFSA or separate State financial aid application no later than March 1 each year;
  • You must continue to demonstrate financial need and be within 150% of the federal income poverty levels;
  • You may continue to receive the award for a total of three additional years, if you remained enrolled full-time, in a degree-seeking undergraduate program of study; and
  • You must successfully complete at least 24 credits at the end of your second academic year of receiving the award and thereafter.


What is the Guaranteed Access Partnership Program (GAPP)?

The Guaranteed Access Partnership Program (GAPP) provides a matching grant award to eligible Maryland students who receive a GA Grant and enroll at a participating Maryland independent college or university as a new undergraduate student. 

The Maryland institutions that are participating include: Capitol Technology University, Goucher College, Hood College, Johns Hopkins University, Loyola University Maryland, Maryland Institute College of Art, McDaniel College, Mount St. Mary’s University, Notre Dame of Maryland University, Stevenson University, St. John’s College, Washington Adventist University, and Washington College.

For more information about the GAPP program, please contact your institution’s financial aid office so that they may assist you in completing the process. ​