Complete your understanding of the 21st Century Scholars Program with the detailed questions and answers below. Answers to more specific questions are always available by calling the Scholars Helpline at 1-888-528-4719 or by emailing Scholars@che.IN.gov.

1. What is the 21st Century Scholars Program?

Indiana’s 21st Century Scholars Program is the state’s premier college scholarship and preparation program for low-income Hoosier students. Students who fulfill the Scholar Pledge are provided up to four years of paid tuition at an eligible Indiana college or university. Scholars also receive a variety of support services designed to help them succeed in school and complete college.

Take the Pledge
In exchange for tuition and free support services, 21st Century Scholars make a commitment to excellence in school and in life. When students enroll in 7th or 8th grade, they pledge to:

  • Graduate with an Indiana High School Diploma from a state-accredited high school.
  • Participate in the Scholar Success Program that helps them plan, prepare and pay for college success.
  • Achieve a cumulative high school Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Not use illegal drugs or alcohol, or commit a crime or delinquent act.
  • Apply for college admission and financial aid as a high school senior.

Students' families must meet income eligibility guidelines, and students must apply by June 30 of their 8th grade year.

Succeed in School
Students enrolling in the 21st Century Scholars Program after June 30, 2011 are required to participate in a Scholar Success Program as part of their 21st Century Scholar Pledge. Scholars will not be required to participate in the Scholar Success Program until the Fall 2013 semester.

The Scholar Success Program ensures Scholars have the guidance and support they need to perform academically and plan, prepare and pay for college and career success. Scholars will learn how to plan their path to high school graduation, prepare with the skills they need to be college-ready and pay for college by earning scholarships and filing financial aid forms on time.

Complete College
The final step in the 21st Century Scholars Program is completing college and being career ready. Scholars continue to receive support in college as they plan their path to a degree, prepare for success in the workplace and pay for college with the 21st Century Scholars scholarship. Scholar upperclassmen and alumni also have the opportunity to give back to the program by helping other Scholars be successful.

2. Why was the Program established?

The 21st Century Scholars Program was established to:

  • Reduce the number of students who withdraw from high school before graduation.
  • Increase the number of students who are prepared to enter the workforce upon graduation.
  • Increase the number of students entering postsecondary educational institutions in Indiana.
  • Decrease drug and alcohol abuse by encouraging higher educational pursuits.
  • Increase individual economic vitality.
  • Improve the overall quality of life for many Indiana residents.
3. Am I eligible to enroll in this program?

Complete eligibility requirements are available on this page.

To enroll in the 21st Century Scholars Program you must:

  • Be a resident of Indiana, both when you apply and when you receive the scholarship (determined by the residency of your parent or legal guardian).
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen. Read more about citizenship qualifications for student financial aid.
  • Be enrolled in the 7th or 8th grade at a public school, charter school, freeway school or other Indiana school recognized by the Indiana Department of Education. Homeschooled students are not eligible for the 21st Century Scholars Program.
  • Fulfill the 21st Century Scholars Pledge.
  • Be one of the following:
    • Placed in foster care.
    • A member of a family at or below the 2012-13 income maximums. (See this page for income eligibility requirements).
4. What is the Scholar Pledge?

The Scholar Pledge is a commitment between the student and the State of Indiana to:

  • Graduate with an Indiana High School Diploma from a state-accredited high school.
  • Participate in the Scholar Success Program that helps them plan, prepare and pay for college success.
  • Achieve a cumulative high school Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Not use illegal drugs or alcohol, or commit a crime or delinquent act.
  • Apply for college admission and financial aid as a high school senior.
5. What does the Program provide?

Students who fulfill the Scholar Pledge receive the 21st Century Scholarship, which provides up to four years of paid tuition at an eligible Indiana college or university. Scholars also receive a variety of support services designed to help them succeed in school and complete college.

6. How do I check my current 21st Century Scholar status?

To check a Scholar's enrollment status, please visit the Scholar status website.

Back to Top