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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. 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. For more information about citizenship qualifications, please read the Division of Student Financial Aid's citizenship guidelines.
  • 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).
2. 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.
3. I am currently home schooled. Can I enroll in the Program?

Home school students are not eligible for the 21st Century Scholars Program at this time. Learn more about other State of Indiana financial aid resources that are available for home school students.

4. Who are considered household members?

All persons living in the same household as the Scholar applicant should be included in the household size on the student’s application. Only people physically residing in the same household as the applicant can be included in the household size.

5. My household income is over the Program eligibility guidelines. Can I reapply for the Scholarship?

Yes, you may enroll in the 21st Century Scholars program by June 30 in the 7th or 8th grade. In order for you to be enrolled in the Program, your household income must be within the program guidelines during the tax year preceding the year in which you apply.

6. How do I report my income on the 2012-2013 application, since I am currently not employed?

Parent(s) or legal guardian(s) should report income from all sources received in the household during the immediately preceding taxable year. For example, if you are applying on or before December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2011. If you are applying after December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2012.

7. My household income may change between the time of enrollment and graduation. How will this affect my Scholarship?

Once enrolled, an increase in family income will NOT affect a student's eligibility to participate in the 21st Century Scholars Program. However, an increase in household income may alter the amount of the student’s 21st Century Scholarship award for students who enrolled in the Program after June 30, 2011.

8. Which year of household income should be included on the application?

All income from all sources received in the applicant's household during the immediately preceding taxable year should be included on the application. For example, if you are applying on or before December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2011. If you are applying after December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2012.

9. Whose income should be used if I live half the year with each of my parents?

If your parents have joint physical custody, then you should provide the household size and accompanying income for the parent with whom the applicant resides at the time of application.

10. Should I leave the income section blank, since I have not filed my taxes at the time of completing the application?

No. All income from all sources received in the applicant's household during the immediately preceding tax year should be included on the application. For example, if you are applying on or before December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2011. If you are applying after December 31, 2012, you must provide your total income received in 2012.

11. Can I include child(ren) not living in the household since we pay child support for the child(ren)?

No, the child receiving support is not living in your household and therefore should not be included in the household size on your application.

12. I qualify for free or reduced lunched through my school. Does this automatically make me eligible for the 21st Century Scholars Program?

No, eligibility is based on income. All students must apply to the 21st Century Scholars Program in order to be enrolled into the program. It is not a requirement of the program that students must participate in the free and reduced lunch program in order to qualify to enroll in the 21st Century Scholars program, and participating in the free and reduced lunch program does not automatically qualify a student for the program.

13. My parent(s) lost their job during 2011 or 2012. How should we complete the income section of the application?

If you are applying on or before December 31, 2012 you must provide your total income received in 2011. If you are applying after December 31, 2012 you must provide your total income received in 2012.

14. My 2012 household income exceeds the Program guidelines. Can we use our 2011 or 2012 income on the application?

No, if you are applying on or before December 31, 2012 you must provide your total income received in 2011. If you are applying after December 31, 2012 you must provide your total income received in 2012.

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