GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Grand Rapids Promise Zone scholarship was approved Tuesday by the state’s treasury department.
Starting with the class of 2020, students who graduate from a school within Grand Rapids will be able to take up to 60 credit hours at Grand Rapids Community College tuition-free.
“This is an incredible win for Grand Rapids students and for our region’s future,” said Teresa Weatherall Neal, Grand Rapids Promise Zone Authority chairperson. “This unique state funding mechanism has proven to improve enrollment and degree completion in similar models around the country, and will help to secure a brighter future for Grand Rapids families and businesses.”
For students to receive the full scholarship, they have to attend and graduate from one of the eligible high schools from at least the start of 10th grade and live within city limits during that time.
Students who enrolled in one of the schools from the start of 11th grade will be eligible for a 50% scholarship.
The scholarship will cover the cost of 60 credit hours, as well as the cost of fees, books and required course materials. Students can use the scholarship has full- or part-time students and have up to five years to use the funds.
The first several years of the scholarship fund will be funded through local donations. After five years, the district expects the program should be able to financially sustain itself.