The Bright Futures scholarship is a merit-based program funded by Florida’s state lottery. Composed of three types of grants, it is designed to financially assist high school seniors in pursuing higher education and is available to them within two years of their high school graduation dates.
The first grant, the Florida Academic Scholars grant, awards the highest amount, paying the total cost of a student’s tuition for a four-year degree. It’s also known as the scholarship for “A” students. The second grant, the Florida Medallion Scholars grant, pays for approximately 75 percent of the cost of a four-year degree and is associated with “B” students. The third grant, the Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars program, is designed to assist students in pursuing a post-secondary vocational degree.
General requirements for any of the Bright Futures scholarship grants include being a U.S. citizen and a Florida resident; completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid by August 31 following high school graduation; being accepted into a qualifying post-secondary institution and not having a felony record. Students who have cumulative high school GPAs of 3.5 or higher and ACT scores of at least 29 or SAT scores of at least 1290 are eligible for the Florida Academic Scholars grant. The Florida Medallion Scholars grant is open to students with GPAs of 3.0 or higher and ACT scores of at least 26 or SAT scores of at least 1170. To qualify for the Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars program, students must have at least a 3.0 high school GPA and must have taken at least three full credits in a single vocational field throughout high school.
Students must maintain certain GPA levels while pursuing their post-secondary education for them to be able to renew their scholarships each year. At the end of each academic year, students are automatically evaluated as to whether they can renew their scholarship. Florida Academic Scholars grant recipients must maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, whereas Florida Medallion Scholars and Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars recipients must maintain at least a 2.75 GPA.
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