South Carolina State Aid
The State of South Carolina provides direct financial support to students and their families to help pay for college. South Carolina residents who meet certain criteria are eligible for state-funded grants and scholarships. To learn more about the state-funded grants and scholarships offered at HGTC, please clink on the links below:
- SC Need-Based Grant
- SC Lottery Tuition Assistance
- LIFE Scholarship
- Palmetto Fellows Scholarship
Zero Tuition Programs Available
Students taking classes in Fall 2023 and/or Spring 2024 may receive the SC•WINS funding if eligibility and program criteria are met. It is important to note SC•WINS provides funding for courses taught through the Academic (curriculum) and the Workforce Development divisions. To be eligible to receive the SC•WINS scholarship students must:
If enrolled in an Academic Program:
- Must be a SC resident, maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA, and complete the required documentation.
- Complete the FAFSA and all required Financial Aid documents.
If enrolled in Workforce Development classes:
- Must be a SC resident and complete the required documentation.
South Carolina Workforce Industry Needs Scholarship (SC•WINS) is a statewide technical college scholarship program designed to address workforce shortages in South Carolina. The scholarship supplements Lottery Tuition Assistance to help cover any tuition and mandatory fees left after applying all other scholarships or grants. The SC•WINS guidelines outline priority program categories for all colleges in the South Carolina Technical College System. These academic programs were selected by the state, based on state-wide data in critical workforce areas and includes programs in both academics and workforce development.
The SC•WINS Scholarship is available to Dual Enrollment students who are already receiving a Lottery Tuition Assistance Program Scholarship (LTAP) for the current academic year and majoring in a critical workforce area as defined by the State Board for Technical and Comprehensive Education. An additional affidavit will need to be completed and submitted to the Office of Financial Aid.
Eligible students will be provided access to the scholarship (up to a maximum of $5,000 for the academic year for three years for an associate degree and two years if enrolled in a diploma or certificate program) as outlined below:
- SC•WINS provides $2,500 per semester (Fall and Spring, then any remaining balance up to $5,000 can be applied to Summer if necessary), and will be applied toward the cost of tuition, fees, and course materials.
- If a student's tuition, fees, and course costs are less than the $2,500 per semester, students will not be provided a refund for the difference. Conversely, if those costs exceed the scholarship, students would be obligated for the difference.
- If a student is enrolled in a one-semester, qualifying program, the student will have access to a maximum of $5,000 for the cost of tuition, fees, and course materials. If this cost is less than $5,000, the student will only have access to the actual amount required for tuition, fees, and course materials.
- SC•WINS is a “last dollar” scholarship and is applied after all other sources of aid are applied.
- Certified Drivers License (CDL)
- Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)
- Clinical Medical Assistant (CMA)
- Digital Court Reporting
- Digital Court Reporting with Legal Transcription
- Residential/Commercial Electrical
SC Need-Based Grant
This program assists the neediest South Carolinians who wish to attend eligible public and private colleges or universities in the state. Program funding depends upon action by the General Assembly and the amount awarded to students is contingent upon the funds appropriated to the program.
To be eligible for the Need-Based Grant, the student must:
- Have a valid Federal Student Aid Report on file in the Financial Aid Office;
- Be a legal South Carolina resident and enrolled or accepted for enrollment as at least a half-time (6 semester hours) undergraduate student in a degree or certificate program authorized by the Commission on Higher Education;
- Meet Title IV standards of academic process
- Be seeking—for the first time—an associate or other recognized credential in a one-year program as authorized by the Commission on Higher Education;
- Be enrolled half-time at the time of grant disbursement and complete 12 to 24 semester credit hours in each regular academic year (Fall/Spring semesters only);
- Must have a 2.0 GPA in each regular academic year (Fall/Spring semesters only);
- Certify that he/she has not been convicted of any felonies, alcohol, or drug-related offenses under the laws of any state or under the laws of the U.S. (student must notify the Financial Aid Office should this status change by the start of the school year); and
- Certify that he/she does not owe a refund or repayment on a State Grant, Federal Pell Grant, or Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and is not in default on a loan under the Federal Perkins Loan or Federal Stafford Loan Programs.
To apply for financial aid, start by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.studentaid.gov.
SC Lottery Tuition Assistance
A portion of Education Lottery revenues are used to fund tuition assistance for technical college students. The actual amount of tuition assistance available to each student will be determined each semester by the State Board for Technical Education. Contact us and ask about your eligibility today!
To be eligible for Lottery Tuition Assistance, a student must:
- Qualify for in-state residency;
- Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA); however, Lottery Tuition
Assistance is not awarded on the basis of financial need;
Complete the FAFSA Waiver form—this form is only used for students enrolled in PACE programs, students who have earned a bachelor’s degree, or students who are enrolled in programs that are not eligible for Title IV aid;
- Be enrolled in a certificate, diploma, or associate degree program (Workforce Development programs are not eligible) and maintain enrollment of at least six credit hours each semester;
- Make clear progress toward completion of a certificate, diploma, or associate degree (maintain a 2.0 GPA after completing 24 credit hours of study);
- Must not have received Lottery Tuition Assistance for more than one certificate, diploma, or degree earned within any five-year period unless the additional certificate, diploma, or degree constitutes progress in the same field of study (as determined by the institution);
- Not be a LIFE scholarship award recipient; and
- Not be in default on any government student loan program.
Most student financial aid is awarded on the basis of financial need. Lottery Tuition Assistance is an exception and is not awarded on the basis of financial need. To establish need or to apply for Lottery Tuition Assistance, a student must complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) or meet one of the qualifications to complete the FAFSA Waiver form.
The Life Scholarship Program was approved by the 1998 SC General Assembly. The LIFE Scholarship pays up to $2,350 for tuition and fees and $150 book allowance per semester, a total of $2,500 per semester for eligible undergraduate students attending two-year colleges in South Carolina. Students may receive the LIFE Scholarship for a total of four semesters at a technical college and the LIFE Scholarship will only pay for one degree or one certificate at a technical college. A student may be eligible for (6) semesters of the Life Scholarship if enrolled in at least 68-hour program at a technical college. Initial eligibility is based on a South Carolina high school underweighted grading policy (UGP) GPA of 3.0. The Life Scholarship Scholar must complete a Life Affidavit Form every year through their myHGTC website.
To receive the LIFE Scholarship, the student must:
- Complete the electronic LIFE scholarship application
- The student and the parent must be a SC resident at the time of high school graduation and upon first time enrollment in college;
- Not be in default on a Federal Title IV or State of South Carolina educational loan;
- Not owe a refund on Federal Title IV or State of South Carolina student financial aid program
- Not have had any felony, alcohol, or drug-related convictions under the laws of any state or under the laws of the U.S.;
- Not be enrolled in Developmental Studies courses (100 level and below)
- Renewal eligibility based on earning a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA and 30 non-remedial credit hours per academic year.
LIFE Scholarship awards may be used only for Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters and may not be used with Lottery Tuition Assistance in an academic year. The Life Scholarship will only pay for the Summer semester if a student has completed 30 non-remedial credit hours with a 3.0 GPA by the end of the Spring semester and enrolled in at least 12 hours for the Summer semester. The Life Scholarship can never start in the Summer semester. Students receiving LIFE Scholarship for the academic year, cannot receive Lottery Tuition Assistance during the summer.
Students who complete all requirements for high school graduation prior to the official graduation day in May/June may be eligible to receive the LIFE Scholarship if they meet all initial and general eligibility criteria. If eligibility criteria are met, the student must complete an Early Graduation Application with all required documents and submit to the Financial Aid Office.
Please visit LIFE Scholarship for more information.
Palmetto Fellows Scholarship
The Palmetto Fellows Scholarship is a merit-based program, administered by the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education, that recognizes the most academically talented high school Seniors and encourage these students to attend college in the State. Palmetto Fellows recipients may receive up to $6,700 their first year and up to $7,500 for their second year. The Palmetto Fellows Scholar must complete a Palmetto Fellows Affidavit every year in order to be awarded. To receive the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship, the student must, among other things:
- Be a US citizen or legal permanent resident (student visas or H visas are not eligible) and a resident of the State of South Carolina that graduated from high school in South Carolina, successfully completed a home school program as prescribed by law, or graduated from a preparatory high school outside South Carolina while a dependent of a parent or guardian who is a legal resident of South Carolina and has custody of the dependent and meets residency requirements for tuition and fees purposes.
- Have a 3.5 GPA , scored in the upper 6% of their class, and scored 1200 (Reading and Math) on the SAT or 25 (composite) on the ACT, or
- Have a 4.0 GPA, regardless of class rank, and scored 1400 (Reading and Math) on the SAT or 31 (composite) on the ACT.
Students receiving Palmetto Fellows Scholarship are not eligible to receive the SC LIFE, Lottery Tuition Assistance, or SC•WINS.
Recipients of the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship must enroll full-time, at least 12 hours per semester, in order to receive any scholarship funds. Developmental course studies do not count toward degree requirements. In addition to this, Palmetto Fellows recipients must be first degree seeking undergraduates.
A Palmetto Fellows Scholar must complete a Designation Form notifying CHE, Commission of Higher Education, of school selection. Then, CHE notifies HGTC that student has completed the Designation Form and eligible for the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship.
In order to maintain the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship, recipients must:
- Earn and maintain a cumulative 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale at HGTC by the end of the academic year (Fall, Spring, and Summer);
- Earn at least 30 nonremedial credit hours for graduation purposes by the end of each academic year. Exempted credit hours (i.e., AP, IB, CLEP), credit hours earned before high school graduation (i.e., dual enrollment courses), and credit hours earned the summer term immediately following school graduation cannot be used to meet the annual credit hours requirement;
- Maintain SC residency;
- Not be in default or owe a refund/repayment on any state or federal financial aid; and
- Certify an affidavit with the Office of Financial Aid each year.
For complete Palmetto Fellows Scholarship Program information, students may visit the S.C. Commission on Higher Education website at www.che.sc.gov.