Near Completer Grant Information

HOW TO APPLY

The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) is offering an opportunity for Maryland residents, who started a degree but did not finish, a financial incentive to complete their degree by having the state help pay for tuition. The Maryland Higher Education Commission is currently working to encourage near completers to re–enroll in an institution of higher education to earn a degree.

A Near Completer refers to an individual who has attended a two-year or four-year educational institution and has completed college credits but does not have a college degree and is no longer attending an institution of higher education.

Specifically, a Maryland Near Completer is someone who has:

  • Earned at least 45 credit hours attending a community college or;
  • Earned at least 90 credit hours attending a public four-year educational institution; and
  • Earned a minimum grade point average of 2.0 on a scale of 4.0 while attending the institutions

This page is dedicated to introducing new resources available to individuals who are interested in returning to college and earning their first degree:

  • Submit a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online  at https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa or submit the Maryland State Financial Aid Application (MSFAA) online through MDCAPS for any applicant who is ineligible to receive federal aid but is eligible for in-state tuition by March 1, 2020. The 2020-2021 MSFAA is now available through your MDCAPS student account at https://mdcaps.mhec.state.md.us/MDCAPS/login.aspx?c=-8586272515384792573&ReturnUrl=/MDCAPS/int/FinAid/index.aspx​
  • How will I know if my school participates in this program? This program is open to Maryland community colleges and public institutions of higher education. MHEC will post a list of participating institutions on its website, please continue to monitor this page for updates on participating institutions.
  • What will you need to re-enroll? – Contact your institutions to identify what is needed for you to re-enroll.
  • When to apply: The 2020-2021 application will become available online through the Maryland College Aid Processing System (MDCAPS) on May 1, 2020. While the FAFSA or MSFAA application is not a requirement for the Near Completer Grant Program, students are encouraged to complete a FAFSA by March 1 for consideration of both Federal and other State financial aid programs. To complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online visit https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa or submit the Maryland State Financial Aid Application (MSFAA) online through MDCAPS for any applicant who is ineligible to receive federal aid but is eligible for in-state tuition. ​

Beginning in July of 2020, a near completer who re-enrolls for the 2020-2021 academic year at a community college will be eligible for up to one-third of the in-county tuition charge. Near completers who re-enroll in a Public four-year institution will be eligible for up to one-third of the (in state) undergraduate tuition charge.

The grant may be used for tuition only after all non-loan aid has been applied. Grants will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.


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