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Bright Futures Scholarship

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

the word scholarship flashed unto a laptop screen

Bright Futures Scholarship

What is the Bright Futures Scholarship?

What exactly is the Bright Futures Scholarship? The Bright Futures Scholarship is offered in Florida in the United States. The purpose of this scholarship program is to provide financial assistance to high school students who qualify for the program to assist them in covering the cost of tuition and fees at eligible public and private colleges and universities in Florida.

The Bright Futures Scholarship program is a program that is designed to encourage and reward academic achievement among high school students in the state of Florida. The Florida Lottery funds this program. Scholarships are granted based on academic accomplishments, such as grade point average, standardized test scores, and community service. The Bright Futures Scholarship can be earned at one of these three levels:

The Florida Academic Scholars (FAS) Award

The Florida Academic Scholars (FAS) Award is a scholarship that pays for the recipient’s full tuition and fees at any public university or college in Florida, in addition to providing $300 per semester to be used to purchase books and other academic supplies.

a female high school student looking at the camera

For 2023/2024 graduates, students must have a minimum weighted GPA of 3.5, complete 100 hours of community service, and receive a score of at least 1340 on the SAT or 29 on the ACT to be eligible for this scholarship.

The Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS) Award

The Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS) Award is a scholarship that pays for 75% of the student’s tuition and fees at a public university or college, in addition to providing $300 per semester to purchase books and other supplies. For 2023/2024 graduates, students must have an overall grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0, complete a minimum of 75 hours of community service, and have scored at least 1210 on the SAT or 25 on the ACT.

The Gold Seal Vocational Scholars (GSV) Award

The Gold Seal Vocational Scholars (GSV) Award is a scholarship that pays for the student’s tuition and fees at a public technical college in Florida and provides an additional $72 per semester for the student to use toward the purchase of books and supplies.

Students must have a minimum weighted GPA of 3.0, complete 30 hours of community service, and pass an industry certification exam approved by the state to be eligible for this scholarship.

Bright Futures Scholarship requirements and eligibility

General requirements for all scholars

  • The student must be a citizen of the United States or an eligible noncitizen, as determined by the student’s postsecondary institution.
  • The student must reside in the state of Florida.
  • After receiving your high school diploma, you have until August 31 to finish the FFAA.
  • Either earn a high school diploma from a Florida public high school, a Florida private high school registered with the Florida Department of Education (FDOE), or a home education program that meets the requirements of a standard Florida high school diploma.
  • The student must not have been found guilty of a felony charge or have entered a plea of nolo contendere to a felony charge unless the Governor and Cabinet sitting as the Executive Office of Clemency has granted the student clemency.
  • Obtain acceptance into and enrollment in a degree or certificate program at an eligible postsecondary institution in Florida that is either public or independent.
  • You must be enrolled in at least six non-remedial semester credit hours (or the equivalent in quarter or clock hours) for each term in which you take classes that are not considered remedial.
  • If you did not receive funding for your award in the academic year that immediately followed your graduation from high school, you must apply for it again within five years of graduating from high school to reinstate it.

Florida Academic Scholars (FAS) and Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS)

Young woman standing next to a wall.

Florida high school students who wish to qualify for the Florida Academic Scholars (FAS) award or the Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS) award must meet the following initial Bright Futures Scholarship eligibility requirements:

  • Graduate from high school with a standard Florida high school diploma (high school graduation requirements) from a Florida public high school, graduate from a private high school that is registered with the Florida Department of Education, earn a General Equivalency Diploma (GED), or finish a home education program; or graduate from high school in a state other than Florida if certain requirements are met.
  • Completing the required high school coursework;
  • Achieving the required minimum high school grade point average or GPA (3.50 for FAS and 3.00 for FMS);
  • Achieving the required minimum score on either the ACT or SAT college entrance exam by June 30 of the high school graduation year; and
  • Completing the required minimum number of volunteer service hours (100 for FAS and 75 for FMS) or 100 paid work hours

Gold Seal Vocational Scholars (GSV)

A student currently enrolled in a career education or certificate program may be eligible for funding through the Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars (GSV) award. High school students in the state of Florida who are interested in applying for the GSV award are required to fulfill the following initial eligibility requirements to be considered:

  • Achieve the required minimum weighted GPA in the non-elective high school courses, which is 3.0;
  • Take at least three full credits in a single Career and Technical Education program;
  • Achieve the required minimum unweighted GPA in the career education courses, which is 3.5;
  • Achieve the required minimum score on the ACT®, SAT®, or Florida Postsecondary Education Readiness
  • Complete 30 volunteer service OR 100 paid work hours

How to apply for Bright Futures Scholarship

The Application Process for Bright Futures Scholarship is straightforward. You won’t have to do much extra work other than submitting the Florida Financial Aid Application and checking your application to ensure everything is processed correctly because a significant portion of this procedure is automated. You are free to begin the application process once it has been determined that you meet all of the requirements for eligibility.

Step 1: Complete and submit the Application for Financial Aid from the State of Florida (FFAA)

Every year, the FFAA begins operations on December 1. After you have finished submitting the FFAA, you will be sent an email containing your login information for your Florida Bright Futures account. Remember that the deadline for submitting your FFAA is August 31, the year you will graduate from high school; otherwise, you will not be considered for a scholarship award.

Step 2: Take the ACT or the SAT and send in your scores.

The good news is that regardless of your chosen test, you’ll have to take either the ACT or SAT to apply to colleges. Send your scores to any public college or university in Florida so they can be forwarded to the Florida Department of Education, which is responsible for evaluating Bright Futures applications.

Step 3: Send in the Official Copies of Your High School Transcripts

a high school student carrying her notebooks

Many schools will hand in your transcripts for you automatically if you want them considered. Despite this, it is a good idea to check in with your guidance counselor to determine whether or not any other actions need to be taken. This is to ensure that your transcripts are still submitted despite any issues.

Step 4: Ensure that the Information in Your Account Is Always Up to Date

Once you have your Bright Futures account information, there are several things that you can and should manage, including the following:

  • Be sure to keep an eye on the reported service hours.
  • Make a notation about your postsecondary institution in your account once you have been accepted to or enrolled in a postsecondary institution in Florida, such as a college or vocational school.
  • You are obligated to keep any demographic information current.
  • Check your account to see if you are eligible for the scholarship after submitting all the required information. This can be done by viewing your eligibility determination.

Now, as you enroll in the scholarship, it is wise that you also consider how to enter college. Some students struggle to enter college. As such, you must get all the help you can get. AdmissionSight is known to be a leader in admissions, with over 10 years of experience getting students into the best universities in the world. Set up an initial appointment today with AdmissionSight and get the best help with college admission.

 

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