New state/federal program means more money for low-income students
Georgia's new needs-based student financial aid program, LEAP - Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership, has received $525,883 in federal matching funds. This brings the total LEAP funds available to Georgia's low-income college students to $1,539,595.
Gov. Roy Barnes included $1,013,712 for the LEAP program in the state budget for this fiscal year, and it was passed by the General Assembly.
"A good education is a necessity today, and we want every student in Georgia to have access to education beyond high school. Even with help from Georgia's HOPE Scholarship Program and the federal Pell Grant, some students still need assistance. This program will help," Gov. Barnes said.
Students receiving LEAP must be enrolled in one of Georgia's HOPE qualified public or private colleges, universities or technical colleges and must be approved for the federal Pell Grant, which also assists low-income students. The LEAP program will begin this fall term and will provide up to $2,000 in additional funds to those students who still have unmet needs after the Pell Grant is applied. Colleges, where the students are enrolled, will determine who will receive the LEAP Grants, and students should contact the financial aid offices at their colleges to apply or get eligibility requirements.
The LEAP Program will be administered by the Georgia Student Finance Commission (GSFC), which administers Georgia's HOPE Scholarship Program. Each school will be allotted a percentage of the total LEAP funds based on the students enrolled last year who qualified for Pell Grants. For example, a college that had 5 percent of Georgia's Pell Grant students last year will receive 5 percent of the total LEAP funds. Each school and the amount it will receive can be found on the following chart.
More information about programs administered by the Georgia Student Finance Commission is available by calling 770-724-9000 in Metro Atlanta, toll-free 1-800-776-6878, or logging on to www.gsfc.org.
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