August 28, 2009


Scholarship Opportunities for NACC Students


Below are two news releases that describe new scholarship opportunities to Alabama State University and Alabama A&M University for graduates of Northeast and other colleges within the Alabama Community College System. This information was provided by the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education. Additional information may be obtained from the universities involved.


New transfer scholarships available for up to 500 ACCS grads this year; as many as 1,000 in subsequent years 


Montgomery – Up to 500 graduates of any Alabama public community or technical college may be able to complete a four-year degree free at Alabama State University or Alabama A&M University, starting this fall. Next year, the number could jump to 1,000 per year.


At a news conference at the Alabama State House earlier this morning, officials from two-year and four-year institutions announced a major new Transfer Scholarship Program intended to help students with associate degrees move up the educational ladder and obtain their bachelor’s degrees. The Transfer Scholarship Program is the result of $1 million authorized by the 2009-2010 Education Trust Fund enacted during this year’s regular legislative session.


“The Transfer Scholarship Program is a major step forward in providing increased educational access to the students of the Alabama Community College System,” said ACCS Interim Chancellor Joan Davis. “This is extremely important during these difficult economic times. Our system serves more than half of all the state’s freshmen and sophomores, and this is an excellent opportunity for our two-year graduates to obtain their bachelor’s degrees on scholarship.”


The Transfer Scholarship Program is open to any graduate of an ACCS community or technical college, Davis said. She noted that ASU and A&M will determine the criteria for who will receive the scholarships.


In 2006, the Alabama State Board of Education approved a settlement agreement requiring the chancellor to make a good-faith effort to inform the Alabama Legislature of the need for the Transfer Scholarship Program and including it in ACCS’s annual appropriation request through the year 2018. The Legislature responded, and this year, ASU and A&M may provide up to 250 scholarships each to ACCS grads.


The settlement provides that in subsequent years, depending on funding appropriated to the program by the Legislature, ASU and A&M may award up to 500 scholarships each, except for 2018, the final year of the program, when each institution may award up to 250 scholarships.


 “Alabama State University is delighted to be involved in this dynamic and enriching program that offers an opportunity for Alabama residents who complete their two-year degrees at a community or technical college and wish to continue their higher education at ASU,” said ASU President William H. Harris.


“We look forward to a long and rich relationship with the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education and its community college students who wish to continue their education with us,” Harris said.


"These innovative scholarships enable us to provide the full collegiate experience to a very important segment of the higher-education landscape,” said A&M President Andrew Hugine.


“Two-year college transfer students often have demonstrated the tenacity and commitment to task that is so indicative of the students with whom we wish to share the legacy of our founder, Dr. William Hooper Councill," Hugine said.


Rep. John F. Knight Jr., who serves as ASU’s executive vice president and mounted the original lawsuit that resulted in the decree, said, “The Knight vs. Alabama Federal Court decree is continuing to help promote and fulfill one of the most basic tenants of the American dream, which is bettering oneself through education. The A&M – ASU Transfer Scholarship Program will give community college students an opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree while providing financial assistance as they enhance their education.


“Because of our effort before the court,” Knight said, “we now have tuition and fee scholarships available this fall so that community and technical college graduates may transfer to a four-year college at either ASU or A&M, which confirms that the court’s decision continues to live, expand and impact numerous lives across Alabama for the better.”


Knight added, “I applaud everyone in our state government and legislature who has worked diligently to make the aspirations and hopes of these students a reality by funding this program, which will ultimately prove that dreams can come true.”

IMPORTANT NOTE: Graduates of an ACCS community or technical collage wishing to apply for the scholarships should contact either ASU or A&M directly.



At a Glance 

  • Knight v. State of Alabama settlement agreement reached in 2006 requires Alabama Community College System chancellor to seek funding from the Legislature for the Transfer Scholarship Program

  • $1 million funding allocated by the Legislature for FY 2009-2010

  • Open to associate degree graduates of all Alabama community and technical colleges

  • Criteria for awarding the scholarships is determined by Alabama A&M and Alabama State University (i.e. ACCS associate degree grads seeking a scholarship must contact the institutions directly)

  • Depending on allocations from the Legislature, the Transfer Scholarship Program extends until 2018

  • In the first and last years of the program, Alabama A&M and Alabama State University each may award up to 250 scholarships; in the intervening years, 500 scholarships each

  • Full-time students may receive full-time scholarships for tuition and fees; part-time students may receive part-time scholarships for tuition and fees

  • At the discretion of A&M and/or ASU, the scholarship period for recipients may extend beyond four semesters