CHARLESTON, W.Va. – In a special meeting Thursday, the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission voted to extend the deadline for current high school seniors to apply for the PROMISE Scholarship until July 1.
Due to challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, applications for the merit-based scholarship were down 27% as of the original March 1 deadline compared to the same time last year, prompting Gov. Jim Justice to call for an extended deadline, according to a press release.
While the PROMISE application and Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) are due by July 1, students have until the end of August to earn qualifying ACT or SAT test scores to be eligible to receive the scholarship this fall, the release states. With large numbers of national testing dates canceled over the last year, Justice recently announced that the state is covering the costs for one ACT on-campus exam for applicants who have not yet qualified. Institutions are working to schedule these free testing opportunities, which are being posted online as they are available.
“Our high school seniors have been working so hard to stay on track for their futures, and we want to give them every opportunity to access the support they need to continue their education,” said Sarah Armstrong Tucker, West Virginia’s chancellor for higher education. “With this extended deadline and additional testing opportunities, we hope students and their families have greater peace of mind as they plan for college this fall.”
The PROMISE Scholarship eligibility requirements, including test scores, remain the same:
- ACT: 22 composite score, with a minimum of 20 in English, math, science and reading
- SAT: 1100 total score, with a minimum of 520 in math and 530 in evidence-based reading and writing
For assistance with applications, students and families are encouraged to call the state’s financial aid hotline at 877-987-7664. Students are also encouraged to sign up for West Virginia’s text-message college counseling program, “Txt 4 Success,” by clicking here.