How and when does a student apply for the scholarship?

The deadline to apply for TN Promise for the Class of 2017 high school seniors was November 1, 2016.

Applicants may apply online at

What if a student graduates early from high school?

Students graduating in the fall term can receive TN Promise. They must attend all mandatory team meetings as if they graduate in May. Funding will not begin until fall unless a student attends a TCAT.

What happens if a student misses a team meeting?

If a student fails to attend his/her assigned team meeting, he/she will be permanently ineligible for TN Promise unless he/she has completed the excuse form prior to or within 72 hours of the assigned team meeting. In order to remain eligible, excused students must attend another team meeting prior to the end of the specific team meeting’s calendar.

How does a student submit their community service hours?

Submit your hours via the community service form by clicking here.

Where can a student complete their community service?

Please click here for community service opportunities near you on our community service page, or check your college's service learning page for ideas!

*Please remember that you cannot get paid or work for a family member and you must volunteer with an actual organization (e.g. church, school, animal or homeless shelter) to complete your community service requirement.

Can a student take a semester off?

A student may request a medical or personal leave of absence from timely enrollment in the initial semester, full-time attendance or continuous enrollment at an eligible post-secondary institution as long as all other applicable eligibility criteria are met. Medical or personal appeals will be considered in the following situations: illness of the student, illness or death of an immediate family member, extreme financial hardship of the student or student’s immediate family, fulfillment of a religious commitment expected of members of that faith, fulfillment of required military service, enrollment for a specific TCAT program being unavailable until a later trimester or other extraordinary circumstances beyond the student’s control where attendance by the student creates a substantial Scholarship-Appealsand-Exceptions for instructions on submitting an appeal. In order to request a leave of absence after initial enrollment, a student must hardship. In order to complete an appeal prior to initial enrollment, a student must visit our appeal site and complete the appeal process as specified by his/her college. In the event an institution denies a student’s request for a medical or personal leave of absence, the student may appeal the decision in accordance with the rules.

Will a student receive a check for the scholarship?

Students never directly receive funding from TN Promise. TSAC will send funds directly to the colleges.

May a student attend a four-year institution with TN Promise funding?

TN Promise eligible post-secondary institutions (see page 16) offer associate degree programs. In order for a student to receive TN Promise funding at one of these eligible institutions, he/she must meet all deadlines, as well as be accepted in the associate degree program. At these institutions, funding for TN Promise will not be last dollar. The scholarship will be determined by the amount a student would receive should he/she attend a community college. This amount would be portable to the eligible four-year institution. In other words, if a student’s last-dollar amount at a community college is $0 due to a full Pell Grant being awarded, he/she would not receive any funding at the eligible four-year institution. If a student receives the HOPE scholarship only, he/she would receive approximately $500 each semester from TN Promise at the four-year institution.

Are GED recipients eligible for TN Promise?

Students who complete a GED or HiSET diploma (and have met all other TN Promise eligibility requirements) must enroll full-time in an eligible post-secondary program in the fall term after they receive their diploma, provided that the diploma was earned before the student reached 19 years of age.

How long after high school graduation will students remain eligible for TN Promise?

If a student continues to meet all requirements, TN Promise funding is available for five consecutive semesters at a community college, eight consecutive trimesters at a TCAT or until a terminating event (graduation or transfer to a non-TN Promise institution) has occurred.

What happens if a student misses a TN Promise deadline?

Failure to meet any TN Promise deadline will result in a student being permanently ineligible for TN Promise.

Who does a student contact if he/she is having trouble submitting the community service form?

Students experiencing problems submitting the community service form should email concerns to Problems with submission do not excuse a student from meeting the established deadline.

Do non-U.S. citizens qualify for TN Promise?

No. To be eligible, students must be able to complete the FAFSA, qualify for in-state tuition and possess a valid Social Security number. The DACA number is NOT a valid entry on the Tennessee Promise application. A student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for which the student’s U.S. citizenship or eligible non-citizenship status has been confirmed by the federal government. Note: This option is only available for:

  1. S. Citizens;
  2. S. permanent residents (with an I-151, I-551, or I-551C permanent resident card); or
  3. Individuals who have an Arrival/Departure Record (I-94) showing one of the following designations: Refugee, Asylum Granted, Cuban-Haitian Entrant (Status Pending), Conditional Entrant (Valid only if issued before April 1, 1980), Victims of Human Trafficking (T-2, T-3, or T-4 visa), or Parolee (who meets certain conditions).
How can students transfer to a four-year program or institution once they have completed their degree or certificate through TN Promise?

The Tennessee Transfer Pathways ensures that students may follow a prescribed curriculum that is transferable, marked by clarity and available for students to review on the first day of enrollment. There are approved transfer pathways that span multiple disciplines and are accepted at all public institutions in Tennessee. More information about participating institutions can be found at: Although a student who completes an associate degree is no longer eligible for TN Promise, the student should contact the four-year institution he/she is interested in to discuss other sources of aid.

Why is it important to update tnAchieves when emails and phone numbers change?

tnAchieves uses the contact information initially provided on the TN Promise application to send important communication related to program requirements. Failure to notify tnAchieves of changes may result in students missing important emails and texts related to upcoming deadlines.

If students and their families have not filed taxes by February 1, 2019, can they still file the FAFSA before the TN Promise deadline?

Yes. Due to changes in the FAFSA application process, students will report income information from 2017 taxes. Soon after filing taxes, students should go in and update their FAFSA with recently filed tax information.

When referencing the tnAchieves website or handbook, which class are students associated with?

For the time students are TN Promise scholars, they will be referred to as the class year in which they graduated from high school.

About the Program

What is TN Promise?

TN Promise is a last-dollar scholarship that provides the opportunity for every Tennessee high school student to earn a post-secondary credential. This also applies to students who complete a GED or HiSET prior to their 19th birthday.

Who is eligible?

Any high school senior who graduates from a Tennessee eligible high school or completes a Tennessee home school program is eligible to apply. Students will apply in the beginning of their high school senior year and begin working with tnAchieves. To receive TN Promise funds, students must complete the tnAchieves program.

What are the eligible post-secondary institutions?

tnAchieves works with 13 community colleges and 27 Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology. In addition, there are several 4-year colleges and universities that offer eligible programs. For a complete list, please click here.

What does TN Promise fund?

TN Promise is a last-dollar scholarship that funds tuition and mandatory fees at eligible TN Promise post-secondary institutions. These funds cannot be used for books, cost of attendance fees or fees associated with a specific program or class.

Does TN Promise pay for books?

TN Promise only funds last-dollar tuition and mandatory fees and does not pay for books or other post-secondary expenses (e.g. application fee, program and service fees).

Does TN Promise pay for remedial education?

Yes. TN Promise will cover remedial classes if a student should need to take them. If you score below a 19 on the ACT, you might be interested in our Summer Bridge Program.

When does TN Promise funding begin?

Students must begin college the fall semester immediately following high school graduation. TCAT students are able to begin in the trimester beginning in May as long as the student has completed service hours by April 1.