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How to get the Hope Scholarship in Tennessee:

October 21, 2019
Every year the Tennessee State Government pays out millions of dollars in funding for students to attend college — here’s how to make the most of it in 3 easy steps!

#1 Qualify for the Hope Scholarship:

Few people realize, but the hope scholarship isn’t just one scholarship, it’s actually a suite of merit and need based scholarships with a range of academic and demographic benchmarks. The tables below will tell you what you need to do to qualify for each type of scholarship.

Non-Demographic Based:

Scholarship Amount/year ACT or SAT GPA Notes
Hope Basic $4,000 21 ACT / 1080 SAT 3.0 Available to all who meet requirements
Ned McWherter Scholars Program $6,000 29 ACT / 1300 SAT 3.5 Application based.
General Assembly Merit $4,000 29 ACT / 1300 SAT 3.75 Application based.

Demographic Based:

Scholarship Amount/year ACT or SAT GPA Demographic Notes
Helping Heroes $2,000 None None Veteran Honorably discharged active duty.
ASPIRE $1,500 21 ACT / 1080 SAT 3.0 Low Income Family or individual income below $36,000 annually.
HOPE Access Grant $3,000 18 ACT / 940 SAT 2.75 Low Income Family or individual income below $36,000 annually.
TSAA $4,000 None None Low Income EFC sub $2,100.
Consider how you can maximize the amount of money you receive, for some students this means studying for the ACT or finding a way to boost her/his GPA. Once a student has established all that she/he is possibly qualified for the next step is applying! If you are struggling with test taking a Granite Prep tutor can always help.

#2 Fill out FAFSA:

Before you can apply for any of these scholarships you must fill out the “Free Application for Federal Student Aid”. This is a form where students and families disclose their tax information to the federal government. The form can take a while to fill out, but it can mean being awarded “Pell Grants” (a.k.a more free money for college) so it’s definitely worth the time spent. Below is a link to FAFSA:

#3 Choose Your Scholarships on the TSAC Portal:

Our third and final step in the process is to make an account on the TSAC portal. TSAC (Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation), is the third party who is responsible for hosting and processing all the HOPE scholarship applications. In other words, this is where you go to apply for all the HOPE scholarships. Creating an account on the portal is easy, just follow the link below and fill out your information and apply to any scholarship you wish!


  1. Determine what you qualify for
  2. Complete FAFSA
  3. Apply with TSAC
If you have any additional questions please leave a comment and we will respond as well as we can! If you still feel a little confused and you would like to make an appointment with a Granite Prep college counselor reach out at:


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Grantly Neely is a certified mindfulness teacher and founder of Granite Prep a company dedicated to helping it’s students achieve their ambitions while building resilient minds.

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