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DC Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program FAQs: New Applicants, Families, & Counselors

UPDATED: Feb. 25, 2019


Question 1: I am a current Mayor’s Scholars awardee. How do I re-apply for funds?
Recipients of the funds must re-apply for the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program each year. Details of the next application cycle (2019-20 school year) are now available on OSSE's website. The application will be available on April 15, 2019. Funding is not guaranteed, is first come first serve, and is contingent upon local funds available each year. The application deadline for the 2019-20 school year funding is July 1, 2019.

Question 2: What is Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)?
Satisfactory Academic Progress is determined by the college, and indicates that students are meeting necessary academic requirements to progress toward a degree. These may include particular classes and particular grades (usually a 2.0 or GPA in addition to minimum credits). Applicants may need to obtain a document from the college that states they are making SAP, in order to apply and be eligible for Mayor’s Scholars funds. If this is the case, students should contact the financial aid office on campus for support.

Question 3: How long will I receive funding?
Recipients of Mayor’s Scholars funding can receive up to $4,000 per year, for up to four years for an associate’s degree, and up to six years for a bachelor’s degree. The funds are available first-come, first-serve, and recipients must re-apply each year. There is no guarantee applicants will receive funding.

Question 4: I have received my Mayor’s Scholars award letter. What do I do now?
Congratulations! As a Mayor’s Scholars awardee, you should keep a copy of the award letter for your records, and show a copy of your award letter to your college or university financial aid office. This letter serves as proof that OSSE will pay your college or university directly up to $4,000 in tuition and fees for the following year. Payment will be sent each semester. Additionally, sign and return a copy of the award letter to the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program (via email: [email protected]).

Question 5: How does the payment process work?
By Sept. 15, and Feb. 15 each year, OSSE will provide the colleges with a list of student awardees for the given. The college will be asked to submit an invoice to OSSE. After OSSE receives the invoice, payment will be sent to the university in 4-10 weeks. The college will not penalize the students for late payment.

Question 6: What expenses does the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate program cover?
The award covers tuition and fees for the academic year (including summer and winter, if applicable). If a student has leftover funds, they will not receive an overage check or reimbursement. The funding is last dollar, and will only go directly from OSSE to the college or university.

Question 7: How does the $4,000 get applied to my tuition bill?
The default application of funding is $2,000 for the fall semester, and $2,000 for the spring semester. However, students may choose to save some of the funding for summer semester. It is up to you, as the awardee, to communicate clearly to your college or university if this is the case. It is not the responsibility of OSSE or the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program to confirm the amount that you will receive each semester. OSSE encourages students to use additional funds available during summer (and/or winter) sessions.

Question 8: I have a course registration hold because my college hasn’t received payment. What do I do?
Recipients should reach out to the financial aid office and/or the student accounts office on campus to handle registration holds, as necessary. The college will not penalize you for the Mayor’s Scholars payment if it’s late, however at some colleges, students need to proactively contact the college to remove their holds.

Question 9: How do I receive funds for next year?
Recipients of the funds must re-apply for the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program each year. Details of the next application cycle will be available on OSSE's website. The application will be available on April 15, 2019. Funding is not guaranteed, is first come first serve, and is contingent upon local funds available each year.