The DC Futures Program (DC Futures) helps accepted DC college students complete their first associate or bachelor’s degree by providing a last-dollar scholarship (tuition, fees and cost of attendance) at three local universities in addition to college coaching and support services that will address personal and financial barriers to completion for all participants. This may completely cover financial need for some participants making the cost of college “free.”
The 2023-24 academic year application closed Friday, Aug. 18, 2023, 3 p.m. EDT. The next application will open in February 2024.
Q & A
1. Can I get money from the DC Tuition Assistance Grant (DCTAG), Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program, and DC Futures?
Yes, if you meet the eligibility criteria and funds are available for all three programs, you can receive awards from all three programs. Please note, the 2023-24 online applications for the Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program and DC Futures Program are located in the Application for Postsecondary Studies and the 2023-24 DCTAG application is located in the DC OneApp. DC Futures Program Applicants are encouraged to complete the DC OneApp first.
2. Do I have to have a coach? Can I choose my coach? What if I already have a coach? What if my coach is not responding to me (complaints)?
If you choose to participate in DC Futures, you are required to have a college coach. You will be assigned a coach from a designated DC Futures College Coaching provider. If you experience issues or concerns with coaching providers, you should reach out to Kimberly Romero at [email protected].
If you already have a coach through another college coaching program you should reach out to your designated DC College Coaching provider to see if you qualify for an exemption to participate in that coaching program rather than working with a designated DC Futures College Coaching provider. Stipends are still processed by the designated DC Futures College Coaching provider, even if you are approved for an alternative.
3. I just graduated from high school, and I do not have a major yet. Can I get this scholarship? Do I have to pay the money back if I change my major?
DC Futures is designed to support participants pursuing high-demand careers. Because of this focus, the program only provides support for participants in certain majors. If you have not declared a major on the DC Futures approved list, you would not be eligible for funding. Reach out to your university regarding rules and requirements for declaring your major.
4. I participated in the pilot for spring 2022 but did not re-apply for the 2022-23 school year – what should I do?
Continued support requires students to complete an annual application to verify eligibility. The 2023-24 application closed Friday, Aug. 18, 2023, 3 p.m. EDT, and you should complete the application at that time, if you believe you continue to meet all eligibility requirements. You will be considered a new applicant if more than one semester passed between your active and inactive participation in DC Futures.
5. Does participating in the pilot program count against max annual or total awards?
Pilot program participation does count against lifetime award limits. Because funding was only available for part of the academic year, 2022 pilot participation will not count as a year against your program time limit.
6. If I don’t need the full scholarship amount for tuition and fees, will I receive a refund check?
No, because the scholarship component of the DC Futures program is a last dollar award you will not receive an overage check.
7. Can you help with books, parking, etc.? Can you buy me a computer?
DC Futures scholarship funds can only be used for tuition and required fees. Your coaching stipend can be used for other educational expenses as needed. Further, you may request emergency funds or prior year unpaid balance payments if you are an enrolled DC Futures participant.
8. I am returning to college, what supports are there for adult learners?
Designated DC Futures College Coaching providers have been selected to best serve a range of student needs, including those of adult learners. If you are found eligible for this program, please reach out to your DC Futures College Coaching provider to support you on your postsecondary journey.
9. How do I get my coaching stipend?
Each coaching provider may define this process for their DC Futures students. Please discuss this with your coach. Receiving the stipend is conditional upon regular participation in coaching sessions.
10. How do I get my emergency funds?
DC Futures participants must be enrolled with an eligible partner university to request emergency funds or previously unpaid balance supports. DC Futures students should receive directions from their university regarding the process used to request and receive these funds.
You may request up to $2,000 in emergency funds each year you participate in the program to cover emergency expenses that would impact their ability to remain enrolled at the university they attend (i.e., food, housing, child care, transportation, health, safety and security, and learning resources).
You may also submit a one-time request to pay a previously unpaid balance at a college or university (up to $1,500). These funds are intended to enable you to access transcripts and credits that can be applied to your current program.
Your assigned coach may provide support around your requests for emergency funds and previously unpaid balances, but those requests must be submitted through your university according to its directions.
If you have questions or need support completing the application, please reach out our DC Futures staff to help you through that process at [email protected].
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