Get Money for College by Applying to the AR Scholarship Lottery

In the “Land of Opportunity,” looking for scholarships for Arkansas can lead to a wealth of financial assistance opportunities. Natural sites such as Hot Springs National Park, Crater of Diamonds, and the Ozark Mountains make studying America’s 29th largest state an outdoorsman’s dream.

Arkansas ‘ higher education scene is noteworthy with 33 state universities, 12 private colleges, and numerous online college programs. Top-tier liberal arts universities like Hendrix College, research institutes like Arkansas State University, and Christian colleges like John Brown University are available.

One of the best scholarships for Arkansas students is AR Scholarship Lottery. The program helps fund Arkansas Academic Challenge scholarships presented by the Arkansas Department of Higher Education (ADHE). By applying for this scholarship, you can save a lot of money on your selected school’s tuition.

AR Scholarship Lottery
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About the AR Scholarship Lottery

Since 2009, the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has raised more than $1 billion for Arkansas college students, assisting in awarding more than 650,000 Arkansas Academic Challenge scholarships.

More than 92 cents of every dollar spent on the lottery goes to prizes, scholarships, retailer commissions, and other expenses in Arkansas. This funding will have a long-term impact on Arkansas education.

The Arkansas Academic Challenge Program offers financial aid to Arkansas residents who are pursuing a higher degree.

It is open to students who have recently graduated from high school, are presently enrolled in college, are enrolling in college for the first time, or are re-enrolling after a long time away from college.

For the sake of this guide, we’ll proceed with the usage of the term “AR Scholarship Lottery” to refer to the Arkansas Academic Challenge Program and use the two different names interchangeably.

Program Benefits

Students who were originally awarded prior to the 2016-17 school year are awarded at the following rates:

  • Year 1: $2,000 (four-year college) or $2,000 (two-year college)
  • Year 2: $3,000 (four-year college) or $2,000 (two-year college)
  • Year 3: $4,000 (four-year college)
  • Year 4: $5,000 (four-year college)
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Starting with the 2016-17 school year, students are awarded at the following rates:

  • Year 1: $1,000 (two-year and four-year college)
  • Year 2: $4,000 (four-year college) or $3,000 (two-year college)
  • Year 3: $4,000
  • Year 4: $5,000

Eligibility Requirements

The AR Scholarship Lottery’s eligibility requirements are based on two student categories: Traditional (Incoming Freshman) and Non-traditional Students.

Eligibility Requirements for Traditional Students

Basic Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the award, an applicant must:

  • Be an Arkansas resident (at least 12 months prior to enrollment) and US citizen/lawful permanent resident
  • Be accepted for admission at an approved institution of higher education in a program of study that leads to a baccalaureate degree, associate degree, qualified certificate, or a nursing school diploma
  • Not have earned a baccalaureate degree
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (although there is no maximum income)
  • Not owe a refund on a federal or state student financial aid grant for higher education
  • Not be in default on a federal or state student financial aid loan for higher education
  • Not borrowed in excess of annual federal loan limits
  • Not be incarcerated at the time of application for or during the time the applicant receives the scholarship
  • Complied with the United States Selective Service System requirements for registration
  • Certify to be drug-free

Additional Eligibility Criteria

In addition to the basic eligibility requirements, applicants are also required to enroll full-time each semester (Fall and Spring) – 12 hours the fall semester immediately following high school graduation and 15 hours each semester thereafter.

Students must enroll in required hours at one institution. Those who complete their bachelor’s degree at the end of a term may be enrolled in less than 15 hours and still be awarded a prorated award amount based on their hours.

Also, students who graduate after 2010 must also meet the following:

  • Graduate from an Arkansas public high school and has a minimum composite or super score of nineteen (19) on the ACT (On-site ACT permissible) or the equivalent score on an ACT equivalent test
  • The applicant who has a disability identified under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20U.S.C.§ 1400 et seq., as it existed on July 1, 2009, and graduated from an Arkansas public high school, and achieve a minimum composite or super score of nineteen (19) on the ACT or the equivalent score on an ACT equivalent
  • Graduate from a private or out-of-state or home school high school and achieve a minimum composite or super score of nineteen (19) on the ACT or the equivalent score on an ACT equivalent
  • Students who are enrolled as a full-time, first-time freshmen but not receiving the Arkansas Academic Challenge will also be considered Traditional if they meet the following:
  • Successfully completed at least twenty-seven (27) semester hours in the academic year immediately following high school graduation; and
  • Achieved a postsecondary grade point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale as a full-time, first-time freshman.
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Continuing Eligibility Criteria

To keep the AR Scholarship Lottery, recipients must:

  • Maintain a 2.50 cumulative GPA
  • Complete 27 semester hours the first academic year and 30 semester hours each year thereafter
  • Complete all remedial courses during the first 30 hours taken after receipt of the scholarship
  • Be continuously enrolled unless student request for scholarship to be placed on hold (Maximum hold of 4 semesters)
  • Shall enroll in courses that lead toward a baccalaureate degree after earning an Associates Degree or having less than four semesters of funding left

Eligibility Requirements for Non-Traditional Students

Basic Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the award, an applicant must:

  • Be an Arkansas resident (at least 12 months prior to enrollment) and US citizen/lawful permanent resident
  • Be accepted for admission at an approved institution of higher education in a program of study that leads to a baccalaureate degree, associate degree, qualified certificate, or a nursing school diploma
  • Not have earned a baccalaureate degree
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (although there is no maximum income)
  • Not owe a refund on a federal or state student financial aid grant for higher education
  • Not be in default on a federal or state student financial aid loan for higher education
  • Not borrowed in excess of annual federal loan limits
  • Not be incarcerated at the time of application for or during the time the applicant receives the scholarship
  • Complied with the United States Selective Service System requirements for registration
  • Certify to be drug-free

Additional Eligibility Criteria for the Non-Traditional Student

Please meet one of the following criteria:

  1. If the applicant has not been enrolled in an approved institution of higher education, has either:
  • Graduated from an Arkansas public high school and achieved a 2.5 high school grade point average; or
  • Graduated from an Arkansas public high school, a private high school, an out-of-state high school, a home school high school, or obtained a high school equivalency diploma approved by the Division of Career and Technical Education and had a minimum composite score of nineteen (19) on the ACT (On-site ACT permissible) or the equivalent score on an ACT equivalent; or
  1. If the applicant has been enrolled in an approved institution of higher education, has earned a postsecondary grade point average of at least 2.5 in completed courses.
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Continuing Eligibility Criteria

To keep the AR Scholarship Lottery, recipients must:

  • Maintain a 2.50 cumulative GPA (will be evaluated at the end of each Spring term)
  • Complete 15 hours each consecutive semester for full-time and complete at least 6 semester hours part-time (excluding summer terms)
  • Be continuously enrolled unless student request for scholarship to be placed on hold (Maximum hold of 4 semesters)
  • Shall enroll in courses that lead toward a baccalaureate degree after earning an Associates Degree or having less than four semesters of funding left

How to Apply for the AR Scholarship Lottery

To apply for this scholarship, applicants must apply for the award on the Arkansas Department of Higher Education’s website.

Once the candidates are ready to apply, they must create an account on the ADHE YouNiversal website. The app encourages students to provide their demographic and educational information. In addition, they must complete their FAFSA applications.

Closing Date

The application deadline is July 1 of a student’s senior year in high school. Make sure to submit your application before or on the due date. No late or incomplete submission will be admitted.

Contact Details

Have any questions regarding the AR Scholarship Lottery? Send your questions to finaid@adhe.edu or mail your message to the following address:

Arkansas Department of Higher Education

423 Main Street, Suite 400

Little Rock, AR 72201

Telephone: 501 371 2000

AR Scholarship Lottery Official Website

Visit the official AR Scholarship Lottery’s official website at www.myarkansaslottery.com for more information on the program.

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