2015 - 2016 Financial Aid Programs & Scholarships        


SEARK offers scholarships, grants, and work-study to eligible students. We encourage you to do your research and apply for all scholarships and grants that you may be eligible for – receiving multiple awards is the best way to cover all of your college expenses. Of course, the sum of your financial aid awards cannot exceed the cost of attendance for the academic year.

FEDERAL AID

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) - Complete FAFSA application each year to determine eligibility for ALL federal aid programs listed below.  Priority application date is April 15.  Submitting your application by this date ensures your file is reviewed for maximum consideration of campus-based aid and eligibility is determined prior to August.  Application is available online at www.fafsa.ed.gov . The school code for SEARK is 014893.

To be considered for financial aid, students must meet the following eligibility requirements: 1) Be enrolled in a degree or aid-eligible certificate program, 2) Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, 3) Make satisfactory academic progress toward completion of the academic program (minimum 67% completion rate of all attempted hours and a 2.00 overall GPA), 4) Registered for Selective Service (if applicable), 5) May not be in default on a loan previously received for college expenses nor owe a refund on a scholarship, grant, or loan from a previous enrollment period.  Eligibility for transfer students is also determined by reviewing transcripts from previous schools.

Federal financial aid is awarded with the assumption that the student is regularly admitted and will enroll full-time (12 or more hours). Federal financial aid funds are disbursed to the student each semester based on the final number of hours enrolled as of the financial aid registration deadline. Part-time students are eligible for some types of aid. The dollar amount awarded and paid to the students will depend upon the number of hours enrolled. Most Title IV financial aid programs require a minimum of half-time enrollment. Some programs require full-time enrollment. Hours taken for Audit, College Level Examinations Programs (CLEP), Department Credit, Proficiency Examination Program, or Advanced Placement are not counted when determining enrollment for financial aid purposes.

Federal Pell Grant - This is the basic grant available to undergraduate students who have demonstrated an exceptional financial need on the FAFSA and have not earned a bachelor or professional degree. The award amount is reduced for students enrolled less than full-time. The award amounts for 2015-2016 range from $0 – $5,775, based on Expected Family Contribution (EFC).  Certificate of Proficiency programs are not eligible programs under the Federal Pell Grant program.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) - Funds are limited and awarded on a first-come, first-served basis and are awarded with preference given to Pell Grant recipients demonstrating exceptional need.  Students must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible to receive FSEOG.  The SEARK priority deadline for this grant is April 15 – as funds are available.

Federal Work-Study (FWS) - enables students to earn money toward college expenses by working on campus. Students may work up to twenty hours a week while classes are in session. Students are paid bi-weekly and the rate of pay is based on the federal minimum wage.  Eligible students must have financial need as determined by your FAFSA results.  A separate FWS request must be submitted to the Financial Aid Office to determine eligibility.

Federal Direct Stafford Loans - Student loans, unlike grants and work-study, are borrowed money that must be repaid, with interest.  The Federal Direct Stafford Loan is the most common student loan program for funding undergraduate education. There are two types of Stafford loans, Subsidized and Unsubsidized.  The subsidized loan is only available to students with financial need.  A federal subsidy pays the interest that accrues on the loan while the student is enrolled at least half-time.  Additional student loan options are available through the unsubsidized Stafford loan program.  Regardless of financial need, a student may qualify for an unsubsidized loan.  A separate loan request must be submitted to the Financial Aid Office to determine loan eligibility.

Please note: The cost to attend SEARK is currently $84 per credit hour plus fees. If enrolling in 12 hours, your tuition and fees costs are approximately $1300, with an estimated cost of $500 for books. Students are strongly encouraged to review their direct costs (tuition, fees, & books) with their financial aid award (grants, scholarships, and/or waivers) to determine if a loan is necessary.  

STATE AID

Arkansas Department of Higher Education (ADHE) - Complete one application to determine eligibility for ALL ADHE scholarships listed below.  Application deadline is June 1 unless noted otherwise.  Application is available online at http://scholarships.adhe.edu/ .  Click Start.

ADHE Academic Challenge Scholarship (Non-traditional) - This scholarship is open to non-traditional students who are Arkansas residents.  Students must have a 2.5 GPA and/or certain test scores to be eligible.  This scholarship provides funds to full-time and part-time students enrolled in at least six (6) hours.

ADHE Academic Challenge Scholarship (Traditional) - This scholarship is open to graduating high school seniors demonstrating academic achievement (ACT score of 19 and/or a grade point average of 2.5).  It provides funds for full-time students and has specific enrollment requirement for full-time students.

ADHE Governor's Distinguished Scholarship - This scholarship is awarded to graduating high school seniors for outstanding academic achievement and leadership. The Governor’s Distinguished Scholarship is the most academically rigorous scholarship program offered for those graduating seniors scoring either 32 on the ACT or 1410 on the SAT, and a 3.50 academic grade point average, or those who are named National Merit Finalists or National Achievement Scholar. It pays tuition, mandatory fees, room and board up to $10,000 per year.  Applications must be submitted to ADHE by February 1.

ADHE Governor's Scholars -This scholarships is awarded to graduating high school seniors for outstanding academic achievement and leadership.  Applications must be submitted to ADHE by February 1.

ADHE Higher Education Opportunity Grant (GO! Grant) - This grant is awarded based on financial need and provides funds to full-time and part-time students enrolled in at least six (6) hours.  Eligibility is based on the family’s adjusted gross income as reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  The grant is available to Arkansas high school graduates or GED recipients.

ADHE Law Enforcement Officers’ Dependents Scholarship (LEO) - This scholarship is a waiver of tuition, fees, and room/board at any public college, university, or technical institute in Arkansas for dependents and spouses of Arkansas law enforcement officers, some Highway and Transportation Department employees, and other public employees, who were killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty

ADHE Military Dependents Scholarship (MDS) - This scholarship is a waiver of tuition, fees, room and board at any public college, university, or technical institute in Arkansas for dependents and spouses of Arkansans who were killed, were missing in action, were prisoners of war, or who are totally and permanently disabled.

ADHE State Teacher Education Program (STEP) - This scholarship provides assistance for eligible teachers with repayment of outstanding federal student loans.  The program is available to Arkansas educators who graduated after April 1, 2004, have unpaid federal student loan balances, and teach in a geographic and/or subject shortage area or are minorities.  Assistance may be granted for up to three years. 

ADHE Teacher Opportunity Program (TOP) - This award offers tuition reimbursement grants to Arkansas teachers and administrators. Teachers and administrators may apply for reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses paid for up to six (6) college credit hours completed for each academic year, not to exceed $3,000. 

 

SEARK SCHOLARSHIPS

 

   High school student taking Advanced Placement (AP) courses

SEARK College High School Concurrent Scholarship - Concurrent Credit allows the college-ready high school student to attend class at a partner high school and earn BOTH COLLEGE and HIGH SCHOOL credit, while still in high school. Concurrent courses are offered at Dollarway, Watson Chapel, White Hall, and Pine Bluff high schools.  Any Arkansas high school student who meets the regular admission standards for Southeast Arkansas College is eligible.  SEARK offers a full scholarship for all tuition and fees, no charge for you to attend.   Visit our website, http://seark.edu/academics/concurrent-credit-3  AND speak to your high school counselor.

 

   Entering student at SEARK

Abbott Scholarship – authorized by the Pine Bluff Area Community Foundation.  Students must be enrolled full-time with at least a 2.50 GPA. Preference is given to Pine Bluff residents or nearby communities. Application deadline is March 15, 2015.  To apply, go to http://arcf.org/Students/BrowseScholarships.aspx .

Kiwanis Club of Pine Bluff – $1,000 - Available for a Jefferson County high school graduate pursuing a Technical Certificate in Health Sciences at SEARK. Student must have 1) 3.00 GPA & 18 or above ACT score,   2) have outstanding participation and leadership in school activities, 3) a one page personal statement on Educational Plan and Professional Goals. Two letters of recommendations from math or science teachers,  (professor, club sponsor, etc.) are required with the application.  Applications are available in the Financial Aid Office.  Mail application and all supporting documents to the address provided on the application before April 15th.

W.E. & Diane Ayres Scholarship - Recipients must attend SEARK College as an enrolled full-time or part-time student in the fall semester.  Preference will be given to nontraditional students residing in the SEARK College service area that includes Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant and Lincoln counties.  Recipient must have a high school diploma or GED and a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or above.  Financial need, community leadership and potential to succeed are the primary factors considered, although none shall be the determining factor.  Application deadline is April 30, 2015.  Application

James & Maude Ryburn Memorial Scholarship - Recipients must attend SEARK College as an enrolled full-time or part-time student in the fall semester.  Preference will be given to nontraditional students residing in the SEARK College service area that includes Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant and Lincoln counties.  Recipient must have a high school diploma or GED and a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or above and an ACT score of 19 (or the equivalent COMPASS score).  Financial need, community leadership and potential to succeed are the primary factors considered, although none shall be the determining factor.  Application deadline is April 30, 2015 or as funds are available.  Application

SEARK College Arkansas Scholars Scholarship - designed for graduating seniors who have completed the high school core curriculum in eight, consecutive semesters and meet certain eligibility requirements.  This scholarship will provide tuition, up to 15 credit hours per semester, for one school year (fall and spring).  Interested applicants should inquire at the College’s Admissions Office for more information.

SEARK College Leadership Scholarship - intended for a graduating senior from one of the College’s six-county service areas who has achieved academically throughout high school and has had outstanding participation and leadership in school activities.  This is a half-tuition scholarship, up to 12 credit hours per semester, which pays for one academic year (fall and spring).  Application deadline is April 30, 2015.  Application

SEARK College Non-Traditional Student Scholarship - available for students at least 25 years of age residing within the College's service area, including Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant, and Lincoln counties Scholarship may be used a maximum of four consecutive regular semesters, not including summer.  Student must maintain a 2.50 GPA and successfully complete 12 credit hours each semester. Application deadline is August 1, 2015.  Application

SEARK College Trustee Scholarship - available for High School graduates in the College’s service area including, Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant, and Lincoln counties. Applications may be obtained from the High School Counselor's Office or the Admissions Office at the College.  Scholarship may be used a maximum of four consecutive regular semesters, not including summer.  Student must maintain a 2.50 GPA and successfully complete 12 credit hours each semester.  Application deadline is April 30, 2015.  Application

 

Continuing SEARK student

Abbott Scholarship – authorized by the Pine Bluff Area Community Foundation.  Students must be enrolled full-time with at least a 2.50 GPA. Preference is given to Pine Bluff residents or nearby communities. Application deadline is March 15, 2015.  To apply, go to http://arcf.org/Students/BrowseScholarships.aspx .

Academic All-Star Scholarship - Students may apply if you meet the minimum criteria: 1) currently enrolled and expect to be enrolled through Spring 2016, 2) complete a minimum of 24 hours towards an associate degree by June 1, 2015, 3) cumulative 3.25 GPA, 4) will graduate with associate degree by Summer 2016, 5) plan to transfer to a four year university within the state of Arkansas. Two letters of recommendations from college officials (professor, club sponsor, etc.) are required with the application. If chosen, you will receive $500 at SEARK for 2015/ 2016.  This scholarship is recognized by most four-year Arkansas universities and will enable you to receive transfer scholarships of varying amounts.   Application deadline is April 30, 2015.  Application

W.E. & Diane Ayres Scholarship - Recipients must attend SEARK College as an enrolled full-time or part-time student in the fall semester.  Preference will be given to nontraditional students residing in the SEARK College service area that includes Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant and Lincoln counties.  Recipient must have a high school diploma or GED and a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or above.  Financial need, community leadership and potential to succeed are the primary factors considered, although none shall be the determining factor.  Application deadline is April 30, 2015.  Application

Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Scholarship - offered by the Pine Bluff Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, this scholarship is awarded to a female student who has successfully completed at least one semester at SEARK College, has a 2.5 GPA or better, is seeking an Associate of Arts degree, and meets certain other eligibility criteria.  One scholarship will be awarded every spring.  Applications are available in the Financial Aid Office and accepted January 1 – February 1.

James & Maude Ryburn Memorial Scholarship - Recipients must attend SEARK College as an enrolled full-time or part-time student in the fall semester.  Preference will be given to nontraditional students residing in the SEARK College service area that includes Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant and Lincoln counties.  Recipient must have a high school diploma or GED and a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or above and an ACT score of 19 (or the equivalent COMPASS score).  Financial need, community leadership and potential to succeed are the primary factors considered, although none shall be the determining factor.  Application deadline is April 30, 2015 or as funds are available. Application

SEARK College Foundation Scholarship - established four scholarships for students attending Southeast Arkansas College. This scholarship will be available each fall and spring semester. The scholarship requires a recommendation from a SEARK College instructor and a completed application by the student. Students must have at least a cumulative 2.0 grade point average, completed 12 credit hours and enrolled in at least 6 credit hours the subsequent semester. There are four $250 scholarships available (1- Nursing and Allied Health, 1- Technical Studies and 2- General Studies (1-English and 1- Math/Science) for each academic department at SEARK College.  For more information, contact the Office of Academic Affairs in the Welcome Center.  Applications are available in the Financial Aid Office. 

SEARK College Non-Traditional Student Scholarship - available for students at least 25 years of age residing within the College's service area, including Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant, and Lincoln counties Scholarship may be used a maximum of four consecutive regular semesters, not including summer.  Student must maintain a 2.50 GPA and successfully complete 12 credit hours each semester. Application deadline is August 1, 2015.  Application

West Pine Bluff Rotary Club Scholarship - is awarded by the Rotary Club of West Pine Bluff in the amount of $500.00 to a deserving SEARK College student.  This academic scholarship is awarded to a current student and is valid for full-time enrollment (minimum 12 semester credit hours) in a two-year Associate of Applied Science Degree technical career program or an Associate of Arts Degree academic transfer program.  Applications are available in the Financial Aid Office and the deadline is August 1, 2015.

 

SEARK TUITION WAIVERS

 

  • Tuition waivers are based on the in-state tuition rate per credit hour 
  • Status on first day of class determines eligibility for waiver   
  • Apply early to help with registration expenses   
  • Waiver is for tuition only and does not apply to non-credit classes, assessment fees, books, or any other fees collected by the College, the student is responsible for these charges.

 

SEARK Employee, Spouse, Dependent Tuition Waiver: Upon admission to SEARK College, all full-time SEARK College employees, their spouse, and dependent children (children under age 24 at the time of registration) may qualify for a tuition waiver for Southeast Arkansas College credit courses.  Application

SEARK ADJUNCT Employee/Spouse/Dependent Tuition Waiver:  Upon admission to SEARK College, all SEARK College ADJUNCT employees, their spouse, and dependent children (children under age 24 at the time of registration) may qualify for a tuition waiver for up to ONE three (3) hour academic course (or three hours tuition amount towards a course with more hours) at Southeast Arkansas College during the semester of employment. Application

Age Exempt Tuition Waiver: Upon review of admission to SEARK College, Arkansas residents who are 60 years of age and older are entitled to attend college credit classes at SEARK College without a tuition charge.  There is no need for an application.

Public Safety Employee Tuition Waiver: Upon admission to SEARK, all full-time municipal and county public safety officers and firefighters within our six county service area – Jefferson, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant and Lincoln counties may qualify for a tuition waiver.  Public Safety officers and firefighters include: city fire department city police department, county sheriff’s office and SEARK security.  Does not include officers of correctional institutional or other educational institutions police department employees or security officers.  Application

Jefferson County School District and Correctional Officer’s Tuition Waiver:  Upon admission to SEARK College, all full-time public and private school district faculty and staff, and full-time officers of correctional institutions employed within Jefferson County may qualify for a tuition waiver of up to ONE three (3) hour academic course (or three hours tuition amount towards a course with more hours) at Southeast Arkansas College. Application

US Veteran Tuition Waiver: Upon admission to SEARK College, a certified US Veteran may qualify for a tuition waiver for up to ONE three (3) hour academic course (or three hours tuition amount towards a course with more hours) at Southeast Arkansas College.  Application

 

OTHER FINANCIAL AID SOURCES

 

Listed below are some other scholarships you may apply for.  Additional scholarship opportunities may be located by checking local newspapers, contacting your employer or your parent’s employer, businesses, industries, libraries, and public agencies.

The Southeast Arkansas College Financial Aid Office will process any scholarship you receive once funds are received from the ­­sponsoring organization.

AASFAA Scholarship - the Arkansas Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (AASFAA) will award at least two non-renewable $500 scholarships to Arkansas students planning to attend member institutions. Scholarship winners must be enrolled at least half time in the upcoming fall semester in a program that leads to a college degree or certificate at an AASFAA member institution. Winners will be selected at a random drawing during the spring AASFAA Conference. All applications must be postmarked by April 1 of each year. Any application postmarked after April 1 will not be considered. Limit one entry per person.   Applications are available in the Financial Aid Office.

American Cancer Society’s Mid-South Division Scholarship - awarding college scholarships to young cancer survivors pursuing an undergraduate degree from an accredited university, community college or vocational/technical school.  The application deadline is February 1, and packets are mailed to students upon request. For more information, contact the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org.

ARK-LSAMP Grant - administered through the National Science Foundation (NSF). This grant is for minority students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) areas. The program consists of a summer academy, mentoring, and research internships for students. The Arkansas Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (ARK-LSAMP) is a collaborative alliance of eight Arkansas institutions, with the goal of increasing the pool of graduates in STEM disciplines. For more information, contact the Office of Academic Affairs in the Welcome Center. Applications are also available in the Financial Aid Office.

Arkansas Community Foundation - Arkansas Community Foundation manages more than 100 private scholarship funds created by individuals, families and companies. You may search for scholarships by major and/or level of study.   

http://arcf.org/Students/BrowseScholarships.aspx

Arkansas Governor's Commission on People with Disabilities - This scholarship is offered to outstanding disabled Arkansans. Visit www.ace.arkansas.gov for more information and application.

Arkansas Rehabilitation Services, 2703 W. 28th Ave, Pine Bluff, AR  71603   Phone: (870) 534-2404   Tuition and/or book assistance for students with disabilities. Apply early due to limited funding. For more information, view

http://ace.arkansas.gov/arRehabServices/aboutARS/Pages/default.aspx

Arkansas Workforce Center, 1001 South Tennessee Street, Pine Bluff, AR 71601    Phone: (870) 534-1920   Offers various programs for retraining.  For more information, view http://dws.arkansas.gov/index.htm

    Workforce Investment Act (WIA) - Provides assistance for retraining for degree programs that are in demand.

    Dislocated Workers Program – Provides training funds for tuition, fees, supplies and books to workers who have

    been laid-off or have been notified that they will be terminated or laid off. 

Arkansas Career Pathways, 1900 Hazel Street, Pine Bluff, AR  71603   Phone: (870) 850-3061 or (870) 850-4823.  This is program designed to assist students with transportation, childcare, and/or tuition and fees. Students must have custody of a child under the age of 21, be a former/current recipient of TEA cash assistance: or a current recipient of Food Stamps, ARKids or Medicaid: or earnings are at the 250% Federal Poverty Level or less.  For more information, view http://www.seark.edu/academic-support/career-pathways .

Arkansas High-Tech Scholarship - awarded to selected students enrolled in eligible postsecondary technical programs.  Preference is given to graduating high school seniors that are Arkansas residents and US citizens.  Applicants must have a minimum 2.5 GPA and ACT composite score of 19 or above.  The application deadline is July 1.  Additional information and application may be found at: http://ace.arkansas.gov/cte/pages/hightechscholarship.aspx .

Arkansas National Guard Tuition Incentive Program - tuition assistance program for active members of the Arkansas Army/Air National Guard who are Arkansas residents.  Soldiers may be awarded up to $5,000 per academic year, depending on actual enrollment.  Applications may be obtained from their unit commander’s office or by logging onto http://www.arguard.org/Education/ta.asp.

Arkansas Workforce Improvement Grant (WIG) - This grant is funded by the Arkansas Department of Higher Education and awarded by the College.  Apply early, limited funds are available.  Eligible students must be 24 years of age or older on the first day of the semester, complete the FAFSA, enroll in at least 3 hours, be an Arkansas resident, and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.  The actual award is based on available funding, the number of hours enrolled AND unmet need.   To calculate eligibility:   Tuition/fees – Pell award = WIG eligibility up to $1000 each semester.

Miss Arkansas Pageant Scholarship – available to the winner and first and second runners-up in the Miss Arkansas Pageant. The winner’s scholarship is $750 per semester for two years.  The first and second runners-up to the crown will receive $750 for two semesters. Visit http://www.missarkansas.org/ for more information.

National Merit Scholarship – Students in 11th grade may be eligible for the National Merit Scholarship program and other programs that use PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) scores. To determine eligibility, the PSAT/NMSQT test must be taken in October of your Junior year. If your school does not participate in giving the test, the student has to request to take the PSAT at a participating school. Eligibility for these awards are tuition/fees, and possibly room/board.  More information, visit https://www.collegeboard.org/psat-nmsqt .     

Potlatch Undergraduate Scholarship Program - available for students living within 30 miles of certain Potlatch facilities and pursuing a two-year or four-year program of study leading to a degree.  Applications may be requested by e-mail at foundationatpotlatchcorp.com.  The deadline for the scholarship is February 10. 

Single Parent Scholarship - awarded to eligible single parents who have primary custodial care of at least one minor child, live in Arkansas, and are current or future undergraduate students.  Other criteria may apply and varies by county.  More information can be found online at www.aspsf.org.

Trade Adjustment Act (TAA) – administered through the Department of Workforce Services.  Assistance through this source is a benefit for workers who lose jobs or whose hours of work and wages are reduced as a result of increased imports.  TAA includes a variety of benefits and reemployment services to help unemployed workers prepare for and obtain suitable employment. Visit www.dws.arkansas.gov for more information.

Transfer Student Scholarships - Most four-year Arkansas institutions offer a transfer scholarship to students who complete an associate degree.  At the beginning of your sophomore year, start researching transfer scholarships for each four-year school you are interested in attending to review qualifications and the deadline date to apply. You should also make plans to attend the SEARK Transfer Day for more information. This event is held during the Spring semester by the Registrar’s Office.

 

Scholarship Searches

 

www.collegenet.com – Database that uses keywords or personal profiles to search for scholarships

www.collegeboard.org – Scholarship database of more than 2,300 sources of college funding

www.fundmyfuture.infoArkansas scholarship database sponsored by the Arkansas Student Loan Authority

 www.fastweb.com – Scholarship database that matches users to various scholarships based their profiles

http://www.scholarshipexperts.com – Database of free college scholarships

www.scholarshiphunter.com – Free scholarship searches and sweepstakes

www.scholarships.com – Scholarship searches and financial aid information

http://www.studentscholarshipsearch.com – Free searchable database of college scholarships and grants

http://www.nerdwallet.com/nerdscholar/scholarships/- Scholarship searches and financial aid information

 

 

Financial Aid Websites

 

www.collegequest.com – Peterson’s website for college planning

http://www.ed.gov – U.S. Department of Education’s site on financial aid

www.finaid.org – Comprehensive information on financial aid

http://www.knowhow2go.org – Advice on the college planning process and financial aid

https://mappingyourfuture.org – Information to help plan a career, select a school, or pay for college

www.studentaid.ed.gov – U.S. Department of Education’s student financial aid guide

 

*Please be aware that some of the scholarship searches may request your name and other personal data.  This information may be used by that company or other companies for advertising purposes.  Be sure to read each website’s privacy policy carefully.                                                                                                                              

  Updated 2/27/15