How to Enroll
The 21st Century Scholarship program has helped tens of thousands of Indiana students attend college and earn a degree.
Read below to learn how to enroll.
The 21st Century Scholars application opens on October 1, 2023.
21st Century Scholar enrollment eligibility
After the passage of House Enrolled Act (HEA) 1449-2023, current 7th- and 8th-grade Hoosier students who are financially eligible for Free and Reduced Price Lunch will be automatically enrolled in the 21st Century Scholars Program.
However, if students do not receive Free and Reduced Price Lunch, but meet the income guidelines, parents or guardians can enroll them from the time they enter 7th grade to June 30 of their 8th-grade year. The 21st Century Scholars application opens on October 1, 2023. To apply for the 21st Century Scholars program, students must:
Be a resident of Indiana
Be a resident of Indiana both when applying and when receiving the scholarship (determined by the residency of the parent or legal guardian).
Be one of the following:
• U.S. citizen or U.S. national (includes natives of American Samoa or Swain’s Island)
• U.S. permanent resident who has an I-151, I-551 or I-551C (Alien Registration Receipt Card)
• Non-U.S. citizen with an Arrival-Departure Record (I-94) from the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) showing one of the following designations:
- Asylum Granted
- Indefinite Parole and/or Humanitarian Parole
- Cuban-Haitian Entrant, Status Pending
- Conditional Entrant (valid only if issued before April 1, 1980)
Click here to visit the Commission’s website for more information.
Be automatically enrolled or apply in 7th or 8th grade
Be automatically enrolled or apply in the 7th or 8th grade at an Indiana public or private school accredited by the Indiana Department of Education.
- Children in foster care may apply after the 8th-grade year.
- Homeschooled students are not eligible for the 21st Century Scholars program.
Meet the income eligibility guidelines if applying
See the chart below for current income guidelines.
- A student in foster care does not need to meet this requirement.
- A student in the 7th or 8th grade who is in legal guardianship does not need to meet this requirement.
Haga clic aquí para mirar un video sobre este programa en Español.
21st Century Scholar income requirements
For each additional family member add $9,509
How to apply the 21st Century Scholars program
Click “Register” in the upper right-hand corner
Create a parent account – an email address is required
Click on “My Account” to apply for the 21st Century Scholars program
Once an application is received, you will receive an email with an application summary and program enrollment information. All applications to the 21st Century Scholars program must be submitted before June 30 of the eligible student’s 8th-grade year.
Ready to get started?
What you’ll need to get started:
Before you apply, make sure you have the following:
- Student Social Security Number or Student Test Number (STN), date of birth and address
- Parent or guardian’s Social Security Number, or Individual Taxpayer ID Number if applicable
- Previous year gross income amounts for all members of the household (Example: if you are applying after December 31, 2023, use 2023 amounts).
- A valid email address. Free email addresses are available from Yahoo!, Gmail and Live.
- Court documents, if submitting a legal guardianship application.
The application process:
During the application process, you will:
- Answer pre-enrollment questions
- Enter student contact information (address, phone, email, school information, and SSN or STN)
- Agree to the 21st Century Scholar Pledge
- Enter income information for parent or guardian
- Review and submit application
Applying Through a Local School or Community Organization
If you don’t have access to the online application, your child’s school counselor may agree to submit an online application for you with help from the Scholar Enrollment Flyer (available in other languages here). You can ask your counselor for help applying, and direct them to this site once you’ve provided all the required enrollment information.
Our Outreach Coordinators are here to help students, parents/guardians and school counselors complete the 21st Century Scholars application.
Important 21st Century Scholars timelines
High school is right around the corner! As a middle schooler, college might seem a long way off, but there are still things you can do to prepare for this important time in your life right now.
Below, you’ll find important timelines for each stage of your 21st Century Scholars journey:
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For most students, Indiana law requires a student to be automatically enrolled or apply by no later than June 30 of the student’s 8th grade year. The only exception is if a student experiences foster care from 7th grade through 12th grade. Students in foster care are enrolled in the 21st Century Scholars Program through an agreement with the Department of Child Services.
The income guidelines change every year to match the current Federal Free and Reduced Price Lunch guidelines.
Yes, you can! Students in foster care in Indiana are able to enroll beyond their 8th-grade year and aren’t required to follow the same income guidelines. If you need help understanding what this means to you or to your student, please contact the Indiana Commission for Higher Education at email@example.com.
You don’t have to file the FAFSA to enroll – it’s only for high school seniors and up. But, you will have to file the FAFSA starting in 12th grade and complete it each year of college to retain your scholarship.