Iowa's Last-Dollar Scholarship
Earn a high-demand degree tuition-free
July 15, 2023
Last-Dollar 2023-2024 Deadline
Last-Dollar Scholarship or EICC Workforce Ready Grant
Planning to start your training for an in-demand career field in the 2023-2024 school year? Your tuition may be covered thanks to two great programs.
The first, Iowa’s Last-Dollar Scholarship, requires you to meet specific income guidelines.
Don’t qualify? That’s okay. You have a second option.
EICC’s Workforce Ready Grant will pick up your tuition bill regardless of income.
How it works
The first step is to file your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) by the July 15 deadline.
The form will calculate your Expected Family Contribution, known as your EFC. To qualify for Iowa’s Last-Dollar Scholarship, your EFC must be $20,000 or less.
If you meet the income guidelines, the state of Iowa will cover the remaining balance beyond the aid for which you were eligible.
If your EFC does not meet the requirement, you can count on the EICC Workforce Grant to cover your tuition costs.
Either way, you can start your career training without the worry of tuition bills.
- Associate Degree Nursing AAS
- Community Dental Health Coordinator Certificate
- Dental Assisting Diploma
- Diagnostic Cardiac Sonography Associates Degree
- Diagnostic Medical Sonography Associates Degree
- Medical Assistant, Diploma
- Practical Nursing Diploma
- Radiologic Technology AAS
- Surgical Technology AAS
- Veterinary Technology AAS
- Advanced Welding Certificate
- Basic Electronics Certificate
- CNC Machining, AAS, Certificate
- Construction Technology (Starting Fall 2023)
- Electrical Systems Certificate
- Engineering Technology - Electromechanical Diploma
- Engineering Technology AAS
- Fundamental Welding Certificate
- Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Diploma
- Mechanical Design AAS, Diploma, Certificate
- Process Control Technology Certificate
- Renewable Energy Systems Specialist AAS
- Welder, Diploma
Here’s the details
Iowa’s Last-Dollar Scholarship
Students who enroll in an eligible program of study at EICC on a half-time basis (minimum 6 credits or equivalent) after completion of a Iowa high school or homeschool program or completion of an equivalency diploma.
- Students age 20 and older who enroll in an eligible program of study on at least a half-time basis (minimum 6 credits or equivalent) and have earned a high school diploma or received their high school equivalency. Age is calculated as of July 1 prior to the year of enrollment.
- Students who have an Expected Family Contribution at or below $20,000
- Students who meet ongoing requirements
- The Last-Dollar Scholarships covers the equivalent of five semesters of full-time enrollment
- The funding is awarded after Federal and State grants. The Last-Dollar Scholarship covers any remaining tuition balance.
- If you have Pell or other grants that cover your tuition, the Last-Dollar Scholarship is refunded to you.
The Last-Dollar Scholarship is part of the state’s Future Ready Iowa program. The program is a workforce initiative connecting Iowans to the training and education required for good-paying jobs and careers that improve lives.
The goal of the Last-Dollar Scholarship is to increase the number of Iowans with education and training up to a two-year degree in careers that are in high demand throughout Iowa. The effort is geared toward getting more Iowans into great jobs, meeting the needs of Iowa employers, and growing Iowa’s economy.
Information from Iowa College Aid on the 2023-2024 changes to Last-Dollar Scholarship.
What happened to the Last-Dollar Scholarship?
The Last-Dollar Scholarship still exists and is not going away. However, action taken during this last legislative session required changes to the program’s eligibility requirements.
Since its beginning, the Last-Dollar Scholarship has experienced significant growth in the number of recipients, especially among students with high Expected Family Contribution (EFC) amounts and low financial need. For example, recipients with a high EFC previously represented roughly 11 percent of all Last-Dollar Scholarships. Today, the share is almost 25 percent.
While the number of applicants continues to grow, the funding for the program will remain the same for the coming year. As a result, it was necessary to reassess the program’s eligibility requirements. Iowa College Aid worked closely with the Governor’s office, the legislature, and Iowa’s community colleges to find a solution that provides students most in need of financial assistance the support necessary to achieve their educational and career goals. The consensus among the group led to the legislature passing the requirement that applicants have an EFC at or below $20,000 to qualify for the award during the 2023-2024 academic year.
Why am I no longer eligible?
A law passed during the 2023 legislative session requires applicants to have an EFC at or below $20,000 to qualify for the Last-Dollar Scholarship for the 2023-2024 academic year. Therefore, you will not be eligible for an award if you have an EFC greater than $20,000.
Why am I just finding out about this now?
Iowa College Aid is still in the process of finalizing award parameters for all state-funded aid programs. This includes the Last-Dollar Scholarship. Unfortunately, appropriations for state-funded aid programs did not occur until the end of the legislative session, and we are awaiting the Governor’s signature on the appropriations bill. However, we are working to communicate the change in Last-Dollar Scholarship eligibility to individuals who we anticipate will be impacted.
What am I supposed to do now?
If your financial circumstances have changed, consult with the financial aid office at your college to explore other options to help finance your postsecondary education.
EICC Workforce Ready Grant
Students who enroll in an eligible program of study during the Fall 2023 semester on a half-time basis (minimum 6 credits or equivalent) after completion of a Iowa high school or homeschool program or completion of an equivalency diploma.
- Students age 20 and older who enroll in an eligible program of study during the Fall 2023 semester on at least a half-time basis (minimum 6 credits or equivalent) and have earned a high school diploma or received their high school equivalency. Age is calculated as of July 1 prior to the year of enrollment.
- Students who have an Expected Family Contribution higher than $20,000
- Students who meet the following ongoing requirements:
- Remain an Iowa resident
- Attend a college orientation session
- Register for courses with the assistance of an advisor
- Participate in available academic advising sessions
- Participate in available career advising sessions if required by your program of study
- Continuously receive an EICC Workforce Ready Grant disbursement in each semester/term (summer semester/term is not required)
- Meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) annually
- Remain continuously enrolled in at least 6 hours per semester/term (summer semester/term is not required)
- Have an Expected Family Contribution higher than $20,000
- The EICC Workforce Ready Grant covers the equivalent of five semesters of full-time enrollment or the completion of a credential for students who enroll in the Fall 2023 semester.
- The funding is awarded after the following:
- Federal and State grants
- Explore EICC or college Foundations Scholarships
Contact the Financial Aid Office on your campus. Our supportive staff will help you determine which opportunity is right for you.