By Bob Fowler
Roane State staff writer
Thanks to prudent fiscal management and increased donations, 50 percent more funding is available next academic year for a variety of Roane State Community College scholarships.
Scott Niermann, executive director of the Roane State Foundation, expressed gratitude to the Foundation’s Board of Directors and its Investment Committee for their faithful oversight of invested and endowed scholarship funds.
“This is some great news, and we’re very grateful for the generous support we’ve received,” Niermann said. More than 400 scholarships are awarded each academic year, and next year there will be even more.
The deadline for students to apply for available scholarships is May 31. The application is available at roanestate.edu/foundationscholarships.
The Foundation normally disperses more than $400,000 annually in scholarships. Next academic year, an additional $200,000 will be available.
“All students graduating from high school, returning Roane State students, and non-traditional adult students returning to college at Roane State are encouraged to apply,” Niermann said.
The Tennessee Promise scholarship covers tuition costs for conventional students enrolled after graduating from high school. Tennessee Reconnect is the program covering tuition costs for students 24 and older who are returning to college or enrolling for the first time.
Niermann said Roane State Foundation scholarships are available for all students to help pay for additional expenses such as textbooks, school supplies and transportation needs.
He said educational expenses for the typical student can add up to around $1,500 a year, while those in the healthcare field who need special shoes, scrubs and other related items can incur as much as twice that in additional costs annually.
Most students in dual enrollment – who receive college credit for courses taken while in high school – can receive grant support through the State of Tennessee. However, those on a technical career path or dual enrollment students taking more than three college-level courses may need even more financial assistance.
There is also some state funding for Middle College students – those who can graduate from high school and obtain a Roane State associate degree at the same time – but not enough to cover all expenses. They are also eligible for Foundation scholarships through a separate application process.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of Roane State Community College this year, a general scholarship fund has been endowed by generous supporters to help any student in any county, Niermann added. Any community member who would like to help grow this endowment can contribute a gift online at roanestate.edu/raiderfund.
Roane State is a two-year college providing transfer programs, career-preparation programs and continuing education. Founded in 1971, the college has locations in Roane, Campbell, Cumberland, Fentress, Knox, Loudon, Morgan, Anderson and Scott counties as well as a branch campus in Oak Ridge. For more information, visit roanestate.edu.