State Announces New Name for Grant Offering Free College Tuition

“HOPE Career Grant” available for technical college students entering high-demand industries


May 31, 2017

The Welding program at Wiregrass is one of programs that is in high demand for graduates to fill jobs here in South Georgia. December 2016 Wiregrass graduate, Jonathon Navas, found success at Coyote Manufacturing Company after benefiting from the HOPE Career Grant (formerly Strategic Industries Workforce Development Grant).

Valdosta, GA. A grant offered at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College enables certain technical education students in Georgia to receive free tuition now has a name that better reflects the grant’s goals.

The HOPE Career Grant, formerly known as the Strategic Industries Workforce Development Grant, is available to HOPE Grant-qualified students who enroll in select majors specifically aligned with one of 12 industries in which there are more jobs available in Georgia than there are skilled workers to fill them. These industries were identified by Governor Deal’s High-Demand Career Initiative and the General Assembly as strategically important to the state’s economic growth. They are among the many forms of financial assistance available through the Georgia Student Finance Commission.

“We continuously seek ways to help our Georgia students attain a high-quality, affordable education that leads to a productive career,” said Gov. Deal. “This grant is an important piece in our tool kit of educational assets, and helps students prepare to enter those industries in the state that have the greatest workforce needs.”

“A Georgia student who qualifies for one of these grants pays absolutely no tuition, and in some cases the grants cover fees and equipment as well,” said Gretchen Corbin, Commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), which offers more than 200 programs in the industries targeted by the grant. “This is a great opportunity for students in our 22 colleges and the Georgia companies who seek them. We believe the new name will help students understand that a rewarding career is the end goal of the grant.”

Wiregrass offers twenty-four programs that are eligible for the HOPE Career Grant. Students who receive the HOPE or Zell Miller Grant may be eligible for additional financial aid assistance under the HOPE Career Grant that can cover tuition, fees, or books. Popular programs such as Commercial Truck Driving, Practical Nursing (LPN), and Welding all qualify for the HOPE Career Grant. For a complete listing of eligible programs visit www.wiregrass.edu. Registration for Fall Semester classes begin August 17. The Application Fee is Waived for students on all four campuses on Free Application Day on Thursday, June 22.