21st Century Scholar Information

What is 21st Century Scholars?
Indiana started the 21st Century Scholars in 1990 to ensure that every student can afford a college education. Income-eligible 7th and 8th graders who are enrolled or auto-enrolled in the program and fulfill a pledge of good citizenship may receive up to four years of FREE undergraduate tuition at any participating public college or university in Indiana. In an effort to serve a growing number of students participating in the program, the scholarship amount may be reduced depending on the availability of funds and the availability of the student's family to contribute to college.

As a 21st Century Scholar, you can get help finding free tutoring, a mentor and a part-time job, and once you get to college, students who are 21st Century Scholars receive support to finish their college degrees.

This program provides an amazing opportunity for students, should they choose to attend college after high school. Middle school students and families do not need to make a decision about attending college as a 7th or 8th grader, however all families are encouraged to apply due to the deadline of the application being June 30th of a student's 8th grade year. 

Application Process

 Auto-Enrollment: Starting in the fall of 2023, students who were enrolled in the free-and-reduced lunch program, via an application with the school, were automatically enrolled as a scholar by the state. The state plans to continue this process for the fall of 2024. Students who are auto enrolled will be contacted by CMS staff to assist with making an account in Scholar Track to accept the pledge. 
2. Parent Application: For any student that does not get auto-enrolled moving forward, please consider applying on behalf of your student. This process takes approximately 20 minutes to complete. Here are helpful directions for parents who choose to apply: Parent Sheet - ScholarTrack.pdf

The 21st Century Scholars application is only available online. Eligible 7th and 8th grade students and their parents or legal guardians may access the online application at www.Scholars.in.gov. Applications must be submitted by June 30th of the student's 8th grade year. Please review income eligibility requirements online before applying: https://learnmoreindiana.org/scholars/how-to-enroll/ 

What you need before you apply:

  1. Student's Social Security Number, date of birth, and address

  2. Parent or guardian's Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, if applicable

  3. Income information

  4. A valid email address (free email accounts are available at yahoo.com, gmail.com, hotmail.com and live.com)

What you will do when you apply:

  1. Answer pre-enrollment questions

  2. Enter student contact information (address, phone, email, school information and SSN)

  3. Agree to the 21st Century Scholar Pledge

  4. Enter income information for parent or guardian

  5. Review and submit application

  6. You will receive an email with an application summary and program enrollment information after the application is received.

Students who meet the eligibility requirements but who are currently in the 6th grade should hold their application until their 7th or 8th grade year.