The South Carolina HOPE Scholarship Program was established in 2001 and was implemented during the 2002-03 academic year. It is a merit-based award designed for first-time entering freshmen attending four-year institutions who do not meet the qualifications for the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship or the LIFE Scholarship. Since its inception, the SC HOPE Scholarship Program has served as an entry scholarship that has allowed students to attend a four year institution in this state and receive funding for a year, before moving on to the LIFE Scholarship.

*NEW Life Scholarship & SC Hope Scholarship Brochure

Eligible full-time students entering eligible four year institutions in South Carolina may receive the following awards:

Up to $2,800 (including book allowance) for the first academic year toward the cost of attendance at an eligible four-year institution in South Carolina.

At the end of the SC HOPE recipient’s first year at an eligible institution, if he/she has earned at least a 3.0 GPA and earned a minimum of 30 credit hours, the student will be eligible to receive the LIFE Scholarship for their second year of attendance.

Initial Eligibility Criteria:

  • Students must meet the following criteria to receive the SC HOPE

  • Graduate from high school with at least a cumulative 3.0
  • GPA based on the SC Uniform Grading Policy.
  • Not be a recipient of the LIFE, Palmetto Fellows or Lottery Tuition Assistance awards.
Continued Eligibility Criteria:

To receive the LIFE Scholarship in their second year of attendance, SC HOPE recipients must:

  • Earn at least a 3.0 LIFE GPA.
  • Earn at least 30 credit hours by the end of their first academic year.
General Eligibility Requirements:

  • US Citizen/Legal Permanent Resident*
  • SC Resident*
  • No felony convictions
  • No second or subsequent alcohol/drug misdemeanors
  • Not in default of any state or federal loans
  • Enroll in a degree-seeking program at an eligible SC institution

*this must be determined at the time of high school graduation. 

Note: There is no application required for the SC HOPE Scholarship.  The eligible institution will notify students if they qualify.