State Financial Aid for Undergraduates


The state funds five major grant programs.

Virginia’s public institutions provide the Virginia Commonwealth Award, a need-based grant, to eligible students. The state funds the program through legislative appropriations. While institutions choose award amounts, state law requires that institutions award aid in such a way that the students with the greatest need receive the largest awards. To apply for the award, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Public institutions also may award the Virginia Guaranteed Assistance Program, which provides financial aid to full-time students who demonstrate financial aid and  graduate from high school with GPAs of a cumulative GPA of 2.5. In order to renew aid, students must maintain a 2.0 GPA and demonstrate continued financial need.

Students who earn associate degrees may qualify for the Two-Year College Transfer Grant. The base award provides $1,000 per year to students who completed their associate degree at a Virginia community college with a GPA of 3.0 or higher, enroll full-time in a four-year institution, and have an Expected Family Contribution of $12,000 or less. Students enrolled in science, teaching, engineering, math or nursing fields are eligible to receive an additional $1,000 per year.

The New Economy Workforce Credential Grant pays two-thirds of the cost of enrolling in a high-demand, industry certification program. The program requires students to receive an industry-based certification or state licensure to avoid repaying an additional portion of training costs.

The Virginia Tuition Assistance Grant Program provides financial aid for students attending in- state, nonpublic institutions. The maximum 2017-18 award is $3,300.