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Q&A with Ga Student Finance Commission leader on HOPE Scholarship

Caylee Noggle is responsible for one of the most important organizations in Georgia government.

As interim president of the Georgia Student Finance Commission, Noggle oversees management of the HOPE Scholarship, Zell Miller Scholarship and several other programs that help pay tuition for about 170,000 students.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution asked Noggle some questions about HOPE as it celebrates the 25th anniversary of its first awards of student scholarships. Here are written responses to those questions, with some of the responses cut for brevity.

Q: What are your thoughts on the amount of money awarded to students for FY 2018?

A: I’m thrilled that the HOPE Programs, supported and funded by the strong work of the Georgia Lottery Corporation, provided over $672 million dollars to Georgia students last year. That number represents thousands of students pursuing in-demand job skills through the HOPE Career grant and thousands more who have excelled academically and have an opportunity to go onto college that might not have otherwise existed.

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Q: What do you think is important to consider about the number of scholarships awarded and how much money is being received by students?

A: Georgia’s HOPE Program continues to be a national leader among merit-based and lottery-funded financial aid programs. Since its inception, 1.8 million Georgians have benefitted from more than $10 billion in HOPE scholarship and grant awards. In addition to the opportunities it creates for Georgians to access higher education, the HOPE Program continues to have a tremendous impact on the academic reputations of our postsecondary institutions as Georgia’s best and brightest high school graduates choose to stay in state. 

Q: Is there anything that you think may be helpful for more students get the scholarships?

A: Every core class taken as soon as a student begins the 9th grade counts towards the HOPE Scholarship GPA requirements. We encourage students and parents to meet with their high school counselors to make sure they are taking the appropriate coursework to meet all the requirements...We host financial aid information and college planning workshops around the state, so families should be on the lookout for notices at their high school about upcoming events. Our website, GAfutures.org, is a great resource of information for not only HOPE eligibility requirements, but for information about all of our state’s scholarship, grant, and student loan programs. 

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