Grants will help students who left school to finish degrees

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi students who left college at least two years ago without a degree can apply for a grant to help them return to — and finish — school.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation recently awarded the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning $1.3 million to fund Mississippi’s Complete 2 Compete tuition assistance grants through 2023.

The Complete 2 Compete program provides one-on-one support for adult learners who have earned college credits, but not a degree, and works with them to complete their education.

Qualifying returning students can receive a $1,000 grant that can be renewed every semester. The award helps pay for any coursework needed to graduate and can help repay prior debt.

Funds can be used at any Mississippi public universities or community colleges. A total of 2,400 students have graduated since the program launched in 2017.

There are more than 200,000 prior students that qualify for the Complete 2 Compete program in the state, according to a press release from the Mississippi Community College Board.

Since May, the Complete 2 Compete program has reached out to former students through postcards as well as internet and social media ads. More than 2,700 former students’ applications were processed over the summer, with 620 returning to enroll in one of Mississippi’s 15 community colleges, 8 universities, and the medical center.


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