The Florida Bright Futures Scholarship is a great financing option for Florida residents who wish to stay in the state to pursue college or professional studies and benefit from the scholarship. Read on to see the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship 2022 Requirements and apply.
In this post, I will briefly explain the eligibility requirements before moving to the application calendar. I’ll end with tips and strategies to help you get the best possible application for Bright Futures scholarships.
More On Florida Bright Futures scholarships 2022
There are three award levels in the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship: The Florida Academic Scholars Award, Florida Medallion Scholars Award, and Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars Award.
The three scholarships are easily renewable, which means you can significantly reduce your university costs for the Florida Bright Bright Future Scholarship for several years.
However, you may find it difficult to submit the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship application form. It turns out that much of the process is streamlined and automated – you will not have to go through too many obstacles to apply.
Eligibility requirements are slightly different, but if you meet these requirements, the application process should be fairly simple.
Level/Field of Study
The Scholarship is available for college and vocational school students who wish to study in Florida.
The scholarship is open to residents of Florida, but if you are an international student looking for a scholarship to Study Abroad, you can check out our Study Abroad scholarships available for international students.
The scholarship award is available to help you fund your studies, and it is renewable.
How much does Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Pay?
- The applicable fees for both FAS and FMS include activity and service fees, health fees, athletic fees, financial aid fees, capital improvement fees, campus access/transportation fees, technology fees, and tuition differential fees.
In summary, Bright Futures award amounts for the 2022 academic year:
- The Florida Academic Scholars Award is $212.71 per credit hour.
- The Florida Medallion Scholars Award is $159.53 per credit hour.
- The Academic Top Scholars Award is $44 per credit hour.
Bright Future Scholarship Eligibility
To apply for a Bright Futures Scholarship, the first step is to verify that you are actually eligible for this scholarship. It’s not something you can do at the last minute, so, to qualify for these awards, you need to spend more time thinking about bright futures in Florida.
General Florida Future Requirements
The following are the general requirements that apply to all Bright Futures Scholarships:
- You must be a resident of Florida and a US citizen or an eligible non-citizen (as determined by your college).
- You must complete the application for financial assistance in Florida before August 31st of your high school year.
- Also, you must obtain a Florida high school diploma or its equivalent from a Florida public high school or a registered Florida Department of Education private school.
- You should not have been convicted of a crime
- You must be accepted and enrolled in a degree or certificate program at an eligible Florida public or independent postsecondary institution (postsecondary, college, vocational, or professional program).
- In addition, you must be enrolled for at least 6 (non-remedial) credit hours per term.
Specific Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Requirements
There are several conditions for Bright Future Scholarships, including minimum requirements for GPA, ACT / SAT, and hours of service for the three Bright Future Scholarships.
The most competitive scholarship is the Florida Academic Scholars Program (FAS), followed by the Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS), and then the Gold Seal Vocational Scholars (GSV).
This diagram lists some of the key requirements for FAS and FMS programs:
|SCHOLARSHIP||WEIGHTED GPA MINIMUM||ACT MINIMUM||SAT MINIMUM*||SERVICE HOURS|
|FMS – Homeschooled students without official transcripts||3.00||27||1220||75 hours|
The requirements for the GSV test score are a little more detailed (note that you only need to pass one of the following exams, but you can not combine sub-sections of different tests):
There’s some more fine print when it comes to eligibility requirements for the Florida Bright Futures scholarships.
To get more detailed information on meeting all of these requirements, check out our Bright Futures guide and handbook below.
4 Steps to Applying for a Florida Bright Futures Scholarship
Much of this process is automated. So, you won’t have to do much extra work outside of submitting the Florida Financial Aid Application and keeping an eye on your app to make sure everything is processed correctly.
If all of your eligibility requirements check out, you can start the application as early as December 1.
Step 1: Submit the Florida Financial Aid Application (FFAA)
The FFAA opens on December 1st each year. Your Florida Bright Futures account login information will be sent to you after you submit the FFAA.
Just remember that you must submit your FFAA by August 31 of the year that you graduate from high school, or you won’t be eligible for a scholarship award.
Step 2: Take the ACT or SAT and Submit Your Scores
The good news is that you’ll have to take either the ACT or SAT for college applications anyway.
Send your scores to any Florida public college or university to ensure that the Florida Department of Education–the institution that reviews Bright Futures applications; receives them.
Step 3: Submit Your Official High School Transcripts
More good news: many schools will submit your transcripts automatically for consideration.
Though, it’s a good idea to check in with your guidance counselor about whether you need to take any additional steps.
Step 4: Keep the Information in Your Account Updated
There are a bunch of things you can (and should) manage once you get your Bright Futures account information:
+ Monitor your reported service hours.
+ Update your postsecondary institution: once you’ve been accepted to/enrolled at an FL college or vocational school, you would make a note of this in your account.
+ Update any demographic information.
+ View your eligibility determination: check your account once everything’s been submitted to see if you’re eligible for the scholarship.
There are two Bright Futures timelines to be aware of if you’re ready to start the application process: Early Evaluation and Final Evaluation.
If you can plan for the Early Evaluation timeline, you could potentially learn about Bright Futures eligibility as early as March.
If your transcripts are submitted for early evaluation (based on academic progress in the middle of the last year of high school and test scores for tests taken by January 31), you’ll get an eligibility notification posted to your online account.
These postings may begin in March, according to the Florida Department of Education.
All students whose final transcripts are submitted following the last high school term will get an eligibility notification posted to their online account.
These postings may begin in July, again according to the Florida Department of Education.
How to Make Your Application Stand Out
Now that you know a little bit more about eligibility requirements and the application process, you can focus on making your Bright Futures application the best it can be.
The good news is, in addition to making sure you meet all eligibility requirements, there isn’t much you have to do to make your application “stand out.”
If you meet the requirements for the FAS, FMS, or GSV scholarship, you’ll receive the scholarship. It’s as simple as that.
However, the bad news is that the eligibility requirements are strict. There’s no gray area – you either qualify because you meet all requirements, or you don’t (no matter how close you are) and don’t get a scholarship.
There are some eligibility loopholes and exceptions for out-of-state, homeschooled, and GED students. You can learn more about them in our requirements guide.
The best Bright Futures success strategy will focus on meeting eligibility requirements as early in your high school career as possible. The following tips will help you do that, starting right now.
All Bright Futures scholarships require students to complete a certain set of high school courses. So, you’re likely to meet all coursework requirements if you went to high school in Florida.
However, if you suspect there may be a problem, schedule a meeting with your guidance counselor.
It’s difficult to significantly raise your GPA in a short period of time. Focus on your grades by picking a realistic GPA minimum as you start your freshman year.
If you’re struggling to meet your goal though, here are some ways to bring up that GPA:
- Take classes that are appropriate for your skill level, but if you’re unsure about which classes are most appropriate, meet with your guidance counselor to discuss.
- See teachers for extra help in weak subject areas.
- Ask about extra credit assignments if possible.
- Check out our guide on raising your GPA.
The earlier you start reporting your community service hours, the fewer hours per week you’ll need to volunteer. If you start chipping away at this requirement as a senior, you’ll have to set aside 2-3 hours a week for community service.
However, if you start as a freshman, you’ll only need to volunteer 1-1.5 hours every two weeks.
You can’t earn any money for your community service hours, but you can kill two birds with one stone and look for positions where you can get interesting professional experience.
Start by asking friends and family for suggestions – make sure you’re working with a legitimate agency that will reliably track your hours.
Finally, set a schedule. Go at the same time every week or every two weeks so you don’t fall behind on completing your hours.
If you need some help brainstorming, check out our guide to the best places to do community service.
Bright Futures Volunteer Hours 2022
For currently enrolled students expected to graduate in the spring of 2022 only, ss. 1009.534(1) and 1009.535(1), Fla. Stat., and Rule 6A-20.028(3)(d), F.A.C., are suspended in part, to allow high school guidance counselors, or other persons approved by a district school board or the administrator of a nonpublic school, to submit transcript documentation to the Florida Department of Education to report compliance with the required number of volunteer service hours for scholarship eligibility if the student
1) completed the service hours;
2) had planned for, and intended to, complete the service hours prior to the student’s high school graduation, but was unable to do so because the pandemic created a lack of access to volunteer opportunities; or
3) if, due to health concerns, the student fell short of the volunteer service hours.
Such documentation shall be considered as evidence that a student has completed the required number of volunteer service hours for scholarship eligibility.
Students who have applied for the Bright Futures Scholarship but were unable to complete their community service requirements will need to contact their school counselor for additional instructions.
These students will need to complete a quick questionnaire regarding their community service hours. This needs to be completed immediately.
Once they contact their counselor, their counselor will email them the required link for the questionnaire that needs to be completed by May 20, 2022.
The deadline for the submission of the application is August 31st.
For more information on the Florida Bright Future Scholarships, click here.