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GS Information Sheet

Arkansas Governor's Scholars Program Award
Governor’s Scholars (GS) Category
Information Sheet

Please read this information sheet very carefully; this sheet is intended as a quick reference for general rules and regulations regarding the Governor’s Scholars Program for Governor’s Scholars (Non-Distinguished).  Please find full rules and regulations for the scholarship on its information page on our official scholarship website at  This document will remain available for future reference through your Scholarship Application Management System (SAMS) account with the Arkansas Division of Higher Education (ADHE).  To access, you will click on “Details” under the scholarship in your SAMS account, and click on the Information Sheet button.  You can also print the document if you desire a copy for your personal records.  We will also notify you by e-mail if your scholarship status changes and requires action on your part.  A copy of every e-mail we send to you will be saved in the “Alerts” section of your SAMS account.



The award amount for Governor’s Scholars (Non-Distinguished) students is $5,000 per year, $2,500 per semester, for four years.

There is an allowance in the law for students who are receiving the fourth year of their scholarship that don’t need all 15 semester hours each semester to graduate.  If enrolling in less than 15 semester hours in the fourth year of the scholarship, your award amount for that semester is prorated by the rates below, with a minimum of 6 semester hours required for any amount.  The semester is considered paid in full even if awarded at the prorated amount.

  • Enrolled in 6-8 hours= 50% or $1,250
  • Enrolled in 9-14 hours= 75% or $1,875
  • Enrolled in 15+ hours=100% or $2,500

Governor’s Scholars Program funds are non-refundable and can only be applied towards Tuition, Room and Board, and mandatory fees charged for a regular full-time course load by the approved institution in which the recipient is enrolled.  If the amounts of the charges at your school are less than $2,500 for that semester, your scholarship may be reduced.

Please review the State Stacking Law (click here). You may be affected by this policy if you are receiving scholarship funds from other sources and are over your Cost of Attendance Budget at your institution.


The award will be disbursed to the institution you are attending in accordance with its disbursement policies, typically in equal amounts for each term (Fall and Spring), after verifying you are enrolled in at least twelve (12) semester hours the first Fall semester immediately following high school graduation, and fifteen (15) semester hours each semester thereafter, as of close of business on the 11th day of classes in a program of study leading to a bachelor’s degree, associate degree, or a qualified certificate.  If you have classes that start later in the semester (e.g. 2nd 8 weeks or Winter semester), you must be enrolled in those classes by the Census Date for the Fall or Spring semester in order for those hours to count towards your payment. You must be enrolled in the appropriate number of credit hours at ONE institution each semester. This scholarship award and hours cannot not be split among multiple colleges in a semester unless there is a consortium agreement between the colleges for that student or that student's program (If you are paying both schools separately for your tuition and fee charges, your program is likely not under a consortium agreement).

If you withdraw (see Holds, Transfers, Underenrollment, and Withdrawals below) or do not attend the first Fall semester immediately following high school graduation you must enroll in 15 hours each semester once you re-enroll for the next semester.

Students may use their Governor’s Scholars Program award for graduate or professional level degrees at approved institutions in Arkansas.  It may be used for graduate or professional level degrees out-of-state but only specifically for dentistry, optometry, veterinary medicine, podiatry, chiropractic, or osteopathy at institutions under agreement with the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB).  In order for a student to be eligible for this, they would have to complete their bachelor’s degree and have semesters of eligibility that were not paid out for the fourth year from the Governor’s Scholars Program award.  Additional information to remain eligible for at the graduate level can be found on the Governor’s Scholars Program information page of our website in the Graduate School Eligibility Criteria section.

NOTE: Arkansas Code Annotated 6-85-203(c) - Recipients of the Arkansas Governor's Scholars Program are now allowed to receive the Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarships under this subchapter; However, the total award amount between the 2 scholarships cannot exceed $10,000 per year. 


  1. Successfully earn twenty-seven (27) semester hours the first academic year as a first-time freshman and thirty (30) semester hours per academic year each year thereafter (the academic year is defined as Fall, Spring, and then Summer in that order). Classes in which you received an “F”, "I", "NC", or "AU" will not count as earned hours towards this requirement.
  2. Maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  3. Be enrolled in a program that leads to a baccalaureate degree, associate's degree, or a qualified certificate.
  4. Meet the satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards required by the institution where enrolled
  5. If you transfer to another institution and are enrolled in an eligible program, you comply with the transfer requirements below.
  6. Be continuously enrolled (each Fall and Spring term) unless the ADHE approves a leave of absence or hold request.
  7. If your cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0 or you have not completed the required amount of semester hours by the end of the Spring semester, you may enroll in Summer school, at your expense, following the Spring term to meet the requirement. The academic year consists of Fall, Spring, and Summer terms in that order.  You are required to send ADHE your official transcript showing those Summer hours with grades by October 1 of each year.
  8. You shall not be in violation of the drug-free pledge to refrain from the use or abuse of illegal substances. This includes alcohol for applicants less than twenty-one years of age.


You may transfer to another eligible Arkansas institution provided you update your SAMS account by October 1 for the Fall term and February 1 for the Winter or Spring terms. If transferring between Fall and Spring semesters, you must also submit a transcript from the school you are leaving showing that you have maintained both the required GPA and amount of earned hours.  If you enter a transfer request through your SAMS account and subsequently decide not to transfer, you must notify the ADHE Financial Aid Office to have the transfer request cancelled.

If you are underenrolled, withdraw, have a leave of absence from school, a hold may be allowed for up to two years (four fall and/or spring semesters) in total, provided you petition ADHE by completing a hold request form in your SAMS account.  To submit a hold, you will log into your SAMS account, click on “Scholarships” in the menu, and click the Request Hold button. This request must be received by October 1 for the Fall term and February 1 for the Spring term.

Failure to notify the ADHE of your intent to hold your scholarship, will likely result in the loss of your award. You will be notified by email to the primary address on your account when your hold request is processed.  If you are not sure if your situation qualifies, you can contact ADHE Financial Aid at 501-371-2050 or

Acceptable hold reasons are as follows:

  1. Student’s illness
  2. Family member’s illness
  3. Death in the family
  4. Financial hardship
  5. Military training
  6. Military deployment
  7. Internship or co-op
  8. Humanitarian endeavor
  9. Need an additional semester to earn an associate’s degree, or to complete pre-requisites for a specific program

Your Governor’s Scholars Program award can be renewed annually provided funding is available until you meet one of the following situations, whichever comes first:

  1. Earn a baccalaureate degree; or
  2. Receive the equivalent of eight (8) semester payments at an approved institution


If you are placed on Probation or Dropped from the scholarship, exceptions will be allowed for extenuating circumstances through an appeal.  When you are placed on Probation or Dropped from your scholarship, you will be notified by e-mail of your options to remedy your situation.  One of those options is to appeal, and you can click the appeal form link in that e-mail to start that process.  An appeal normally consists of a letter or statement of your situation, a copy of your unofficial transcript, and documentation showing proof of those circumstances.  The appeal will be due by the date listed in the e-mail you receive regarding your Dropped or Probationary status.  If the appeal is not approved and you are not already receiving the Academic Challenge Scholarship, you may be transitioned to the Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarship as long as you met the hour requirements for the academic year.  If you did not meet the hour requirements, you can apply for the Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarship in the next application cycle that normally begins October 1 of each year.