R609C, Regents’ Scholarship

R609-1 Purpose: The Regents’ Scholarship encourages students to complete the Regents’ Recommended High School Curriculum, in order to provide better access to higher education opportunities and to reward students for preparing academically for college.

R609-2 References

2.1. Utah Code  Section 53B-8-108 et seq., Regents’ Scholarship Program.

2.2. Utah Code Section 53B-2-101(1), Institutions of Higher Education

2.3. Utah Admin. Code §R277-700-7, High School Requirements (Effective for Graduating Students Beginning with the 2010-2011 School Year).

R609-3 Definitions

3.1. “Advanced Math” means any of the following courses: pre-calculus, calculus, statistics, AP calculus AB, AP calculus BC, AP statistics, college courses Math 1030 and higher, IB Math SL, HL, and Further Math.

3.2. “Board” means the Utah State Board of Regents.

3.3. “College Course Work” means any instance in which college credit is earned, including but not limited to, concurrent enrollment, distance education, dual enrollment, or early college.

3.4. “Eligible Institutions” means institutions of higher education listed in Utah Code Section 53B-2-101(1)..

3.5. “Excusable Neglect” means a failure to take proper steps at the proper time, not in consequence of carelessness, inattention, or willful disregard of the scholarship application process, but in consequence of some unexpected or unavoidable hindrance or accident.

3.6. “Good Cause” means the student’s failure to meet a scholarship application process requirement was due to circumstances beyond the student’s control or circumstances that are compelling and reasonable.

3.7. “High School” means a public school established by the Utah State Board of Education or private high school within the boundaries of the State of Utah. If a private high school, it shall be accredited by a regional accrediting body approved by the Board.

3.8. “Scholarship Appeals Committee” means the committee designated by Commissioner of Higher Education to review appeals of Regents’ Scholarship award decisions and take final agency action regarding awards.

3.9.  “Scholarship Award” means a  scholarship awarded to all applicants who meet the eligibility requirements of section R609-4.

3.10. “Scholarship Staff” means the employees assigned to review Regents’ Scholarship applications and make initial decisions awarding the scholarships.

3.11. “Substantial Compliance” means the applicant, in good faith, demonstrated clear intent to comply with the scholarship application requirements and has demonstrated likely eligibility, but failed to precisely comply with the application specifics.

R609-4 Award Requirements

4.1. To qualify for the Regents’ Scholarship, the applicant shall satisfy the following criteria:

4.1.1. Graduate from a Utah high school with a minimum, non-weighted GPA of 3.3.

4.1.2. Complete four credits of English.

4.1.3. Complete four credits of math, including one course of advanced math.

4.1.4. Complete three credits of lab-based biology, chemistry and physics.

4.1.5. Complete two credits of world languages.

4.1.6. Complete three credits of social science.

4.1.7. Complete the ACT with a minimum score of 22.

4.1.8. Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

4.2. A student may satisfy a course requirement through a competency-based assessment provided it is documented for credit on an official transcript.

4.3. The courses completed must be unique except when repeated for a higher grade.

4.4. Repeated course work will not count toward accumulation of required credits.

4.5. College Course Work: College course work will only be evaluated if the applicant submits an official college transcript.  If an applicant enrolls in and completes a college course worth three or more college credits, this shall be counted as one high school credit toward the scholarship requirements.

4.6. Mandatory Enrollment:  An award recipient attending a credit-granting eligible institution shall enroll in a minimum of 12 credit hours per academic semester, beginning with the fall semester after high school graduation. An award recipient attending a non-credit granting institution must enroll full time in a program eligible for federal aid by September 1 after high school graduation. The institution at which the student attends shall verify the recipient has met the enrollment requirement.

4.6.1. Scholarship recipients must elect whether to use the award funds at credit granting institutions or non-credit granting institutions.  The decision is irrevocable; recipients may not transfer awards between non-credit granting and credit granting institutions.

4.7. New Century Scholarship:  A recipient shall not receive both a Regents’ Scholarship and the New Century Scholarship established in Utah Code Section 53B-8-105.

609-5 Application Procedures

5.1. Application Deadline: Applicants shall submit an official scholarship application no later than February 1 of the year that they graduate from high school.  The Board may establish a priority deadline each year. Applicants who meet the priority deadline may be given first priority or consideration for the scholarship.  Subject to funding, students may be considered based on the date of they completed and submitted their application.

5.2. Required Documentation: Applicants shall submit the following documents:

5.2.1. The online Regents’ Scholarship application.

5.2.2. An official high school paper or electronic transcript, official college transcript(s) when applicable, and any other miscellaneous official transcripts demonstrating all completed courses and GPA.

5.2.3. If a student completed coursework at an educational institution outside of the district from which the student graduated, the student must submit an official transcript from the school at which he or she completed the coursework if the courses completed and grades earned are not reflected in the official high school transcript.

5.2.4. Verified ACT score(s).

R609-6  Award Amounts and Renewals.

6.1. Funding Constraints of Awards: The Board will determine award amounts, depending on the annual legislative appropriation, whether the institution is a credit granting or non-credit granting institution, and the number of qualified applicants.

6.2. Scholarship Award: Students who meet the eligibility criteria and enroll at a credit granting institution will receive a  four-semester scholarship award, the amount of which will be determined annually by the Board. Students who enroll in a non-credit granting institution will receive a one-time scholarship award, the amount of which will be determined annually by the Board, which the institution may disburse over the course of a recipient’s enrollment within this policy’s limits and requirements.

6.3. Ongoing Eligibility:  Scholarship recipients who enroll at a credit granting institution must maintain a 3.0 GPA and complete a minimum of 12 credit hours per academic semester to remain eligible for the award.  Students who earn less than a 3.0 Semester GPA will be placed on probation. If the recipient again at any time earns less than a 3.3 GPA the scholarship may be revoked. Institutions shall verify the recipient has met these requirements.  Recipients who do not maintain eligibility forfeit the remaining award amount.

R609-7. Time Constraints and Deferrals

7.1. Time Limitation: Scholarship funds are only available to a recipient for five years after their high school graduation date.   

7.2. Upon the first day a recipient begins courses using the scholarship funds at a non-credit granting institution, the recipient must use the award in its entirety within two years, unless extended under section 7.3.  This time limit does not extent the five-year award availability under section 7.1.

7.3. Deferral or Leave of Absence: Recipients who will not enroll as a student shall apply for a deferral or leave of absence with their institution.

7.3.1. Deferrals or leaves of absence may be granted, at the discretion of the institution, for military service, humanitarian/religious service, documented medical reasons, and other exigent reasons.

7.3.2. An approved deferral or leave of absence will not extend the time limits of the scholarship.  The scholarship may only be used for academic terms that begin within five years after the recipient’s high school graduation date.

R609-8  Transfers

8.1. Recipients who elect to attend a credit granting institution may transfer to another credit granting institution and retain the scholarship award.  Recipients are responsible to inform the Office of the Commissioner of their intent to transfer.  The Office of the Commissioner shall coordinate the transfer of scholarship funds and information.

R609-9  Scholarship Determinations and Appeals

9.1. Scholarship Determinations:  Submission of a scholarship application does not guarantee a scholarship award.  The Scholarship Staff shall review individual scholarship applications and determine eligibility.  Awards are based on available funding, applicant pool, and applicants’ completion of scholarship criteria by the specified deadline.

9.2. Appeals: An applicant has the right to appeal the Scholarship Staff’s adverse decision by filing an appeal with the Scholarship Appeals Committee subject to the following conditions:

9.2.1. Applicants may submit a written appeal through either the U.S. Mail or their Regents Scholarship Student Account.  Appeals must be postmarked (if mailed) or submitted online within 30 days of the date on which the scholarship notification was issued.

9.2.2. In the appeal, the applicant must provide his or her full name, mailing address, the high school he or she last attended, a statement of the reason for the appeal, and all information or evidence that supports the appeal. The failure of an applicant to provide the information in this subsection shall not preclude the acceptance of an appeal.

9.2.3. An appeal filed before the applicant receives official notification from the Scholarship Staff of its decision may not be considered.

9.2.4. If an applicant failed to file his or her appeal on time, the Scholarship Appeals Committee shall notify the applicant of the late filing and give him or her an opportunity to explain the reasons for failing to file the appeal by the deadline. The Scholarship Appeals Committee shall not have jurisdiction to consider the merits of an appeal that is filed beyond the deadline unless it determines the applicant established excusable neglect.

9.2.5. The Scholarship Appeals Committee shall review the appeal to determine if the award decision was made in error, or if the applicant demonstrated substantial compliance with the scholarship application requirements but failed to meet one or more requirements for good cause.

9.2.6. If the Scholarship Appeals Committee determines the applicant has shown by a preponderance of the evidence that the initial decision was made in error, it shall either reverse the initial decision or remand it back to the Scholarship Staff for further review in accordance with the Appeals Committee’s instructions.

9.2.7. If the Scholarship Appeals Committee determines the applicant has shown by a preponderance of the evidence that he or she demonstrated substantial compliance with the application process requirements and good cause for failing to meet one or more of the requirements, the Appeals Committee shall grant the applicant a reasonable period of time to complete the remaining requirements and to resubmit the completed application to the Scholarship Staff for a redetermination.  In such a case, the applicant shall have the right to appeal an adverse decision according to this rule.

9.2.8. The Scholarship Appeals Committee’s decision shall be in writing and contain its findings of facts, reasoning and conclusions of law and notice of the right to judicial review.

9.2.9. The Scholarship Appeals Committee’s decision represents the final agency action.  An applicant who disagrees with the Scholarship Appeal Committee’s Decision may seek judicial review in accordance with Utah Code Ann. 63G-4-402.

R609-10 Reporting

10.1. As directed by Commissioner’s staff, eligible institutions shall report to the Board of Regents the following:

10.1.1. The names of students the institutions awarded Regents’ Scholarship funds.

10.1.2. Enrollment information such as the current GPA, the number of credits completed, and deferment or leave of absence information.

10.1.3. Other information deemed necessary to evaluate eligibility or the effectiveness of the program.

10.2. The Board of Regents may, at any time, request additional documentation or data related to the Regents Scholarship and may review or formally audit an eligible institution’s compliance with this policy.

Adopted June 4, 1999, amended July 12, 1999, April 20, 2001, May 31, 2002, September 15, 2006.  Amended and approved by the Board of Regents October 16, 2009, April 1, 2010, March 25, 2011, March 29, 2013, April 1, 2016, November 17, 2017, and May 17, 2019.