Oklahoma’s Promise (OHLAP)

money rollsIf your family’s income is in the average range or less, Oklahoma has a deal for you: free college tuition in exchange for taking solid college-prep courses and staying out of trouble.

But you have to jump on this early in your high school career. Applications are due by June 30 after your 10th grade year. Applying during 8th or 9th grade is even better. That gives you the lead time to complete the required high school courses, including: 

  • four years of English,
  • three years of math,
  • three years of history and citizenship,
  • two years of laboratory science, and
  • two years of either foreign language or computer science and technology. 

The free tuition offer, called Oklahoma’s Promise, is designed to make sure no Oklahoma student is kept out of college by high tuition costs. The program is also known as the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Program (OHLAP). 

Oklahoma’s Promise scholarships cover full tuition (but not fees and other costs) at any public community college, technology center or university in Oklahoma. It covers part of the tuition at private colleges, universities and career schools in the state. Since it started in 1996, Oklahoma’s Promise has paid more than $240 million in scholarships to more than 100,000 students. Another 19,000 students will have scholarships for fall 2010.

To qualify, you have to take the specified courses and maintain a 2.5 high school grade point average. Your family income must be $50,000 or less -- which takes in a lot of middle class families -- at the time you apply. (The  median household income in Oklahoma is $45,494.) For students who will start college in the 2012-2013 academic year and after -- which generally includes anyone applying now -- family income must be $100,000 or less at the time you start college. You also have to maintain certain grade point averages in college. For details see Oklahoma’s Promise and this Oklahoma's Promise brochure