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Keyword: community college

Expansion Creates Greater Opportunity for Students to Attend CCBC Tuition-free 

More Baltimore County residents now have access to a debt-free college education thanks to expanded eligibility for the Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship. Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, with support from the Baltimore County Council, increased the income level that qualify for the program from $85,000 to $150,000, allowing more middle-class residents the opportunity to attend Community College of Baltimore County free of tuition and fees.

Photo of Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski speaking

“Education is my number one priority, and that doesn’t stop when students graduate from our public school system. Higher education can open countless doors of opportunities for our students, and that’s why we’re taking steps to expand access to the opportunities available at our community colleges,” Olszewski said.

Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship Growth

Photo of a group holding Got Promise signs

The Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship has experienced tremendous growth since it was introduced in the spring of 2018. Last year, 111 scholarships were awarded. Today, there are nearly 400 Baltimore County College Promise scholarship recipients and that number continues to grow. With the expanded income eligibility requirements, CCBC expects a boost in inquiries as well as qualified students.

“The increased income requirements is a real game-changer for Baltimore County residents,” said CCBC President Sandra Kurtinitis. “Too often middle-class Americans are left out of opportunities like this. Their income is too high to qualify for Pell grants; yet, too low to enable them to send their children to community college full-time. The Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship is allowing academically-prepared students the opportunity to earn a college education debt-free. We are fortunate to have legislators who believe in the importance of public higher education and are willing to invest dollars behind this life-changing program.”

Eligibility Requirements

Photo of Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski standing next to three others

In addition to the income requirement, other eligibility requirements include: 

  • Be a Baltimore County resident
  • Have a GPA of 2.3 or higher
  • Be a 2015 to 2019 high school or external diploma degree graduate
  • Be enrolled full-time at CCBC (12 credits or more) 

Baltimore County College Promise scholarships cover all degree and certificate programs as well as select workforce training certification programs. The scholarship is calculated as a “last dollar in” award, meaning that it is applied after all other financial awards and state aid have been utilized.

CCBC student and scholarship recipient Christa Bryant says the Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship is making her pursuit of an associate degree stress-free.

“My mother, who is retired, no longer has to consider going back to work to help me cover my tuition,” says Bryant. “I can now take a full load of classes and not spend sleepless nights worrying about how to pay the bill.”


Students can apply for the Baltimore County College Promise Scholarship throughout the year. Watch the press event and, for complete application details, visit www.ccbcmd.edu/collegepromise.

About the Community College of Baltimore County 

Photo of Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski speaking in the foreground with someone looking on in the background

Since 1957, CCBC has opened the doors to accessible, affordable, high-quality education empowering generations of area residents to transform their lives and the lives of others. Each year, nearly 60,000 students enroll at the college’s main campuses, extension centers and online to make their starts, earn degrees, launch and build careers. CCBC offers the region’s most expansive selection of degree, certificate and workplace certification programs that prepare students for transfer, job entry and career advancement in such industries as business, education, health care, information technology, cybersecurity, construction and transportation. CCBC is nationally recognized as a leader in innovative learning strategies, among the nation’s top associate degree producers, and designated as a Military Times Best College 2018.

CCBC is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, 2nd Floor West, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (267-284-5000). The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.


Show Airs on Cable Channel 25 and Online

The latest edition of Baltimore County’s half-hour cable television public affairs show, “Hello Baltimore County,” features the County’s new College Promise program, an initiative to connect job-seekers with good jobs in growing fields, plus the Department of Aging’s array of programs and services for seniors and their families.

Baltimore County’s College Promise Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz and CCBC President Sandra Kurtinitis explain how the County is making CCBC tuition-free for eligible students.

Connect to a Better Job – Let Baltimore County’s new Job Connector initiative help you get job-ready to work in a growth industry.

40 Years Serving Seniors – Baltimore County’s Department of Aging is 40 and serving today’s seniors with more programs and services than ever.

You can also view the show on the County website’s Hello Baltimore County page. In addition to online access, the program runs several times per week on Cable Channel 25, in Baltimore County, at the following times:

Mondays: 1:30 p.m., 6 p.m., 10 p.m.

Tuesdays: 12 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 9 p.m.

Wednesdays: 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 4 p.m., 10 p.m.

Thursdays: 1 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 8 p.m.

Fridays: 11 a.m., 6 p.m.

Saturdays: 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m., 7 p.m., 10:30 p.m.

Sundays: 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m., 7 p.m., 10:30 p.m.


County Executive Announces Baltimore County College Promise Program

In a transformative move that would help make college a reality for hundreds of recent high school graduates, Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz announced this morning at CCBC Essex that his FY 19 budget proposal will include a request for a Baltimore County College Promise program. If approved by the County Council, this new need-based scholarship program, will begin with the Fall 2018 semester, and will cover tuition and mandatory fees at CCBC to enable eligible Baltimore County residents to complete an associate’s degree or workplace and certification program, up to a maximum of three years.

“This is a real game-changer for students from low or moderate income families for whom the benefits of a college education might otherwise be out of reach,” Kamenetz said. “It opens up a lifetime of career income opportunities.”

The Baltimore County College Promise program guarantees that CCBC college tuition will be free for eligible recent high school graduates who live in Baltimore County. It applies to students pursuing an associate’s degree or a licensure or certification program. The scholarship goes beyond federal, state and private scholarships to provide full tuition for qualified students to pursue and complete their education at CCBC. 

“The Baltimore County College Promise program is truly something to celebrate,” exclaimed CCBC President Sandra Kurtinitis. “It will increase access to higher education for hard-working Baltimore County students who otherwise might struggle to meet the financial obligation of going to college.  Students who receive a Promise Scholarship must be college ready, doubling the value of this investment. We are fortunate to have a County Executive who believes in the importance of public higher education and not only ‘talks the talk,’ but ‘walks the walk.’ The Baltimore County College Promise program is an investment in the future of Baltimore County students and our local economy.”

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our recent graduates, especially those with financial constraints, to take full advantage of the tremendous education and career-advancing opportunities at CCBC,” said BCPS Interim Superintendent Verletta White.

College Promise has Widespread Support Among County Council Members

“I know firsthand how much the people in my district value CCBC Catonsville,” said 1st District Councilman Tom Quirk. “To give individuals who might not be able to afford to go to college the opportunity to do so is vital to our future as a county, and frankly, as a nation. This is about family stability and economic growth.”

“There is nothing more important to a person than a good job, and access to higher education is vital in opening up opportunities for individuals,” said 2nd District Councilwoman Vicki Almond. “This is a very good day for Baltimore County.”

“Jobs. Jobs. Jobs.  This announcement is about jobs pure and simple,” said Council Chair Julian E. Jones, Jr.  “Helping people get the education they need to succeed is exactly what government ought to do.”

“For people in my district, this announcement will be a true lifesaver,” said 6th District Councilwoman Cathy Bevins. “Free college tuition will open up doors that otherwise would be closed. I am so proud to be a part of this effort.”

“Both the Essex and Dundalk campuses of CCBC are important resources in my community,” said 7th District Councilman Todd Crandell.  “Making college more affordable to those who struggle to make ends meet is a very good thing.”

Qualifications and Requirements

To be eligible, students must live in Baltimore County and have an adjusted household income of $69,000 or less, which is the median income for Baltimore County residents. Students must have graduated from a public, parochial or home school within the past two years with a GPA of 2.5 or better and complete a federal financial aid (FAFSA form). Baltimore County College Promise students must enroll full-time and be college-ready. They must maintain full-time enrollment and a GPA of at least 2.5. The scholarship applies only to the student’s first credential or degree. More details on eligibility and program parameters can be found on the attached fact sheet

How to Apply

Students who wish to learn more about the Baltimore County College Promise may visit the College Promise page on CCBC’s website

Program Cost

The current cost for full-time CCBC students taking 12 credits per semester is $1,865 in tuition and fees. The Baltimore County College Promise scholarship is calculated as a “last dollar in” award, meaning that it is applied after all other financial awards like Pell grants and state aid (not including loans) have been utilized. For example, students with $1,000 in financial aid would receive $865 from this new program to fill the gap.

CCBC estimates that approximately 1,100 students, who graduated in the past two years, are eligible for the first year of the program, and the projected cost for the first year is $980,000. Costs for years two and three are estimated at $1.8 million and $2.3 million respectively.  Baltimore County government will provide the funding for the Baltimore County College Promise scholarship from its operating budget that will be presented to the County Council for approval this April.

Current CCBC Student Enrollment

Currently, 67 percent of CCBC’s student population are Baltimore County residents and 95 percent of its graduates remain in the Baltimore region, benefitting local economies and communities. Some 46 percent of CCBC students receive financial aid, and 53 percent work at least 20 hours per week.

The Value of Education for Graduates and Society

Studies show that the average CCBC associate’s degree graduate working to their full potential will see an increase in earnings of $10,400 each year. Over a lifetime, this translates to more than $300,000 in additional earnings.

In addition to higher earnings, the scholarship improves college graduation rates, which promotes a stronger economy by enhancing the skills and job-readiness of the County’s workforce. A better educated labor pool increases the attractiveness of the region to employers, fueling economic growth, prosperity and overall quality of life.

The County Executive will present his budget to the County Council on April 12.  The County Council will vote on the budget on May 24.


 
 
Revised September 11, 2017