Every year LA GEAR UP students compete for $200,000 in RFS scholarships. Awards of $1,000, $500, and $250 are awarded to selected student members of the LA GEAR UP cohort from the graduating classes of 2014 and 2015 at participating schools. Each participating school is eligible for a limited number of RFS award slots.
RFS awards are paid into START Savings Accounts. Scholarships can be used for college tuition, fees, and other eligible Qualified Higher Education Expenses.
For 2012-13, LA GEAR UP is transitioning the RFS scholarship program into a student identification and award system via the Louisiana Connect College & Career Readiness portal. This eliminates the need for students to complete paper applications by leveraging data available in Louisiana Connect as provided by students, parents, and key program partners. From May 2013 through September 1, 2103, students and parents will be able to engage Louisiana Connect in order to earn points toward their 2012-13 RFS scholarship eligibility. From September 2, 2013, through the spring of 2014, students and parents will be able earn their Louisiana Connect points and other points as identified on the RFS Student Checklist available below for the 2013-14 RFS awards cycle.
In March of 2013, over 4,000 previous winners of Rewards for Success scholarships were mailed START Savings Account statements which identify their account details. These account balances include a student’s initial RFS scholarship award and any additional interest earned or earnings enhancements applied to the account by the START Savings Program. For an explanation of the START Savings Program, view the video below:
Students are eligible to use their Rewards for Success scholarship funds once they have enrolled in post-secondary education. The disbursement form below must be completed and submitted to the Louisiana GEAR UP office in order for those funds to go to the institution where the student is enrolled. Note that students currently enrolled in high school can use their Rewards for Success scholarship funds for dual enrollment or summer coursework offered through area colleges.