State Council of Higher Education for Virginia

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Virginia Guaranteed Assistance Program

General Description and Purpose

The purpose of the Virginia Guaranteed Assistance Program (VGAP) is to provide an incentive to financially needy students now attending elementary and secondary school in Virginia to raise their expectations and their academic performance and to consider higher education an achievable objective in their future. The law requires that the awards to undergraduates be proportional to need so that the students with the greatest need receive the largest awards.

Application Process

Contact the financial aid office of the college or university you plan to attend for application process and deadlines.


In order for an undergraduate student to be eligible for an award, a student must:

  1. Be admitted into a Virginia public two-or four-year college or university;
  2. Be enrolled full-time in an approved degree, certificate, or diploma program;
  3. Be a domiciliary resident of Virginia as defined by the Code of Virginia §23-7.4;
  4. Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen;
  5. Demonstrate financial need as determined by the institution;
  6. Graduate from a Virginia high school or complete a program of home school instruction in accordance with § 22.1-254.1 (students who obtain a GED are not eligible);
  7. Have at least a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale (or its equivalent);
  8. If a home school completer: achieve a SAT verbal and math combined score of at least 900 or ACT Composite score of at least 19, and
  9. Be classified as a dependent student for federal financial aid purposes


The actual awards will vary by institution; however, those students found to be in the neediest category will receive awards of at least tuition. The maximum award is the cost of tuition, required fees, and a book allowance.


Awards may be renewed for up to three additional years provided that the student:

  1. Maintains continuous full-time enrollment;
  2. Earns at least 24 credit hours during the previous award year;
  3. Maintains domiciliary residency in Virginia;
  4. Demonstrates continued financial need;
  5. Maintains a college grade point average of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale, or its equivalent; and
  6. Maintains the satisfactory academic progress standards of the institution for federal student aid programs.

This fact sheet is produced by SCHEV to provide a general overview of the program.

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