The mission of the Scholarship/Grants Program is to provide opportunities for students to obtain scholarships, grants, and tuition savings programs.
The goals of the Scholarship/Grants Program are:
1. Effectively and efficiently administer assigned programs
2. Achieve and maintain high standards of customer services.
3. Create a motivating environment to maximize staff productivity.
The Scholarship/Grants Program includes the following activities:
1. Paul Douglas Scholarships - Federal funding for scholarship awards was rescinded for the 1995-96 fiscal year and has not been funded for subsequent years. However, under current federal guidance, the agency must assure that former recipients complete their obligation by teaching or repayment.
2. State Student Incentive Grants (SSIG) - Provides need-based grants to academically qualified students. Each college and university establishes the annual award amount within the limits established by this agency. This federal program requires a state match and mandates that the non-federal share of the total amount of these grants shall come through direct state appropriations.
3. T.H. Harris Scholarship Program - Provides awards to undergraduate students attending state supported colleges and universities. Qualifications include a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) from a Louisiana high school. This program was amended to include undergraduates at the LSU Medical Center and the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine. The program is in the process of being phased out. No new awards have been made since academic year 1995-96. Renewal recipients will continue to be funded as long as they meet the continuation academic criteria.
4. Rockefeller Scholarship Program - Annually provides 60 scholarship awards of $1,000 each to Louisiana residents engaged in the study of wildlife, forestry, or marine science at Louisiana colleges and universities. Repayment of funds received is required if a student fails to successfully complete the prescribed course of study.
5. Louisiana Tuition Assistance Plan (TAP) - Provides tuition awards for academically qualified Louisiana residents attending Louisiana public colleges and universities. Act 1375 of 1997 terminates TAP effective academic year 1998-99 and replaces it with a component of the Tuition Opportunity Program for Students (TOPS).
6. Louisiana Honors Scholarship Program - Provides tuition awards to Louisiana's high school graduates who rank in the top 5% of their graduating class and who attend a Louisiana public or approved private college or university, or state technical institute. Act 1375 of 1997 terminates this program effective academic year 1998-99, and replaces it with a component of TOPS.
7. Student Tuition Assistance and Revenue Trust (START) - A college savings plan which awards a state grant as an incentive for families to save for the projected future costs of their children's postsecondary education.
8. Tuition Opportunity Program for Students (TOPS) - A comprehensive, merit-based student aid program consisting of a series of components, with each component having its own eligibility criteria and titled award. TOPS provides financial assistance to Louisiana students for the purpose of pursuing a postsecondary education.
The Scholarship/Grants program administers state and federal scholarships, grants, and the tuition savings program.
OBJECTIVES AND PERFORMANCE INDICATORS
1. The Scholarship/Grant Division program will maintain a ratio of administrative costs to state program expenditures of less than 5% through FY 1998-99.
1. TOPS Opportunity Award replaces the Tuition Assistance Scholarship; TOPS Performance Award replaces the Louisiana Honors Scholarship Program effective FY 1998-99.
RESOURCE ALLOCATION FOR THE PROGRAM
SOURCE OF FUNDING
This program is funded with the general fund, fees and self-generated revenues, statutory dedications and federal funds. The fees and self-generated revenues are derived from award fees used to defray the costs related to processing scholarships and grants (FY 1996-1997 only). The first statutory dedication is the sixty (60) $1,000 scholarships from the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge Trust and Protection Fund for students studying wildlife, forestry and marine sciences. The second statutory dedication is the Teacher Preparation Loan Fund, pursuant to Act 476 of the 1997 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature. (Per R.S. 39:32B. (8), see table below for a listing of expenditures out of each statutory dedicated fund.) Federal funds include the following: (1) the State Student Incentive Grant (SSIG) for needy, academically qualified students; and (2) the Paul Douglas scholarships to encourage individuals to pursue teaching careers.
ANALYSIS OF RECOMMENDATION
The total means of financing for this program is recommended at 166.9% of the existing operating budget. It represents 99.6% of the total request ($34,413,622) for this program. The major reasons for this program's increase from the existing operating budget are due to the two TOPS workload adjustments and a technical adjustment. The program's FY 1997-1998 combined appropriation for the Honors Scholarship Program ($9,838,730 for 4,308 students) and the Tuition Assistance Program ($7,422,479 for 3,461 students) is $17,261,209 for 7,769 students. It is anticipated that under the new TOPS program, an additional $13,134,871 will be required to provide tuition assistance to 11,790 eligible students (a net increase of 4,021 students). These students are comprised of: (1) 4,701 Opportunity Award students and $10,386,398 (2.5 Grade Point Average [GPA]; minimum 19 American College Test [ACT] score; at $2,209 [average public school tuition]); (2) 3,309 Performance Award students at $8,634,339 (3.5 GPA; minimum 23 ACT score; at $2,609 [average public school tuition plus $400]); and (3) 3,780 Honors Award students at $11,375,343 (3.5 GPA; minimum 27 ACT score; at $3,009 [average public school tuition plus $800]). It should be noted that the Opportunity Awards replace the former Tuition Assistance Program and the Performance Awards replace the former Honors Scholarships. The net increase of 4,021 new TOPS students will require $168,450 in additional salaries and operating costs to pay and outfit an additional three (3) education program managers to process the increase in applications and to administer the various awards. The $400,000 Teacher Preparation Loan Program (a statutory dedication) and its general fund administrative component ($35,794 and one  classified position), also known as the "Teachers' TOPS", has been moved into this program by a workload adjustment from the Loan Operations Program so as to account for all TOPS components in a single budgetary unit.
ACQUISITIONS AND MAJOR REPAIRS
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