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Heiner: Scholarship Program Will Put Kentuckians Back To Work

Phillip M. Bailey

Hal Heiner, the secretary of Kentucky’s Education and Workforce Development Cabinet, says a new free community college tuition program will help put people who have exited the labor force back to work.

“I am hopeful that this catches fire across the commonwealth and individuals that may have been out of high school for ten or twenty years or more say ‘I’ve always wanted to do that’ and now here’s an easy way to do it,” Heiner said.

The scholarship would be the “last dollar in” for students seeking two-year degrees at schools in Kentucky, paying for the rest of tuition and fee expenses not covered by federal financial aid.

Students will be able to use the scholarship to pursue two-year degrees in the state’s community college system or any other accredited school in the state.

However the program has been criticized for limiting recipients to certain degrees.

To qualify, students have to have a high school diploma, be a resident of Kentucky and seek a degree that can be used in one of the state’s “top 5 high-demand industries,” as determined by the state.

Ryland Barton is the Managing Editor for Collaboratives for Kentucky Public Radio, a group of public radio stations including WKMS, WFPL in Louisville, WEKU in Richmond and WKYU in Bowling Green. A native of Lexington, Ryland most recently served as the Capitol Reporter for Kentucky Public Radio. He has covered politics and state government for NPR member stations KWBU in Waco and KUT in Austin.
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