A new scholarship with Amarillo College, THRIVE, will allow more than 8,500 students to receive two years of college courses at no charge. The scholarship, which covers the next six years, is a "last money in" tuition assistance program that applies to 60 hours of tuition, books, and even fees at AC.
Students from Amarillo High School, Caprock High School, Palo Duro High School, and Tascosa High School may apply for the scholarship funding so long as they meet the program's eligibility criteria.
The THRIVE Amarillo Scholarship will be funded through the public-private partnership of four local organizations: Amarillo Independent School District, the Amarillo Area Foundation, AC, and the Amarillo Economic Development Corporation.
“With THRIVE Amarillo, a group of committed partners has come together to provide tuition, books and funding to cover fees to students from all Amarillo ISD high schools,” said Clay Stribling, President and CEO of the Amarillo Area Foundation. “Opportunities like THRIVE only happen when community stakeholders are unified by a common goal.”
This scholarship could benefit more than just the student recipients. It will help foster a strong, highly educated workforce in the city, which could attract businesses to the area. According to the Align Amarillo Strategic Plan study conducted last year, only 27 percent of Amarillo residents have advanced degrees (bachelor's or higher) compared to the national average of 36 percent – something the THRIVE Amarillo Scholarship hopes to change.
“Amarillo is a business-friendly city,” said Mayor Ginger Nelson. “Our investment in THRIVE fortifies our commitment to build a strong workforce for Amarillo businesses.”
The goal of the scholarship is to increase high school graduation rates, provide a cost-free pathway for students to pursue higher education in their hometown, and diversify the Amarillo area workplace to support a growing economy.