The Washington State Governors’ Scholarship for Foster Youth is a scholarship program that helps young men and women who are currently in an open dependency court order in Washington State, or an open dependency tribal court order, continue their education and earn a college degree. Eligible students must meet specific criteria. The program is supported by Governor Jay Inslee, The Honorable Chris Gregoire (former Governor), The Honorable Gary Locke (former Governor), and other former governors of Washington State.
Proceeds from the Governors’ Cup – an annual golf tournament – provide funding for approximately 40 new scholars each year. Scholarship award amounts range from $2,000 to $4,000 depending on the college of attendance.
Click here for eligible colleges. Selected students can access the annual scholarship for up to five years to complete their undergraduate study. Students must be enrolled full time and maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to renew the scholarship each year.
To be considered for the Washington State Governors’ Scholarship students must:
- Be enrolled as a Washington state high school senior and on track to graduate from high school during the 2015-2016 academic year.
- Have a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.0 or greater.
- Plan to enroll in college on a full-time basis, beginning the fall term of 2016, and complete a program of study at an eligible, nonprofit accredited public or independent college or university in the state of Washington.
- Have resided in Washington state for at least three academic years prior to high school graduation.
- Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
- If under 18, students must currently have an open dependency court order that resulted from intervention by Washington state on their behalf and they have been placed in any of the following living situations:
- Foster Care
- Family Foster Care, with non-relative adults
- Kinship Care, with relatives
- Residential/Group Care
- Dependency Guardianship (with either relatives or non-relatives)
- Guardianship (with either relatives or non-relatives)
- If over 18, students must have lived in a court-ordered foster care, dependency guardianship or guardianship until emancipation, (age 18).
- The applicant is currently, or was until age 18, in federally recognized care. The applicant has been classified by the United States government as an unaccompanied minor refugee, is a legal permanent resident and is in legal care, (or was in care until emancipation) of a private non-profit agency in Washington state.
- The applicant is currently, or was until age 18, under a dependency tribal court order that placed the student outside the home.
Applicants are not eligible if they:
- Have been adopted.
- Returned to live with their parents before turning 18, (regardless of whether the court continued to remain involved).
- Have had their dependency court order dismissed.
- Were not dependent to federal, state or tribal court prior age 18.
The 2016-2017 Governors' Scholarship application will be available on January 4, 2016. The online application must be submitted by Monday, February 29, 2016 at 5 p.m. PST.
In addition to submitting the online application, you must also mail your transcript and a letter of recommendation to College Success Foundation.
- Transcript: You must submit an official transcript from your high school, so be sure to request one from your school in advance.
- Letter of Recommendation: Please provide this form to your recommender to complete and submit with your letter of recommendation.
- Copy of Dependency Court Order: Please provide a copy of the official court document reflecting the current placement situation. Copies can be obtained from a social worker.
A sample application is available for you to preview the questions asked in the online application.