Aspire NWU Scholarship Program

The Aspire NWU Scholarship Program will fully fund tuition through federal, state and NWU merit-based and need-based aid for Southeast Community College's Learn to Dream Scholars who qualify for the federal Pell Grant. The program will serve most students whose family adjusted gross incomes are at or below $60,000.

Thanks to the generosity of the Acklie Charitable Foundation, Nelnet and Union Bank & Trust, the Learn to Dream Scholars Program provides economically-disadvantaged students from Lincoln public and private schools the opportunity to complete 60 semester credit hours at one of SCC’s campuses without paying tuition and fees. The program also provides 30 semester credit hours to students who reside in SCC’s 15-county service area.

For Aspire NWU students, Nebraska Wesleyan first applies state and federal grants to the cost of tuition. Next, NWU applies the subsidized student loan and then provides scholarships to cover the remaining tuition cost. Scholarships and grants comprise 85% or more of the cost of tuition. Outside scholarships, family financial resources, unsubsidized federal student loans and on-campus work study may be used for additional educational expenses, such as room and board, fees and books.

SCC students who complete 12 credit hours from any of its six learning centers are eligible to transfer to NWU. To qualify, a student must:

  • be a current student or graduate of the Learn to Dream Scholars Program
  • be a Nebraska resident
  • be federal Pell Grant eligible as determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) apply and enroll in a traditional NWU undergraduate degree program
  • carry a full-time academic course load of 12-18 credit hours per semester

How to Apply for Aspire NWU

Step 1 – Apply for admission to Nebraska Wesleyan University

Aspire NWU candidates must apply and be admitted as a new transfer student.

Step 2 – Submit a FAFSA

Interested students must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at https://fafsa.ed.gov/ and add NWU’s school code (002555). If required, recipients must complete the federal verification process to confirm eligibility for the Aspire NWU Scholarship Program. While there is no formal closing date, students are strongly encouraged to complete the application for admission and the FAFSA by March 1.

Step 3 – Watch for SAR

Completing the FAFSA will generate the Student Aid Report (SAR) on which the expected family contribution is listed. Eligibility will be specified when the financial aid award is formally announced. The NWU financial aid staff will confirm your official eligibility for the Aspire NWU Scholarship Program.

Renewal Process

Students will remain eligible until they have completed their bachelor’s degree, provided they file a FAFSA prior to March 1 each year and remain Pell-eligible. Students must also maintain full-time status and at least a 2.0 GPA. Aspire NWU funding covers the full cost of tuition after state and federal funds (including the maximum Subsidized Federal Direct Loan eligibility) are applied. Outside scholarships, family financial resources, unsubsidized federal student loans and on-campus work study may be used for additional educational expenses, such as room and board, fees and books.