Top 20% Scholarship
Top 20% Scholarship covers tuition for up to six semesters of enrollment for eligible degree seeking students. To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be a resident of Community College District 522 at the time of high school completion and while attending SWIC, be eligible to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Illinois Alternative Application for Student Aid, and place into the Top 20% of one of the following:
- High School Graduates: Ranked in the top 20% of the graduating high school class on the final high school transcript OR placed into the 80th percentile on the ACT or SAT examination by earning a composite score of 1240 or higher on the SAT or 25 or higher on the ACT.
- High School Equivalency Completers: Score in the top 20% of their equivalency group on GED or other high school equivalency test.
- Homeschool Graduates: Must be at least 16 years of age and placed into the 80th percentile on the ACT or SAT examination by earning a composite score of 1240 or higher on the SAT or 25 or higher on the ACT.
All applicants must meet all of the following non-negotiable conditions. Failure to do so will result in the loss of the scholarship for which there is no appeal process to regain.
- All recipients of this scholarship must be a resident of Community College District 522 at the time of high school
completion and during attendance at SWIC.
- Every new academic year, students must renew the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) prior to the start
of the fall term. A student’s financial aid file must be complete with an official financial aid award prior to receipt of the
scholarship. The deadline to complete all necessary FAFSA required paperwork and scholarship application is the 2nd
week of the 1st semester of attendance. SWIC’s school code is 001636.
- A complete Top 20% Application (including all required application information) must be submitted by the second
week of the first semester of attendance following high school completion.
- The scholarship must be used toward enrollment within the academic year immediately following high school
completion: Fall (8/19/2023), Spring (1/23/2024) or Summer (6/3/2024). The scholarship may be used for the summer
semester immediately following high school completion only if continuously enrolled in the fall semester of the following
academic year and attends the fall semester. This will be evaluated at the time of awarding and will be based on the first
high school credential received.
- High school graduates ranked in the top 20% of their graduating class must provide an official final high school
transcript including the number of students in the class and the individual class rank or official record of a qualifying
ACT/SAT score. If the official transcript has already been sent to Enrollment Services, please notify the Financial Aid
- High school equivalency completers must be ranked in the top 20% of their equivalency group. Proof must be
provided by submitting a non-returnable copy of their high school equivalent certificate and official letter from the Adult
Basic Education Office identifying them as scoring in the top 20% of their equivalency group.
- ACT or SAT scores for high school graduates or homeschool graduates must have a composite score of 25/36 or higher
on the ACT test or 1240/1600 or higher on the SAT test. Proof must be provided by submitting a non-returnable copy of
official ACT scores.
- If the student attends any other college, university, trade school, etc. after high school completion prior to attending
SWIC, the student is not eligible to apply for the scholarship. Dual credit earned while the student is still in high school
does not affect eligibility.
- Students may receive the scholarship for up to six semesters of continuous enrollment. Summer attendance is not
required, but the scholarship will be awarded unless otherwise requested in writing. Students must enroll in consecutive
fall and spring semester. A gap between fall and spring terms, will result in loss of the scholarship (excluding summer
- To maintain continuous scholarship eligibility, students must maintain a 3.0 semester GPA and a cumulative
completion rate of 67%, regardless of the source of tuition payment. Cumulative completion rate may be calculated by
dividing total hours earned by total hours attempted.
- The scholarship pays tuition only for classes that appear on the student’s academic transcript. It does not pay fees,
books, fees associated with proficiency examinations, or fees for dropped classes that are not on transcript (tuition cost).
- Students must be degree or certificate seeking at SWIC to receive the scholarship.