Galesburg Promise

Galesburg Promise is built on the belief that education is the key to regional vitality and economic development. The City of Galesburg established and funds this grant. The purpose of the grant is to provide an incentive for students to graduate from high school and provide an opportunity for post-secondary education to increase the pool of college graduates who can be gainfully employed in Galesburg and the surrounding area.

Galesburg Promise will pay up to 16 credits of tuition (excludes fees) per semester, according to an arranged percentage based on the number of years of attendance in Galesburg District 205, Galesburg Christian School, and Home School in the city of Galesburg. To allow the funds to help as many students as possible this is a last-dollar grant. Therefore, the student must apply for federal and state financial aid as well as other scholarships by the established deadlines in order to be considered for Galesburg Promise funding. All scholarships and grants are applied first toward tuition and then the Galesburg Promise will pick up the remainder of tuition after all other financial aid.


  • Graduate from Galesburg District 205, Galesburg Christian School, Home School in the city of Galesburg.
  • Submit Initial Application for the scholarship the year you graduate or the following year 
  • Limited to 64 credits paid under the award
  • Enroll in a post-secondary education program that will result in a degree or certificate from Carl Sandburg College
  • Complete the application process each year as outlined below

Apply for the Galesburg Promise Each Year


Application Dates: October 1 to June 15 (Priority deadline March 15)

**Funds are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis upon completion of the steps below. Apply early as eligible students could exceed the money available.  Sandburg recommends students file the FAFSA by  December 1 for potential MAP Grant funding. 


    STEPS TO APPLY: Due June 15 (Priority deadline March 15)
  1. Apply to Sandburg at Steps to Enroll
  2. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at  
  3. Apply for Galesburg Promise: mySandburg, Student Apps/Scholarship Application, Galesburg Promise Application.
  4. Apply for Foundation Scholarships: mySandburg/Student Apps/Scholarship Application, Carl Sandburg College Scholarship Application OR apply for two outside scholarships and submit proof of application. Foundation Scholarship application dates are October 1 to June 15 (priority deadline March 15) - Scholarships.
  5. Submit official high school transcripts (7th semester accepted for awarding). Send to Carl Sandburg College, Attn: Admissions, 2400 Tom L Wilson Blvd, Galesburg, IL 61401. A final high school transcript verifying graduation is required before funds can be applied to the student's account.
  6. Submit financial aid required documents. 


Funds Are Limited

Scholarships are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis to eligible students as long as funds are available. Students should complete their financial aid application as soon as possible to secure funding.

Stay Eligible

  • Maintain a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA and successfully complete 67% of your cumulative hours enrolled. If your GPA or completion rate falls below the requirements, your award will not be applied to charges. 
  • Enroll in a minimum of 9 credit hours (excluding summer)
  • Reapply annually

Frequently Asked Questions

Do all students receive the same financial benefit?

No. The benefit is prorated using the scale below based on the student’s length of attendance at Galesburg District #205, Costa, Galesburg Christian School, or Homeschooled while living in City of Galesburg:

  • 13 grades (K-12) = 100% 
  • 12 grades = 95%
  • 11 grades = 90%
  • 10 grades = 85%
  • 9 grades = 80%
  • 8 grades = 75%
  • 7 grades = 70%
  • 6 grades = 65%
  • 5 grades = 60%
  • 4 grades = 55%
  • 3 grades = 50%
  • Fewer than 3 grades = 0%

The length of attendance is the total of full grades a student completed in public school while living in the #205 School District as verified through school records. The percentage is the amount of tuition reduction that will be applied to the student’s account, up to a maximum of 16 hours each semester.

The Galesburg Promise Scholarship Application process is open from October 1st until March 15 of each academic year, allowing students to apply for scholarships to be awarded the following academic year.   

How do we Document Homeschool for Galesburg Promise?

Students who Homeschool need to provide documentation to show what years the student was homeschooled, transcripts from any courses taken outside of homeschool, and documentation of the family residence. Documentation may include tax returns, property tax documents, documentation from City Assessor’s office showing years of ownership/occupancy, and address. A signed statement from the parent to certify the years' homeschool was provided and the location of homeschool.

What if I am not covered for a 100% attendance benefit?

You are responsible for fees, books, and the percent of tuition not covered by Galesburg Promise. To make arrangements for payment, please contact the Business Office at 309.341.5210. For example, if you have completed 9 grades, your Galesburg Promise would cover 80% of tuition.  The student will pay any fees shown on the student statement plus 20% of the tuition charged.  Scholarships or grants awarded to the student will reduce the Galesburg Promise to allow funding to remain available for future generations.

How do I calculate how much Galesburg Promise I'm eligible for?

You can use the form found here to calculate your Galesburg Promise funds.

Payment Example

Tuition $2000, Fees $175, Outside Scholarship $500, Galesburg Promise 80% Award
Tuition $2000  
Fees 175
Student pays all fees
Scholarship and other Aid-$500  
Galesburg Promise-$1100 $2000 x 80% = 1600 less $500 other aid
Balance Due $575 Student Amount Due

How long am I eligible to receive Galesburg Promise?

Your first application for the Galesburg Promise Scholarship is due by March 15th of the year you graduate from High School or the year following high school graduation. Once you are accepted as a Galesburg Promise recipient, you may apply annually for a total of three years of funding toward a degree or certificate for a maximum of 64 hours or whichever comes first.

Is a new Galesburg Promise application required every year?

Yes. Each year you must complete the Galesburg Promise application and Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the established deadline.

Does the Galesburg Promise cover the cost of books and fees?

No. The Galesburg Promise is applied to tuition and the student is responsible for fees and book costs. 

Do I have to be a full-time student in order to receive Galesburg Promise?

No.  Fall and Spring semesters, minimum enrollment is 9 credit hours.  Galesburg Promise will pay for a maximum of 16 hours each semester.  The minimum enrollment requirement does not apply to the Summer semester.

What if I decide not to attend after I have signed up for classes?

If you decide not to attend after signing up for classes, you must officially drop your classes before the refund date. Refund dates vary based on the class. You can find the refund date for each course on the class schedule. If you fail to withdraw before the refund date, you may be held financially obligated for the cost of the classes

Will Galesburg Promise cover tuition for dual credit courses?

No. Students must have graduated from Galesburg High School (includes Costa attendance), Galesburg Christian School, or Home School in the City of Galesburg with documentation. Grades from high school dual credit courses are counted in your college grade point average when being reviewed for Galesburg Promise.

Will summer classes be covered by Galesburg Promise?

Yes. However, students must attend the previous spring semester in the Promise Program in order to qualify for summer session funds.

How is the funding for the scholarship administered?

Awards are made on a first-come, first-served basis upon completion of the Galesburg Promise Steps to Apply outlined above.


Is there an application date for mid-term graduates?

If you are a midyear high school graduate and intend to enroll at Sandburg for the following Spring semester, but you did not apply for Promise during your junior year of high school, you may petition the Financial Aid Office by December 15 for consideration.