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 to provide funding incentive for students graduating from the Galesburg school districts. It provides 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-schooled students in the city of Galesburg. To allow the funds to help as many students as possible this is a last-dollar grant, meaning the student must apply for federal and state financial aid as well as other scholarships by the established deadlines 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.


  • Students who have previously filed a Promise application do not have to reapply for the scholarship in future years.
  • Returning students must still fulfill the two additional scholarship applications (the General Sandburg Scholarship Application fulfills this requirement) and must also complete the FAFSA.



  • Graduate from Galesburg District 205, Galesburg Christian School or have been home schooled 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.
Application dates: October 1 to June 15 (priority deadline March 15)

**Funds are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis upon completion of the steps below. Apply early as eligible students could exceed the money available. Sandburg recommends filing your 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).
  5. Submit official high school transcripts (7th semester accepted for awarding) by mailing 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. 

If you have applied for Promise at least once, you may follow the steps below to renew your Promise scholarship. (You don't need to submit a new Promise application.)


STEPS TO APPLY: Due June 15 (priority deadline March 15)
  1. 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).
  2. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) at  
  3. Submit financial aid required documents. 



Funds are limited

Scholarships are awarded on a first-come, first-served 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). 


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 home schooled while living in the 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 1 until June 15 of each academic year, allowing students to apply for scholarships to be awarded the following academic year.   

How do we document home schooling for Galesburg Promise?

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

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 nine 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: $2,000
  • Fees: $175
  • Outside scholarship: $500
  • Galesburg Promise 80% award:
    • Tuition: $2,000  
    • Fees: $175
    • Student pays all fees.
    • Scholarship and other aid: $500  
    • Galesburg Promise: $1,100 ($2,000 x 80% = $1,600 less $500 other aid)
    • Balance due: $575 student amount due

Our full cost of attendance can be found on our webpage.

How long am I eligible to receive Galesburg Promise?

Your first application for the Galesburg Promise Scholarship is due by June 15 of the year you graduate from high school or the year following high school graduation. You may receive Promise for a total of three years or a maximum of 64 credit hours, or whichever comes first. See the Steps to Apply for Returning Students above.

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 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 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 mid-year 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.