Introduced by Senator Dunne of Windsor District, Senator Bartlett of Lamoille District, Senator Kitchel of Caledonia District and Senator Miller of Chittenden District
Subject: Education; green mountain service scholarship; AmeriCorps service
Statement of purpose: This bill proposes to enable a graduate of a Vermont high school who has served in AmeriCorps to receive a loan which may be used to pay expenses at a Vermont college or university in a program leading to a bachelor’s degree; and to stipulate that a portion of the loan may be forgiven for each year that the student remains in Vermont following graduation from the college or university.
AN ACT RELATING TO GREEN MOUNTAIN SERVICE SCHOLARSHIPS
It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:
Sec. 1. 16 V.S.A. chapter 87, subchapter 4A is redesignated to read:
Subchapter 4A. National
Sec. 2. 16 V.S.A. § 2857 is added to subchapter 4A to read:
§ 2857. GREEN MOUNTAIN SERVICE SCHOLARSHIPS
(a) The general assembly finds that it is in the best interest of the state to encourage young Vermonters to return eventually to Vermont, encourage all Vermonters to give back to their country through national service and to give them the opportunity to be free from debt as they embark on
(b) In this section, “eligible student” means a student who:
(1) has received a diploma from a Vermont secondary school;
(2) was a resident or, if the student was a minor, whose parent or guardian was a resident of Vermont when he or she received the diploma;
(3) has completed at least one year of active service in AmeriCorps;
(4) has not received education assistance under section 2856 of this title; and
(5) is or has been enrolled in an approved Vermont postsecondary education institution as a full-time student in a program leading to a bachelor’s degree.
(c) An eligible student may receive up to two loans of $10,000.00 each under this section. Each loan shall be awarded for one year of service.
(d) Following graduation, $5,000.00 of a loan received under this section shall be forgiven for each year that the former student remains a Vermont resident.
(e) A student may use funds received under this section:
(1) for expenses at an approved Vermont postsecondary institution, provided that the student is a full-time student enrolled in a four‑year undergraduate program leading to a bachelor’s degree; or
(2) for reimbursement for expenses at an approved Vermont postsecondary institution, provided that the student completed at least two years of study toward a four‑year bachelor’s degree at an approved postsecondary institution in Vermont prior to completing two or more years of national service, and provided that the student has either completed the degree program or is enrolled in the program with the intention of completion.
(f) The board may adopt rules necessary to administer this section.
Sec. 3. EFFECTIVE DATE
Scholarships established in Sec. 2 of this act shall be awarded only to eligible students who began national service in AmeriCorps following passage of this act.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street