Yes. A student must apply for Palmetto Fellows through the SC Commission on Higher Education (CHE) through their high school guidance office. CHE will begin accepting applications on May 1 during the student's junior year of high school. Specific information about the application process can be found on CHE's website: Commission on Higher Education. Also, detailed criteria that a high school student must meet in order to qualify are provided.
Palmetto Fellows FAQ
Below are frequently asked questions regarding the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship. If you have any other questions, please contact us.
Study Abroad and Co-op
- If I study abroad one semester, can I use the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship?
Some (not all) study abroad programs allow a student to use their Palmetto Fellows Scholarship funds for the semester abroad. Students should meet with the financial aid study abroad coordinator to determine if their scholarship can be used for the study abroad term. For additional information, review the financial aid study abroad page.
- If I study abroad and my transcripts from the foreign school are not sent back to Clemson before the next school year starts, can I have the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship while I am waiting for the credits to be posted?
No. The Palmetto Fellows Scholarship requires 30 or more credit hours earned each academic year, and the student cannot have the scholarship while they are waiting for study abroad transcripts to be processed at Clemson. However, once the credit hours from the study abroad have been added to Clemson's transcript, the scholarship can be awarded at the time, even if the semester has already begun. Students would then be reimbursed once the scholarship is credited.
- What happens to my Palmetto Fellows Scholarship when I do a co-op?
If a student is enrolled in a co-op in the fall or spring terms, they are not charged full tuition and fees. Thus, the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship stipend for that semester cannot be used and remains available for future semesters providing the student meets the regular Palmetto Fellows Scholarship criteria (credit hours and Clemson GPA of 3.0 or better).
- Can the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship be used to pay for my apartment?
The scholarship is applied as general credit toward the student's University account. On the first day of classes, if all other tuition and fees are satisfied and the student is enrolled full time, excess financial aid is refunded to the student. These funds can include the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship, and the refund can be used for any college-related expenses, including off-campus housing.
- If I drop a class, will I lose my Palmetto Fellows Scholarship?
The Financial Aid Office is required to verify that all scholarship recipients are enrolled full time (12 credit hours minimum) on the Last day to drop a class or withdraw from the University without a W grade each semester, including summer. The Palmetto Fellows might be affected by a course withdrawal depending on when the course is dropped. Palmetto Fellows recipients should also be aware of renewal criteria for the upcoming academic year when deciding whether to drop a class. Students are advised to contact the Financial Aid Office prior to dropping below 12 credit hours during the semester.
- How do I keep the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship for the next year?
The continuing eligibility requirements for students are the same for each academic year – a student must earn a minimum of 30 credit hours and have a cumulative Clemson GPA of 3.0 or better. The academic year consists of fall, spring and summer each year. Please note that no exemption credit courses count toward a student's 30 earned hours. Students must attend and earn 30 credit hours for renewal. Here is a handy GPA calculator.
- If I take a course in the summer before I start college, will those credits count toward the 30 credit hours I need my first year?
No. A student with the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship begins counting the credit hours when they enroll in college for the first time. Although the transfer credit hours often will count toward the student's degree requirements, they don't count if they were earned prior to starting college.
- How long can I receive the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship?
There are eight semesters of potential eligibility. If a student graduates before using all eight semesters, the student forfeits any remaining Palmetto Fellows Scholarship semesters (stipends).
- How will Academic Forgiveness affect my Palmetto Fellows eligibility?
Renewal for Clemson and state scholarships is based on your GPA and your earned credit hours. Academic Forgiveness can improve your GPA while reducing your credit hours, so you must be aware of all consequences before requesting that a grade be forgiven. Please speak with the Office of Student Financial Aid if you have questions about how Academic Forgiveness may affect your scholarship eligibility. If you are seeking to regain a scholarship for an upcoming academic year, you must submit the Request for Academic Forgiveness form to 104 Sikes Hall before the first day of class of the fall semester.
- Do pass/no pass classes count toward Palmetto Fellows eligibility even though they do not count as GPA hours?
Yes. The credit hour(s) will count toward the required 30 earned credit hours you will need for continued eligibility as long as you pass the class. A no pass grade will not hurt your GPA, but it also will not count toward the 30 credit hour requirement.
- If I graduate early, can I use any remaining semesters toward graduate courses?
No. The Palmetto Fellows Scholarship is only available to students who are pursuing their first baccalaureate degree from an accredited university.
- If I am graduating this semester and will only be part-time, can I receive my Palmetto Fellows Scholarship?
Yes. We can prorate your scholarship amount based on the number of hours you are taking, resulting in a partial award during your final semester.
- If I have less than the 30 credit hours and/or less than the 3.0 Clemson GPA at the end of the year, do I permanently lose the Palmetto Fellows scholarship?
Yes. Once a student has failed to meet the renewal requirements (either GPA, credit hours or both by the end of the academic year – which is fall, spring and summer each year) they lose the scholarship permanently. The student might be eligible for the LIFE Scholarship if they meet the criteria for that program.
- I have lots of Advanced Placement credits that have been posted to my transcript at Clemson. Do I get to count any of those credits for the 30 credit hours I need each year?
No. Advanced Placement credit hours do not count in the credit hour requirement.
- My Clemson transcript shows that I have "Duplicate Credit" for a math course that I took at Clemson. I took that same course at a technical school before I started college. Will the course I took at Clemson ("Duplicate Credit") count toward the 30 hours I need to earn?
Yes. A duplicate credit taken at Clemson will count toward your 30 hours of required credit at Clemson for Palmetto Fellows renewal. The previous class credit will be "replaced" with the Clemson class credit.
- What happens if I take a semester off to work or just to be away from school for personal reasons?
The semester you are not enrolled in is still counted as one of the eight terms of potential eligibility. Future eligibility might be jeopardized because of lower credit hours earned and/or low GPA after a student has taken a semester off. A student must also file an appeal to the Commission on Higher Education for a review of their file under certain circumstances. Typically, just taking off a semester is not considered a valid reason to request a review.
- What happens if I have to take a medical withdrawal from Clemson?
There are instances where a student must leave school for documented medical reasons, including psychological. If a student takes a medical withdrawal during the fall term, they should still be able to enroll and use their Palmetto Fellows as a full-time student in the spring, since the scholarship is awarded for a year at a time. Regardless of the semester itself, we would advise the student to submit an appeal to the Commission on Higher Education for a review of the student's eligibility for the next academic year.
- If I transfer to another school, will the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship automatically be transferred to the other school?
No. The student must complete the Transfer Request form available on the Commission on Higher Education Website. The Commission can then notify the new school that the student is transferring and should be awarded the Palmetto Fellows for the upcoming semester.
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