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For Immediate Release
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Contact:Heidi Guarino 781-338-3106

18,000 Students in the Class of 2011 Receive Merit-Based Adams Scholarship

Recipients Receive Free Tuition at any State College or University

MALDEN - Continuing the Patrick-Murray Administration's efforts to maintain the Commonwealth's position as a national leader in education, education officials announced today that more than 18,000 students in the class of 2011 have been awarded the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship, qualifying them for free tuition at any Massachusetts public college or university.

A total of 18,034 students in the class of 2011 received the merit-based scholarship, an increase of more than 500 students since last year. Students become eligible for the scholarship based on their performance on the grade 10 MCAS English Language Arts and Math tests. To qualify a student must be a permanent legal Massachusetts resident, score Advanced on one exam and either Proficient or Advanced on the other, and rank within the top 25 percent of students in their district.

"These students have a great opportunity to access an excellent education across the Massachusetts public higher education system," said Education Secretary Paul Reville. "I applaud these students, their families and their teachers for their efforts and achievement."

Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester praised the students for their hard work.

"These students have remained dedicated and committed to their learning, and this scholarship is a well-earned testament to their success," said Commissioner Chester. "I congratulate every recipient, and wish them well as they move on to higher education."

Higher Education Commissioner Richard M. Freeland agreed.

"I am delighted to see the increase of more than 500 students in the Adams Scholars program, and welcome them to find their place in our rich and diverse system of public higher education," he said. "Our colleges and universities offer academic excellence and exceptional workforce training. I know that these students and their families will be pleased with the broad array of choices and programs they find at our 29 campuses across the state."

Adams Scholarship recipients receive free tuition at any Massachusetts public college or university. The tuition waiver remains in effect for eight consecutive semesters or four years. Recipients must begin to use the waiver in the first fall semester following their high school graduation, and must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or better throughout the time of the waiver. The scholarship does not cover the cost of fees, books or other expenses which vary from school to school.

The Adams Scholarship is the state's only merit-based tuition waiver program, and was established to help families pay for college, create an incentive for students to push themselves academically and encourage them to pursue higher education in Massachusetts. The program is in addition to the nearly $88 million in annual state-funded financial aid awarded to Massachusetts residents.

For more information on the Adams Scholarship, visit the Department's website at

Last Updated: November 9, 2010
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