The HOPE Scholarship requires students to enroll in an eligible TN public college, university, or private college (or an out-of-state regionally accredited college, university, private college) within 16 months following high school graduation. However, enrollment at an ineligible TN institution (or non-regionally accredited out-of-state institution) any time after high school graduation will make the student permanently ineligible.
As such, we strongly encourage students who choose to attend out-of-state to research their institution of choice, ensuring it is accredited through one of these regional accrediting agencies. There is no exception or appeal process for students to regain the TN HOPE Scholarship that choose a non-regionally accredited institution. Our office is always available if questions arise.
List of regional accreditors
The following are the regional accrediting agencies for educational institutions in the United States:
- Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, formerly part of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges - 2-year educational institutions in California, Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa, Micronesia, Palau, and Northern Marianas Islands, as well as schools for American children in Asiwa.
- Higher Learning Commission, formerly part of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools - Educational institutions in Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Wisconsin, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
- Middle States Commission on Higher Education, formerly part of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools - Postsecondary institutions in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands.
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges - Educational institutions in the six New England states (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont).
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) for postsecondary institutions in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools - Educational institutions in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges - 4-year educational institutions in California, Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa, Micronesia, Palau, and Northern Marianas Islands, as well as schools for American children in Asia.