SUPPORTING OUR GRADUATES
Yampa Tuition Grants (YTG) provides need-based grants for accredited undergraduate and vocational schools. All Routt county and Moffat county graduates, as well as residents who have lived here at least 5 years, of any age are eligible to apply. Grants range from $1000 to $7500, dependent on need. The Yampa Tuition Grants Fund is held at the Yampa Valley Community Foundation.
Yampa Tuition Grants awards $195,000 to 39 Yampa Valley Students
We’d like to thank all our donors, volunteers, school staffs and other community supporters for making our program a huge success in its first year of operation. Also, a big thank you to the Yampa Valley Community Foundation for their support.
The best testament to the benefits of our grants have come from our awardees. Read some of their thank you notes here.
Here are some facts about this year’s awards:
Students from Hayden, Moffat, Soroco, Steamboat Springs, and Yampa Valley high schools received grants, as well as some students who are long-term residents, but didn’t attend our local high schools.
Grants ranged from $1000 to $7500.
Four (4) of the recipients were students who graduated in 2002, 2009, 2013, and 2018, and 14 who graduated between 2020 and 2022. These students had either put their post-secondary education on hold or students who are already in college. The remainder are 2023 graduates.
We’re a need based program. Total need of our awardees, as measured by the gap between college costs and expected family contribution (as calculated in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid), is about $1 million. We covered about 20% of the gap. Much of the remainder will be covered by other forms of student aid, as well as loans.
Schools our students will attend next year include CMC, CNCC, many Colorado state schools, other universities and a trade school.
We’ve just begun. Let’s help more students next year!
Is There Financial Need? YES
We all know that a key to the future of our community is the ability of families to afford to live here. We also know that one of the most daunting expenses for any family is the cost of college education. Not only has it become much more expensive to live here, but college costs also continue to escalate. In Routt and Moffat counties:
70% of graduates apply for aid via the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). That's about 190 current seniors. YTG is open to current college students as well, so our group of students needing aid is several times that number.
28% of our high school students qualify for free or reduced lunch, meaning they are at or below 185% of the poverty level ($56,338 for a family of four)
A family of four earning the median household income for our area, $68,000, is expected to contribute about $10,000 per year for a college education. This compares to an average cost to attend an in-state four year college of about $30,000. The gap must be filled by a combination of grants and loans.
Most student aid packages include a large element of loans. The average total loan amount for bachelor’s degree seekers at public institutions is $28,600. This puts a burden on our college grads. Our grants lessen this burden significantly.
WHO WE ARE
We are lucky to live in a community that is incredibly generous. At the same time, the cost of living and local economic changes make it increasingly difficult for many families to fund higher education. By working together we can help improve the lives of the young people who are the future of our community, and that is why we ultimately decided to launch Yampa Tuition Grants.