WT Offers Students Hope and Opportunity Through Financial Aid

Chip Chandler Jun 23, 2021
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WT Offers Students Hope and Opportunity Through Financial Aid

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124,


CANYON, Texas — Incoming and continuing students at West Texas A&M University can qualify in two ways for free money, thanks to a pair of financial aid avenues — the WT Hope Scholarship and the WT Opportunity Grant.

The WT Hope Scholarship offers more than $500,000 for first-time and transfer students who reflect the state’s demographics, particularly minorities, first-generation students and students from low-income families.

“Many high school graduates want to continue their education, but they think, for any number of reasons, that college just isn’t an option for them,” said Jeffrey Baylor, executive director of admissions. “The Hope Scholarship is intended to open up educational options for these students and is just one way that shows how committed we are to serving a diverse student body at WT.”

Angela Allen, WT’s chief diversity and inclusion officer, said the scholarship is an incredible pathway for diverse students interested in WT.

“This scholarship truly provides hope for those questioning how they will persist to graduation,” Allen said. “The WT Hope Scholarship meets students where they are, which aligns with the WT mission to ensure the success of all students.”

WT is now in its fifth year as a Hispanic Serving Institution and makes efforts to recruit for diversity in all areas in the student body, faculty and staff.

The WT Opportunity Grant has about $180,000 available annually for students with financial need who do not qualify for a Texas Grant or a Pell Grant.

“Most middle-class families can figure out a way to put their student through college, but often, one financial blow can wreck those plans and students may have to drop out entirely,” said Mike Knox, vice president for student engagement, enrollment and success. “If students have any kind of change in their financial status, they can apply for this grant, and we can fund up to the full cost for that semester.”

Funding for both the grant and the scholarship comes through The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents.

The programs are in line with the Board of Regents’ Strategic Plan that promises the A&M System will remain accessible and affordable for all students, regardless of socioeconomic background.

“Our board’s strategic plan articulates clearly our commitment to ensuring our institutions serve a diverse student body,” said Chairman Tim Leach. “These funds give our administration another tool to support Texans and enable them to pursue their education.”

The funding opportunities also are in line with WT’s long-term plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World, which pledges to put people first in all areas.

The grant and the scholarship have different application mechanisms.

To be eligible for the WT Opportunity Grant, undergraduate students must have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, form on file, be a resident of Texas, and be in good academic standing. To apply, contact Tamara DeSpain at 806-651-2050 or Students will fill out a one-page form, which will be reviewed by a committee, generally within one week.

To check qualifications for the WT Hope Scholarship, click here. To contact the Admissions office, call 806-651-2020 or 1-800-99-WTAMU, or email


About West Texas A&M University

WT is located in Canyon, Texas, on a 342-acre residential campus. Established in 1910, the University has been part of The Texas A&M University System since 1990. With enrollment of more than 10,000, WT offers 60 undergraduate degree programs, 40 master’s degrees and two doctoral degrees. The University is also home to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the largest history museum in the state and the home of one of the Southwest’s finest art collections. The Buffaloes are a member of the NCAA Division II Lone Star Conference and offers 14 men’s and women’s athletics programs.