NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Since its inception in 2004, the Tennessee Education Lottery has helped students statewide to attain a higher education and make their dream of a career a reality.
“Well, in 15 years, we have raised over five billion dollars with a ‘b,’” Rebecca Hargrove, President and CEO Tennessee Education Lottery said.
That amount has led to 1.3 million scholarships and grants awarded impacting thousands of students.
“It’s about 130,000 students each year,” Hargrove said.
There are 14 different programs for students, and while the lottery raises the money, the governor and legislature determine how funds are spent.
“So, we fund Hope scholarships and Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect, Wilder-Naifeh Grants, which is full tuition to the TCAT schools across the state. There’s a Helping Heroes Scholarship Program, so if you’ve served in the military and you come back, you’re still eligible for a Hope Scholarship,” Hargrove said.
There’s even a loan forgiveness program for math and science teachers — a scholarship program supporting high school graduates with intellectual disabilities to obtain a higher education — to after school learning programs offering academic enrichment.
“Well, I think the thing that probably touches my heart the most is when I go to a downtown in Middle Tennessee and someone will stop me and say, ‘You’re that lottery lady aren’t you? Yeah, I am. Thank you, because of you my son or my daughter or my favorite niece or my favorite nephew had the opportunity to go to college and I just want to say thank you.’ Now that makes you feel good about what you do every day,” Hargrove said.
And thanks to the Tennessee Education Lottery higher education funds may even expand.
“Go to our website and you can find out about all of them. You may be eligible for one that you don’t even know about,” Hargrove said. “Education wins when students win.”
The Tennessee Education Lottery Spotlight sponsored by the Tennessee Education Lottery, which has raised more than $5 billion for education programs.