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Higher Education in Maryland


2015-2016 Awards have been made. Please check your MD CAPS account for updates.

Who may apply: Current high school seniors and full-time, degree-seeking undergraduates.

How to apply: Complete and file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.fafsa.gov

When to apply: January 1 through March 1, each year.

Eligible majors: All majors are eligible.  This award is a grant and does not need to be repaid.


You and your parents (if you are a dependent student) must be Maryland residents. You must enroll at a two-year or four-year Maryland college or university as a full-time (12+ credits per semester), degree seeking, undergraduate student.  Audited courses cannot be used to reach the minimum credit hours required for full-time status.  You must demonstrate financial need. All applicants are ranked by Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Your EFC is based on information reported on the FAFSA. Students with the lowest EFC are awarded first.


An EA Grant is determined by student need. Your need for an EA Grant is determined using the following formula:

   OSFA College Cost of Attendance
-  EFC + or - Regional Cost Of Living Adjustment
-  Certain State scholarship awards (if awarded)
-  Federal Pell Grant (if eligible)
= OSFA Adjusted Financial Need


Students attending four-year institutions will be awarded an EA Grant equal to 40% of OSFA adjusted financial need.  Students attending community colleges will be awarded an EA Grant equal to 60% of OSFA adjusted need.  The minimum annual award amount is $400 and the maximum award is $3,000. Should you be offered and accept certain State scholarship awards, your EA Grant will be recalculated. You may hold the EA Grant with all State awards except the Guaranteed Access Grant and Part-Time Grant. The total dollar amount of all State awards may not exceed your cost of attendance as determined by your school’s financial aid office or $19,000, whichever is less.  All financial aid received, including State aid, may not exceed your cost of attendance. 

Funds may not be available to award all eligible students.


To renew an award, you must maintain satisfactory academic progress at the college you are attending and submit the FAFSA no later than March 1 each year. You must also continue to demonstrate financial need. You may be a recipient of an EA Grant for a total of four years of full-time, degree-seeking, undergraduate study.

Download 2015-2016 Conditions of Award for New Awardees (PDF)

Download 2015-2016 Conditions of Award for Renewal Awardees (PDF)

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