Gov. Carney signs SEED scholarship expansion bill

Posted 10/13/21

Gov. John C. Carney signed a bill Tuesday that expanded the state’s existing SEED (Student Excellence Equals Degree) scholarship program.

According to a news release from the …

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Gov. Carney signs SEED scholarship expansion bill


DOVER - Gov. John C. Carney signed a bill Tuesday that expanded the state’s existing Student Excellence Equals Degree scholarship program.

According to a news release from the governor’s office, the bill gives Delawareans of all ages access to a free college degree or workforce training certification at Delaware Technical Community College. 

 Senate Bill 12, sponsored by Sen. Nicole Poore, aims to help adult Delawareans seeking a career change, as well as students starting college immediately after high school.

 “Working families throughout Delaware are still reeling from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, and they deserve our help to get back on their feet,” Sen. Nicole Poore said in the release. “This legislation will give those workers the tools they need to achieve a better life than the one they left behind in March 2020, to embark on new careers, particularly in those fields where Delaware desperately needs a skilled workforce.”

Delaware led the nation in free college access when the SEED scholarship began in 2005, and since then, it has provided free college tuition to more than 13,000 Delawareans. 

Dr. Mark T. Brainard, president of Delaware Tech, said the scholarship expansion will build on the program’s previous success.

“Thanks to the foresight of Sen. Harris McDowell, who worked diligently on the original SEED legislation, and now Sen. Poore working to expand this program, thousands of Delawareans who never thought college was possible are now able to develop the skills and knowledge to change their lives,” Dr. Brainard said. “We look forward to helping them get to work.”

 The new legislation will:

  • Expand eligibility to 10 semesters, so scholarship recipients will have additional time to complete an academic degree program. Officials say this will benefit those who are going to school while working full-time and supporting their families.
  • The legislation will include students who have a GED or “Delaware State Board of Education Endorsement Secondary Credentials.”
  • It also will be available to individuals with non-violent felonies (previously, individuals with felony convictions were not eligible for the scholarship).

Calling Delaware a “national leader in free and affordable college access,” Gov. Carney said the SEED program at Delaware Tech will “build on that strength.” 

"This legislation will help more Delaware students of all ages learn in-demand skills, stay in our state, and get a good job that can support a family,” Gov. Carney said. “There's never been a time in my public service career when that's been more important. I want to thank Sen. Poore for her leadership on this legislation, and Dr. Brainard and everyone at Delaware Tech for their hard work every day." 

For more information on the SEED scholarship, go to