History and Purpose
The UCSB Promise Scholar Program was established to recognize talented, incoming undergraduates who have demonstrated significant potential to embark on a journey of rigorous academics, cutting-edge research, and student leadership. Currently the promise includes a minimum of $120,000 in financial support for incoming freshman students over their four years at UCSB, and $60,000 for transfer students over their two years at UCSB.
By promising our Promise Scholars predictable financial resources, we give them the opportunity to thrive academically and become active, productive participants of a world-class research institution like UCSB. The Promise Scholarship will promote attainment, completion, and overall success in all aspects of our Scholars’ education goals within the UCSB community. Most importantly, the UCSB Promise Scholar Program allows students and their families to plan for their total time at UCSB, rather than year-by-year like traditional financial aid programs.
Students must meet the following requirements:
- Be a California resident or eligible for AB 540, as determined by the Office of the Registrar
- Fill out a FAFSA or California Dream Act Application and provide all requested documents by the priority deadline each year of attendance
- Qualify for Cal Grant and Pell Grant, as determined by the FAFSA or California Dream Act Application
- Have sufficient financial need as determined by the UCSB Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships
In addition, student test scores, GPA, and extra-curricular excellence are taken into consideration through students' Admission’s Application.
All sources of scholarship and grant awards (federal, state, and institutional) will count towards meeting the $120,000 or $60,000 promise. In some cases, Promise Scholars may need to attend Summer Session to ensure maximum eligibility each year.
Promise Scholar Responsibility Policy
Promise Scholars are required to meet certain requirements throughout the duration of their undergraduate academic career in order to remain in good standing with the program. Students who fail to meet these requirements will experience partial fee remissions and possible dismissal from the program. These requirements are as follows:
The Promise Scholarship can assist in covering fees for Tuition, Campus Based Fees, Health Care, Room and Board, Books and Supplies, Personal Expenses, Transportation, Telephone/Cell Phone, and Loan fees.
As long as students are enrolled in at least 6 units and in good academic/financial aid standing, one third of all grants and scholarships will automatically transfer to the BARC billing account each quarter (Fall, Winter, Spring).
If grants, scholarships, and accepted loans exceed the amount billed to students on their BARC account, students will receive the difference as a refund 7 days prior to each quarter to purchase books and other education related materials.
Please note that although you need to be in at least 6 units for your financial aid to disburse to BARC, you must be a full-time student (at least 12 units per quarter) in order to prevent getting your aid reduced.
Yes, when living off campus, students receive a financial aid award letter that awards funds for Rent, Groceries, and Utilities. Please visit the Cost of Attendance section of our website for more information about off-campus budgets.
Yes, Promise Scholars are eligible to use their scholarship funds to study abroad through UCEAP. If the cost of the program with UCEAP exceeds the cost of attending UCSB the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships will adjust your financial aid accordingly.
Promise Scholars should regularly check their university (Umail) email addresses. Important information, document requests and event invitations will be sent via Umail.
Scholars should also monitor their My Aid Status which can be accessed from the UCSB Financial Aid homepage. Important documents and deadlines will be posted on that portal.
The $120,000 and $60,000 award includes the Gaucho Health Insurance (GHI) Grant. Should Promise Scholars opt to waive our of GHI, they would no longer be eligible for the GHI Grant and that funding would not be replaced in additional scholarship funds. To reach the maximum $30,000 award each year, students must remain enrolled in GHI.
More information on the Gaucho Health Insurance Grant
Promise Scholar Program Director
Natalie Gonzalez, M.S.Ed.
Counselor | Educational Opportunity Program
Financial Aid Advisor
Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships
Promise Scholars Program