By Associated Press - Saturday, July 4, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Only one in four students participating in a college scholarship program has completed the volunteer work needed to remain eligible.

If students in the Tennessee Promise program don’t complete and submit their hours by Aug. 1, they will no longer be eligible for the scholarship program. It offers new high school graduates a tuition-free ticket to community and technical colleges.

The Tennessean reports ( ) that the approaching deadline has triggered “a campaign of constant communication” from officials, says Mike Krause, executive director of Tennessee Promise.

Krause says he and his staff are flooding the more than 31,500 eligible students with text messages and emails encouraging them to finish the community service.

Officials say they aren’t panicking, since many students fulfilled previous requirements at the last minute.

The state is highlighting chances to volunteer. On July 18, every state park is holding special community service events for Tennessee Promise students.

Students will have the opportunity to paint at Bicentennial Capitol Mall, clear honeysuckle bushes from Harpeth River State Park and build a log cabin at Bledsoe Creek State Park, among other activities.

Community service is “a really lovely part of the program that people don’t often talk about,” said Krissy DeAlejandro, executive director of tnAchieves.

Even now, with just a quarter of the students done with volunteering, DeAlejandro said more than 72,200 service hours have been logged across the state.


Information from: The Tennessean,

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