Post-Graduation Scholarships

A post-graduation scholarship is a type of charitable grant that foundations would make to attract individuals with career skills needed in a particular region to make their homes and build their careers in that community. A post-graduation scholarship would be awarded to an individual who has already completed a degree or technical program in a career field that is needed in a particular region, thus paying off a portion of the individual’s student loans. As with traditional scholarships, these programs would establish eligibility requirements, as well as a process to verify that those requirements continue to be met through the duration of the scholarship award agreement.

The Council appreciates the leadership of Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI), Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Rep. Darin LaHood (R-IL), and Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL), as well as their staff.  

The Workforce Development Through Post-Graduation Scholarship Act (S.1757 / H.R. 3582) would:

  • Define post-graduation scholarship grants as a charitable activity.
  • Exclude from an individual’s taxable income a post-graduation scholarship grant in the same manner as traditional scholarships. 
  • Ensure that this program is benefiting those communities most in need. 
  • Require the Secretary of the Treasury and Comptroller General to submit to Congress reports on the implementation of this program.

In addition, the Council worked with a coalition of philanthropic organizations on this legislation:

Michelle Foster, President and CEO, The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation
"Offering post-graduate scholarships is a wonderful opportunity to attract West Virginians back home, as we work to grow our shrinking population and stimulate economic development.”

Randy Maiers, President & CEO, Community Foundation of St. Clair County
“We’re excited to partner with Senator Peters in supporting post-graduation scholarships like the Come Home program we’ve developed that is bringing the best and brightest workers back to St. Clair County,” said Randy Maiers, President & CEO, Community Foundation of St. Clair County. “These awards are a win-win for our area: they help recipients pay back their student loan debt while putting their training and education to good use.”

Mark Roberts, CEO, Community Foundation of Central Illinois
"Post-graduation scholarships will give community foundations like ours a new tool to attract and retain needed talent for our workforce. These scholarships are an investment in our workforce and communities for years to come. Not only do the recipients benefit, but it is a win for our employers, families, and the entire community."

Brian Wagner, CEO, Muskingum County Community Foundation
"The Muskingum County Community Foundation and the J.W. & M.H. Straker Charitable Foundation developed The 'Make Muskingum Home (MMH)' program with the goal of increasing our local tax base, combating population decline and attracting college graduates to Muskingum County, Ohio following graduation. Our program helps to relieve student loan debt while allowing recent graduates to become an integral part of the community. The Workforce Development Through Post-Graduation Scholarships Act will allow us to continue to develop our program to provide the community with great young talent, while also providing new opportunities for other rural communities."

Kyle Caldwell, President & CEO, Council of Michigan Foundations
“The Council of Michigan Foundations is proud to work with Senator Peters and our community of philanthropy on innovative strategies to retain and attract talent in support of Michigan’s talent agenda and economic growth,” said Kyle Caldwell, President and CEO of the Council of Michigan Foundations. “As an increasing number of students are taking on significant loan debt, the Workforce Development Through Post-Graduation Scholarships Act offers financial relief for graduates looking to come to or return to Michigan. This added resource strengthens the partnership between philanthropy and businesses as we look to create pathways to economic stability for individuals and families that strengthen Michigan’s workforce.”

Grantmakers Council of Rhode Island
"Communities depend on a skilled workforce to provide essential services, like education, healthcare and social services. In the current labor market, it can be difficult to attract the skilled workers necessary to fill critical positions. Post-graduation scholarships are a valuable tool to not support recent graduates and workers providing essential services, but also to ensure that communities have the services they need to grow and thrive."

Monique B. Jones, President & CEO, Forefront
"Forefront is proud to support the Workforce Development Through Post-Graduation Scholarships Act of 2023, and are grateful for the Illinois leadership of Rep. Darin LaHood to advance this legislation. This important change to our tax code would allow for a new and innovative type of charitable giving, that would relieve student loan debt while helping underserved communities recruit talent to meet their workforce needs. The State of Illinois stands ready to take advantage of such a program when this bill passes, and we are excited to be working with foundations across the state to advocate for this change."

Claudia Cummings, President and CEO, Indiana Philanthropy Alliance
“Indiana Philanthropy Alliance strongly supports the Post-Graduation Scholarship Act. It will not only provide much-needed financial relief to the younger workforce burdened by student debt, but also enable philanthropy to partner with policymakers and educators to invest in our workforce development and economic growth. We need to attract and retain the best young talent in our state. This act will help achieve that by creating more opportunities for higher education and career advancement. Indiana Philanthropy Alliance looks forward to working with our partners to support the implementation of this act and contribute to the betterment of our community.”

The Council strongly supports allowing foundations to administer post-graduation scholarship programs by enacting the Workforce Development Post-Graduation Scholarship Act.

More Information on the Workforce Development Through Post-Graduation Scholarships Act:


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