The New Mexico Legislative Lottery Scholarship Program, run by the New Mexico Higher Education Department (NMHED) – and funded through the NM Lottery – offers graduating seniors and recent graduates with a GED/HSE credential the opportunity to receive funding to help make their goal of higher education become a reality. This scholarship can help recent New Mexico grads attend college or vocational programs with relatively less debt. It will pay a percentage of the student’s tuition, and this amount varies from year to year.

A recent change to the Lottery Scholarship gives students 16 months in which to enroll full time after they date when they graduate or pass their GED/HSE. It can only be used at a two or four-year accredited institution in New Mexico.

The Lottery Scholarship starts the second semester after students begin college or a vocational program, and will be funded up to seven semesters for a bachelor’s degree, or three for an associate degree. Some NM colleges and universities offer a supplementary scholarship to help bridge the first semester gap; eligibility requirements vary by institution.

Criteria to earn and keep the Lottery Scholarship is specific:

  • Be a NM resident
  • Graduate from an accredited NM public or private high school, or have earned a GED/HSE credential
  • Students enrolled at a four-year public NM college or university must take 15 credit hours
  • Students enrolled at a two-year NM community college must take 12 credit hours
  • Maintain a 2.5 GPA

Students with a documented disability can seek accommodations for the Lottery Scholarship. Speak with your school’s Financial Aid office to find out if you can obtain a reduced class load or an extension on your length of your eligibility.

To learn more, visit the NMHED website, contact your enrolled or prospective institution or email Bridges at to make an appointment with one of our college counselors.

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