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Many Three Rivers College students rely on the Pell Grant to pay for their education. Starting this summer, qualifying students will be able to access additional Pell funds to pay for Summer classes.

The U.S. Department of Education has made changes to the Pell Grant to make it a year-round program, said Regina Morris, Director of Financial Aid at Three Rivers College.

Prior to the change, if students received full-time Pell in the Fall and Spring semesters, there were no Pell funds available for the student to attend Summer classes.

Year-round Pell allows students to receive up to 150 percent of a regular grant award over the course of the academic year so that they can continue taking classes in the summer and finish their degrees faster than they would otherwise, Morris said.

“A full Pell Grant recipient getting 100 percent of the grant award would get $2,960 for Fall and $2,960 for Spring for a total of $5,920. Now recipients can receive an additional 50 percent for Summer classes. That’s $2,960 if the student is taking 12 or more credit hours during Summer session,” Morris said.

“The ability to access Pell funds for Summer classes means that eligible students can keep taking classes and not have to put their education on hold until Fall,” said Ann Matthews, Dean of Student Services at Three Rivers. “Students will be able to keep their academic momentum, and that can make all the difference in reaching their goals. Losing that momentum can cause some students to abandon their goals or delay earning a degree or certificate that can lead to a career with more earning power.”

To be eligible for the additional funds, students must be eligible to receive Pell for the payment period and be enrolled in at least six credit hours in the Summer semester.

The federal Pell Grant program provides need-based grants to eligible students to promote access to higher education. Unlike student loans, generally you do not have to repay grants. To establish eligibility, students need to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year they plan to attend college. Visit for a link to the FAFSA form and for more information on Pell and the many other types of financial aid available to Three Rivers students.

“Many students want to do classes in the Summer so they can get into the workforce sooner, but in the past they would get discouraged because there was no money available,” said Chris Adams, Director of Enrollment Services at Three Rivers. “Year-round Pell provides extra opportunities for students to complete their education and reach their goals for a better life.”

Registration is now open for Summer and Fall classes at Three Rivers. New and returning student can find a Getting Started Checklist and other admissions information at or call the Welcome Center at 573-840-9605.

Three Rivers College is committed to contributing to the quality of life in Southeast Missouri with quality, affordable higher education opportunities and community services that support and encourage the economic, civic, and cultural vitality of the region. For more information about college and workforce programs and upcoming events, visit

Main Campus
2080 Three Rivers Blvd., Poplar Bluff, MO 63901
Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Summer Office Hours (June and July): Monday – Thursday,
7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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