In-state students attending The University of New Mexico this fall can expect the majority of their tuition to be covered. The state Higher Education Department (HED) has notified state universities of the amount it intends to fund through the Legislative Lottery Scholarship for the 2016-17 school year.

UNM students receiving the scholarship can expect to have approximately 93 percent of their total tuition paid for the upcoming fall and spring semesters. The scholarship is estimated to cover up to $2465 per semester for main campus students.

“The University of New Mexico continues to be one of the most affordable educations at a high research institution in the nation,” UNM President Robert G. Frank emphasized. “The Legislative Lottery Scholarship makes it even more accessible and inviting, paying for more than 90 percent of the tuition for qualifying students.”

A letter from HED to state universities explains that the funding amount is based on calculations of historical and projected revenue estimates from the New Mexico Lottery Authority and the Taxation and Revenue Department. This year’s projected level averages 90 percent for eligible students statewide. However, for UNM students, the amount will cover 93.3 percent of our 15 credit hour tuition costs.

The lottery scholarship’s solvency has been in question for some time and with a demand of approximately $60 million annually, future funding continues to be uncertain. The HED letter states that so far this year, the New Mexico Lottery has generated $38.7 million for scholarships, compared to $34.4 million at this time last year. Enrollment at the state’s higher education institutions has declined by 5 percent overall, but 15 of the institutions raised tuition for the upcoming school year. Both of these factors impact the percentage award for the statewide scholarship program.

Tuition at New Mexico higher education institutions averages $2,500 a semester at research universities, $1,500 at four-year colleges and $600 at two-year community colleges.

“New Mexico students continue to benefit from the generosity of the Legislative Lottery Scholarship and should look to attend colleges and universities in the state to minimize higher education expense and student loan debt,” said Terry Babbitt, associate vice president, enrollment management department.

Under the program, students at research universities — such as UNM — must take 15 credit hours a semester to qualify for a scholarship. Students are required to familiarize themselves with the policies and procedures for the Legislative Lottery Scholarship (if applicable) and Non-Lottery Scholarships. If students do not meet the requirements, they risk losing scholarship funding.

For questions about scholarships, financial aid, or registration, visit: