The University of New Mexico is committed to ensuring that residents of the State entering college for the first time can afford to pursue a bachelor’s degree. As a world-class university and leader in higher education, UNM is proud to announce The Lobo First-Year Promise for Fall 2020.

“We were very excited about the Governor’s proposal for The Opportunity Scholarship and how it would benefit our residents. Now that it is being phased in—starting with two-year public institutions in the state—we are glad it has become reality,” said Dan García, UNM’s vice president for enrollment management.

At the same time, The University of New Mexico wants to reassure low-income and academically-talented students and their families in New Mexico that a university education is possible during 2020-21. The Lobo First-Year Promise provides that guarantee. It is UNM’s commitment to support first-time students’ college enrollment in anticipation of future expansion of The Opportunity Scholarship at The University of New Mexico.

"As the University for New Mexico, we are dedicated to making an excellent four-year education accessible to all New Mexicans," said UNM President Garnett S. Stokes. "We want prospective students to know that they can be on the path to a UNM degree right away...that's the Lobo promise." 

The priority date for prospective students, originally set for April 30, has been extended to July 1 to allow completion of admission and financial aid applications to ensure that qualified students will receive The Lobo First-Year Promise. An annual family income of $50,000—roughly the state’s median family income—will be the central qualifier for this program.

Full eligibility details are below:

  • Be a New Mexico resident and a graduate of a New Mexico high school within the past sixteen (16) months.
  • Be admitted to UNM for Fall 2020 and attend as a first time full time freshman.
  • Enroll full-time in and complete a minimum of fifteen (15) credit hours in both fall and spring during the 2020-21 academic year and earn a 2.50 or greater GPA.
  • Have a family income of $50,000 or less.
  • Submit the 2020-21 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and all required official admissions documentation (application for admission, transcripts, test scores) by July 1.

The University has already increased funds to institutional scholarships for New Mexico students; with additional resources provided from the recent legislative session, this new program is now possible and makes a commitment to low-income, first-year students starting in Fall 2020 that tuition and fees will be covered.

“The Lobo First-Year Promise is the first institutional-specific program of its kind in the state and we are proud to make the commitment to our residents with the greatest financial need,” said García.

"UNM is thrilled to be able to offer this Lobo First Year Promise to incoming New Mexican students entering in Fall of 2020," said Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs James Holloway. "We want all New Mexicans to know that they have options, and that attending the state's flagship university is well within reach. This program will allow more students to have a choice, and to select a higher education option based on their needs and aspirations, rather than cost."

For more information about full eligibility requirements, visit