Tennesseans spent record amounts to play the state lottery this year and that will mean record amounts for scholarships this academic year.
About 102,000 Tennessee students receive scholarships that are funded by the state lottery. During recent hearings before the State Funding Board, the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation presented new estimates for lottery proceeds for the year. It’s now projected that the lottery will give between $328 and $333 million to scholarship programs for the current academic year.
The corporation originally estimated about $323 million for the year.
Because of the record proceeds, some state lawmakers say they want more students included. State Senate Democratic Leader Jim Kyle suggests scholarships for the state’s new online-degree program, Western Governors University. State Senator Doug Overbey proposes helping military veterans earn their degrees and helping undergraduates who are pursuing double majors.