New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship

The New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship provides tuition and required fee assistance for New Mexico residents who meet eligibility and are pursing a training certificate, Associate Degree, or Bachelors Degree at a New Mexico public college or university.


The Opportunity Scholarship is awarded during the Fall, Spring, and Summer semesters starting the 2022-2023 academic year.

The Opportunity Scholarship will cover up to 100% of tuition and required fees and up to $50 per credit hour for course specific fees. There is no application required for the Opportunity Scholarship. If you meet the eligibility criteria, our Scholarship team will work with you to award the scholarship.

Note: NMHED is working to finalize the list of allowable workforce certificates. We will publish once the list is available. We are also waiting on clarification if differential tuition programs (Fast Track, CNM Online college, or other programs that charge differential tuition will be covered at 100%).

You can visit the New Mexico Higher Education Department website for more information. 


  • Be a resident of New Mexico.
  • Have a high school diploma, GED, or received a high school equivalency credential
  • For recent graduate learners, enroll 12 credits hours but no more than 18 credits hours for the Fall and Spring semester.  
  • For continuing students, enrolled in at least six credit hours, but no more than 18 credit hours in the Fall or Spring semester.
    • Consecutive enrollment for Fall and Spring terms. Summer term is optional.
  • Maintain at least a 2.5 grade point average (GPA) beginning with the first semester receiving the scholarship 
  • Do not exceed 90 attempted credit hours for completion of an Associate Degree
    • The scholarship covers up to 90 credit hours for an Associate degree and 160 credit hours for a Bachelors Degree.
  • Students who currently have an Associate Degree or Bachelors Degree are not eligible at CNM.
  • Non-credit programs are not eligible
  • Students are encouraged, but are not required, to complete a FAFSA. 
Note: If you have 90 attempted hours or have an Associate, Bachelors, Masters or doctoral degree , you are not eligible for the Opportunity Scholarship at CNM. 

Continuing Eligibility

  • Maintains a 2.5 cumulative GPA
    • We are currently reviewing students who fell below a 2.5 gpa prior to Fall 2022. 
  • Maintains Consecutive enrollment
    • Consecutive enrollment for Fall and Spring terms. Summer term is optional.
  • Meets earned credit hour criteria

Duration of the Scholarship

  • Scholarships may continue for an eligible student for up to 90 attempted credit hours or the completion of an Associate Degree.
  • Once an Associate Degree is obtained, the student will no longer be eligible at CNM and can continue towards a Bachelors Degree at a university. 
  • For recent graduate learners, enroll full-time (at least 12 credit hours no more than 18 credit hours for fall and spring semester) in a credit-bearing 2-year program. 

 Recent Graduate Learners

During the 16 months after graduation, a recent graduate learner may attend a public post-secondary educational institution or tribal college prior to their initial semester less than-full time without affecting future program eligibility, as long as a 2.5 GPA is maintained.  Once a recent graduate learner is enrolled and attends  full-time during the 16 months after graduation, the recent graduate learner shall be considered to have commenced the initial semester and must meet the initial semester eligibility requirements

Probationary Status

You can apply for probationary status if you can't meet the Opportunity Scholarship requirements because of an exceptional mitigating circumstance beyond your control. Fill out the Request for Probationary Status form, attach the required documentation, then submit to Scholarship Services for review.

  • A probation period is allowed for exceptional circumstances on a per semester basis. A leave of absence can be renewable yearly at the higher
    education institution.
  • The scholarship may be renewed two years after losing eligibility and exhausting an allowable probation period.
  • If a probationary appeal is not granted, reinstatement of Opportunity can be petitioned no sooner than two years following the end of the semester when eligibility was lost.