The Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG) was established in the academic session 2006-2007 to the first year college students finished their degree course from high school after 1st January 2006 as well as to the college students of the second year finishing their graduation from high school after 1st January 2005.

The grant was the first time explore on the part of the government to stimulate students who are trying to show their competitive talents and skills. Under this grant, a student can avail $750 for his studies in the first year and $1300 for the second year.

In this clause, government has clearly mentions that combined amount of ACG and Pell grant should not exceed the total cost of student’s attendance. If suitable candidates happen to be more than the total funds allocated for grant, the amount to each eligible student can be reduced proportionally.

Citizenship of United States of America is the biggest criteria to be eligible for the grant, secondly you should be recipient of a Pell Grant; have taken admission in a full time degree program; enrolled either in a first or second academic year in a study program at a institution granting a two-year or four-year degree; must have completed a rigorous study program at a secondary school after 1st January 2006 in first year and if you are a student of second year then after 1st January 2005.

Further you should have not enrolled in an undergraduate course previously and student of second year should have at least scored 3.0 aggregate GPA on a scale of 4.0 for the first academic year. There are some additional requirements of eligibility, which will be applicable from 1st July 2009.

The uncompromising academic courses at a secondary school means those courses which State education agencies (SEAs) and state-authorized indigenous studies institutions have applicable and Secretary of Education has given recognition.

Also the programs, which states have constituted as advanced or honors secondary school programs or programs in which student has completed International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program with minimum two courses scoring four or more in the course examination come under this category.

Students who have completed Advanced Placement (AP) courses with minimum two courses scoring three or more in exams of College Board for those courses also constitute rigorous study program.

A program in which student at secondary level completes minimum of three years of math, geometry or statistics and data analysis, four years of English, three years of social studies, three years of science in which each year- two minimum courses are taken from chemistry, biology and physics, and one year comprising a language besides English is also termed as rigorous study program.