The Select STEM Waiver Program was created by the Florida Legislature and takes effect in the Fall 2021 semester. Under this program, resident undergraduate students who are enrolled in eligible STEM programs will receive a tuition waiver for portions of their tuition and fee invoice under certain circumstances. This program is often referred to as the "buy-one-get-one" waiver, meaning that for each course for which a student enrolls they receive another course of equal or lesser value at a discount. For example:
- If an eligible student is enrolled in six credit hours (2 three hours courses) their tuition and fees for the second three credit hours will be reduced.
- If an eligible student is enrolled in seven credit hours (1 three hours and 1 four hour course) their tuition and fees for the three credit hours will be reduced.
To maximizing this benefit for students and to ease the administrative burden for schools, the Florida Board of Governors guided schools to apply this waiver as a 50% discount to the applicable fees for all eligible classes, rather than as a buy-one-get-one discount. The biggest difference is that eligible students enrolled in an uneven number of classes (or even enrolled in only one class) receive greater and immediate benefit under the 50% off model.
In order to qualify for the Select STEM Waiver Program, students must be certain eligibility criteria:
- Students must be Florida residents for tuition purposes (in-state residency).
- Students must have earned at least 60 semester credit hours toward a baccalaureate degree within 2 academic years after initial enrollment at a Florida public post-secondary institution.
- Initial enrollment is defined as the first registration in a public post-secondary institutions after earning a high school diploma.
- The 60 semester credit hours must be earned/granted at a Florida public post-secondary institution.
- Dual-enrollment from high school credits earned at a Florida public post-secondary institution count towards the 60 credit requirement as long as the student begins initial enrollment at a Florida public post-secondary institution.
- Students must be enrolled and accepted into one of eight Programs of Strategic Emphasis as adopted by the Board of Governors. This program must be the student's primary major.
The Florida Board of Governors has identified eight programs of strategic emphasis, they are:
|CIP Code||CIP Description|
|11.0101||Computer & Information Sciences|
|14.1001||Electrical & Electronics Engineering|
|52.1201||Management Information Systems|
Courses may be taken in the fall, spring, or summer terms, but courses which are not required for the degree program will not count for the waiver. In general, courses must be:
- Upper division courses required to complete the academic program, including required electives and required courses offered by other departments, for up to 110% of the number of required credit hours.
- An upper division course is defined as a 3,000 or 4,000-level course required for the degree using the common course numbering designation.
- An equivalent course is defined as a 3,000 or 4,000-level course required for the degree using the common course numbering designations.
- The 110% will be based on the number of credit hours required at the time that a student is admitted to the major, regardless of whether the number of hours required increases or decreases at a later point in time.
- Eligible courses must be taken by the student during the same semester. Students will not be allowed to "bank" waiver credits for use in future terms.
- Courses cannot be classified as Non-Fundable or Market Rate.
The Select STEM Waiver program will not waive all tuition and fees, but does offer a steep discount toward eligible 3,000 or 4,000-level undergraduate courses. If granted, the waiver will cover 50% of:
- Student Financial Aid Fee
- Capital Improvement Fee
- Health Fee (Health, Health +, Counseling Center)
- Athletic Fee
- Activity & Services Fee
- Technology Fee
- Tuition Differential Fee
- Transportation Access Fee
- Distance Learning Fees
- Student Facilities Use Fee
- Auxiliary Fees, Lab Fees, Material & Supply Fees, and Equipment Fees
The waiver will not cover:
- Tuition and Fees for Ineligible Courses (like Non-Fundable, Market Rate, or Courses not within the 3,000 or 4,000-level)
- Excess Hours Tuition or Repeat Course Fees
- FSUCard Term Fee
- Fees for Books and Supplies
- Other non-Tuition related fees not explicitly stated in the covered areas above
Policies for the Select-STEM Waiver are maintained by the Board of Governors of the State University System.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I apply for the waiver?
There is no application for the Select STEM Waiver Program. FSU will identify eligible students based on academic records, major, and enrollment each term and will automatically apply the waiver to student accounts. If you feel that you meet eligibility requirements, but were not automatically identified for the waiver, then please contact the Office of the Registrar (Jim Coppotelli, email@example.com) to request a manual review.
When will the waiver apply to my invoice?
Because the waiver is based on enrollment, Student Business Services might not apply the waiver until after the drop/add window for the term has closed, typically during the second week of classes.
What happens if I change my schedule?
Because the waiver is covering 50% of applicable fees for eligible classes, the waiver might adjust with schedule changes that impact your tuition/fee assessment. Changes to your waiver might take a little time to reflect on your FSU bill, especially if you change your schedule after drop/add.
What happens if I change majors?
Eligibility is determined at the time that the waiver is applied to student accounts. If a major change occurs after the waiver is posted the student may lose eligibility for future terms, but the change will not affect the current term.
What if I'm double-majoring?
As long as the student's primary major is included in the list of CIPs the student's academic schedule will qualify for the waiver, even for courses that are not technically part of the primary major, but satisfy requirements for the secondary.
How does the waiver affect my financial aid eligibility?
Like all resources, the Select STEM Waiver will reduce your overall need which may result in a reduction of need-based scholarships, grants, and loans.