Grow Your Own Teachers

Grow Your Own Teachers

The “Grow Your Own Teachers Act” seeks to provide opportunities for school employees to pursue careers in teaching in New Mexico by providing scholarship opportunities for school employees who may want to attend a public post-secondary educational institution in New Mexico to earn a bachelor’s degree in education.

The program provides for professional leave and scholarship awards to qualified school employees. The scholarship is intended to help defray the educational expenses charged by the institution including tuition, fees, books and course supplies.

  • Must be a resident of New Mexico;
  • Accepted into an accredited public education department approved teacher preparation program at an eligible institution;
  • Has not earned appropriate educational credentials to be licensed as a teacher by the New Mexico public education department;
  • Has demonstrated financial need as determined by the institution and the student’s FAFSA; and
  • Has worked as a school employee in a New Mexico public school in a position that works directly with students for at least two years and is in good standing with the New Mexico public school and school district. 
Eligible Schools
  • Public schools;
  • Tribal schools;
  • State institutions;
  • Special schools;
  • State agencies that employ school employees.
How To Apply

Students shall contact the teacher preparation program at the relevant institution for scholarship application instructions.      

Where To Apply

Students shall apply directly to the teacher preparation program at the relevant institution.

Process of Seeking GYOT Scholarship - An EA who is seeking the scholarship must:
  1. Apply to a teacher preparation program;
  2. Petition his or her school requesting professional leave for college classes; examinations and practice teaching, which the school is to grant if the school employee receives a GYOT scholarship and submit this petition to the teacher preparation program;
  3. Submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to demonstrate Pell eligibility. 

Institutions shall make awards to qualifying school employees based on financial need. Awards shall not exceed $6,000 per academic year for no more than 5 years.


The scholarship shall continue as the recipient maintains satisfactory academic progress at the eligible educational institution, but in no event shall the recipient receive the scholarship for more than five academic years.

Award Amount

The amount of the scholarship award to the recipient shall be based on financial need not exceed $6,000 per year.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply? Contact the institution you would like to attend to learn about their application process and timeline.

Can a student who has completed a baccalaureate degree but does not have educational credientials       particiapate in GYOT Scholarship? Yes.

Is the GYOT Scholarship stackable with the TEACH Grant? Yes, both teacher programs are stackable with other aid.

Do alternative teacher licensure programs qualify as teacher preparation programs eligible for the GYOT Scholarship? Yes.

Is the Pell Grant required for the GYOT Scholarship? Yes. The GYOT Scholarship requires FAFSA completion and Pell eligibility.

Is the Grow Your Own Teachers Scholarship available to Early Childhood programs? Yes.

Are Alternative Licensure Program students eligible? Yes.

NMHED Financial Aid Programs Update Webinar 7/10/19
PowerPoint Presentation



GYOT Petition Sample Letter



Grow Your Own Teachers Scholarship Institution Contacts


NMHED, Financial Aid Division Contact Information
Phone: 1-800-279-9777

CONTACT US: If you require additional guidance on how to direct your question or are not able to locate the information you are looking for on the New Mexico Higher Education Department's website, please send us a message.