Qualify for FREE tuition & books

A community program for income-eligible adults

Do You Meet Our Qualifications?

  • You are committed to going to school full–time
  • You are 18 years or older (no maximum age limit)
  • You have a GED or High School diploma

High school seniors can apply in their last semester.

Learn more

  • You have basic math and reading skills (above a fifth-grade level)
  • You have not completed a college degree (associate degree or higher)
  • You are a resident of a city or county we are recruiting from (to apply, look for a CareerUp in your county)

  • You qualify for in-state tuition (you’ve lived in Texas for 12+ months)
  • You are a US Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • You qualify as low-income (see chart)

Calculate Your Monthly Income

Household Size Monthly Household Income*
1 $2,147
2 $2,903
3 $3,660
4 $4,417
5 $5,173
6 $5,930
7 $6,687
8 $7,443

To be income-eligible, your household income should be less than the amount shown in the chart above.

Federal Poverty Guidelines (200%). Updated annually. Last updated: 2.2.2021

*Households with more than 8 people add $757 per month for each additional person

Have questions?

We have answers to our most frequently asked questions on our FAQ page, like: "What if I have a criminal record?", or "What if I don't have any income?"

Visit our FAQs page to find answers.

English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)

Capital IDEA’s Career Expressway program covers tuition for English Level 3 and 4 at Austin Community College. If you're ready for Level 3 or above, you can start now: Apply Now 

If you need Basic English, Level 1, or Level 2 English, complete those classes at Austin Community College and apply to Capital IDEA when you’re ready for Level 3. ESOL Academic Program at ACC 

How do I know what level I'm at?

Take the ESOL assessment and keep your receipt. Capital IDEA will reimburse you for the testing fee at Step 4 of the applicaiton process.
ESOL Assessment Steps at ACC 


Dedication and Commitment

In addition to the qualifications above, applicants should demonstrate a dedication to completing one of our programs and commitment to giving back to the community upon graduating.

If you have any questions on meeting the qualifications call: 512.457.8610 or send your questions to