Who is eligible?

The brightest and most talented 10th and 11th graders currently enrolled in Tennessee's public and private high schools, students who will be juniors and seniors in the 2023 - 2024 academic year. To be eligible, students should rank in the top of their high school class in performance/capability. Governor’s School is a special summer program for the gifted and talented - for the best students in Tennessee.

What does it cost?

Students who are accepted will receive a full scholarship for program expenses. The only expenses students will have to pay for is their transportation to and from the campus and personal items. Everything else - dorms, tuition, meals, special trips, lectures, and labs - will be provided. The program is funded by the Department of Education through funds appropriated by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee. If transportation is a financial problem, please contact the Governor’s School for the Humanities office.

When is the deadline for applications?

Applications must be postmarked no later than January 5, 2024. Guidance counselors may set an earlier deadline for materials to be returned to them so they have time to complete and mail by our deadline. Guidance Counselors should send all application materials directly to the school(s) to the Governor’s School for the Humanities office. Applications received directly by students will not be considered.

How will the students be selected?

Committees, appointed by the director in consultation with the state Department of Education, selects the students who will attend each school. The selection committee reviews each student's application material, transcripts, personal data sheets, and recommendations - looking for the most exceptional students in Tennessee. The committee will also select a number of alternates for each school.

Can students apply for more than one school?

Yes. However, since the dates of the programs overlap, students accepted for more than one school will have to decide which program they would like to attend.

If a student accepts one Governor’s School invitation, will he/she have a chance to accept another later on if vacancies occur?

No. Students need to make sure they are going to attend before they accept.

What do students do if invited to more than one Governor’s School?

Each school to which students have been invited needs to be notified whether or not the student plans to accept. Since there are only a small number of total spaces available, the invitations that are not accepted will then be offered to applicants on alternate lists. Your cooperation here is greatly needed and is very much appreciated.

If a student attended one of the Governor's Schools last summer, may he/she apply to attend this summer?

No. Any student who has previously attended a Tennessee Governor's School will not be accepted. No-shows and/or drop-outs from the previous year (without prior approval) will also not be allowed to reapply.

What about activities outside of class?

There will be many of them – optional field trips, service projects, movies, and special events scheduled for after hours and on the weekends. Students will also be free to take part in any of the activities on campus - sports, running, etc. Bring tennis racquets and basketball shoes!

Who are the instructors?

Writers, language experts, historians, philosophers, artists, expert musicians, distinguished professors, and career level teachers - the best in their fields.

Do students earn any special credits?

All Governor's School students will be given the opportunity to earn three (3) hours of university credit upon successful completion of their enrolled courses. Students who successfully complete the program will also be awarded a certificate of merit signed by the Governor.

Is transportation provided to/from church?

Insofar as it is logistically feasible, every effort will be made to ensure students will be able to attend religious services on Sunday mornings if they so desire. Advance written permission from parents/guardians is required.

Does an up-to-date transcript need to be included?

Yes. Since the deadline for the return of the applications may be before the semester grades are distributed, schools should provide the most recent grades available.

If the school requires two specific types of teacher recommendations and a student has had only one, what should he/she do?

Students with this situation may obtain a reference from a reputable person, such as an employer or community leader, who can identify the applicant as talented, highly motivated, mature, and a high achiever.

Can students with disabilities apply?

Yes, if they meet the criteria.

Must a student stay for the entire four weeks?

Yes! The program is intensive and highly individualized. Classes and special activities will be planned for the entire four weeks, INCLUDING WEEKENDS. Absences from scheduled activities will not be permitted except in the case of emergencies or religious activities, with permission from the director. Students will not be excused to attend other camps or seminars, to take family vacations, attend weddings, have senior pictures taken, etc. Come prepared to stay, study, and have fun!

How many students will be selected?

Fifty (50) of Tennessee’s brightest and most talented students will be selected to attend the Governor’s School for the Humanities.

When will students be notified of selections?

Notifications will be sent to all students on March 1. Students will receive separate notification letters from each of the schools to which they applied.

Will students' home schools be notified?

By the second or third week in April, a list of all students accepted at that point will be submitted to the Department of Education for mailing to public and private school Guidance Counselors.

Are there opportunities for visitation by interested teachers and/or counselors?

Yes, but we don't encourage drop-ins. Call the Governor's School office ahead of time to make arrangements.

If test scores are not available for sophomores, what should be used?

Indicate the type of test taken and the anticipated date of receipt. Include any available standardized test scores on the Test Data Form.

Are students permitted to bring communication devices, such as cell phones and tablets?

Cell phones may be brought but are not permitted in classes or other programs.

Other than grades, test scores, etc., what will raters look at in this application?

The recommendations from teachers are very important. For instance, if two applications are otherwise given the same rating, what the teachers have said may result in a higher score. Extra-Curricular and service activities are also important.

Is this application confidential?

Yes, no personally identifiable information will be released.