HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Horry-Georgetown Technical College is offering zero tuition this school year.

The free offer applies to 60 academic programs and 16 workforce development courses, with the hope of benefitting a wide-range of students covering multiple fields of study.

The offer is for all three campuses — Conway, Market Common and Georgetown.

In order to be eligible to receive free tuition, students must be a South Carolina resident, maintain a 2.0 GPA and complete required documents as well as FAFSA and required financial aid.

“I think it’s going to be more beneficial for people that don’t come from stable families and stuff like that,” said Hayden Jenkins, a student at HGTC.

Jenkins, who will be a freshman at HGTC this school year, said he thinks the free tuition offer will encourage some students to go to school.

“I think it would help a lot of people just to be able to get into school more,” Jenkins said. “And if they don’t have to worry about money, then they would be more encouraged to go to school.”

He also thinks it could help students pay off other expenses as well.

“I would probably put it more towards my bills and stuff for my car and all that,” Jenkins said.

HGTC’s president, Marilyn Fore, said the purpose of the zero tuition program is to remove the barrier for students who worry about the cost of college. She said this was made possible by a compilation of funds and resources from a number of areas.

“It was our idea and cabinet members. We sat down and we scrubbed the budgets and we looked at our enrollment and we said, ‘we can do better,'” Fore said. “We can provide the tuition for more students than we anticipated.”

Fore said the courses being offered tuition-free were chosen by HGTC and the government based on high-skilled areas that need high-skilled workers.

Fore said HGTC maintains the lowest tuition in the state, but they want to make it more accessible.

She said that is why they waived their application fee.

Students start classes Aug. 21, but registration for fall semester classes has been extended to Aug. 30.