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Drive to 55

The Drive to 55 is Governor Bill Haslam’s initiative to increase the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary degree or credential to 55 percent by the year 2025. The Drive to 55 is focused on ensuring that more Tennesseans are equipped with the skills and credentials that will be needed to support the state’s economy now and in the future.

Tennessee's Colleges and Universities

The institutions of higher education across the state of Tennessee provide their local areas with vital outreach and community service programs, opportunities, and events. 


The FOCUS Act supports Tennessee’s ambitious education attainment goals by ensuring that our higher education institutions and systems can best support the needs of our students.

Student Resources

The Student Success and Resources page lists links to financial aid resources, state resources, and information on institutions. 

Discounts and Fee Waivers

There are two programs available to facilitate postsecondary educational opportunities for State employees and their dependents, as well as dependents of public school teachers: fee waiver for State employees and fee discount for children of State employees and public school teachers.

Financial Aid

Financial aid information can be found on the website.   In addition, THEC provides information on the Fee Waiver and Fee Discount programs for state of TN employees.

Complete College TN Act of 2010

In January 2010, Tennessee passed the Complete College Tennessee Act (CCTA), a comprehensive reform agenda that seeks to transform public higher education through changes in academic, fiscal and administrative policies at the state and institutional level. 

Academic Programs

Information on academic policies and forms, program resources, SREB programs, Academic Common Market (ACM), Improving Teacher Quality (ITQ) Grants, Diversity in Teaching Grants, and First to the Top are located here.  

Fiscal Policy

Information on appropriations, the Tuition Model, student tuition and fees, Grapevine Appropriation Data, Total Student Support History, capital projects, facilities planning, Drive to 55 Project Capacity Fund Grant RFP, and Institutional Outcome Improvement Fund Grant Competition are found here. 

Postsecondary State Authorization

The Higher Education Authorization Act of 2016, T.C.A. §49-7-2001 et seq., T.C.A. §49-7-144, and Rule Chapters 1540-01-02 and 1540-01-10 govern the regulation of postsecondary educational institutions.


Each year, nearly 70 percent of community college freshman in Tennessee are placed in remedial courses upon enrollment in higher education. The Seamless Alignment and Integrated Learning Support (SAILS) program targets students that have not achieved college readiness benchmarks by introducing the college developmental curriculum into the high school senior year.