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Senior Citizens Free Tuition Program

It's never too late to master a second language, learn accounting basics or explore history. In fact, why not do all three?

As a South Carolina resident who is 60 years or older, State law provides you tuition exemption* so that you can take classes at a state college or university tuition free! Lab fees, matriculation fees and program fees, etc. are not exempt and must be paid by the student.

Because courses are offered on a space available basis, students may not register for classes until the day classes begin for the semester in which you are enrolling. So, please, be sure that you've reviewed eligibility requirements, and that you have completed the application process before trying to register.


In order to qualify for free tuition as a senior citizen, students must meet the following criteria:

  • You must be 60 years or older
  • You must be a South Carolina resident for at least 12 months
  • You must be admitted to the University of South Carolina


Application Process

In order to apply for free tuition as a senior citizen and before you register for classes, please follow these five simple steps:

  1. Submit an application. 
    If you are not currently enrolled as a student at USC, you will need to review the requirements and apply through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. You can also call the Office of Undergraduate Admissions directly at 803-777-7700.
  2. Receive your VIP ID.
    Your VIP ID is a series of numbers used to identify you at the university. Once accepted to the university, you will receive your VIP ID in your acceptance packet. Students currently enrolled at USC already have this number.
  3. Verify your residency. 
    Once you receive your VIP ID, you can access the SC Residency Certification form through Self Service Carolina. This will require your VIP ID to login!
  4. Obtain free tuition status.
    After the SC Residency Certification form is processed, the South Carolina Residency Office will update your records so that the free tuition as a senior citizen will reflect on your account. For questions concerning eligibility for free tuition, please call the Residency Office at (803) 777-4060.
  5. Have your advising hold removed.
    You must have your advisement hold removed before you are able to register for classes. Please email Amanda Therrell at or you can call her at (803) 777-9850 with your full name and VIP ID to have the hold removed. Senior citizens who are already enrolled in a degree program must contact your college or school adviser.

Registering for Classes

You are eligible to register on the first day of classes for the semester in which you are enrolling. Review our searchable database of courses to find the courses that interest you. If you require courses in the evening or on weekends, be sure to select the appropriate criteria in the search field for "session." Please also be mindful that some courses may require prerequisites prior to registration. 

To register for courses:

* Please be advised that the tuition exemption does not include lab fees, matriculation fees, program fees, etc. associated with your class.