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ATLANTA (AP) - Gov. Nathan Deal says he will propose that the state establish a separate scholarship within the HOPE grant program to provide full tuition for technical college students with a 3.5 grade-point average.

During an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday, Deal said the new Zell Miller Scholarship in the HOPE grant program will help train the state's workforce to meet critical employer needs. His office estimates some 16,000 technical college students would immediately qualify.

Deal is also proposing $10 million in state funds for low-interest loans available to technical college students. The HOPE program is funded through lottery revenues.

Deal will also ask that $3.6 million in state funds be set aside to pay for books and supplies of high school students dually enrolled in a technical college.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.