LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas Higher Education Department says more than 55,000 students have applied for scholarships funded by the state lottery and the office is backlogged in giving applicants word on whether they have qualified.

The agency said Friday that thousands of calls from applicants have further bogged down the staff.

The deadline to apply was June 1. The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery is to provide funding for 28,000 scholarships — $5,000 for students in four-year programs and $2,500 for students in community colleges.

Factoring in all the different scholarships the state offers, the department has more 125,000 applications to process.