2021 NC HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES:
There’s a new way YOU COULD EARN A DEGREE TUITION FREE

(Don’t let this opportunity get away. It’ll be the best money you never spent!)

With the North Carolina Longleaf Commitment Grant, money no longer has to be an obstacle to getting a good education that will get you hired. That’s because many 2021 high school graduates in the state, like you, can access up to $2,800 per year for two years—which means you could potentially earn a degree from any of the 58 community colleges across the state tuition free. (You read that right.)

And the best part—other than the grant money itself (which, like a scholarship, never has to be repaid)—is that there’s no extra application to fill out. And there’s no catch, either. All you have to do is finish your FAFSA® (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and enroll in an NC Community College. Then, if you’re eligible, the financial aid office at your community college will inform you of your grant award.

Who is eligible?

To receive a Longleaf Commitment Grant, you must be:

  • A North Carolina resident
  • A 2021 North Carolina high school graduate [High school equivalency completers (GED, HiSET) are eligible]
  • A first-time college student [Career & College Promise (CCP) and Early/Middle College High School students are eligible]
  • Enrolled in a curriculum program for the 2021-2022 academic year
  • Taking at least 6 credit hours per semester (Part-time eligible students will receive a partial award)
  • A student who has completed the 2021-2022 FAFSA (with a resulting Expected Family Contribution or EFC between $0-$15,000)

To be awarded a grant for the following academic year, all you have to do is:

  • Renew your FAFSA for the 2022-2023 school year
  • Meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements of your college

Are you still wondering what the FAFSA is? Click to learn more.

How do I get this grant?

What do I need to do to fill out the FAFSA?

  1. Talk to your parents. (You’ll most likely need their financial information to complete the FAFSA.)
  2. Review and gather all the necessary documentation.
  3. Plan a time when you’ll have at least an hour to fill it out together.
  4. Complete and submit your FAFSA here.
  5. Find out what happens next and get more useful info.

ASSISTANCE WITH THE FAFSA

Filling out the FAFSA is an important step in putting your education within reach. But you don’t have to go it on your own. The College Foundation of North Carolina has variety of resources to guide and support you along the way.

More about the money

Awards range from $700-$2,800 per year to pay for tuition and fees at an NC Community College. Funding for the grant program comes from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) fund using money from federal COVID-19 relief packages. The NC Longleaf Commitment grant program is a partnership between the NC Governor’s Office, NC Community College System, and the State Education Assistance Authority.

FIND A COLLEGE

Looking for a school closest to you? Click on any of the pin drops and follow links to the colleges’ websites to learn more about their programs and financial aid resources.

I’m looking for a community college that can help me get a career in:

Carteret Community College

3505 Arendell Street, Morehead City, NC 28557, USA

https://carteret.edu/programs/

Nash Community College

522 North Old Carriage Road, Rocky Mount, NC 27804, USA

https://www.nashcc.edu/courses-programs

Robeson Community College

5160 Fayetteville Road, Lumberton, NC 28360, USA

https://www.robeson.edu/academics/

Vance-Granville Community College

200 Community College Road, Henderson, NC 27536, USA

https://www.vgcc.edu/areas-of-study/

College of The Albemarle

1208 North Road Street, Elizabeth City, NC 27909, USA

https://www.albemarle.edu/programs-classes/

Edgecombe Community College

2009 West Wilson Street, Tarboro, NC 27886, USA

https://www.edgecombe.edu/programs/

Craven Community College

800 College Court, New Bern, NC 28562, USA

http://cravencc.edu/programs/

Halifax Community College

100 College Drive, Weldon, NC 27890, USA

http://halifaxcc.edu/Academics/

James Sprunt Community College

133 James Sprunt Drive, Kenansville, NC 28349, USA

https://jamessprunt.edu/programs-2/

Randolph Community College

629 Industrial Park Ave, Asheboro, NC 27205, USA

https://www.randolph.edu/academics.html

Mitchell Community College

500 West Broad Street, Statesville, NC 28677, USA

https://mitchellcc.edu/programs

Martin Community College

1161 Kehukee Park Road, Williamston, NC 27892, USA

https://www.martincc.edu/programs

Rockingham Community College

215 Wrenn Memorial Road, Wentworth, NC 27375, USA

https://www.rockinghamcc.edu/academics

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College

1333 Jake Alexander Boulevard South, Salisbury, NC 28146, USA

https://www.rccc.edu/academics/

Sampson Community College

1801 Sunset Avenue Highway 24 West Clinton, NC 28328

https://www.sampsoncc.edu/academics/

Wilson Community College

902 Herring Avenue East, Wilson, NC 27893, USA

https://www.wilsoncc.edu/academics/

Wayne Community College

3000 Wayne Memorial Drive, Goldsboro, NC 27534, USA

https://www.waynecc.edu/academics/

Wake Technical Community College

Wake Technical Community College, 9101 Fayetteville Road, Raleigh, NC 27603, USA

https://www.waketech.edu/programs-courses

Wilkes Community College

1328 South Collegiate Drive, Wilkesboro, NC 28697, USA

https://www.wilkescc.edu/new-students/

Let’s find the right path for you.

Answer a few questions to see what your best route to getting hired might be.

Have you completed high school or an equivalent?

Nope. I’ve got a few years left.

Do you want to work toward earning a degree?

Yep.

All signs point to you getting a head start on your higher education while you’re still in high school.

That’s because the Career & College Promise program allows you to have duel enrollment, so you can work on both at the same time. And since this program is also tuition free, it’s a real money-saver.

Maybe.

All signs point to you getting a head start on your higher education while you’re still in high school.

That’s because the Career & College Promise program allows you to have duel enrollment, so you can work on both at the same time. And since this program is also tuition free, it’s a real money-saver.

Nope.

Your answers suggest on-the-job learning might be a great way to get your foot in the door.

This type of training combines hands-on learning with related classroom instruction. Apprentices earn money while learning a highly-skilled trade from an employer. State and federal certificates as well as other credentials can also be completed through an apprenticeship.

No.

How do you see community college benefitting you?

By helping me grow my skills.

Looks like your top priority is getting the skills you need fast—so you can land a good job quickly.

Short-term training, sometimes called continuing education, comes in various forms and are all focused on helping you gain the real-world skills you need to get into—or move up in—a number of fields. These courses often lead to state licensure or a certificate upon completion.

By preparing me to start a new career.

Your answers suggest on-the-job learning might be a great way to get your foot in the door.

This type of training combines hands-on learning with related classroom instruction. Apprentices earn money while learning a highly-skilled trade from an employer. State and federal certificates as well as other credentials can also be completed through an apprenticeship.

Yes. (Or at least, I will soon.)

Are you interested in earning college credit?

Yes, definitely.

Which way do you prefer to learn?

Virtually or physically, being part of a class works for me.

How much time are you willing to spend getting an education?

Two years, tops. I’m trying to get done and get a job ASAP.

Seems like you want the opportunities that come with a degree, but in half the time of a bachelor’s. 

Associate degrees are perfect for that. They can give you a big advantage over many non-degree holders in the job market—and open up even more potential positions that were previously out of reach. You’ll have relevant skills employers want in about two years.

I could do four—or more.

Great! Sounds like you plan on using community college as a stepping stone to a four-year university.

Like any associate degree, transfer degrees take about two years to complete—but this one includes general education credits that are easily transferable. It counts the same as having completed two years toward a bachelor’s degree.

I learn best by being hands-on. Just show me how to do it.

Your answers suggest on-the-job learning might be a great way to get your foot in the door.

This type of training combines hands-on learning with related classroom instruction. Apprentices earn money while learning a highly-skilled trade from an employer. State and federal certificates as well as other credentials can also be completed through an apprenticeship.

Nope, I don’t need it.

How do you see community college benefitting you?

By helping me grow my skills.

Looks like your top priority is getting the skills you need fast—so you can land a good job quickly.

Short-term training, sometimes called continuing education, comes in various forms and are all focused on helping you gain the real-world skills you need to get into—or move up in—a number of fields. These courses often lead to state licensure or a certificate upon completion.

 

By preparing me to start a new career.

Looks like your top priority is gaining real-world skills—either through on-the-job learning or continuing education.

Short-term training or an apprenticeship can help you gain the specific skills you need to get into—or move up in—a number of fields. Certificates, licensure and other credentials can be completed through these programs via hands-on learning and/or classroom instruction.