North Dakota Financial Aid Choices

Have You Considered Every Funding Resource?

The state of North Dakota has found a useful way to organize their information on student financial aid, by collecting it on the website belonging to the North Dakota University System. One page contains information on scholarships, the state’s one grant program, and loan forgiveness. That page also includes a number of links describing the university system itself, to help you select a school or transfer between schools.

You can also find assistance in financing and planning for your college career.

Scholarships From The State Of North Dakota

The state has established four scholarship programs for North Dakota students attending North Dakota schools, including special help for members of local Indian tribes.

North Dakota Academic Scholarshipsnorth dakota financial aid

The North Dakota Academic Scholarships were designed by the state legislature to provide an incentive for high school students to choose more challenging course alternatives. The most you can obtain through this program is $6,000 for all four years of school, distributed in increments of $750 per semester. If you are enrolled full-time and your GPA stays at 2.75, as a minimum, you can renew the award.

Full-time enrollment is defined as a minimum of twelve credits in the first two semesters of school and fifteen credits during each following semester.

To apply, you must be a senior in a North Dakota high school with a GPA of at least 3.0 in the particular set of courses required for this program, and a score of 24 on the ACT. Your high school counselor can tell you which courses to take, and the annual ACT deadline is currently February 12.

North Dakota Career & Technical Education Scholarships

Interestingly, the North Dakota Career & Technical Education Scholarships are described in precisely the same manner as the Academic awards, with one major distinguishing feature: you must score either a 24 on the ACT or three 5s on the WorkKeys tests, which are vocational assessments. As you might suspect, the underlying difference in the two types of scholarships lies in the two sets of courses required in high school.

To qualify for the Academic scholarships, you must take the following courses:

  • English and Language Arts, including courses in literature, composition, and speech (4 units).
  • Mathematics: one unit of Algebra II, one course for which Algebra II is required, and a third unit.
  • Science: one unit each of biology and physical science plus a third unit.
  • Social studies: A total of three units. Must include one unit each of U. S. History, social science, and democracy studies. For the democracy course, you may substitute a half-unit of U. S. Government plus a half-unit of economics.
  • Physical education: one unit, taken solely in physical education or divided between physical education and health.
  • One foreign language, or Native American language, or sign language (two units).
  • One unit, and you may choose among foreign languages, Native American languages, American Sign Language, fine arts, or Career and Technical Education.

One of the subjects listed above must be fulfilled by taking an advanced placement examination, or you may exchange a half-unit requirement by taking a dual credit course. Requirements for the Career awards are very similar, with these exceptions:

  • Mathematics includes one unit of Algebra II and two units of your choice.
  • Two units from one of the vocational study plans, which currently cover the following fields: agriculture, business and office work, consumer education, health, information technology, marketing, engineering, and trade/industry.

North Dakota Indian Scholarships

The state of North Dakota currently offers between 150 and 175 North Dakota Indian Scholarships to students formally enrolled in the state’s federally recognized Indian tribes. Annual amounts vary between $800 and $2,000, and a GPA of 2.0 is required. You must attend school full-time to be eligible.

North Dakota Scholars Program

The North Dakota Scholars Program pays full tuition for academically superior North Dakota high school graduates who pursue their undergraduate education in-state. If you maintain a GPA of 3.5, you can renew the scholarship for three years while attending any private or tribal college. If you choose a private school, the amount you receive equals the average tuition charged at the public research universities.

To apply, you must be a junior in high school and score in the upper fifth percentile of all the ACT tests taken in North Dakota, meaning the required score can vary every year.

Other Financial Aid From The State Of North Dakota

North Dakota State Student Incentive Grant Program

The North Dakota State Student Incentive Grant Program goes to first-time undergraduates, brings as much as $1,500 each year, and require you to fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You must attend school full-time, meeting the satisfactory academic progress standard, and you can find all essential details on how the grant program works here.

Note: Te receive priority consideration, you must apply by April 15.

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Occupations Student Loan Program

The Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Occupations Student Loan Program is oddly named, since it’s a loan forgiveness program targeted at paying off student loan debt in exchange for working in an approved STEM field somewhere in North Dakota. You must have graduated with a 2.5 GPA, earned a degree in the field in which you work, and not be in default on the loan for which you’re seeking forgiveness.

Like the state’s scholarships, you can receive a cumulative total of $6,000, at an annual rate of $1,500.

Teacher Shortage Loan Forgiveness Program

The Teacher Shortage Loan Forgiveness Program benefits teachers who agree to work in teacher shortage areas in North Dakota. That can mean either a grade level or an academic subject experiencing a dearth of teachers, and both are designated by the Department of Public Instruction. You can receive as much as $1,000 each year, for three years at most.

Note: Your years of teaching must be consecutive.


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