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North Dakota Scholarships and Financial Aid

Grants, Student Loans, & Fellowships

North Dakota has 16 post-secondary educational institutions. North Dakota University alone has 11 campuses. Two campuses offer doctoral degrees, two offer master’s degrees, two offer bachelor’s degrees, and five offer associate degrees or technical training. North Dakota is also home to five independent or private schools. Students attending any of these post-secondary institutions may be eligible to receive financial assistance while pursuing their degrees.

Questions About North Dakota Scholarships and Financial Aid

As a new or continuing student, you might have some questions about scholarships and financial aid. For example:

  • Who qualifies for federal financial aid?
  • What kinds of North Dakota state financial aid programs are available?
  • How do I apply for scholarships at my university or college?
  • If I don’t get federal or state financial aid—or if I just need more scholarships—where can I get it?

Federal Financial Aid—Who Qualifies?

To qualify for federal financial aid, you must have financial need. Financial need refers to whatever educational expenses you and/or your parent(s) cannot afford to pay. To see if you qualify, you need to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid. FAFSA applications are available January 1, one year before the school year in which you need assistance. The national deadline for the FAFSA is usually June 30, but the North Dakota state deadline for the FAFSA is March 15, by midnight, Central Standard Time. Your school may also have a FAFSA deadline, so check with your financial aid office to make sure you don’t miss it.

Your financial aid office will decide how much assistance you need depending on the information you reported in your FAFSA. If you qualify, you may receive a financial aid package offering grants, which do not need to be paid back, and low-interest loans, which do need to be paid back.

North Dakota Financial Aid Programs—Scholarships, Grants, and Loans

North Dakota offers several programs to help students achieve their post-secondary educational goals. Here’s a list of available programs:

ND State Student Incentive Grant (SSIG) Program
Residents are eligible for this North Dakota financial aid program, which supports undergraduates who are studying at accredited post-secondary institutions in the state. Submit the FAFSA to be considered.

Technology Occupations Student Loan Forgiveness Program
Students who have already received a degree in a technology field may be eligible to receive loan forgiveness for their service in a technology position in North Dakota for a year. Click here to download an application. Applications will not be accepted before May 1.

Teacher Shortage Loan Forgiveness Program
Teachers teaching in subjects or grade levels with teacher shortages may qualify for this North Dakota financial aid program. Click here to download an application. Applications will not be accepted before April 1.

Tuition Waivers Available at NDUS Institutions
North Dakota tuition waivers are available to specific students. Click here to see if you qualify. Talk to your financial aid office for more information and application procedures.

North Dakota Scholars Program
This full tuition scholarship program is offered to North Dakota students who have scored in the top 5% of the ACT. The ACT must be taken during students’ junior year in high school. See your high school counselor for more information.

North Dakota Indian Scholarship Program
Students who are North Dakota residents and members of American Indian tribes recognized by the U.S. Government are eligible to apply for this North Dakota financial aid program. Click here to download an application.

Applying for North Dakota University and College Scholarships

When searching or applying for scholarships, remember that every school’s financial aid or scholarship office requires different application procedures and has different scholarship deadlines. North Dakota university and college scholarships are offered depending on merit, need, ethnic background, major, special ability, leadership/community service, and a combination of these things. Many merit-based scholarships are offered to students when they first enter the institution. That means all you have to do is apply for admission on time and you will automatically be considered. Scholarships based on other criteria, such as ethnic background or major, may require separate applications. See your financial aid or scholarship office for details.

More Scholarships for North Dakota Students—Foundations, Professional Groups, and Businesses

There are other scholarships out there for students if you need more funding. These scholarships are offered by foundations, professional groups, and businesses. Here’s a list of just a few of the scholarships out there:

North Dakota Grain Dealers Association (NDGDA) Educational Foundation
Award: Ten $750 scholarships
Qualifications: Students must be majoring in a field related to agriculture at Bismarck State College, Dickinson State University, Williston State College, New Town – Fort Berthold Community College, Wahpeton – North Dakota State College of Science, Bottineau – MSU, or North Dakota State University – Fargo.
Application: Click here to download an application.

North Dakota Veterinary Medical Association
Award: Four scholarships available
Qualifications: Vary depending on scholarship
Application: Click here for more information on applications.

North Dakota Dollar for Scholars
Award: A large number of scholarships ranging from $500 to $10,000
Qualifications: Students will be judged on aptitude tests (ACT, SAT, etc.), scholastic performance, letters of recommendation, and personal goals and achievements.
Application: Click here to apply.

North Dakota Association of Counties
Award: Two $1,000 scholarships
Qualifications: Must be children or grandchildren (17 to 22 years old) of county employees.
Application: Click here to download a current application.

North Dakota Society of CPAs
Award: $500 scholarship
Qualifications: Applicants must have taken Intermediate Accounting when they apply. Applicants will be judged on their application, community involvement, and career goals.
Application: Apply here.

Three Tips to Keep in Mind Searching for North Dakota Scholarships and Financial Aid

  • Because loans have to be paid back, make sure you have exhausted all your North Dakota grant and scholarship options before you take out any loans, even government loans.
  • There are a number of scholarships offered to students who are members of federally recognized Native American tribes. If you are a North Dakota resident, check it out to see if you qualify.
  • There are many scholarships available in North Dakota. Search locally by calling businesses, professional organizations, or foundations in your area.

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