Both houses of the state Legislature have passed a bill that would save a popular scholarship program, and Gov. Chris Christie is expected to sign the bill.
The New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Rewards Scholarship (NJ STARS) is a state-sponsored, merit-based scholarship designed to reward academic excellence to outstanding high school graduates. To qualify for the scholarship, New Jersey students must graduate from their local high school within the top 15 percent of their class. NJ STARS provides a scholarship for students to attend their local community colleges.
NJ STARS II provides a transfer scholarship to NJ STARS community college graduates who successfully transfer to a New Jersey four-year college or university to earn their bachelor’s degrees. NJ STARS and NJ STARS II – like many other state-funded programs in these tough economic times – have changed over the past few years, but now there appears to be agreement among state leaders about what NJ STARS and NJ STARS II will cover starting this fall.
NJ STARS will cover tuition only. Students (and/or their parents/guardians) are responsible for fees and books.
NJ STARS II will provide a $2,500 annual scholarship for NJ STARS students who earn their associate degrees at their community colleges with grade point averages of 3.25 or better and successfully transfer to any public or private New Jersey four-year college or university to earn their baccalaureate degrees. NJ STARS II students will continue to have four semesters of NJ STARS II eligibility and must maintain a 3.25 grade point average in their junior year to receive the scholarship in their senior year. A student whose family’s income equals or exceeds $250,000 will not be eligible for NJ STARS II.
The following provisions will apply to current NJ STARS II students:
- Current NJ STARS freshmen may be awarded the $2,500 amount upon transferring to a New Jersey four-year college or university for the fall 2013 semester.
- Current NJ STARS sophomores may be awarded the $2,500 amount upon transferring to a New Jersey four-year college or university for the fall 2012 semester.
- Current NJ STARS II juniors with grade point averages of 3.25 to 3.49 at New Jersey public four-year colleges and universities may receive a $6,000 NJ STARS II scholarship in their senior year.
- Current NJ STARS II juniors with grade point averages of 3.5 or better at New Jersey public four-year colleges and universities may receive a $7,000 NJ STARS II scholarship in their senior year.
For more information, visit www.njstars.net.