Most 2020-2022 High School Graduates Eligible for Free Tuition at NC Community Colleges

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(February 1, 2022) – Most North Carolina high school graduates who earned a diploma since 2020 or will receive a diploma in 2022 are eligible to receive state grant funds to attend a community college for free in Summer or Fall 2022 semesters, according to the NC Community College System (NCCCS). This affords recent and upcoming high school graduates the opportunity to attend Alamance Community College free of charge for up to two years.

The grant funds provide a path for incoming students at Alamance Community College to persist, complete, and achieve their academic goals. Administrators point to this opportunity for students to obtain a great paying job while beginning a career in needed professions or industries, with the added incentive of pursuing advanced education opportunities.

Last year the NCCCS received $25 million through the Governor’s Pandemic Relief Office to establish the Longleaf Commitment grant to cover tuition and fees for eligible 2021 high school graduates at any of the state’s 58 community colleges for up to two years. The grant – not a loan – provided students between $700 and $2,800 per academic year toward a degree or to attain transfer credit.

The North Carolina Community College System is now broadening eligibility criteria to include 2020-2022 high school graduates for the upcoming academic semesters.

Said Dr. Lisa Johnson, Vice President of Instruction at Alamance Community College: “We look forward to assisting high-school graduates and their parents as they navigate this process. This is an opportunity to graduate from college, debt-free, with a degree that allows graduates to be employed in high-demand professions that serve our state’s communities. We are better together and this grant provides us with the tools to help students achieve their dreams.”

Eligibility Requirements for the Longleaf Commitment Grant are as follows:

  • Graduate from a North Carolina high school in 2020, 2021, or 2022. High School Equivalency completers such as GED, HiSET, and Adult High School are also eligible.
  • Be a North Carolina resident for tuition purposes.
  • Be a first-time college student, including Career & College Promise (CCP) and Early College.
  • Enroll in a curriculum program during the 2021-22 academic year or the upcoming 2022-2023 academic year.
  • Enroll in at least 6 credit hours per semester.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) from $0 – $15,000. EFC is based upon a student’s FAFSA determination.
  • Renew the FAFSA for the 2022-23 academic years and meet the satisfactory academic progress requirements of the college.

Students may apply now at  and click “Apply for College” to begin the enrollment process. Students may also contact the Student Success Office at Alamance Community College directly at 336-506-4270.

To receive an EFC and determine financial aid eligibility, submit a FASFA at