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How to Get Free College in Minnesota.

College decision day was May 1. Now, many Minnesotans may be wondering how to decrease the cost of attending the college they chose. In 2023, progressives in the Minnesota legislature passed a bill that included the North Star Promise Scholarship. The scholarship provides free college to low income Minnesota residents.

Here are the answers to your questions about free college in Minnesota.

What is the North Star Promise Scholarship Program?

The North Star Promise is a scholarship that covers the remaining cost of college tuition for low-income undergraduates after all other grants or scholarships have been applied. Minnesota’s “low income” threshold is a household adjusted gross income of $80,000 or less two years before applying for the program. For the 2024-2025 school year, this would be 2022.

For the complete list of eligibility criteria, visit the MN Office of Higher Education website.

Which schools participate in the North Star Promise Program?

All Minnesota public higher education institutions and Tribal Colleges are eligible, starting in the Fall 2024 semester. This includes:

  • All Minnesota State Colleges and Universities
  • All University of Minnesota campuses
  • All Tribal Colleges:
  • Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College
  • Leech Lake Tribal College
  • Red Lake Nation College
  • White Earth Tribal and Community College

How do I sign up?

The North Star Promise Program does not require a separate application. Minnesota residents who complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the Minnesota Dream Act Application will automatically be considered for the scholarship.

Check if you are a Minnesota resident here.

What if I have questions?

There are many resources online about Minnesota’s free college program and the FAFSA. Here are a few of them:

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