NDSU Tuition Award Program


NDSU is a land grant institution committed to addressing the workforce needs of North Dakota and the region. We strive to support students in their pursuit of a career by providing an attainable, affordable and high-quality education.

During the 2024-25 academic year, Pell-eligible North Dakota and Minnesota students with family income levels of $80,000 or less will have base tuition and student fees fully covered for two years if they are in their first year at NDSU. Students returning in their second year at NDSU in 2024-25 will also be considered for this program for one year.


How It Works

This scholarship program is intended to provide financial support to eligible students by covering any remaining base tuition and student fees after other gift aid has been applied (ex: grants, scholarships, waivers from federal, state, institutional or external sources). For example:

  • An eligible student from North Dakota enrolls full-time in fall semester, totaling to $5,528.50 in base tuition and fees.
  • The student receives $2,500 in grants and $1,500 in scholarships, leaving $1,528.50 to be covered.
  • The Tuition Award Program will cover the remaining $1,528.50 after all other grants and scholarships are applied.



Students talking between classes

For full consideration, students must meet the following criteria during the 2024-2025 academic year:

  • Be a North Dakota or Minnesota resident eligible for the in-state or reciprocity tuition rate
  • Be a new, first year or transfer degree-seeking student beginning summer or fall 2024, or a returning NDSU student who first enrolled at NDSU in summer 2023, fall 2023 or spring 2024
  • Have a family income (annual adjusted gross income) of $80,000 or less and be Pell-eligible as reported on the 2024-2025 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Enroll full-time (12+ credits per semester) for fall and spring semesters
  • Be in good academic standing and meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
  • Be pursuing first bachelor’s degree
  • Not be in default on a state or federal student loan
  • Be a US Citizen or Permanent Resident


Application Process for New Students

  1. Apply for Fall 2024 admission (currently enrolled NDSU students do not need to re-apply for admission)
  2. Complete the 2024-2025 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)


Renewal Options

This program is currently available to eligible students through Spring 2026. NDSU is exploring options for continued funding.



What is “gift aid”?

Generally speaking, gift aid refers to financial assistance students receive that does not have to be repaid. The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NAFSAA) defines gift aid on their website.

What does “Pell-eligible” mean?

Pell-eligible refers to eligibility the Federal Pell Grant. Students pursuing their first bachelor’s degree and show high financial need on the FAFSA application may be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant if additional factors are met. The FAFSA application is required to determine eligibility for the Federal Pell Grant. Learn more about the Federal Pell Grant on our website.

Am I required to submit the FAFSA to be considered?

Yes, the 2024-2024 FAFSA application is required for consideration.

When can I complete the FAFSA?

The 2024-2025 FAFSA application is anticipated to become available December 2023. NDSU has a FAFSA priority deadline of February 1. Our Federal FAFSA School Code is 002997.

What is the amount of this scholarship?

This is a “last dollar” scholarship, meaning it is applied after all other gift aid is applied (ex: grants, scholarships, waivers from federal, state, institutional or external sources). As a result, the dollar amount of the scholarship will vary depending on the amount of other gift aid received. 

When will I know if I’m receiving this scholarship?

If you meet the eligibility criteria outlined above, you will be considered for this scholarship program. NDSU hopes to provide a preliminary scholarship amount in March when financial aid award notices are sent. If you receive gift aid from other sources after you receive your financial aid award notice, the amount of this scholarship will be adjusted. In other words, the amount of this scholarship can change over time depending on a number of factors.

I’m a legal Minnesota resident. How do I know if I’m eligible for the Minnesota reciprocity tuition rate?

An agreement between North Dakota and Minnesota makes students eligible for tuition comparable to resident tuition. Students graduating from a Minnesota high school who enroll at NDSU within 12 months of graduating automatically qualify for this rate. Transfer students, home-schooled students and students earning a GED must apply for this rate at www.ohe.state.mn.us. Learn more about the Minnesota reciprocity tuition rate on the NDSU One Stop and Minnesota Office of Higher Education websites.

I am an international student – am I eligible for this program?

No – International students are not eligible for federal financial aid and thus cannot complete the FAFSA.  However, NDSU does offer some partial scholarships specifically for international undergraduate applicants. More information on these awards can be found on our international undergraduate scholarships page.

What if income levels of me or my family have changed since I submitted the FAFSA?

NDSU Financial Aid and Scholarships recognizes the information reported on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) may not reflect your current financial situation or ability to pay for educational expenses. If you are an undergraduate student and you or your family has experienced one or more of the special circumstances listed on our website, you may submit the Special Circumstance Form to have your financial aid eligibility re-evaluated.

Since this scholarship only provides financial support for base tuition and student fees, are there other options to help cover additional NDSU costs such as housing, meal plan, and differential tuition?

External scholarships (non-NDSU scholarships), federal loans or alternative loans can be considered to cover additional college costs. We encourage you to review NDSU’s estimated cost of attendance on our website.

Is there a deadline to be considered for this scholarship?

This scholarship is awarded on a funds-available basis. For maximum consideration, we encourage you to apply for admission and submit your FAFSA early.

Learn More

We’re ready to answer your questions. Contact your Admission Counselor to gather additional information about this scholarship.