Scarlet Guarantee for NJ students who qualify

A new financial aid program taking effect this fall could make Rutgers University of New Brunswick free for New Jersey residents who are full-time undergraduate students and have a household income below $65,000. $.

The program will also provide a sliding scale that can lower tuition and out-of-pocket fees for New Jersey students with household incomes below $100,000.

In total, the university said about 7,600 students will benefit from aid provided through the Scarlet Guarantee, a “last dollar” program that covers tuition and fees for first- and second-year students. second year eligible. The program also links to a statewide program called the Garden State Guarantee, which provides the same relief to third- and fourth-year students.

The Scarlet Guarantee is only available to students attending Rutgers-New Brunswick; similar programs, called “Bridging the Gap” and “R-UN to the top” already exist on the university’s other two campuses in Camden and Newark, respectively. The New Brunswick campus did not have a similar program until the Scarlet Guarantee, which was deployed to attract and retain high caliber students who are admitted to campus undergraduate programs, while expanding the income level for students who will benefit from $100,000, said Principal Chancellor Dr. Francine Conway. The state’s Garden State Guarantee caps at a total gross income of $80,000.

Rutgers Gate

“The criterion for admission to NB is strong academics, and students who have strong academics were competitive for other universities and would leave simply because we had no way to support them. This gives us the opportunity to retain these students. New Jersey is a very talented place when it comes to students,” Conway said.

For 19-year-old freshman and Bayonne resident Des Walker, the two programs together could mean a tuition-free education down to that last dollar until she graduates in 2026. Walker said she was an aspiring playwright majoring in journalism and media. attends Rutgers University in New Brunswick, and the first in her family to attend a four-year college.

“Honestly, I’m excited because I feel like a lot of students are worried. They want to continue [higher] education, but they don’t see the economic value of it,” Walker said. “Personally, I don’t want to spend a large part of my life paying off a degree that I got a very long time ago,” she said.

A supervisor where she works in the university’s student enrollment and accounting services department informed Walker that she qualified for the aid program.

“I think it will take a lot of the stress out of having to worry about finances. It’s definitely something that worries everyone,” she said. “I feel like the students are going through so much more,” said Walker, who took out a federal loan to pay off part of his unpaid term bill. Walker has paid for her education thus far with the help of state and federal grants, a merit-based scholarship, funds from her family, and money she earned as a work-study student.

Walker said she hopes the Scarlet Guarantee program will free her from the loan she has already taken out.

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The Murphy administration allocated $50 million in Budget 2022 to the Garden State Guarantee as part of a comprehensive college affordability program that was enacted last summer, spokeswoman Nicole Kirgan said. from the office of the Secretary of Higher Education.

The Garden State Guarantee is a statewide program that covers tuition and fees for full-time students in their third and fourth years pursuing undergraduate studies at one of 11 public institutions. state higher education. It will be implemented for the first time in the 2022-23 academic year.

Rutgers University.

“GSG is one of the first post-secondary programs in the nation to offer a statewide pledge package that connects two- and four-year pledge programs,” Kirgan said. The program also benefits students who transfer to one of the state’s 11 four-year public universities from two-year community colleges.

The program is modeled after the Garden State Guarantee. The income cap for students with an overall gross income of less than $65,000 pays no tuition or fees; students with income between $65,000 and $100,000 are eligible for tuition relief calculated on a sliding scale.

Overall gross income refers to taxable income and is calculated after certain deductions, such as health savings.

Walker applied for federal aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. Students who submit FAFSAs are automatically considered for the Scarlet Guarantee, as are students who qualify as New Jersey Dreamers and complete the NJ Alternative Financial Aid Application, which is available to some undocumented students. who have attended a New Jersey high school for at least three years, or have a high school diploma and show proof of intent to apply for lawful immigration status.

For Walker, who is black, queer and low-income, programs like the Scarlet Guarantee are “definitely shaping the way” because of how much she and people like her need it, she said. “People of my identity and the like, we certainly don’t have a lot of resources. And even though there are resources that we can’t afford because of our identity, I feel like a lot of students can benefit from it,” she said.

By the numbers

In combination with the Garden State Guarantee, the Scarlet Guarantee will provide the following coverage to undergraduate students for four years:

  • Adjusted gross income of $65,000 or less: full annual tuition and compulsory fees
  • Adjusted gross income of $65,001 to $80,000: students will pay no more than $3,000 per year for tuition and compulsory fees
  • Adjusted gross income of $80,001 to $100,000: students will pay no more than $5,000 per year for tuition and compulsory fees

The $24 million program is a partnership between Rutgers University New Brunswick and the state, with New Jersey contributing $10 million.

Mary Ann Koruth covers education for To get unlimited access to the latest news about schools in New Jersey and how it affects your children, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @MaryAnnKoruth

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