New Jersey Administrative Code
Title 9A - HIGHER EDUCATION
Chapter 9 - GRANT AND SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMS
Subchapter 10 - NEW JERSEY STUDENT TUITION ASSISTANCE REWARD SCHOLARSHIP (NJ STARS) PROGRAM
Section 9A:9-10.4 - Eligibility requirements

Universal Citation: NJ Admin Code 9A:9-10.4

Current through Register Vol. 55, No. 48, December 18, 2023

(a) A student shall be eligible for a scholarship under the NJ STARS Program for up to five semesters, including summers, unless the student is enrolled in a three plus one degree program established pursuant to P.L. 2018, c. 144, in which case the student shall be eligible for a scholarship under the NJ STARS Program for up to six semesters, including summers. This period of eligibility also includes any semester for which a student qualifies for the scholarship but does not receive payment pursuant to N.J.A.C. 9A:9-10.7. In order to qualify for this scholarship, a student must meet the following eligibility requirements:

1. A student must have completed a rigorous high school course of study and graduated from high school in 2004 or later and must enroll in a full-time course of study at a New Jersey county college by the fifth semester after high school graduation;

2. Upon notice from the Authority of conditional eligibility for the Program, a student shall take a college placement test selected by the New Jersey Council of County Colleges and administered by the county college in the county of the student's school district at no cost to the student or the school district. The county colleges may enter into an agreement with the school district to administer the test at the high school or other selected site within the district.
i. The county college shall notify any student who does not achieve the required score on the placement test that the student requires remediation prior to becoming an NJ STARS scholar. The student has the responsibility to address the identified deficiencies through such means as the student determines, including enrollment in remedial classes at the county college during the senior year of high school.

ii. A student shall have one year from September 1 following high school graduation to demonstrate the skill levels required to pursue courses for credit at a county college. The student shall become an NJ STAR scholar eligible for five, or six if enrolled in a three plus one program, semesters of NJ STARS scholarships if during or at the end of the one-year period the student demonstrates the required ability. A student loses eligibility to become an NJ STARS Scholar if the student continues to require remediation at the end of the one-year period;

3. For the first year of enrollment, a student must have graduated high school and had a class rank at the completion of 11th or 12th grade in the top 15.0 percent of the student's high school class, provided that in the case of students graduating from high schools that do not calculate their class rank, the student's ranking should be determined by the high school in consultation with the Authority. Ranking policies are determined by the individual high schools and not by the Authority. At the time of high school graduation a student must have met, and continue to meet, all residency and citizenship requirements set forth in 9A:9-2.2 and 2.3;

4. After the first year of enrollment, the scholarship shall continue to be payable to an eligible student if the student has attained a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) at the start of the student's second year of county college enrollment.
i. If an NJ STARS recipient has less than a 3.0 GPA at the start of the second semester of the first year of county college enrollment, the student shall participate in an enrichment program designed by the county college during the second semester of the student's first year of enrollment in accordance with P.L. 2005, c. 168;

5. A student must annually complete and file a financial aid application, as approved by the Authority, within established State deadlines in order to apply for all other available forms of Federal and State need-based grants and merit scholarships. This includes the student satisfying all requirements to determine his or her eligibility to receive payments of these State and Federal grants and scholarships within established State deadlines;

6. A student must maintain continuous enrollment in a full-time course of study unless:
i. The student is on medical leave due to the illness of the student or illness of a member of the student's immediate family or emergency leave because of a family emergency, which medical or emergency leave shall have been approved by the county college prior to completion of the semester for which leave is being granted;

ii. The student is called to partial or full mobilization for State or Federal active duty as a member of the National Guard or a Reserve component of the Armed Forces of the United States;

iii. The student receives an exemption from the full-time course of study requirement by enrolling part-time and:
(1) Provides the county college with a written note from a physician or other licensed health care professional indicating the student's need to take a reduced number of credits due to a physical or mental health condition; or

(2) Provides the county college with documentation to verify the death of the student's parent or spouse in the current or previous semester. Acceptable documentation includes, but is not limited to, a copy of the obituary listing the student as the child or spouse, or a copy of the death certificate along with a copy of the birth certificate or marriage certificate;

iv. A student enrolled for less than full-time status during the summer semester shall not receive an NJ STARS award for that semester, unless the student receives an exemption from the full-time course of study requirement pursuant to (a)6iii above, but shall maintain eligibility for the program; or

v. In the final semester of county college enrollment a student may take less than 12 credits if the county college determines that the student needs less than 12 credits in that semester to complete the degree program. In order to maintain NJ STARS eligibility, the student must take at least as many credits as that student requires to complete the degree program. If the final semester falls during the summer, the student shall receive an NJ STARS award for the summer semester, as long as the student meets these requirements; and

7. A student shall not receive an NJ STARS scholarship for the sixth semester of county college enrollment, unless the student is enrolled in a three plus one degree program established pursuant to P.L. 2018, c. 144, but if a student enrolled in a nursing or engineering program enrolls for a sixth semester that student shall maintain eligibility for the New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship II (NJ STARS II) Program, established pursuant to P.L. 2005, c. 359 (N.J.S.A. 18A:17B-86.1et seq.), provided the student meets the requirements for receipt of an NJ STARS II scholarship and graduates after the sixth semester.

(b) A student is eligible to receive an NJ STARS scholarship during the fall, spring and summer semesters.

(c) A student who is eligible for an NJ STARS scholarship and who earned college credits from a higher education institution while enrolled in high school, may submit a transcript from that institution to his or her county college. If the county college determines that the student's coursework is equivalent to that offered by the county college, then the county college shall apply the credits toward the award of the student's associate degree as an NJ STARS scholar.

(d) In the case of a student who was an NJ STARS scholar on May 2, 2012 and graduated from high school prior to 2010, the NJ STARS scholarship shall be administered, and the student shall remain eligible for the program in accordance with the provisions of P.L. 2004, c. 59, as the same read prior to May 2, 2012.

(e) A student enrolled part-time pursuant to (a)6iii above shall receive an additional semester of NJ STARS eligibility for each semester the student receives an exemption from the full-time course of study requirement, not to exceed five additional semesters.

Amended by 46 N.J.R. 2354(a), effective 12/1/2014

Amended by 52 N.J.R. 469(a), effective 3/2/2020

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