Golden LEAF Scholarship Program

Scholarship Value: $14,000
Awards Available: 215

The Golden LEAF Scholarship is designed to assist current North Carolina high school seniors and North Carolina community college transfer students. Recipients must be from certain rural counties, plan to attend a participating North Carolina college or university, demonstrate financial need, and express an intent to return to a rural North Carolina community upon college graduation. The scholarship is funded by the Golden LEAF Foundation through a grant to the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority.


  • Be a North Carolina resident for tuition purposes and reside in a qualifying rural North Carolina County as identified by the Golden LEAF Foundation
    • Applicants must complete residency determination at the North Carolina Residency Determination Service Website
  • Be a graduating North Carolina high school senior or a currently enrolled North Carolina community college transfer student enrolling full-time (degree seeking) in the fall at a participating North Carolina public or private college/university
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5
  • Have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that does not exceed the maximum permitted by Golden LEAF
  • Express an intent to return to a rural North Carolina community upon college graduation

Application Requirements

  • Complete and submit a full electronic Golden LEAF Colleges and Universities application
  • Submit an electronic copy of academic transcript that has final grades for most recent Fall semester
  • Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the appropriate school year

Other Information

The scholarship provides $3,500 a year for up to four years to high school seniors and $3,500 a year for up to three years to community college transfer students.  Students who have previously attended a college or university outside of dual enrollment (high school and college at the same time) are not eligible for consideration.

For renewal consideration, a Renewal Profile and FAFSA must be submitted each year.  In addition, the recipient must have continued financial aid need, remain enrolled full-time (degree seeking) at a participating North Carolina public or private college or university, and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.

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