Higher education is blooming in the Garden State!
New Jersey is home to numerous high ranking colleges and universities, including Ivy League Princeton University and the prestigious Rutgers University. It also offers some of the most generous financial aid programs in the nation.
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And it gets even better: With its new initiative, New Jersey is committed to becoming the country’s most educated state.
Overview of Higher Education in New Jersey
New Jersey is home to 83 higher education institutions, according to a 2018-2019 report by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Of the 83, 32 are public, 38 are non-profit private schools, and 13 are for-profit private schools.
In 2018, the NCES reported that the average in-state student would pay $13,963 per year to attend one of New Jersey’s public 4-year institutions, while out-of-state students will pay around $28,669. Both tuition rates are well above the national average.
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New Jersey is one of the best-educated states in the country, but to stay competitive and sustain the economy the state will need even more educated workers. Its campaign “65 by ’25: Many Paths, One Future,” aims to have nearly two-thirds of New Jersey residents complete some education or training beyond high school by 2025.
They will achieve this by focusing on career education, closing equity gaps, and enhancing partnerships between high schools and colleges and between two-year and four-year colleges.
About Online Colleges in New Jersey
Data from the NCES in 2018 showed that 8.1% of undergraduate students in New Jersey were enrolled in fully online degree programs.
An additional 16.4% were enrolled in a hybrid program, combining both online and on-campus courses. Today, nearly all of the state’s colleges and universities offer online programs, and more and more students are taking advantage of this convenient, flexible way to earn a degree.
Students at Thomas Edison State University (TESU), a public university designed specifically for adults, can choose from an impressive list of online college degree programs. The school offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate certification and degree programs – all online! Their online courses are 12 weeks long, and students can opt for courses that are very independent or those with lots of interaction and discussion amongst students.
The well-known Rutgers University offers 17 fully online bachelor’s and master’s degrees – from business and education to liberal studies and marketing. As with online colleges in New Hampshire and online colleges in New Mexico, the school also partners with Coursera to provide Massive Open Online Courses, giving everyone access to courses at the nation’s top schools.
Scholarships and Financial Aid in New Jersey
If you’re thinking about attending a college or university in New Jersey, the first thing you should do is fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This will give you access to federal, state and even private financial aid.
The FAFSA becomes available every year on October 1st. You will want to fill it out as early as possible because much of the aid is given on a first-come, first-served basis. Completing the FAFSA application is simple. You will just need to provide financial information for yourself and your parents (unless you’re considered “independent”). That data will be reviewed and used to determine how much and what kind of financial aid you qualify for.
The ideal forms of financial aid are grants and scholarships because neither has to be repaid. New Jersey residents have access to some of the most generous financial aid programs in the nation! Their programs include:
- New Jersey Tuition Aid Grant – For high school graduates who demonstrate financial need; Award may cover up to full cost of tuition
- New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship (NJ STARS) – For students who rank in the top 15% of their class at the end of either the junior or senior year of high school and achieve the required score on a college placement test; For full-time attendance at student’s home county college; Award covers full cost of tuition
- New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship II (NJ STARS II) – For successful NJ Stars scholars who transfer to a New Jersey 4-year public or private school for their bachelor’s degree; Must have earned associate degree with a GPA of 3.25 or higher; Family income must be less than $250,000; Award covers full cost of tuition
To learn more about New Jersey’s state-sponsored aid, visit the Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA) website, and set up a New Jersey Financial Aid Management System account to help you find and apply for state aid.
New Jersey residents can also apply for private scholarships, such as the following:
|Scholarship Name||Scholarship amount|
|AAA South Jersey Scholarship Contest||$2500|
|Builders League of South Jersey Scholarship||Varies|
|Missy’s Miracle Scholarship||Varies|
If these don’t suit you, check out the scholarship search site Fastweb.com. There, you can enter your information and the site will match you with dozens of scholarship opportunities.
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And finally, make sure to connect with the financial aid office at the school you have chosen. They can tell you about any aid programs that may be exclusive to the school.
List of Online Colleges in New Jersey
|Online Colleges in New Jersey||Annual Tuition||Application Fee|
|Georgian Court University||$31,618||$40|
|New Jersey Institute of Technology||$16,430||$75|
|Ocean County College||$4,345||$0|
|Seton Hall University||$39,258||$55|
|Thomas Edison State College||$6,350||$75|
New Jersey offers award winning schools, plenty of online learning opportunities, and generous financial aid. With its new commitment to become the most educated state in the country, it’s clear the Garden State is growing in the right direction.