For more detailed information on state financial aid programs contact:

Minnesota Higher Education Services Office
1450 Energy Park Drive, Suite 350
Saint Paul, MN 55108-5227

 The following are financial aid programs available to students who are residents of the state of Minnesota. 

Minnesota State Grant

State Grants help students from low- and moderate-income families pay for educational expenses at eligible Minnesota colleges or universities. In 2006, approximately:

What Is the Application Process?

There is no charge for applying to the Minnesota State Grant Program. Students can apply for a State Grant by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form is used to determine the student's and family's expected financial contribution, and is the same form used to apply for the Federal Pell Grant and other types of aid from institutions. To receive a State Grant for a term, the FAFSA must be submitted to the federal processing center within 30 days of the school's term start date.

Which are the "Eligible Institutions" in Minnesota?

Eligible institutions include the state universities, the University of Minnesota, public community and technical colleges, schools of nursing and related health professions, private colleges, and private career institutions in Minnesota. For more information, contact the financial aid office at the school the student is attending or wishes to attend.

State Grants may not be used at out-of-state schools. However, Minnesota has tuition reciprocity agreements with several states and one Canadian province that may help reduce the price of a student's higher education.

Who is Eligible?

Minnesota residents who:

 Students who are in default of a student loan or who are more than 30 days behind for child support owed to a public agency are NOT eligible, unless they have established payment plans with the appropriate agency.

Students may receive State Grants for four consecutive full-time quarters or three consecutive semesters during the course of a single fiscal year.

State Grants are limited to:

 Students must reapply each year to renew their grants. A State Grant can be renewed for up to six full-time semesters or nine quarters (or their equivalent). However, the student must make satisfactory progress as defined in state law.

Enrollment Status

To receive the full amount of the State Grant, the applicant must be a full-time student (registered for 15 credits per term). Less than full-time students will have their price of attendance prorated based on the actual number of credits. However, the parent or student contribution used in the award formula is NOT reduced if the student takes fewer credits, so a student who is eligible for an award at 15 credits may not qualify at a lower enrollment level.

Part-time students with three or more credits can be considered for a State Grant. However, students are encouraged to complete their degree as quickly as possible by registering for as many credits as they can handle each term.

How Much Money You Can Receive?

The maximum award for 2007-2008 will range from about $5,575 at a public technical college to $8,499 at a private four-year college. The average award during 2005-2006 was $1,750. The minimum award is $100 per year.

How Is the Award Determined?

Awards are based on the difference between what students and their families are expected to contribute to pay for the education and the actual price of attending a particular college or university.

However, all applicants are required to contribute at least 46 percent of their price of attendance out of savings, earnings, loans, or other assistance from school or private sources. For dependent students, the remaining 54 percent of the price of attendance is met by a contribution from the parents as determined by the federal need analysis (FAFSA) prorated to 96 percent and by the combination of Federal Pell Grant and State Grant awards. For independent students, the remaining 54 percent of the price of attendance is met by a contribution from student's income and assets (as determined by the federal need analysis) and by the combination of Pell and State awards.

For the State Grant Program, the price of attending a college or university consists of:

 The price of attendance is pro-rated based on the student's enrollment status.
See examples of the State Grant Award calculation:

The State Grant Program divides the responsibility of paying for a student's higher education between the student, parents, and government (state and federal). This is called Shared Responsibility.

How are Students Notified about their Grants?
Participating schools are required to calculate awards on campus and include the amount of the State Grant in the student's financial aid award notice.


Child Care Grant

The Postsecondary Child Care Grant Program helps low income students who have young children pay for child care while the student attends classes.

Who is Eligible?

Minnesota residents who have a child 12 years old or younger (or 14 or younger if the child is handicapped) and whose family size and income qualify for the program. To qualify, student also must:

The student must not be receiving assistance from the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP). Individuals receiving MFIP at this time should contact their County Social Office of Higher Education to get additional information about child care assistance.

What Schools Are Eligible?

Eligible institutions are all public postsecondary schools and private, baccalaureate degree granting colleges and universities located in Minnesota, or nonprofit, two-year vocational schools granting associate degrees.

How is the Award Determined?

The amount of child care assistance depends on:

 How Much Money Can You Get?

The maximum available to a full-time student is $2,600 for each eligible child per academic year. Assistance may cover up to 40 hours of child care per week for each eligible child.

In some instances, the maximum award may be increased by 10 percent to compensate for higher market costs for infant care.

What Is the Application Process?

The student should apply to the financial aid office at his or her school.


Public Safety Officer's Survivor Grant

The Public Safety Officer's Survivor Grant provides educational benefits to dependent children and the surviving spouse of a public safety officer killed in the line of duty on or after January 1, 1973.

 Who is Eligible?

To qualify, the spouse or dependent (less than 23 years old) must be enrolled in an undergraduate or certificate program at one of the more than 130 public or private postsecondary schools in Minnesota that participate in the State Grant Program.

You are not eligible if you have received a bachelor's degree or been enrolled full time for the equivalent of 10 semesters or 15 quarters, whichever occurs first. Students who have withdrawn for active military service after December 31, 2002 are given an extra term of eligibility.

How Much Money Can You Get?

Awards are based on the average tuition and fees charged by the institution or the tuition and fee maximums established in law for the State Grant Program, whichever is less. The annual tuition and fee maximums for the 2007-2008 award year are $9,838 (four-year program) and $6,114 (two-year or less program).

Awards are renewable for a maximum of eight semesters or 12 quarters or their

What Is the Application Process?

Applicants need to take a certificate of eligibility to the financial aid office at the school they attend or plan to attend. This certificate can be obtained from:

Nancy Reissner
Minnesota Department of Public Safety
445 Minnesota Street, Suite 100 NCL Tower
St. Paul, MN 55101
Tel: (651) 201-7165


Alliss Opportunity Grant Program for Adults Returning to College

Adults may be eligible to take a college credit course for free at one of Minnesota's community colleges through the Alliss Opportunity Grant Program. The grant covers one course (up to five credits). The cost of books is included in the award, but other restrictions and fees many apply.

Application Process: Contact the community college admissions office for more information and an application. You cannot apply for a grant after you have registered.

Eligibility Requirements: To be eligible for this grant, you must have been out of high school for seven or more years, and not have a bachelor's degree.


Grants for Dislocated Workers

Dislocated Worker Programs serve individuals dislocated from long-held jobs. The goal is to help workers obtain new employment quickly. These programs focus on upgrading current job skills, retraining workers whose skills are not marketable, and providing support services.

For More Information

Individuals may inquire about Dislocated Worker Programs at local Workforce Centers or call (888) GET-JOBS (888-438-5627).


Aid for Minnesota National Guard Members

Members of the Minnesota National Guard may be eligible to receive specific veterans benefits, and may be eligible for federal and state grants for the federal government and the state of Minnesota.

Federal Benefits

Montgomery G.I. Bill

Under the Montgomery G.I. Bill, eligible members of the Minnesota National Guard who are full-time students enrolled in a participating postsecondary institution are eligible to receive $309 per month in basic benefits for 36 months effective October 1, 2006. (Montgomery G.I. Bill, Selected Reserve, Chapter 1606)

In addition, eligible members of the Minnesota National Guard in an approved apprenticeship or on-job training program are also eligible for monthly benefits.

Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)

A member of a Reserve component who served on active duty on or after September 11, 2001 for at least 90 consecutive days is eligible for an education stipend if their active service is:

Initial training does not qualify as part of the consecutive days of service. (Reserve Educational Assistance Program, Chapter 1607)
The following rates are in effect as of October 1, 2006:

Student Enrollment Status

Consecutive service of 90 days but less than one year

Consecutive service of 1+ year

Consecutive service of 2+ years

Full time




3/4 time




1/2 time




Less than 1/2 time,
More than 1/4 time




1/4 time or less




Federal Tuition Assistance for Veterans

The Federal Tuition Assistance program for National Guard or reserve members pays up to $250 per semester hour, up to $4,500 per fiscal year (October 1 through September 30) .

The combination of the Minnesota Tuition and Textbook Reimbursement and Federal Tuition Assistance can total more than 100 percent of the tuition (not including fees). Money is paid directly to the school.

To be eligible, students must be members of the National Guard prior to start of the course. Students can also receive Montgomery G.I. Bill kicker benefits as long as the soldier is attending school half time or more. Soldiers with Montgomery G.I. Bill basic benefits may be eligible for the program, pending funding from National Guard Bureau.

To apply, students complete their applications on Students need to bring a signed copy of the DD 2171-e (printed when completing the application online) to their unit with a copy of their course registration and tuition and fees statement. Applications must be received prior to the start of the course. Federal funding is limited and this benefit is approved on a first come, first pay, basis.

Minnesota Veterans Benefits

Minnesota Tuition and Textbook Reimbursement Grant Program

The Minnesota Tuition and Textbook Reimbursement Grant Program is available to active members of the Minnesota National Guard enrolled in undergraduate and graduate courses.

The program reimburses students for coursework satisfactorily completed at any school approved for veterans benefits. The rate of reimbursement is 100 percent of the tuition cost at any school, not to exceed 100 percent of the per credit rate at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Money is paid directly to the soldier.
Guard members may use this program with the Federal Tuition Assistance and Montgomery G.I. Bill benefits.

To apply, you must request approval for possible reimbursement through your unit at the start of the semester. Upon completing the course, you must turn in your grades, and submit a tuition and fee statement from the school to your unit for reimbursement.

Minnesota G.I. Bill

The Minnesota G.I. Bill program is a new program in 2007 established to provide postsecondary educational assistance to eligible Minnesota veterans who served on or after September 11, 2001. Learn more.

For additional information:


Presidential Freedom Scholarship

The Presidential Freedom Scholarship recognizes high school students for outstanding community service. The principal of each school can nominate up to two students to represent the school.

Who is Eligible?

High school juniors and seniors, in public and private schools, who have performed at least 100 hours of community service in the year prior to applying.

How Much Money Can You Get?

Each scholarship is at least $1,000, which includes at least $500 from local business, community, or civic organizations and a $500 match from the Corporation for National Service.

What Is the Application Process?

Students are nominated by their high school principal in the spring each year.

For More Information

To learn more, visit or contact your high school principal or the Office of Higher Education.


Robert C. Byrd Scholarship for High School Students

The Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship is a federal program that provides scholarships to high school seniors who demonstrate outstanding academic achievement.

About 120 awards are equitably distributed across Minnesota's eight congressional districts. Awards can be renewed for up to three years upon request (assuming the student retains his or her eligibility), and are not competitive.

Who Is Eligible?

Initial applicants must be high school seniors who are residents of Minnesota. Resident seniors attending high schools outside the state are also eligible if they have the principal's endorsement.

How is the Award Determined?

High school seniors are nominated by their principals. The Minnesota Department of Education administers the award and accepts one nomination per high school (two if the graduating class is larger than 350).

How Much Money Can You Get?

The renewable scholarships are for $1,500, but the award amount can change depending on the level of federal funding. Recipients may attend any accredited postsecondary institution in the United States.

What Is the Application Process?

The Minnesota Department of Education distributes application/nomination information to all Minnesota high schools, charter schools (public and private), GED programs and Area Learning Centers in January. Students should contact their principal or counselor for application forms. A Minnesota resident high school senior attending a high school outside Minnesota may self nominate if he or she has the endorsement of the high school principal.
The nomination deadline is early March. Students are notified before the end of their high school senior year.


Minnesota Academic Excellence Scholarship

Minnesota Academic Excellence Scholarship helps students who have demonstrated outstanding ability, achievement, and potential in one of several subjects: English or creative writing, fine arts, foreign language, math, science, or social science.

Who Is Eligible?
High school graduates must be admitted to enroll full-time in a nonsectarian, baccalaureate degree-granting program at:

Students MUST enroll during the year of their high school graduation.

How Much Money Can You Get?

The scholarship can be renewed annually for up to three academic years if the student meets certain academic standards.

Implementation of this program depends on availability of funds which come from the sale of special collegiate license plates.

What Is the Application Process?

Contact the institutions you are considering to check if the college participates in the program. The scholarship can be renewed annually for up to three additional academic years if the student continues to meet the program's academic standards.


Minnesota Indian Scholarship

Minnesota Indian Scholarship Program provides money to help American Indian students pay for their higher education.

Who is Eligible?

Scholarships are available to eligible American Indian students who are undergraduate or graduate students enrolled full- or three-fourths time.

In order to qualify for this scholarship, you must be:

How Much Money Can You Get?
The award amount is based on need up to $4,000 per year for undergraduate students, and up to $6,000 for graduate students.

What Is the Application Process?

Interested students should complete the Minnesota Indian Scholarship application below. They should also complete the FAFSA and an application for tribal education funds.

Students are encouraged to contact the school financial aid administrator at their campus and their tribal education program (see list below). The priority deadline is July 1. Information and application forms also are available from:

Minnesota Indian Scholarship Program
Minnesota Office of Higher Education
1450 Energy Park Drive, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55108
Tel: (651) 642-0567 or (800) 657-3866
Lara Gerhardson, Outreach Liaison
Tel: (218) 755-2270
Tribal Education Programs

Minnesota Chippewa Tribe

Fond du Lac Tribal Center
1720 Big Lake Road
Cloquet, MN 55720
Tel: (218) 879-4593 x2633 or (800) 365-1613

Grand Portage Reservation
P.O. Box 428
Grand Portage, MN 55605
Tel: (218) 475-2812

Leech Lake Scholarship Office
115 6th Street Northwest, Suite E
Cass Lake, MN 56633
Tel: (218) 335-8523 or (866) 638-7738

Scholarship Office
Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe
43408 Oodena Drive
Onamia, MN 56359
Tel: (320) 495-3702 or (866) 916-5282 x32

Bois Forte Reservation
P.O. Box 16
Nett Lake, MN 55772
Tel: (218) 757-3261 or (800) 221-8129

White Earth Tribal Council
P.O. Box 418
White Earth, MN 56591
Tel: (218) 983-3285 or (800) 950-3248

Minnesota Sioux Tribe

Lower Sioux Community
P.O. Box 308
Morton, MN 56270
Tel: (507) 697-6185

Prairie Island Indian Community
5636 Sturgeon Lake Road
Welch, MN 55089
Tel: (651) 385-4132

Shakopee Sioux Community
2330 Sioux Trail NW
Prior Lake, MN 55372
Tel: (952) 445-8900

Upper Sioux Community
P.O. Box 147
Granite Falls, MN 56241
Tel: (320) 564-2360

Red Lake Tribe
New Beginnings
P.O. Box 416
Redby, MN 56670
Tel: (218) 679-3350


Minnesota Educational Assistance for War Orphans

Qualified war orphans may receive up to $750 a year from the Department of Veterans Affairs to be used for tuition, books, supplies, board and room.

To be eligible for this program, you must have lost your veteran parent through death because of a service caused condition and have been a resident of Minnesota for two years prior to your application for educational benefits.

Children of deceased veterans also may qualify for free tuition at the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, until they earn a bachelor's degree. This does not apply to private institutions.

For more information, students should contact the financial aid office at the school they attend or plan to attend, their county Veterans Service Officer at the County Courthouse, or:

Lillian Dambowy
Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs
Veterans Service Building, 2nd Floor
20 West 12th Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
Tel: (651) 296-1033


Minnesota Veterans' Dependents Assistance Program

The Minnesota Veterans' Dependents Assistance Program provides tuition assistance at most Minnesota colleges and universities to dependents of persons considered to be prisoners of war or persons missing in action -- as defined by the Department of Defense -- after August 1, 1958.

Students can receive tuition and fee assistance up to a maximum of $250 per year at Minnesota private colleges.

For more information, students should apply to the financial aid office at the school they attend or plan to attend


Education Vouchers for Former Youth In Care

Education vouchers are federal funds made available to states through the Chafee Foster Care Independence Act. Education vouchers are intended to help youth ages 18 to 23 pay for postsecondary education.

Since October 2003, 42 students have received more than $169,700 to help pay for their education. More than $300,000 is still available in the program.

Who Is Eligible?

In order to receive an education voucher, you must meet the following requirements:

How Much Money Can You Get?

The maximum amount per year is $5,000 per student. Youth must apply for other sources of financial aid as well. In addition to tuition, books and fees, education vouchers may be used for room and board, child care, transportation, computers, and other expenses the student may need to cover to make a post secondary education possible.

The amount of an education voucher award is based on the amount of other aid you are receiving, and an estimated living expenses budget which is a part of the application.

What Is the Application Process?

A downloadable application is available from the Minnesota Department of Human Services. Applications are reviewed twice a year.
You also must attach a copy of your completed FAFSA, apply for other sources of financial aid, and submit two letters of recommendation. Students may reapply for education vouchers every year. Transcripts are required as evidence of progress in a post secondary education program.

What Is the Deadline?

Students have until June 1 to apply for vouchers for the fall term.

For More Information

If you have questions about the education voucher program, contact:

Claire Hill
Minnesota Department of Human Services
444 Lafayette Road North, 3rd Floor South
St. Paul, MN 55155
Tel: (651) 296-4471

State Financial Aid Information

Find state financial aid information for the specific state that you live in. Find contact information for your local federal aid office, and get details about specific federal aid programs in your area.