Welcome High School Students, Graduates, and Transfer Students!
The New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship (NJ STARS) Program is an initiative created by the State of New Jersey that provides New Jersey’s highest achieving students with free tuition at their home county college for 12-18 college-level credits in the fall and spring semesters for up to five semesters.
To see if you qualify, please check the NJ STARS Fact Sheet for 2021 High School Graduates or visit the HESAA website and check the NJ STARS Fact Sheet for the year you graduated high school.*
*Fall 2021 will be the last semester of eligibility for 2019 high school graduates.
*2019 and 2020 high school graduates who qualified for the NJ STARS program but did not attend Bergen Community College full-time may still be eligible if they enroll within five semesters following high school graduation, even if they attended another college or university.
Prospective NJ STARS Student Notification
Prospective NJ STARS students should receive a letter from HESAA sometime at the end of February or in early March during their senior year of high school. Click here to view a copy of the 2021 letter. Students who did not activate their NJ STARS eligibility by May 7th will still be eligible to apply to the NJ STARS program at Bergen Community College until September. Students signing their NJ STARS Application/Contract after the start of the Fall semester will have to pay their tuition and wait for reimbursement from the State of New Jersey.
This year, postcards were mailed out from Bergen Community College in mid-March to all qualifying students in Bergen County containing information about the NJ STARS program and QR Codes that can be scanned to RSVP to NJ STARS events, and to this webpage to complete the online application process.
*If you did not receive a letter from HESAA or a postcard from Bergen Community College, please see below.
To get started, download the Self-Identification Form for Prospective NJ STARS Students and save it to your computer. Then complete the form, save it again, and email it to Catherine Krostek, the Bergen Community College NJ STARS Representative.
Please visit the How to Apply to the NJ STARS Program webpage to begin the NJ STARS certification process, and join us at one of the NJ STARS Weekly Webinars for help or to find out everything you need to know about the NJ STARS program. Visit the NJ STARS Events webpage for dates and times, and to RSVP.
Students who did not receive correspondence from HESAA or Bergen Community College
If you did not receive a letter from HESAA, you will not receive a postcard from Bergen Community College since you may not have ranked in the top 15% of your class at the end of your junior year. Please check with your high school guidance office since if you did not qualify at the end of your junior year, you can still qualify if you rank in the top 15% of your class at the end of your senior year.
Students whose names are not on the HESAA list of qualifying junior high school students but should have been and students who qualify at the end of their senior year are potentially eligible for the NJ STARS Program. However, these students will need to provide proof of their class rank and class size either on an official, final signed and sealed transcript or on the Certification of High School Class Rank Form from their high school which must contain the school seal.
Qualified out-of-county students should receive a letter from HESAA but will not receive correspondence from Bergen Community College.
NJ STARS Contacts at Bergen Community College
NJ STARS Program Certification – Room C-111
Enrollment Services Coordinator & NJ STARS Representative
Academic Counseling – One Stop
Jennifer Migliorino-Reyes, Dean for Student Success
Enrollment Services – One Stop
Peter Vida, Dean of Enrollment Services