More students could benefit from Longleaf grant

If you just graduated high school in 2021, or are the parent/guardian of a recent high school graduate, hopefully you have heard about the Longleaf Commitment Grant.

This state-funded program seeks to fully cover or reduce tuition expenses for eligible 2021 graduates attending any of the state’s 58 community colleges this fall. North Carolina community colleges have started awarding eligible students up to $2,800 per year, in addition to any federal financial aid or other state grants students are eligible to receive.

At Wilson Community College, all students who graduated from a North Carolina high school in 2021 (including early January 2021 graduates) are automatically considered for the grant once they submit an admissions application, complete residency determination and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. This is an unprecedented opportunity for eligible students to complete a degree or earn transfer credits at no cost to them or their families through the spring 2023 semester. There is not a separate application for the grant, and the funds do not have to be repaid.

Some students may assume they are not eligible due to income level. Many college applicants do not qualify for financial aid aimed at assisting low-income families because they have an expected family contribution (based on FAFSA determination) that is too high to receive assistance. Middle-income students who are faced with paying all or part of their educational expenses tend to enroll in college at a lower rate than both high- and low-income students. But the EFC is not solely based on income — many factors (i.e. the number of family members in the home) are taken into account, so we encourage all students to complete a FAFSA, regardless of income level.

What some people may not realize is the Longleaf Commitment Grant provides more funds to those with a higher EFC. For instance, a full-time eligible student with an EFC of $0 would receive full financial aid and $700 per year from the Longleaf grant; while a full-time eligible student with an EFC of $10,000 would not qualify for financial aid, but would receive $2,800 per year. Longleaf funds are prorated based on a student’s enrollment status, and awards are split between the fall and spring semesters.

If you are interested in receiving the Longleaf grant, you can visit our website at to apply for admission and complete the steps necessary for RDS and FAFSA. Once you have applied to the college and done your FAFSA with the WCC school code, our financial aid office can determine your eligibility. For more information about taking advantage of the Longleaf Commitment Grant, contact the WCC financial aid office or visit the NC Community Colleges information page.

Registration for the fall 2021 semester is open through Aug. 18.  For more information, visit our website at or give us a call at 252-291-1195.  #WilsonCC — we make Wilson work.


• Aug. 12-18 — Fall registration.

• Aug. 16 — First day of classes.

• Aug. 25 — New student orientation and nursing information session.

Scroll to Top

Severe Weather Alert

Due to the threat of severe weather, the college will be closed on Friday, September 7, 2023.