North Carolina Opportunity Scholarship and ESA+ Priority Applications Close March 1, 2024

Submit your Opportunity or ESA+ Scholarship application(s) by March 1! Incomplete applications will not be included in the scholarship lottery.   For further assistance visit MyPortal Frequently Asked Questions or call: 855-330-3955, M-Th (8am-6pm), F (8am-5pm). *Extended hours Thursday, 2/29 until 7:00 p.m. and Friday, 3/1 until 6:00 p.m.
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Forgivable Education Loans for Service (FELS)

The FELS Program provides financial assistance to qualified students who are committed to working in critical employment shortage professions in North Carolina. You must complete loan forgiveness within seven years of graduation, excluding periods of approved deferments.

You must repay the loan through loan forgiveness or cash payments.

Option 1: Loan Forgiveness

Requirements

You must meet the following requirements to qualify for loan forgiveness:

  • Graduate from or complete the Approved Education Program*
  • Obtain licensure from the applicable licensing board
  • Secure qualifying employment

*FELS eligible programs are reviewed by the FELS Advisory Committee each academic year.  Borrowers must have enrolled in an approved program for the academic year in which they began receiving FELS to qualify for service forgiveness. List of approved education programs for previous years

How to Apply for Loan Forgiveness

  1. Notify NCSEAA of your intent to repay through loan forgiveness within 90 days of graduation or completion of your approved education program, even though you may not have secured a qualifying position. You may complete this process during the exit interview process on the Student Portal or through Repayment Services at (919) 549-8614, ext. 4654 or (800) 700-1775, ext. 4654 .
  2. Obtain licensure from the applicable licensing board.
  3. Secure a qualified position. You should contact Repayment Services prior to accepting a position to determine whether the position qualifies for loan forgiveness.
  4. Complete a loan forgiveness application and submit it to NCSEAA for approval.

For additional information, see Frequently Asked Questions about Loan Forgiveness.

Option 2: Repay the Loan in Cash

If you cannot repay your loan through loan forgiveness (you did not graduate from the program on the degree level for which you received financial assistance, or you work in a position that does not qualify for loan forgiveness), you must repay the loan in cash. You may repay the loan in one lump sum or monthly installment payments.

For additional information and instructions on how to repay in cash visit Frequently Asked Questions: FELS Cash Repayment.

Deferment

A deferment is a period in which loan forgiveness or cash repayment of a loan is postponed or delayed. Although payments are not due during a deferment period, interest at the rate of eight percent will continue to accrue on the outstanding principal balance of your FELS loan. A borrower may apply for deferment by completing and returning a Postponement/Deferment Form to NCSEAA for approval.

For additional information visit Frequently Asked Questions: FELS Deferment.


Tip

Q: How long do I have to repay my FELS loan obligation through loan forgiveness?

A: You must complete your loan forgiveness obligation within ten years of graduation from or completion of the FELS program.