How to Apply to the NJ STARS Program


We are excited that you have decided to apply to Bergen Community College as a prospective NJ STARS student in the NJ STARS program.  In order to be officially certified as an NJ STARS student, please read the following information as well as the information in the table below, and complete all necessary steps.

Sometime in February, letters will be sent from HESAA (Higher Education Student Assistance Authority) to high school students who qualified for the NJ STARS program at the end of their junior year.  After Bergen Community College receives the list of qualifying students from HESAA, a letter will be sent to those students together with the NJ STARS Application/Contract and the HESAA Fact Sheet for 2016 High School Graduates.

If you do not receive a letter by the end of March, please check with your high school guidance department to see if you ranked in the top 15% at the end of your junior year and if not, if you might rank in the top 15% at the end of your senior year.

  1. After receiving your letter from Bergen Community College, please read the Fact Sheet carefully to be sure you meet the residency requirements.  The 2016 Fact Sheet is now available and can be accessed on the HESAA website at www.njgrants.org, or simply click here:  Fact Sheet for 2016 High School Graduates.
  2. If you have applied to Bergen Community College, or will be applying and have received your letter regarding the NJ STARS program, first determine if you meet the requirements outlined in the fact sheet.  Next, please read the application/contract carefully.  The application/contract contains important information including requirements that must be met to become certified as an NJ STARS scholar, as well as requirements necessary to maintain eligibility in the NJ STARS program.
  3. If your name was not included on the HESAA list of qualifying junior high school students but should have been, or if you ranked in the top 15% at the end of your senior year, you will not receive a letter from HESAA or Bergen Community College.  To be certified as a prospective NJ STARS student, you will need to provide your final, official signed and sealed transcript that contains your rank and class size.  If your transcript does not contain your ranking information, you will need to obtain a letter from your high school on the high school letterhead which specifies your class rank and class size.  The letter must be signed by the Guidance Director or Vice President, and it should contain the school seal.
  4. If you received a letter and applied to Bergen Community College, please email [email protected] so your college record can be flagged as a prospective NJ STARS student, and NJ STARS announcements regarding upcoming deadlines, NJ STARS Information Sessions, registration dates, etc. will be sent to you via email.  If you haven't applied yet or you are interested in learning more about the program, please email [email protected] for more information, and you will be placed on an email list so you can be sent NJ STARS announcements via email.  
  5. After registering your classes, complete the entire NJ STARS Application/Contract which includes checking your student email and both of your Bergen Community College and HESAA student portal accounts to be sure your Financial Aid and other requirements have been met.  See the table below for more information.
  6. Stop in A-118 or call 201-447-7211 to schedule an appointment with one of the NJ STARS Academic Counselors. Be sure to say that you are an NJ STARS scholar and you were advised to make an appointment with an NJ STARS counselor to bring in your completed NJ STARS Application/Contract. 
  7. Please have your high school send your final, official signed and sealed transcript as soon as possible so that it can be cleared prior to your appointment with an NJ STARS counselor.  If you need a letter of ranking (see #4 above), please be sure they include the letter with your transcript.  Your transcript and letter if necessary) should be mailed or hand delivered to: Catherine Krostek, Enrollment Services Coordinator, 400 Paramus Road- Room A-123E, Paramus, NJ  07652.
  8. Please schedule your appointment with an NJ STARS counselor and bring your completed application/contract to your appointment by July 29, 2016.

 TO DO LIST

INSTRUCTIONS  DEADLINE 

Apply to Bergen Community College and declare a major.

Apply online. If you are unsure of which major to declare, choose liberal arts.

BCC has an open enrollment policy; however students are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

Complete required Free Application for Federal Aid (FAFSA).

Choose BCC as the first  or only college.
Complete the appropriate aid year FAFSA. Choose BCC as the first or only college.

College Code:  004736

Contact Financial Aid with any questions at:

Phone:  201-447-7148
Fax:  201-612-9823
Email:  [email protected]
BCC Priority Deadline:  April 15, 2015

State Deadline:  (2014-2015 Academic Year)
Returning Students June 1, 2015

All Other Applicants:

October 1 2015 (fall semester or full academic year)

March 1 2016 (spring semester only)

Complete required State financial aid paperwork. Visit www.njgrants.org and click "Report Additional Information for State Aid.”

IMPORTANT!

Any changes to the first choice college code require direct contact to FAFSA and HESAA.

HESAA Customer Care: 800-792-8670

Contact Financial Aid with any questions at:

Phone:  201-447-7148
Fax:  201-612-9823
Email:  [email protected]

Deadlines listed above apply.
Confirm FAFSA and HESAA information is complete, accurate timely and received by the College. Contact Financial Aid with any questions at:

Phone:  201-447-7148
Fax:  201-612-9823
Email:  [email protected]

Submit any additional paperwork requested.

Deadlines listed above apply.
Submit final, official sealed high school transcript. Official transcript must be sent to Registration to be evaluated for transfer credit. Students may use unofficial copies of transcript for initial registration.
Unofficial copy of transcript should accompany the student on the day of registration. Official copy should be received before registration for the student’s second semester.

Display college readiness for English, Reading and Math. College readiness is displayed by any of the following:

SAT scores: 540 reading, 530 math
ACT scores: 23 reading, 20 math, 23 composite
AP or CLEP scores
CAP classes in English or Math

College level English or Math taken at another regionally accredited institution

BCC Accuplacer testing.

Additional placement testing is required for students pursuing a major which requires pre-calculus.

Placement testing must be complete prior to registering for the first semester.

College readiness must be displayed by Sept. 1st one year following high school graduation.

Students must submit any placement test scores and are strongly advised to bring copies of test scores and current high school transcripts with them on the day of registration.

Students are not eligible for NJ STARS funds until college readiness is displayed.

Complete the Verification Process for Federal and/or State aid. If selected for verification, you will receive an email from Financial Aid.  Submit all required paperwork to the BCC Financial Aid office.  

Delays in supplying any requested documentation can impact processing of financial aid applications/ scholarships.

Contact Financial Aid with any questions at:

Phone:  201-447-7148
Fax:  201-612-9823
Email:  [email protected]

Please refer to the Financial AidFederal and State websites for deadlines and procedures.
Register for courses. Attend Spring Ahead with your high school (speak with your Guidance Department for details) or attend a New Student Orientation (post cards are mailed.) Ideally before the payment deadlines for each semester. Please refer to the Bursar for payment deadlines and policies.

Registration after the payment deadlines will result in same day payment being required.

Registration after the payment deadlines will result in same day payment (potentially in full) being required.

Make payment on all fees.

*NJ STARS covers tuition only for 12-18 credits per semester, no summer funding available. The remainder of the cost of attendance is the responsibility of the student.
Payment on fees can be made once NJ STARS funding is awarded to the student’s account.  Students will be sent an award letter from financial aid and the award will appear on the student’s Portal account. Ideally before the payment deadlines for each semester.  Please refer to the Bursar for payment deadlines and policies.

Registration after the payment deadlines will result in same day payment being required.

Registration after the payment deadlines will result in same day payment (potentially in full) being required.

Complete the NJ STARS application/contract. After the application/contract is fully completed, stop in A-118 or call 201-447-7211 to schedule an appointment with one of the NJ STARS Academic Counselors.

Be sure to say that you are an NJ STARS student bringing in a completed application/contract.   Please bring the completed application/ contract with you to your appointment.

Can be signed by you and an NJ STARS Counselor at any time during the enrollment process but preferably by July 24, 2015.

Become familiar with your BCC portal. Log in to your BCC Portal account and change your password. Use these tools daily as it is the main means of communication between you and school.

As soon as you are given access to the accounts.

*If pre-calculus and/or calculus are required for the student's degree, an additional placement test may be necessary to determine college readiness for the pre-appropriate math sequence.  An academic advisor can be contacted for details.