Today, Elizabeth City State University is launching its VikingPLUSprogram, a comprehensive set of initiatives to help students afford a high-quality college education. The university will award new funds under VikingPLUSthis year and has already provided a total of nearly $4.2 million in free credits, additional emergency funding, and housing and meal plan grants since spring 2020.
“Our students should be discovering their passions, not worrying about finances, which can be a significant concern for many families,” said ECSU Chancellor Karrie G. Dixon. “A college degree opens doors to the future, and we have combined programs under the VikingPLUSumbrella to nurture our students and empower them to conquer their dreams.”
Ranked one of the Best Bang for the Buck colleges, ECSU supports students financially, and offers programs to help students feel a sense of belonging and purpose on campus. As noted in Best Colleges, when students “tap into their school’s resources and programs, they have a better chance of graduating and entering the workforce with a bachelor’s degree.”
One of the biggest concerns for students and families is student loan debt. According to Student Loan Hero, Americans owe more than $1.71 trillion in student loans, which is about $739 billion more than the total U.S. credit card debt.
“We consider the overall welfare of our students. From supporting them financially to keeping class sizes small, we strive to give our students the individual attention and resources they need to thrive,” said Chancellor Dixon.
Below are highlights of the VikingPLUSprogram, with more initiatives to be added in the future.
- The first six credits of summer school are free: 431 students just received an award totaling $517,733 in free tuition for the summer 2021 term.
- Students will receive $1,500 towards their housing and meal plan if they live on campus for the Fall 2021 semester. ECSU expects to award $1.5 million for the 1,023 students projected to live on campus this fall.
- ECSU awarded more than $2.1 million in emergency grants to support students during the COVID-19 pandemic. These funds are awarded on an ongoing basis, and do not impact financial aid eligibility.
- The university offers a $150 to $4,000 grant if a student withdrew temporarily and re-enrolled at a later date. ECSU has provided $50,000+ since the launch of the program last year, with additional grants to be awarded this summer.