RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK — Golden LEAF scholarship awards, valued at $12,000 ($3,000 per year for up to fouryears) will be offered to first-time recipients attending a qualifying North Carolina campus for the 2017-18 academic year.

The scholarships are funded by a grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation and are administered by the N.C. Education Assistance Authority. Information and applications are available online on the College Foundation of North Carolina ( website at

To be considered, applicants must:

* Be enrolled during the 2016-17 academic year at a North Carolina public or private high school or a North Carolina community college.

* Enroll for fall 2017 as a full-time, degree-seeking freshman or transfer from a North Carolina community college at one of the 57 qualifying public universities or private colleges and universities in North Carolina.

* Be a North Carolina resident for tuition purposes with a permanent residence in one of 79 qualifying rural counties.

* Demonstrate financial need by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) which is available at

* Submit a Golden LEAF scholarship application available at and a current high school or community college transcript.

The application deadline is March 1.