New skilled workforce loan and scholarship program

Photo courtesy: Bismarck State College

BISMARCK, N.D. - North Dakota college students could receive up to $17,000 with a new skilled workforce loan and scholarship program this fall.

If a higher education student enters one of the high-demand career fields provided on the list that will be available by August, half of their schooling would be paid for by the state and the other half would be paid for by the employer.

"Maybe they're a graduating senior this year or a junior or something, an employer can recruit that student and offer a program to stay and work in the state, and get some of their schooling paid that way," said Matt Gardner, director of government affairs for the Greater North Dakota Chamber.

Gardner says the program is targeted at those pursuing a two-year degree or less.

"Type of a nurse, could be a truck driver, could be a welder, you know, our manufacturing sector, you know, there are many different sectors and one thing I should point out, part of this legislation is it needs to be an in-demand career field," he added.

Gardner says before the fall, there will be a website where students and employers can register. He added it could also be used on top of other scholarships, financial aid and could be a tool to pay off loans.