Begin to establish residency TODAY!
We know the process for establishing NC state residency is a bit tedious and time-consuming, but due to budgetary belt-tightening that directly affects GSSP funds, it is extremely important for you to begin establishing residency ASAP. The Graduate School has been forced to change how they handle GSSP funds, which puts a lot of the burden on the department and your advisors.
Further, the Graduate School has explicitly included in the terms and conditions contracts (i.e. TA and RA contracts) a rule on residency and tuition support. It states that out-of-state students supported by GSSP “are expected to complete a good faith residency reclassification application prior to the posted deadline for their one-year anniversary academic term [ . . . . ] Failure of eligible students to begin residentiary acts and submit an application will result in loss of eligibility for continuing tuition remission support.” That means that you will LOSE YOUR GSSP FUNDING, YOU WILL LOSE YOUR TA AND/OR RA, YOU WILL LOSE YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE, AND YOU WILL GET A FULL TUITION BILL THAT YOU WILL HAVE TO PAY! Even if you’re on a fellowship at this time, it is in your best interest to establish NC state residency because you don’t know when you’ll be put on a TA or RA that’s linked to the GSSP.
Start doing the following if you haven’t done so already to establish residency:
- Obtain a North Carolina Driver’s License
- Register your car in NC and obtain NC license plates
- Register to vote in North Carolina (can be done when obtaining Driver’s License, at a local bank, at the post office, etc.)
- List personal property for which you pay property taxes in NC
- Open a savings and a checking account at a local bank or credit union
- If possible, convert membership in professional associations, service or civic groups, churches, etc. to local chapters of these groups.
- Keep track of proof of jury duty, tax forms filed that include the time you lived and worked in NC, where you live while not in NC, and what your parents still help you with. This last item may require that your parents provide additional information, such as their tax records.
When you begin working on your application, you’ll not only complete the application, but also include proof of the aforementioned residentiary acts (the online application system will tell you what you need when you submit it). Applicants to NC State typically have their initial tuition residency status determined based on responses they provide as part of their admissions application. The written statement you have to provide is also crucial. Please see the Graduate Office for guidance. It takes 12 months to obtain and accomplish all of the recommended steps to be considered for NC State residency. So start NOW.
If you don’t start this process now, you will likely not get approved for in-state residency next year. However, the fact that you submit the application and provide proof of residentiary acts does show a good faith effort, and the Graduate School may take that into consideration when they do their GSSP eligibility checks (but they can decide to stop your GSSP support anyway). They will scrutinize what you submit, and if it does not meet their standards when you get rejected, they may decide to also deem you ineligible for tuition support. With that in mind, YOU NEED TO TAKE THIS VERY SERIOUSLY.
If you need more information see the Residency for Tuition Purposes website.