NC Principal Fellows Program

The NC Principal Fellows Program is a scholarship loan program funded by the North Carolina General Assembly. Awards are based upon academic merit. Financial need is not a consideration. The scholarship loans assist interested individuals in earning a master's degree in school administration in preparation for a career as an assistant principal or principal in the public schools of North Carolina.

Visit the official website of the NC Principal Fellows Program >

Principal Fellows studentsMinimum Requirements

To be considered for the Principal Fellows Program, each applicant must:

  • Be a domiciliary (legal resident) of North Carolina.
  • Have a baccalaureate degree from an institution accredited by a state, regional, or national accrediting agency.
  • Have at least a 3.2 grade point average on a 4.0 scale in the last 60 semester hours of study, including any graduate work.
  • Be unconditionally admitted for the next academic year as a full-time student in the first year of the two-year Master of School Administration degree program at a participating University of North Carolina institution by the date the Principal Fellows Commission selects the recipients in the spring.
  • Have completed no more than two courses (6 hours) that apply toward the masters in school administration.
  • Have at least four (4) years of successful full-time teaching experience (does not include part-time, substitute teaching or teacher assistant experience) or other relevant experience.


An applicant must provide an:

  • Official transcript for all college-level work;
  • GRE or MAT score;
  • Employment history;
  • Description of professional accomplishments;
  • Description of academic awards and honors;
  • Description of administrative responsibilities;
  • Description of professional leadership positions or activities;
  • Resume;
  • Written goals statement;
  • Three letters of endorsement (one must be from the current principal or supervisor);
  • $25.00 application fee, non-refundable, non-deductible and non-applicable to tuition or any fees (payable to UNC-GA).

The deadline for completed applications to be received is January 15 each year.

Principal Fellows studentsObligations

Upon receipt of a scholarship loan, a Principal Fellow must:

  • Enroll for a full-time academic load per enrollment period for two academic years beginning in the fall;
  • Sign a promissory note establishing a scholarship loan agreement;
  • Not be employed on a full-time basis during the time he/she is receiving the scholarship;
  • Practice at an approved site in North Carolina as a full-time administrator for four (4) years within six (6) years following completion of the masters degree, or repay in cash the amount received through the Principal Fellows Program plus interest at an annual rate of 10%;
  • Comply with the Rules and Regulations of the Program.

Principal Fellows Handbook >