Financial Aid + Scholarships


Frequently Asked Questions

Our family cannot afford the whole cost at Washington University. Should I even bother applying?

Of course! Washington University is committed to making attendance here affordable for students who have been offered admission. If you don’t apply, you won’t find out how we can help you. Our awards range up to the full cost of attendance. You have nothing to lose by applying.

Do I apply for need-based aid every year?

Yes. If your award contains need-based components, it's important to understand how changes in your family's income, assets, or family demographics can impact your financial assistance award in future years. In general, your award will remain the same or increase from year to year, as long as your family's FAFSA information remains relatively consistent. We realize changes in your family's financial situation can happen from year to year while you are a student. We will work with your family to understand any changes in your family's information and help you prepare for the upcoming academic year.

Is there a GPA requirement to keep my financial aid award?

Students are required to maintain satisfactory academic progress. This is generally defined as maintaining a 2.0 GPA and earning enough credits to graduate on time.

Is the only way for my family to pay our share of the costs to write a big check each semester?

No. Our interest-free Installment Payment Plan allows you to spread each semester's tuition, fees, room, and board charges over 5 equal monthly payments. Washington University’s Partners in Education with Parents (PEP) is among the best parent financing programs in the country. PEP features low interest rates, low monthly repayment terms, and the option to freeze all four years of costs at the entering-year rate.

What will happen if my family and I have unexpected financial problems after I’ve enrolled?

Our primary goal is to help our students be successful. We do all we can in response to changing family circumstances to help you complete your Washington University education.

Will I have to work while I’m in school? I don’t want work to hurt my course work.

Many students choose Federal Work-Study jobs related to their academic and extracurricular interests. Work schedules don’t interfere with classes. Students with part-time jobs tell us how much they learn from the experience. Both the job and the contacts they make are very helpful when they are looking for full-time employment after graduation.

Are international students eligible for financial aid?

Yes. International students can receive need-based financial assistance. Students with permanent resident status in the United States should apply for financial assistance as U.S. citizens. International students are also welcome to apply for the academic scholarships (except the John B. Ervin Scholarship).

I’m a National Merit finalist, will I receive a scholarship from Washington University?

The type of National Merit Scholarship you receive is determined by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC). If you receive scholarship funds from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, Washington University will accept the award as an outside scholarship to help cover part of the cost of attendance. However, Washington University does not offer University-funded scholarships based on a student’s standing with the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

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