Types of Financial Aid
There are a variety of funding opportunities available that you can use in any combination that works best for your situation.
Boston College Aid
Scholarships, assistantships, tuition remission, and fellowships are awarded by the individual graduate schools or law school. Please check your individual school's website for information and deadlines to apply for these types of aid. Students are notified directly by their graduate school or department of their awards. In addition, there is assistantship information on the Graduate Student Life website. Recipients are encouraged to send a copy of their award letters or emails to www.bc.edu/finaidupload.
Federal Direct Loans
Direct Loans are low-interest loans for students to help pay for the cost of a student's education.
With Direct Loans a student borrows directly from the Federal government, who is your lender. Students will have a single point of contact—your loan servicer—for everything related to repayment, even if you receive Direct Loans at different schools. Your loan servicer can be a private business. Each student will have online access to individual Direct Loan account information via the servicer's website. Students can choose from several repayment plans that are designed to meet the needs of almost any borrower and can switch repayment plans if their needs change.
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
- Interest rate is 7.05% fixed during repayment as of July 1, 2023.
- Origination fee is 1.057% for loans disbursed on or after Oct. 1, 2020, and before Oct. 1, 2023.
- Interest accrues while the student is enrolled as well as during the grace and repayment periods.
- Repayment on both principal and interest beginning six months after the student ceases to be enrolled in school on at least a half-time basis, generally extending over a 10-year period.
- $20,500 maximum award per academic year for Graduate and Law students.
Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan
- Apply for a Federal Direct Grad PLUS through the U.S. Department of Education.
- Note: If you are starting in the fall, do not apply for a Federal Direct Grad PLUS loan until after July 1. The credit check for the Federal Direct Grad PLUS loan is valid for 180 days and credit must still be valid when classes start for the semester. The credit decision for the Federal Direct Grad PLUS loan typically takes 24–48 hours. It is recommended that you submit your application approximately two weeks before the bill due date.
- Interest rate is 8.05% fixed for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2022. Loans accrue interest while students are in school and during repayment.
- Interest starts accruing at the loan’s first disbursement.
- Rates are reset annually by the federal government on July 1.
- Origination fee is 4.228% for loans disbursed on or after Oct. 1, 2022, and before Oct. 1, 2023.
- Eligibility is COA (cost of attendance) minus any aid received by the student.
- The school will determine the amount you are eligible for upon certification of the loan.
- A Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be completed by the student before they apply for a Federal Direct Grad PLUS loan.
- Students must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN).
- To complete an MPN online, you will be required to use your FSA ID.
If you have not previously received a Federal Direct Loan, the government requires you to complete entrance counseling to ensure that you understand the responsibilities and obligations you are assuming. For Graduate and Law students, the entrance counseling will fulfill requirements for the Direct Unsubsidized Loans. You can complete the Entrance Counseling online at studentaid.gov.
Master Promissory Note
Graduate and Law students who have not previously borrowed a Federal Direct Loan must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN). The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loan(s) and any accrued interest and fees to the Department. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan(s). The MPN can be completed online at studentaid.gov. You will be required to use your FSA ID.
In most cases, once you've submitted the MPN and it's been accepted, you won't have to fill out a new MPN for future loans you receive. You'll receive a disclosure statement that gives you specific information about any loan that the school plans to disburse under your MPN, including the loan amount, fees, and the expected disbursement dates and amounts. This disclosure statement will be sent to you from your loan servicer.
Federal Loan Resources
- studentaid.gov—The U.S. Department of Education's website for federal student aid. On this page you can:
- Apply for the FAFSA and an FSA ID
- Complete a Direct Loan Electronic Master Promissory Note (MPN)
- Complete Direct Loan Entrance Counseling
- View Disclosure Statements and other electronic loan correspondence
- Apply for a Graduate PLUS Loan application
- Complete online Exit Counseling
- Access the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS)
- Find links to other tools and resources
- The Department of Education's Direct Loan Applicant Services hotline: 800-557-7394
This is a federally subsidized loan program awarded to nursing students demonstrating financial need. Repayment of principal and interest (fixed at 5%) begins nine months after you cease to be enrolled at least half-time. The minimum monthly installment is $40.00, and the loan must be paid within ten years.
You will be required to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and related disclosure materials. This is an electronic process; specific instructions will be emailed to you once the financial aid process is complete. Funds will be disbursed to your student account only after completion of all forms. Disbursements of this loan will be made in two equal installments—one each semester.
Students who have been awarded the Nursing or Law loan for the first time or the Balfour, Peter Jay Sharp, or the Bank of America Loan this year must complete Entrance Counseling and sign a promissory note. Visit ECSI's website for more information. Students will receive an email from the ECSI when it is time to sign their documents. Please make sure that your email client does not block communications from ECSI.
Private Educational Loans
Private Educational Loans are loans not guaranteed by the Federal government. The borrower (student) may borrow a private educational loan through various banks, credit unions, or savings and loan associations. There are many different types of private educational loans for different types of borrowers.
These loans are not need based; rather, they are based on creditworthiness. Terms and conditions applicable to these loans vary greatly. Factors such as interest rate, APR, length or repayment, loan minimum and maximum, and fees should be carefully considered when researching and choosing a private educational loan.
One feature of many private educational loans is the ability to completely postpone (defer) repayment until you graduate from college. Private educational loans almost always offer lower interest rates than credit cards do.
While we encourage students to pursue Federal financial aid before considering private educational loans, there are many student situations where a private educational loan is viewed as a preferred alternative. Sometimes it is the convenience of not needing to complete Federal forms to borrow funds. Whatever your situation may be, borrow only what you need, and compare your options before you borrow.
Please note that private loans cannot be considered for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program.
There are two types of student employment opportunities available to students, Federal Work-Study and campus employment.
Federal Work-Study (FWS) is a federally-subsidized employment program awarded to domestic students. Opportunities under the FWS program may be on- or off-campus, including community service positions. To be eligible for FWS, students must demonstrate federal financial need by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for a given year, and be enrolled in a degree program at least half-time or greater. Preference is given to FWS-awarded students since they have demonstrated financial need, but this is not guaranteed.
The amount indicated on your financial aid award is the maximum eligibility level, not a guarantee. Actual earnings depend on the hours worked and the pay rate of the position. Many graduate students work an average of 10 hours per week. Earnings made do not credit the student’s account, but rather are paid directly to the student in the form of a weekly paycheck. If a student works two jobs, whether on campus, off campus, and/or community service, both jobs will be paid with the Work-Study award.
If you do not qualify for FWS or did not apply for financial aid, you can work under the campus employment program. Campus employment is a separate option allowing students to hold part-time jobs on campus to help meet educational expenses.
In either employment program, students may not work more than 20 hours per week while school is in session. During the summer, students may work up to 40 hours per week as permitted. For available positions and additional information, visit bc.edu/studentemployment.
Aid from employers, corporations, foundations, service organizations, religious groups, school associations, and other organizations that sponsor educational assistance programs are considered outside aid. We will include an estimate of these awards on your financial aid award notification based on information received from your supplemental form or other notification. Outside aid recipients are responsible for providing copies of award notices to this office and notifying us if their award will be different than the estimate. Deferment of payment is possible, provided we have received a copy of the award notification.
Your local library, civic organizations, and vocational rehabilitation programs are some sources for scholarship information. You may also visit fastweb.com for additional resources.
Note: If you receive funds from an outside source, an adjustment may be made to your award package to ensure that the total of all resources is within your Cost of Attendance.
Veterans' Education Benefits
Boston College acts as a liaison with the Veterans Administration for students who may qualify to receive veterans' education benefits. Eligible students should apply through the United States Department of Veterans Affairs in order to obtain a Certificate of Eligibility. Applications can be completed online at benefits.va.gov/gibill or by calling the Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-888-GIBILL-1 (1-888-442-4551).
Once the Certificate of Eligibility has been received, the student should contact Linda Malenfant, the VA Certifying Official in the Office of Student Services. The Certifying Official will then certify the student's enrollment information to the Regional Processing Office (RPO). The RPO will process payment of benefits directly to the student.
For more information on life at Boston College, visit our Boston College Veterans website.
Boston College is proud to participate in the Post-9/11 GI Bill® Yellow Ribbon Program. This award is a supplement to Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits, and it signifies Boston College’s commitment to providing benefits to those who have served our nation so courageously.
The Yellow Ribbon Program is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. The program allows institutions of higher learning (degree granting institutions) in the United States to voluntarily enter into an agreement with the Veterans Association to fund tuition expenses that exceed the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition rate. The institution can contribute up to 50% of those expenses, and the VA will match the same amount as the institution.
Boston College has allocated 100 slots for Yellow Ribbon recipients. Any student in a degree program is eligible to apply. The Yellow Ribbon Program (YRP) scholarship, combined with Boston College Scholarships, federal aid, and other estimated financial assistance, cannot exceed the cost of attendance. YRP recipients must maintain good academic standing while receiving the scholarship. Recipients will be eligible to receive the award in subsequent years, provided that Boston College remains a YRP participant.
Eligible veterans must meet one of the following criteria:
- Served an aggregate period of active duty after September 10, 2001 of at least 36 months
- Honorably discharged from active duty for a service connected disability and served 30 continuous days after September 10, 2001
- Is a dependent eligible for Transfer of Entitlement under the Post-9/11 GI Bill based on a veteran’s service under the eligibility criteria listed above
Students in all undergraduate schools, GA&S, GSOE, GSON, GSSW, and CASG will receive a $6,000 Yellow Ribbon scholarship from BC that is matched by the VA with an additional $6,000 for a total of $12,000.
For the 2021–2022 academic year, Boston College is implementing a pilot program for Yellow Ribbon recipients for full-time MBA and Law School students in which Yellow Ribbon funding will meet the total tuition cost for these programs.
Eligible veterans must first fill out a form with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and then submit a Certificate of Eligibility to Student Services. For more information on the Yellow Ribbon Bill, including eligibility requirements, visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website.
Post-9/11 GI Bill® Yellow Ribbon Program
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at benefits.va.gov/gibill.