The Financial Aid Office provides assistance to graduate students who are interested in obtaining federal and/or alternative loans to help fund their education. Included on this website is information about the graduate aid programs available through the University of Rochester’s Financial Aid Office. All graduate students are encouraged to discuss with their academic departments financial aid options such as tuition waivers, assistantships, or fellowships. The River Campus Financial Aid Office does not administer graduate student grants, scholarships, or fellowships.
Please be aware that students enrolled in the Advanced Program for Non-Nurses (APNN) are considered to be undergraduates. Application instructions for APNN students are provided.
Eligibility for Federal Aid
To qualify for federal student loans, a student must be:
- enrolled in a degree-seeking program
- enrolled at least half time (6 credit hours per term)
- A U.S. citizen or permanent resident
For more detailed information on the William D. Ford Federal Direct Student Loan program please visit the Loan section of our website.
If you do not meet the criteria listed above, you may be eligible to borrow through a private or alternative loan lender. To research more about alternative loans, please visit the Loan section of our website.
- Q: How is my eligibility for aid determined?
- A: For need-based aid, we subtract the expected family contribution (calculated from the information you reported on the FAFSA) from our cost of attendance. We also subtract any other sources of financial aid you receive. The remainder is your “financial need.” For non-need based aid, we subtract all of your sources of assistance from the cost of education.
- Q: What is included in my cost of attendance?
- A: This includes tuition, mandatory fees, rent, food, books, a personal allowance, and transportation between a local residence and campus. It cannot include car payments, credit card payments, moving expenses, job search expenses or other non-educational expenses. The Financial Aid Office has determined reasonable estimates of the cost of attendance.
- Q: What needs to be completed for my federal loans to disburse?
- A: First time borrowers of a Federal Direct Loan at the University of Rochester must fulfill requirements for both an electronic master promissory note (eMPN) and an entrance counseling session. These requirements must be completed before loan proceeds can be credited to a student’s account. The entrance counseling session will inform borrowers of their rights and responsibilities. The eMPN is a formal contract between the student and the federal government. Students will be notified via email if they are required to complete these requirements and will be directed to our website to begin the sessions. Returning students who have received federal loan funding at the University before are not required to complete these requirements again.
- Q: Will my tuition bill reflect my financial aid?
- A: Once your financial aid eligibility has been determined, your loan information will be reflected on your University billing statement. Please note that if you do not complete your federal loan requirements in a timely manner, your financial aid will be cancelled from your bill and you will be responsible for the balance owed. Our office will send notifications prior to cancelling your aid.
- Q: How do I receive a refund for my living expenses?
- A: If a student receives aid (including loans) in excess of the direct costs payable to the University of Rochester (direct costs include tuition and fees), the Bursar’s Office will issue a credit balance refund. A refund is NOT available earlier than 10 days before the first day of classes each term. Orientation sessions are not considered the start of classes. Credit balance refunds are only available after financial aid funds have disbursed to student accounts. Although financial aid resources can be used for living and book expenses, students should be prepared to cover their costs at the beginning of each term out of savings, until financial aid funds have been applied to the account. Please note: If you are not registered for the same number of credit hours that you originally reported on your application, your funds will not disburse. Click here to contact your counselor to report a change in your credit hours.
- Q: How may I receive an increase in my award?
- A: Your cost of attendance includes the direct costs that appear on your bill (tuition and fees) and the indirect costs that do not appear on your bill( room, board, books and supplies, transportation, and personal expenses). If you feel that your cost of attendance does not reflect your circumstances correctly, it is recommended that you meet with your financial aid counselor to discuss your concerns and options.
- Q: How do I defer my previous student loans?
- A: Our school submits enrollment information to the Federal government in order to place federal loans on deferment. Students should contact any other loan servicers that they have borrowed with to receive information on how to defer those loans.
- Q: What do I do if I need additional educational funding beyond my estimated cost of attendance?
- A: Your cost of attendance includes the direct costs that appear on your bill (tuition and fees) and the indirect costs that do not appear on your University bill (room, board, books and supplies, transportation, and personal expenses). If you feel that your cost of attendance does not reflect your circumstances correctly, please schedule an appointment to meet with your financial aid counselor to discuss your options.
Counselors are assigned to graduate students based on the program in which they are enrolled. Click here to find contact information for your counselor. Contact information for graduate students can be found towards the bottom section of the page.
How to Apply
How to Apply
2013-2014 Academic Year
Students who are applying for federal aid must also complete the FAFSA. Click here to access the FAFSA. Be sure to list our federal school code, 002894.
- Aid Enrollment Plan Form (available through FAOnline):
- Required for all graduate students, whether they are applying for federal aid or for an alternative loan.
- FAFSA: www.fafsa.ed.gov. Be sure to list our federal school code, 002894.
- Required for graduate students applying for federal aid.
2014-2015 Academic Year
All graduate students applying for federal loans must complete the FAFSA. Students applying for alternative loans should apply directly with the lender of their choice. Click here to access the FAFSA. Be sure to list our federal school code, 002894.
Deadlines for Applying for Aid
In order to have your student loan funds available at the start of the fall semester, you should submit your application materials to the Financial Aid Office by May 1. The FAFSA can be completed for the new academic year after January 1, 2014. Award letter notifications for students who apply by our deadline should expect to see an email regarding their financial aid for the 2014-2015 academic year by mid-June 2014.
If you apply after the start of the academic year, please allow up to 2 – 4 weeks for processing of your application to determine your eligibility for aid. Additional processing time is needed to set up loans for first time borrowers through the federal government. Filing your application well before you actually need your loan funding is highly recommended.
Federal Direct Loan Eligibility
Graduate students may borrow up to a maximum of $20,500 per academic year through the Federal Direct Loan program. The actual amount a student is eligible to borrow cannot exceed the University of Rochester’s cost of attendance minus any other assistance received.
Unsubsidized loans will accrue interest while a student is enrolled. Students may choose to pay the interest while attending school; if allowed to accrue it will be capitalized (added to the principle balance) at the beginning of the repayment period. There is a fixed interest rate of 5.41% as well as an origination fee. This fee will be subtracted from the amount borrowed, and will be reflected in the disbursements issued to the University.
The total outstanding Federal Direct Loan debt a graduate student may carry is $138,500, of which no more than $65,500 may be subsidized. This figure includes any Federal Stafford/SLS/Direct Loans received during undergraduate study.
Federal Graduate PLUS Loans
Students who have already applied for the Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan can also apply for additional aid through the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan program. The PLUS loan is based on credit-worthiness, which is determined by the federal government. A student’s maximum PLUS loan eligibility cannot exceed the cost of attendance minus all awarded financial aid for the academic year.
This loan has a fixed interest rate of 6.41%. An origination fee will be subtracted from the amount borrowed and is reflected in the disbursement to a student’s account. Interest will begin to accrue on this loan after it has disbursed. The interest can be paid while attending school. If a student chooses not to pay the interest while enrolled, it will be capitalized when repayment begins. Additional details regarding the PLUS loan, including how to apply, can be found under the Federal Student Loanssection of our website.
Please note: the following types of students should speak to their financial aid counselor first before pursuing alternative loans so that your counselor can provide you with the best information regarding your borrower options:
- Students seeking to pay past-due balances
- Students denied on previous alternative loan applications due to poor credit
Alternative educational loans are offered by banks and educational lenders as a supplement to federal student loans. These loans may also be referred to as private educational loans, as they are not affiliated with the federal or state loan programs. Alternative student loans require a separate application directly with the private lender. Click here to read more on alternative loan options.