Financial Aid

Brandeis maintains a substantial aid program consisting of grants, loans and work awards. Approximately 50 percent of the students enrolled at Brandeis receive university assistance. The staff of the Office of Student Financial Services is available to assist parents and students in planning to finance four years of undergraduate education.

Financial aid is awarded after a careful analysis of the family's ability to support the student's costs of education. The analysis is based on the information submitted by the family on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE, and if applicable, federal income tax returns.

The student's eligibility for assistance is determined according to federal government regulations and university policies governing financial aid programs. Included in the analysis is the ability of the parent(s) and the student to contribute from current and future income and assets. The difference between a family's ability to support the student and the actual costs of education is determined to be the student's financial need. The amount of each student’s financial aid award is based upon the financial need. Students with demonstrated financial need should expect some combination of scholarship, loan and/or work awards in their financial aid offer.

Financial Aid Policy

  1. Students receiving need-based scholarship aid will usually be expected to assume loan and work obligations as part of a self-help package determined annually by the Office of Student Financial Services. Students may decline or request changes to the amounts of their loan and work if funds are available and their demonstrated need level allows.
  2. Financial aid applicants are required to apply for the Federal Pell Grant and state scholarship programs, where available, by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid by the stated deadlines. Brandeis is unable to replace with university funds non-university aid that students are eligible to receive, but for which they fail to apply in a timely manner.
  3. Outside awards received from federal and state programs may result in a dollar-for-dollar reduction in Alumni and Friends, MLK, Fein or Posse Scholarship funds. Outside awards received from non-governmental sources, even if based on criteria exclusive of need, will first be used to reduce the need-based self-help (loan and/or work) used to meet institutional financial need, any unmet federal financial need, and then the grant components of the student's need-based award. Students receiving need-based or merit-based aid will not be permitted to keep outside awards in excess of the total cost of attendance.
    The above policy will be applied to outside awards received by any Brandeis student regardless of class year. All awards should be reported in writing to the Office of Student Financial Services.
  4. All students must reapply for financial aid each year. Students receiving any type of federal aid must file the Renewal Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which can be filed online. Students receiving need-based scholarship funds from Brandeis must also complete the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE and provide copies of student and parent tax returns. The university may also require verification of certain application items including, but not limited to, the student's academic year residence status and the enrollment of siblings at other postsecondary undergraduate institutions. The filing date for applying for renewal of financial aid is the last Friday in April. Late applicants will only be considered for scholarship if funds remain available.
    Although it is expected that financial assistance will be continued each year of the student's undergraduate enrollment, the form and/or amount may change in subsequent years to reflect changes in financial need, federal and university funding, and other circumstances. An increase in the amount of loan in the financial aid package should be anticipated.
  5. Upperclass students who wish to apply for financial aid for the first time must file the FAFSA and the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE as well as submit copies of student and parent tax returns. The university may also require verification of certain application items including, but not limited to, the student's academic year residence status and the enrollment of siblings at other postsecondary undergraduate institutions. The filing date for applying for financial aid is the last Friday in April. Late applicants will only be considered for scholarship if funds remain available.
  6. First-year students who receive any type of federal aid must file the FAFSA before any aid can be credited to their student account. First-year students who receive need-based scholarship funds from Brandeis must also provide copies of student and parent tax returns. The university may also require verification of certain application items including, but not limited to, the student's academic year residence status and the enrollment of siblings at other postsecondary undergraduate institutions.
  7. If a student's FAFSA application is selected for standard verification, he or she will be required to submit a Verification Worksheet (available on our website at http://www.brandeis.edu/sfs/forms.html), submit documentation of child support paid and food stamps received (if applicable), and to use either the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA or submit copies of IRS Tax Transcripts to verify the income reported on the FAFSA (non-filers must submit a non-filer statement along with income documentation). He or she may also be required to sign a statement of educational purpose and to provide proof of identification to satisfy the requirements of federal verification.
  8. All verification documents must be submitted prior to the application filing deadlines indicated on the SFS website (http://www.brandeis.edu/sfs/finaid/filing.html) and/or the awarding and disbursement of institutional, federal and state financial aid. Failure to do so by ten days prior to the start of the academic year term will result in cancellation of his or her financial aid, which may result in late fees and/or withdrawal from the University for non-payment of the balance due. If a student is selected for verification after his or her financial aid has been disbursed, he or she will have 30 days to complete the verification process and failure to do so will result in cancellation of both state and federal financial aid. Any required changes to a student’s FAFSA data resulting from the verification process will be made to his or her application directly by Brandeis, unless otherwise instructed. Any changes to his or her financial aid award due to the verification process will be communicated via a financial aid award letter.
  9. If a student transfers to another institution, and the student previously attended that institution via the Brandeis Study Abroad Program, the student will be required to repay any scholarship funds awarded to the student by Brandeis to attend that institution.
  10. If a student changes his or her academic program (that is, taking fewer than 12 credit hours [which equals full-time status], studying abroad or elsewhere domestically, graduating in less than four years, graduating in more than four years or taking a leave of absence), there may be implications for the amount and type of financial aid that the student can receive. If a student is considering any of the above options, he/she should consult a financial aid counselor first to discuss the impact on financial aid eligibility.
  11. Federal regulations require that a student receiving federal assistance make satisfactory academic progress in accordance with standards set by the university. Brandeis delegates the responsibility to monitor academic progress to the Committee on Academic Standing and charges it to make such determinations on the basis of individual merit, and not in relationship to some arbitrary numerical standard.
    The committee thoroughly reviews the records of students whose performance was unsatisfactory, that is, more than one D and/or one or more E or F, at the conclusion of each semester. Students whose progress has been judged unsatisfactory and whose withdrawal has been required by the Committee on Academic Standing shall be accorded a reconsideration by that body in the presence of new information, judged to be relevant by the dean of the college or his/her designee.
    Should a required withdrawal action be rescinded on appeal, financial aid eligibility shall be reinstated. Any student permitted by the committee to register for the following semester is considered to be making academic progress and is eligible for financial aid from federal and university sources. However, because an ability to complete the degree within eight semesters is a measure commonly applied by the committee in making these determinations, students are advised to consult the sections of the current Bulletin pertaining to class standing (under "Academic Regulations").

Financial Aid to Transfer Students

Financial aid is available for students entering Brandeis as transfer students from other institutions of higher education. Applicants who wish to apply for financial assistance should submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE, and copies of student and parent Federal income tax returns for the most recent tax year. The application for financial aid is due at the same time as the application for admission.

Federal Loans

1. Federal Perkins Loan Program
Interest is not charged and repayment is not expected while the recipient is enrolled at least half-time. During repayment, interest is at a fixed rate of 5 percent per year, and repayment may be made over a 10-year period. Cancellation of a portion of the aggregate loan is available for service as a teacher of the handicapped, or in a low-income school district. The number of Perkins Loans is limited and reserved for the most needy students.

2. Federal Direct Stafford Loan Program
This program enables eligible undergraduate students to borrow up to $5,500 during the first year, $6,500 in the second year, and $7,500 in the third and fourth years. All students, regardless of family income, must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and, if required, documents to satisfy the requirements of federal verification, in order to be eligible for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan. Students are notified of their eligibility for this loan program on the financial aid award letter.

There are two different forms of this loan: the Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan and the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Interest and repayment are deferred on the Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan while the borrower attends college on at least a half-time basis.

Although repayment is also deferred on the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan while the borrower is enrolled at least half time, interest accrues on this loan from the time the loan funds are disbursed. The interest may be deferred and capitalized. Six months after the cessation of half-time enrollment, the borrower begins a 10-year repayment period (other repayment options are available) during which time interest is charged to the student. For the 2013-2014 academic year, the interest rate on the subsidized and unsubsidized versions of this loan was a fixed rate of 3.86 percent. This loan carries a 1.072 percent origination fee.

Borrowers of the Perkins Loan, the Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan, and the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan must complete the required promissory notes and entrance counseling online at the beginning of their entering semester upon receipt of correspondence from the Office of Student Financial Services. Anticipated credits on a student's account will be cancelled if all required steps are not completed.

The terms of the above loan programs are subject to federal legislation and may be changed.

Title IV Cancellation

If you have been awarded a federal, private or parent student loan (for example, Federal Direct Stafford or PLUS), you have a right to cancel all or a portion of your loan or loan disbursement. To do so, please submit a written request to: Office of Student Financial Services, Brandeis University, Mailstop 027, 415 South St, Waltham, MA 02453-2728 or e-mail sfs@brandeis.edu.

A request for loan cancellation or adjustment must be made before the end of the academic year or prior to leaving school—whichever comes first—and must state which loan(s) and what amount(s) you wish to cancel. Cancellation of your awarded student loan(s) will most likely create a balance due on your account. This balance would be due and payable upon receipt of the statement.

Student Employment

The Office of Student Financial Services seeks to provide work opportunities to students seeking work on campus and in the Waltham area. This service is available to students, regardless of whether or not they are receiving financial aid. Students who receive job allotments as part of their financial aid package will have priority for jobs, but many non-aided students find campus employment. Potential job earnings are not deducted from billed charges from the university at the beginning of each term. Students receive weekly paychecks based on hours worked.

Listings of all on-campus and off-campus job opportunities are available on our website.