Types of Aid

From federal loans to private loans to scholarships, there are many ways to fund your Bryn Mawr education. Learn more about your financial aid options below.

Federal Aid

U.S. citizens and permanent residents can submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply for federal funding. You can apply for federal funding at any time. 

Pell Grants are need-based grants awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or a professional degree. If the amount of Pell Grant is not known or is estimated by the Office of Financial Aid at the time of the initial award announcement, the amount of the Bryn Mawr grant will change so that the total grant aid will remain the same.

Only U.S. citizens and eligible noncitizens are eligible for federal aid programs. More information concerning federal eligibility can be found at https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/grants/pell.

The amount of Pell Grant funds a student may receive over her lifetime is limited by a new federal law to be the equivalent of six years of Pell Grant funding. The maximum amount of Pell Grant funding a student can receive each year is equal to 100%, the six-year equivalent is 600%. More information about Pell Grant lifetime can be found at https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/grants/pell/calculate-eligibility.

The College awards FSEOG from federal funds allocated to Bryn Mawr to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need who have not earned a bachelor’s or professional degree. In compliance with federal regulations, priority is given to students who qualify for Pell Grants.

If a student is not eligible for Pell Grant, but the student’s parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. armed forces and died as a result of service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after September 11, 2001, the student may be eligible for this grant. To receive this grant, the student must be under 24 years old or enrolled in college, at least part-time, at the time of the parent’s or guardian’s death. The amount of the grant will be equal to the maximum Pell Grant for the award year, although the amount will not exceed the cost of attendance for the year.

The Federal Direct Loan Program enables students who are U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents and enrolled at least half-time (two units) to borrow directly from the federal government rather than from a bank. Loans made through this program include the Direct Subsidized and the Direct Unsubsidized Loans. Eligibility for the Subsidized Loan is determined by the information provided on the FAFSA.

Direct Subsidized Loans: The student must demonstrate federal financial need. The U.S. Department of Education will pay (subsidize) the interest that accrues during certain periods. For current interest rates and origination fee information, click here.

Direct Unsubsidized Loans: Financial need is not a requirement. The student is responsible for paying the interest that accrues. For current interest rates and origination fee information, click here.

All first-time Federal Direct Loan borrowers must complete a Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling  by using the FSA ID. Students can monitor their federal grant and student loan usage through the Federal National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). Federal grants and loans are scheduled for disbursement on the first day of classes for each term. Financial aid is credited to the student’s account in two equal disbursements (fall and spring).

Once a student graduates or drops enrollment below half-time they must complete exit counseling at https://studentaid.gov. Loan repayment begins 6 months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time. More information about different types of repayment plans and aggregate limits can be found here. Students can also identify who their loan servicer is by visiting NSLDS.

Dependent undergraduate students whose parents are applying for a PLUS Loan must complete a FAFSA. The Federal Direct PLUS Loan is a non-need based loan program designed to help parents provide funds for the parental contribution. A PLUS Loan applicant must pass a credit check. Interest is charged on PLUS Loans during all periods, beginning on the date of the first loan disbursement. There are no aggregate PLUS Loan limits. The annual amount is limited by cost of attendance. More information about the application process, current interest rates and origination fees, and repayment can be found here.

The College awards Federal Work Study based on need from federal funds allocated to Bryn Mawr. Eligible students may earn up to a specified amount through part-time employment. Wages are paid, in part, by the federal subsidy. Maximum earning potential is contingent on the availability of jobs and scheduling. First-year students learn more about employment opportunities at Student Orientation. Current College policy requires that all first-year students work with the dining services department. Funds earned are paid bi-weekly directly to the student to be used towards educational expenses and are not applied towards the student bill. 

The Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. It is a supplement to the “Post GI Bill Benefit in Pennsylvania” also known as Chapter #33 and expands veterans’ higher-education benefits. Students applying to Bryn Mawr may also be eligible for additional aid beyond the VA benefit. Students may choose if they want to pursue federal and/or institutional funding beyond their VA benefit.

All VA benefits, including housing allowances and book stipends, sent directly to the student will be considered resources before Bryn Mawr Grant eligibility is calculated. Merit scholarships in conjunction with VA entitlements and Bryn Mawr Yellow Ribbon Matching Grants cannot exceed the total cost of attendance, so merit scholarships will be adjusted accordingly. 

Chapter 31 VA recipients who receive funding to cover tuition, should know that any tuition awards offered by Bryn Mawr will be rescinded/replaced upon notification of a VA benefit.

Bryn Mawr College will need to verify your eligibility for the program before any funds can be awarded. Please contact the Office of the Registrar and be prepared to submit your Certificate of Eligibility. Once these documents have been received the Registrar will verify your eligibility and notify the Office of Financial Aid.

Eligible students admitted to degree programs in Bryn Mawr’s undergraduate college will be able to take advantage of this benefit pending College approval. For more information about yellow ribbon visit the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Institutional Aid

All students are eligible for institutional aid. You must apply for institutional aid when you submit your admissions application. If you do not apply for institutional aid when you apply for admission, you will not be eligible for institutional aid in the future.

Bryn Mawr offers need-based assistance to full-time undergraduate students (both domestic and international) when they complete a CSS Profile. Bryn Mawr Grants are awarded for a maximum of eight terms. Only students who apply for institutional aid at the time of admission are considered for institutional grant assistance during any of their subsequent years of enrollment.

A portion of Bryn Mawr College's institutional financial aid is from scholarships established by alumnae/i, friends, parents, corporations and foundations. Each year the Office of Development asks students to complete a bio and write a letter to our generous alumnae and friends who support Bryn Mawr. This is an opportunity for students to share their unique experiences with our most dedicated alumnae and friends.

Bryn Mawr offers a need-based institutional loan for international students who are enrolled at least half-time. There are no loan fees charged for this loan and it has a fixed interest rate of 5%. This means that the interest rate will remain the same for the life of the loan.

All International Loan borrowers must complete and sign forms provided by the College including the Self-Certification Form, Approval Disclosure Form, Master Promissory Note and Questionnaire. Incoming students attend the Entrance Loan Counseling Workshop during Orientation Week. Loans are scheduled for disbursement on the first day of classes for each term. Financial aid is credited to the student’s account in two equal disbursements (fall and spring). You may cancel your loan up to three days after signing the promissory note. If you have not canceled this loan after two days, we will credit your loan funds to your student account.

Loan repayment begins six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time.

The maximum repayment period of 10 years. The borrower will be notified of minimum payment and repayment period at the exit interview. While the borrower is enrolled at least half-time the interest rate on the loan will be 0%. During the grace period, the interest rate will be 0%.

UNISA is the billing company for International Loans. Contact UNISA at: 800-875-8910. You may access your account information and make domestic payments on your loan at: www.unisainc.com. Payments must be made from an American bank account.

To make loan payments from outside the United States: Use the Flywire Loan Payment website: https://www.flywire.com/pay/unisabmc.

Bankruptcy Limitations:

• If you file for bankruptcy you may still be required to pay back this loan.
• International Loans must be awarded as part of your financial aid offer. International students may not apply for financial aid after being admitted to the College.
• Borrowing limits are fixed. You may not borrow more than the amount offered as part of your financial aid award from year to year.
• International Students do not qualify for U.S. Department of Education federal loans.

Students who have campus employment may earn money to cover educational expenses. Funds earned are paid bi-weekly directly to the student and are not applied towards the student bill. Students work with the Student Employment Office for job placement.

Merit-based aid is awarded by the Admissions Office without regard to financial need. Bryn Mawr offers a limited number of merit-based awards to U.S. citizens and permanent resident applicants for  which admission are considered. There is no separate application. Applicants are evaluated through a holistic review process of admissions application materials including, but not limited to, academic coursework and performance, involvement in school and community, leadership qualities, letters of recommendation, quality and content of writing, and potential to contribute in meaningful ways to the Bryn Mawr community. Scholarships are non-negotiable and only awarded at the time of admission.

Scholarships of up to $45,000 per year are available and are awarded for a maximum of eight semesters. They are renewable provided that the student is enrolled full time at Bryn Mawr. The Bryn Mawr Merit Scholarship and the Bryn Mawr Presidential Scholarship, in conjunction with other sources of financial aid and entitlements, cannot exceed the cost of attendance.

Other Aid

Students may also qualify for other funding including state assistance, private loans, and merit aid. 

Students who are residents of Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont or West Virginia, are required to apply on time to their state grant program. State grants are awarded to the student by the state scholarship office of the state in which the student resides. The Office of Financial Aid complies with state regulatory requirements. If the state funds have not been received at the time of Bryn Mawr’s award announcement, the Bryn Mawr grant and/or FSEOG will later be reduced by the amount of the state grant. If a student fails to meet her state grant deadline, the College will not replace forfeited state grant funds with Bryn Mawr grant.

Private loans are non-federal education loans offered by a lender such as a bank or credit union. Students should consider applying for a private loan only after exhausting all other possible sources of funds. Private loans often have variable interest rates, require a credit check, and may have less attractive repayment plans than federal loans. Many lenders require a creditworthy co-signer. In general, students may borrow up to the cost of education minus all other financial aid received. Students who choose to borrow a private loan must select a lender of their choice and complete the lender’s application process. Bryn Mawr encourages careful borrowing by maximizing federal funding, considering interest rates offered and limiting the amount borrowed.

In your research for private alternative loans, you can use ELMSelect to compare the different lenders based on their options, benefits, and services and then apply directly online. We have created an impartial list of private loan products that our students have used in the past. They are listed on the ELMSelect website in random order. Bryn Mawr College students are not required to use the lenders on these lists.

You will find information about lenders, including interest rates and terms on ELMSelect. Please note the order of lenders is randomized each time you access the site. You can sort by low APR, alphabetically, fixed interest rates, and variable interest rates. You can compare up to 4 lenders at a time.

Once you have selected a lender you would like to use, you can apply for a loan through ELMSelect. After the lender has processed your application, it will send your application to Bryn Mawr for certification to confirm you are a student at Bryn Mawr, the number of courses enrolled, costs, etc. Our office will complete the certification request and send it back to the lender. The lender will then release the funds to the school for deposit to your student account.

The Career & Civic Engagement Center maintains part-time and temporary job postings from the local community. Interested students must have been awarded Federal Work Study, and can learn more about their services here.

This federally funded program offers grants to Pennsylvania undergraduate students aging out of foster care who are attending an eligible postsecondary institution.

PHEAA administers the Chafee ETG Program on behalf of the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services as authorized under the Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 and amended by the Promoting Safe and Stable Families Amendments of 2001 and the Family First Prevention Services Act of 2017.

When you apply for the Chafee ETG Program, you will be evaluated to determine if you also qualify for the FosterEd Program

To read more about eligibility, how to apply, and renew please visit the PHEAA website.

Point of Contact at Bryn Mawr:

Joanne Sullivan



Hours: 9am-5pm