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Types of Financial Aid

Scholarships

Boston Conservatory Scholarships are based primarily on artistic merit. However, we do take financial need into consideration when allocating merit awards, so applicants who are US citizens or Eligible non-citizens (green card holders) with need should have their processed FAFSA into the Financial Aid Office by March 1.  To do that they should submit the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov by February 15th.

Boston Conservatory Scholarship awards are decided upon as a result of the Admissions entrance audition. There is no paperwork to fill out in order to be considered for a merit award.  We do not offer academic scholarships.  Please call the Admissions Office at (617) 912-9153 with any questions regarding merit awards. Please call the Financial Aid Office at (617) 912-9147 for questions regarding the FAFSA.

Conservatory Scholarships

Range
$5000 - full tuition

Who may apply
Incoming Students

How to apply
Complete The Boston Conservatory Application for Admissions

A limited number of performance-based scholarships are available to full time students who demonstrate the highest artistic skills. A student's financial need may be taken into consideration if the student fills out the FAFSA. However, the primary consideration will always be merit.  Please note that only US citizens and Eligible non-citizens may fill out the FAFSA.

The scholarship is renewed if the student remains full time and fulfills all academic and performance requirements.

Returning Student Scholarships

Range 
Differs from year to year, but in the last few years the average has been approximately $3000

Who may apply
Returning Students

How to apply

US Students:  Complete the Returning Student Scholarship Application, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and use the IRS Data Retrieval tool in the FAFSA.  If the student is ineligible for the data retrieval tool, then they must send in a signed IRS tax return transcript (not tax account transcripts).  Transcripts may be requested from the IRS at 1-800-908-9946, 1-800-829-1040 or at www.irs.gov.

International Students:  Complete the Returning Student Scholarship Application, the International Student Financial Data Form and provide verification of income

The criteria for these scholarships is need and merit.  Need is determined for US students and eligible non-citizens by filling out the FAFSA and sending in tax documents. International students must fill out the International Financial Data Form and provide translated income verification.  Merit is determined by faculty recommendation and GPA. The scholarship application becomes available in February and the deadline for all documentation is May 2.

Private Scholarships

Range
Unspecified

Who may apply
Everyone

How to apply
There are many websites to use to locate outside scholarships

Many professional, regional, and other organizations offer scholarships or grants for which students may apply directly.  The following website provides a listing of most scholarship search engines:

International students should check resources in their home country.  They can also check:

Grants

The Boston Conservatory defines grants as need-based awards that do not need to be paid back.

Boston Conservatory Grants

Range
$500 and up

Who may apply
Incoming Students

How to apply
Complete the Boston Conservatory Application for Admission and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid at www.fafsa.ed.gov 

A limited number of need-based institutional grants are available to students who fill out the FAFSA.  Preference is given to those students who fill out the FAFSA by the March 1 deadline (May 1 for returning students).  Students who receive the BC Grant when they first enter The Boston Conservatory may receive it every year if they fill out the FAFSA by May 1 and show they have need.

Pell Grants

Range
$329 - $5550 (subject to change)

Who may apply
First time Undergraduates who are U.S. citizens or Eligible Non-citizens.  Undergraduates who are working on their second bachelor degree or who have received 12 semesters of Pell Grant are not eligible for any more.

How to apply
Complete the Boston Conservatory Application for Admission and the FAFSA

This is a federally funded program that is based exclusively on financial need as determined by the FAFSA.  The FAFSA information is calculated and an Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) is determined  based on that calculation.  In 2012/13 students with EFCs less than 4996 were eligible for a Pell Grant.

Starting in Fall 2012, students will be limited to only 12 semesters of Pell Grant eligibility.  This change affects all students regardless of when or where they received their first Pell Grant.  Students who have already received 12 semesters of Pell Grant will no longer be able to receive any more starting Fall 2012. 

Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants

Range
$400 - $4000

Who may apply
First time Undergraduates who are U.S. citizens or Eligible Non-citizens attending at least half time in a degree program.

How to apply
Complete the Boston Conservatory Application for Admission and the FAFSA 

This is a federally funded program and is available only to a limited number of Pell eligible students.  The school is provided with an allocation of SEO Grant out of which the school awards funds.  Preference is given to students who make the March 1 FAFSA deadline (May 1 for returning students) and who have the lowest Estimated Family Contributions (FAFSA results).  Amounts are decided based on the number of eligible applicants.

State Aid

Some states offer grants/scholarships that will transfer to The Boston Conservatory.  Most of these states require the FAFSA to be processed by a specific date.  They may also require their own application.  We've received scholarships from the following states:

Massachusetts (www.osfa.mass.edu).  See below for more information on Massachusetts funding

Maine (www.maine.gov)

Pennsylvania (www.pheaa.org)

Rhode Island (www.riheaa.org)

Vermont (www.services.vsac.org)

Please check your state grant agency to see if the Conservatory is eligible to receive your state’s funding.  For a listing of state higher education agencies, please check here.

MASSGrant

Range
$300 - $1600

Who may apply
Undergraduate Massachusetts residents

How to apply
Complete the FAFSA by May 1

Undergraduate MA residents that are eligible for the Pell Grant may be eligible for the MASSGrant as long as they have filled out the FAFSA by May 1.

Massachusetts Gilbert Grant

Range
$500 - $2000

Who may apply
Undergraduate Massachusetts residents

How to apply
Complete the FAFSA

An extremely limited amount of funding is available to Massachusetts residents who have need. Priority is given to students who make the FAFSA deadline and who show the most need. The Gilbert is not awarded until the institution is notified of its funding level, which is usually not until the summer.

 

Student Employment

There are a limited number of jobs on campus that are available to any student. Preference for these jobs are given to students with Federal Work Study.

Federal Work-Study

Range
$1000 - $2500

Who may apply
Undergraduates and Graduate students who are U.S. citizens or Eligible Non-citizens attending at least half time in a diploma or degree program.

How to apply
Complete The Boston Conservatory Application for Admission and the FAFSA

The Federal Work Study program provides part-time jobs for undergraduate and graduate students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay education expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to the recipient's course of study. Funds and positions are limited, so not everybody who wants a work study job can get one. Work study funds are offered to full and part-time students who demonstrate financial need.  Preference is given to students with small to no scholarship funding.

Work Study funds go directly to the student in the form of a bi-weekly paycheck for hours worked. Work Study does NOT go to tuition. Students are responsible for getting their own job. Preference is given to students who make the March 1 FAFSA deadline (May 1 for returning students).

Conservatory Employment

Range
$1000 - $2500

Who may apply
Boston Conservatory students

How to apply
Complete the Boston Conservatory Application for Admission

Conservatory Employment is available for students who do not have work study. Students are responsible for getting their own Conservatory employment job. Earnings are paid directly to the student on a bi-weekly basis.

Click here for more information on student employment at The Boston Conservatory

Loans

Loans are available through the Federal Government, some state governments, private lenders and the institution.  Loans are self-help financial aid that MUST be paid back.  To determine estimated payback amounts, you can use a repayment calculator such as the one at the Sallie Mae College Answer website.  Please note that the amount of repayment depends on the type of loan you received, the amount you borrowed, the amount of the interest rate and the length of the repayment plan.

Need Based

Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loans - Subsidized means that the interest is  paid for by the government while the student is in school, in a grace period or in a deferment period.

Range
Up to $5500 for Undergraduates

Who may apply
Undergraduates who are U.S. Citizens or Eligible Non-citizens (ie green card holders) attending at least half time in a diploma or degree program.  Graduate students may no longer apply for Subsidized Stafford Loans.

How to apply
Fill out a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note here (hard copy MPNs available upon request) and the Entrance Interview. See check list below.  Please note that it is not possible to apply for 2014/15 federal loans until the end of March 2014.

Prerequisite
FAFSA

Interest
6.8%

Fees
1% Origination fee taken off the top of the loan.

The Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan is available to students who show financial need as determined by the FAFSA.  The federal government pays all of the interest on these loans until six months after the student graduates or stops attending college at least half time (6 credits for undergraduates).  

Maximum borrowing limits are as follows:

    Credits Annual Limit Aggregate Limit
Undergraduates Freshmen 0-23 $3,500  
  Sophomores 24-47 $4,500  
  Juniors 48-71 $5,500  
  Seniors 72- $5,500 $23,000
          

Non-Need Based

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans - Unsubsidized means that the interest is not paid for while the student is in school, in a grace period or in a deferment period.  The interest does not have to be paid while the student is in one of these periods, but it will start to accumulate.

Range
Up to $7500 for Undergraduates; up to $20500 for Graduates

Who may apply
Undergraduates & graduate students who are U.S. Citizens or Eligible Non-citizens (ie green card holder) attending at least half time in a diploma or degree program.

How to apply
Master Promissory Notes and Entrance Interviews need only be done once for both the Subsidized and the Unsubsidized Stafford Loans for all the years the student attends the Conservatory. Fill out a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note here (hard copy MPNs available upon request) and the Entrance Interview. See the check list below.  Please  note that it isn't possible to apply for 2014/2015 federal loans until the end of March 2014.

Prerequisite
FAFSA

Interest
6.8% (the interest starts to accrue immediately)

Fees
1% Origination fee taken off the top of the loan 

The Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is available to students who are ineligible for the Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan (i.e. students that have no need according to the FAFSA; see the Financial Aid Award Guide for more information about “need”). The amounts and terms are the same as for the Subsidized Stafford Loan except the interest is not deferred. The interest starts to accrue immediately. The student can defer payment of the interest and principal until six (6) months after the student has graduated, withdrawn or dropped below part time status.  

Independent students or dependent students whose parents have been denied the Direct PLUS Loan may obtain an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan in the amounts listed below. 

    Credits Anual Limit Aggregate Limit
Undergraduates Freshmen 0-23 $4,000  
  Sophomores  24-47 $4,000  
  Juniors 48-71 $5,000  
  Seniors 72- $5,000

$31,000 for dependent undergraduates (minus any Subsidized Loan) 

$57,500 for independent undergraduates and dependent undergraduates whose parents have been denied the PLUS Loan (minus any Subsidized loan)

Graduates     $20,500 $138500 (minus any Subsidized Loan) 

In addition, ALL undergraduate students may receive $2000 in Unsubsidized Stafford Loan.  For example: a dependent freshman may receive $3500 in subsidized loan and the $2000 unsubsidized loan, for a total of $5500. If that dependent freshman’s parent applied for and was denied a PLUS loan, then he would be eligible for $9500 ($3500 Sub, $4000 Unsub and $2000 add’l Unsub).  

Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loan Checklist

If this is your first time borrowing a Direct Loan at The Boston Conservatory, you need to do the following things before you can receive your loan funds:

  1. Get a FAFSA pin number at www.pin.ed.gov
  2. Fill out the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov
  3. Send the signed award letter to the Financial Aid Office
  4. Send any requested documentation (see award letter) to the Financial Aid Office
  5. Fill out a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) at: www.studentloans.gov (hard copy MPNs are available upon request, but take longer to process). Sign in at the website using your SSN and your pin number and click on Complete Master Promissory Note.
  6. Fill out a Direct Loan Entrance Interview at: www.studentloans.gov
    Sign in at the website using your SSN and your pin number and click on Complete Entrance Counseling.

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loans

Range
Up to full cost of attendance, less other financial aid

Who may apply
Creditworthy parents of dependent undergraduate students attending at least half time in a degree program. Parent borrower and student must be a US Citizen or Eligible Non-citizen (ie green card holder)

NOTE: Only biological and adopted parents are eligible for the Parent PLUS Loan.  Stepparents are eligible only if they are married to the biological parent at the time of the PLUS loan application.  Grandparents or legal guardians are NOT eligible unless they have legally adopted the student.

How to apply
Fill out a Direct PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note here (hard copy MPNs available upon request). See check list below.  Please note that it isn't possible to apply for 2014/15 federal loans until the end of March 2014.

Prerequisite
FAFSA 

Interest
Fixed at  7.9% (starts to accrue immediately)

Fees
4% Origination fee taken off the top of the loan.  The fee should be factored in to the total amount that is borrowed.

PLUS loans are available to all credit worthy parents of undergraduate students.  PLUS borrowers may take out the full Cost of Attendance minus other financial aid.   If a parent is denied the PLUS loan, then the student may receive an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan in the amount of $4000 (freshmen or sophomore) or $5000 (junior or senior).  Repayment begins immediately after the second disbursement of the loan, unless the parent borrower wishes to defer repayment.  The borrower must request deferment from the lender. 

Direct PLUS Checklist

If this is your first time borrowing a PLUS loan at The Boston Conservatory, you need to do the following before you can receive your loan funds:

  • Apply for a pin number at the FAFSA website or at www.pin.ed.gov
  • Fill out the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Only one FAFSA per student.
  • Fill out the PLUS Loan Application
    • Go to the following direct loan website: www.studentloans.gov
    • Sign in using your pin number and social security number.
    • Once into the website click on “Request a PLUS Loan”
    • Choose Parent PLUS
    • Continue on until you submit the record and receive a confirmation number.
    • You will be notified right away if you’ve been approved or denied.
  • If you’ve been approved, then fill out the Direct PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) by clicking on “Complete Master Promissory Note” in the www.studentloans.gov website (hard copy MPNs are available upon request – but take longer to process).
  • If you are denied, then you have three options:
    • Request an appeal (click on “Appeal Credit Decision” from the side tool bar in www.studentloans.gov)
    • Reapply with an endorser
      • Have your endorser get a pin number at www.pin.ed.gov
      • Have your endorser sign into www.studentloans.gov and click on “Endorse PLUS Loan” from the side tool bar. Please note that your endorser will need to know the Loan Reference Number
    • Your student will automatically be provided with additional Unsubsidized Stafford loan ($4000 for freshmen and sophomores; $5000 for juniors and seniors). If you are later approved for the PLUS loan, the additional Unsubsidized Stafford loan will be removed from the student’s financial aid package.

You will receive emailed updates on the progress of your PLUS loan (including how much you borrowed if you asked for the maximum).

Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loans

Range
Up to full cost of attendance, less other financial aid

Who may apply
Creditworthy graduate students who are US Citizens or Eligible Non-citizens (ie green card holders) attending at least half time in a diploma or degree program.

How to apply
Fill out the Grad PLUS Master Promissory Note here (hard copy MPNs available upon request).  See check list below.

Prerequisite
FAFSA and entrance interview (if the entrance interview has been filled out for the Subsidized/Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, then it needn’t be filled out again)

Interest
Fixed at 7.9% (starts to accrue immediately)

Fees
4% Origination fee taken off the top of the loan.  The fee should be factored in to the total amount that is borrowed.

Students should take out their full Subsidized/Unsubsidized Stafford loan eligibility first before applying for the Grad PLUS loan.  Repayment can be deferred until after the student graduates, withdraws or drops below half time. 

Direct Grad PLUS Checklist

If this is your first time borrowing a Grad PLUS loan at The Boston Conservatory, you need to do the following before you can receive your loan funds: 

  • Apply for a pin number at the FAFSA website or at www.pin.ed.gov
  • Fill out the free application for federal student aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.ed.gov
  • Send the signed award letter to the financial aid office
  • Send any requested documentation (see award letter) to the financial aid office
  • Fill out the direct Grad PLUS loan application
    • Go to the following direct loan website: www.studentloans.gov.
    • Sign in using your pin number and social security number.
    • Once into the website click on “Request a PLUS Loan”
    • Choose Graduate PLUS
    • Continue on until you submit the record and receive a confirmation number.
    • You will be notified right away if you’ve been approved or denied.
  • If you’ve been approved, then fill out the Direct PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) by clicking on “Complete Master Promissory Note” in the www.studentloans.gov website (hard copy MPNs are available upon request – but take longer to process).
  • If you are denied, then you have the following options:
    • Request an appeal (click on “Appeal Credit Decision” from the side tool bar in www.studentloans.gov
    • Reapply with an endorser
      • Have your endorser get a pin number at www.pin.ed.gov
      • Have your endorser sign into www.studentloans.gov and click on “Endorse PLUS Loan” from the side tool bar. Please note that your endorser will need to know the Loan Reference Number
  • If you haven’t filled out the Entrance Interview for the Subsidized/Unsubsidized Stafford Loan(s), fill out the Entrance Interview at www.studentloans.gov.
    • Click on “Complete Entrance Counseling” on the side tool bar
    • Continue on until you submit the record and receive a confirmation number

You will receive emailed updates on the progress of your Grad PLUS Loan (including how much you borrowed if you asked for the maximum) 

Private Educational Loans

Range
Up to full cost of attendance, less other financial aid

Who may apply
Everyone; co-signer usually required for undergraduates and international students

How to apply
Applications may be completed at the lender website. Please go to www.elmselect.com for a list of the most popular private loan lenders that our students have used in the past three years.

Prerequisite
None

Interest
Check individual loan website

Fees
Check individual loan website

Private loans are available to students, but most of them require a credit worthy co-borrower.  Lenders will check the credit and the debt to income ratio of both the student and co-borrower when approving loans. 

There are many different private loans with different fees and interest rates.  The interest rates on most of these loans are variable, meaning they could go up or down (a few lenders have started offering private loans with a fixed rate of interest). 

The interest rate on private loans is usually based on the US Prime Rate or the LIBOR (London Interbank Offered Rate) AND the credit score of the student and co-borrower.  Currently, the Prime and LIBOR rates are fairly low, so a private loan could be economical if the amount borrowed is not great and will be paid off in a relatively short period of time. However, if you borrow a private loan for your first and second year of school, the debt you incur may count against you when attempting to borrow for the third and fourth year.  In other words, you may be denied a private loan in your later school years because you took out private loans in your early school years.  In contrast, the Parent PLUS Loan only checks credit, not debt and it has a fixed rate of interest (7.9%).

These loans are certified by the school and the funds come directly to the school.

Private loans cannot be fully approved until the student signs a self-certification form. The lender will send this form to the student. The student may also download this form from The Boston Conservatory website. The form will ask for the student’s Cost of Attendance and his estimated financial assistance.  The Cost of Attendance can be found in the Financial Aid Award Guide and the estimated financial assistance amount can be found on the student’s award letter.  The student may also ask the Financial Aid Office for this information.

Conservatory Poirier Loans

This loan program results from a generous bequest from the estate of the late Alfred Poirier, a patron and sponsor of the arts. A limited number of loans are available to undergraduate seniors who have need who are U.S. citizens. The maximum amount that can be borrowed is $7,500 per year or $3,750 per semester. The interest rate is 6.0% and the loan has a 120-day grace period.   Eligibility for the Poirier Loan is determined by the Financial Aid Office.  Undergraduate seniors, who are interested in taking out the Poirier Loan, should contact the Financial Aid Office.

Direct to Consumer Loans

DTC loans are marketed directly to students.  These loans usually have a higher rate of interest and/or higher fees.  The check is made out to the student and not the school.  If the school becomes aware that the student has taken out one of these loans, it will be counted as a resource against the student’s Cost of Attendance, which may result in a loss of other financial aid.  Because the checks go directly to the student, these loans are not counted as Expected Funding on the bill, which could result in a late fee of $200.

 

Average Loan Indebtedness

The average indebtedness for students who graduated from The Boston Conservatory (includes both private and federal loans) is:

Undergraduates  $51183
Graduates  $55592

 

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