Financial Aid - Current Students
Applying for Financial Aid
Sources of Aid
Grant aid is gift aid that does not need to be paid back.
Institutional Gift Aid
Saint Joseph’s awards grants to students based on their academic performance, achievements and financial need. To be considered, students must submit a FAFSA annually.
Federal and State Grants
Federal Pell Grant Program
The largest federal need-based student aid program provides grants up to a maximum of $7,395 for the 2023-24 academic year to undergraduate students who are enrolled in their first bachelor’s degree. Eligibility is based on financial need —specifically, the EFC (Expected Family Contribution) as determined by the FAFSA, as well as educational costs and student enrollment status. Students must file the FAFSA to be considered.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
These federal grants are reserved for undergraduate students with exceptional financial need. Priority is given to Pell Grant recipients with the highest demonstrated financial need. Students must file the FAFSA to be considered. The annual award amount is typically $1,000.
PA State Grant
The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency provides grants to undergraduate students that meet Pennsylvania residency requirements and are enrolled at least half-time (six credits) in their first bachelor's degree program. Eligibility is based on financial need. PA residents must file the FAFSA by May 1 each year to receive consideration.
Non-PA State Grants
Delaware, Washington D.C., Massachusetts, Ohio, West Virginia, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Vermont are among those students that allow their state grants to be transferred for use at Pennsylvania schools.
All undergraduate applicants are automatically considered for merit scholarships based on academic achievement. Merit-based scholarships for undergraduates are renewable for up to eight semesters as long as the student remains enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student and meets the minimum cumulative GPA requirement for the award. These scholarships can be applied to tuition only.
Other scholarships require students to submit applications and can be based on interests, activities, background and academic achievement.
Outside Scholarship Opportunities
You can apply for external scholarship opportunities to help with your Saint Joseph's tuition. If you receive a scholarship or tuition resource from an outside source, you should submit a copy of the award notification to the Financial Aid Office via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This will ensure that when funds are received by the outside organization that they are appropriately credited to your account.
The Office of Financial Aid regularly updates the following scholarship databases as we receive information on outside scholarships:
Federal Work Study awards are based on financial need, as determined by the FAFSA, and provide a student with an opportunity to work in a campus job for an hourly wage. Awards go up to $2,500 annually. Work Study awards are not applied directly toward a student’s charges, rather, a student is paid every two weeks for hours worked.
*Disclaimer: Federal Work Study jobs are not guaranteed. Eligible students may apply for jobs available via Handshake. FWS awards are dependent on the availability of funding and may be withdrawn or subject to change depending on this availability. Any financial aid package could be adjusted at any time according to federal and institutional regulations
Federal Direct Student Loans
Federal Direct Student Loans are available to U.S citizens and permanent residents who are enrolled at least half-time (six credits/semester). Typically, Federal Direct Student Loans are included in your initial financial aid package and are available to all students, regardless of need. No cosigner or credit check is required. The student is the borrower and repayment begins six months following graduation, over a 10-year period.
Undergraduate students with financial need may qualify to have a portion of their Federal Direct Student Loan subsidized. This means the Federal Government will pay the interest on the loan while the student is enrolled and during the six-month grace period. The interest rate on Federal Direct Student Loans is "variable-fixed" in that it is rest by the federal government July 1st each year, for loans made for the upcoming academic year, but any loan taken out in that academic year has that fixed interest rate for the life of the loan.
For the 2023-2024 academic year, the interest rate on the Federal Direct Student Loan is 5.49% for undergraduates (7.05% for graduate students) and there is a 1.057% origination fee deducted from the loan amount by the federal government.
Maximum annual loan limits based on grade level for dependent undergraduate students are as follows:
- $3,500 Subsidized + $2,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan: Freshmen (0-23 credits earned) = $5,500 TOTAL
- $4,500 Subsidized + $2,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan: Sophomore (24-53 credits earned) = $6,500 TOTAL
- $5,500 Subsidized + $2,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan: Junior/Senior (54+ credits earned) = $7,500 TOTAL
Whether loan is Subsidized is based on financial need as determined by the FAFSA. If student as no financial need, total annual Unsubsidized Student Loan eligibility would be: $5,500 as a freshman, $6,500 as a sophomore, $7,500 as a junior or senior.
Maximum annual loan limits per grade level for independent undergraduate students or for dependent undergraduate students whose parents are denied on the Federal Direct PLUS Loan are as follows:
- Freshman: $3,500 Subsidized Federal Direct Student Loan + $6,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Student Loan = $9,500 TOTAL
- Sophomore: $4,500 Subsidized Federal Direct Student Loan + $6,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Student Loan = $10,500 TOTAL
- Junior & Senior: $5,500 Subsidized Federal Direct Student Loan + $7,000 Unsubsidized Federal Direct Student Loan = $12,500 TOTAL
To receive the Federal Direct Student Loan, first-time borrowers at Saint Joseph's University must do the following:
- Complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at http://studentaid.gov/
- Complete an Entrance Counseling Session
Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loans for Undergraduates
- Credit-worthy parents of dependent undergraduates can borrow up to the cost of attendance minus other financial aid received on an annual basis.
- The repayment period is 10 years (repayment can be deferred up to four years).
- The interest rate is variable-fixed: fixed for the life of the loan but reset July 1 for the upcoming school year. For the 2023-2024 academic year, the interest rate on the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan is 8.05%.
- There is a 4.228% origination fee deducted from the loan amount by the federal government.
- Parents can apply for a Parent PLUS Loan at http://studentaid.gov/ If approved, the parent borrower must complete the Parent PLUS MPN (Master Promissory Note) at http://www.studentaid.gov/ (good for 10 years except in the case of an endorsed loan).
Private or “alternative” student loans should typically be considered only after eligibility for all federal student loans have been determined. Although terms can vary depending upon the product, with most private, alternative loans:
- The student, who must be at least 18 years of age, is the primary borrower.
- Most undergraduate students will need a credit-worthy cosigner (note-even if loan does not require a cosigner, the interest rate is often much higher without one, particularly if the student does not have an established credit history). Many products offer a cosigner release option once the student has graduated and successfully made a certain number of on-time payments.
- The student can borrow on a yearly basis up to the “total cost of attendance” minus the other financial aid he/she is receiving.
- Are generally disbursed directly to the University via EFT after the drop/add period ends each semester.
- Can be deferred while the student is in school and for the first six months following completion of his/her program, but loans are “unsubsidized” (interest is accruing during this period).
- Offer both variable and fixed rate options.
- Are based on either the prime rate or LIBOR rate plus an add-on.
- Are zero origination fee loans (i.e.-no fee is deducted from the amount you borrow) but there are one or two exceptions to this.
- Interest rates vary depending upon the credit-worthiness of the student borrower and/or cosigner.
Preferred lender policy
It is not Saint Joseph’s University’s practice to recommend a specific lender. Each student/parent has the right to select a lender of their choice; however, as a service to our students and families, Saint Joseph’s University provides a historical list of lenders our students have successfully borrowed with over the past several years. Visit elmselect.com to learn more about private education loans and to compare various loan products.
1. Apply online for the full year amount needed at the individual lender’s website or go to elmselect.com to compare products and apply for one (it is not recommended to apply for multiple loans since a credit check is run on the student and the borrower).
2. Once an application is processed and approved by the lender, Saint Joseph’s University receives electronic notification and will “certify” the loan with the lender directly. Once a loan is certified, it will appear on the Tuition & Aid tab of The Nest where the student’s other financial aid is listed.
3. Funds will be disbursed to the University shortly after the drop/add period ends each semester.
Federal Truth in Lending regulations mandate all new private loan application will require additional certifications (Title X of the Higher Education Opportunity Act). This regulation mandates self-certification and a waiting period that may lengthen the process (the average processing time is 3-6 weeks). Once the loan is approved and a final self-certification is received by the lender, funds will be disbursed to the school after an 8 day waiting period, typically after the drop/add period ends each semester. Please contact Office of Financial Aid if you have questions.
The Fellowships Office helps Saint Joseph’s undergraduate students apply successfully for major fellowships, including awards for undergraduate study, study abroad, graduate study and research internships. We work one-on-one with applicants throughout the application process to help leverage their Jesuit education into service for others and transformative, lifelong success for themselves.
Cost of Attendance
Student Cost of Attendance (COA) budgets are designed to provide students with an accurate projection of reasonable costs while enabling the Financial Aid Office to formulate an appropriate financial aid package. The COA budget assigned to a student does not, however, imply the availability of financial aid funds.
Dates and Deadlines
Please be aware of these important dates related to your financial aid award for the 2024-25 school year:
PRIORITY FAFSA FILING DEADLINE
Incoming Freshmen (Fall Semester)
- Early Action: December 31
- Early Decision I: December 31
- Early Decision II: January 15
- Regular Decision: February 1
Returning Undergraduate Day Students: April 1
FINANCIAL AID AWARD PACKAGE NOTIFICATION
Incoming Freshmen (Fall Semester)
- Early Action: by early to mid-March
- Early Decision I: by early to mid-March
- Early Decision II: late March
- Regular Decision: late March
Enrollment Deposit Due
- Early Decision I: January 15
- Early Decision II: March 1
- Early Action and Regular Decision: May 1
Returning Undergraduate Day Students: June 20
Special Scholarships: Mid-March
ENROLLMENT DEPOSIT DEADLINES
- Early Decision I: January 15
- Early Decision II: March 1
- Early Action and Regular Decision: May 1
FEDERAL AND STATE AID DISBURSED TO STUDENT ACCOUNTS
Federal financial aid does not disburse to student accounts until 1-2 days after the add/drop period ends each semester. State aid disbursed once PHEAA sends the funds to the University (usually 4-6 weeks into the semester).
Policies, Disbursements & Refunds and Forms
The Saint Joseph's University Office of Financial Aid launched HawkCent$, our financial wellness program, in 2018, to ensure current undergraduate and graduate/professional students comprehend basic financial concepts, strategies and best practices in a way that they are empowered to make sound financial decisions which contribute to their personal financial health, both short-term and long-term. We offer monthly, in-person workshops during the academic year on a variety of topics, designed to ensure students:
- Adhere to good credit practices and repayment strategies
- Develop personal saving strategies
- Understand how to create a budget and revise a budget due to life changes
- Understand what a FICO score is, what it is comprised of, what it impacts and how to monitor and improve it
- Master the basics of investing
- Avoid identity theft
- Recognize the role of emotions in making financial decisions
The Fall 2023 HawkCent$ Schedule is as follows:
- FICO Fun: Why Building & Maintaining Good Credit Really Matters Monday, October 9th, 4:00-5:00 p.m., North Lounge, Campion
- Money Management: All About Savings Tuesday, November 14, 4:30-5:30 p.m., North Lounge, Campion (presented by Robert Juliano, WSFS Bank, Vice President & Director of Corporate Giving & Financial Education)
- Exploring the True Cost of Living Off-Campus & Mastering the Resources at Your Disposal Thursday, December 7th, 5:00-6:00 p.m. Doyle Banquet Hall South, Campion. Register to Attend
The Spring 2024 HawkCent$ Schedule is as follows:
- The Odyssey of the Outside Scholarship Search & The Road to Loan Repayment Plans Tuesday, January 23, 2024 4:30-5:30 p.m.
- Your Financial Life After College & Navigating Job Offers Thursday, February 22, 2024 4:00-5:00 p.m.
- Everything a College Student Needs to Know About Personal Finance: But Doesn't Want to Ask! Monday, March 25, 2024, 5:00-6:00 p.m., Presented by Todd Erkis, Haub School of Business
Saint Joseph’s University Office of Financial Aid is proud to offer iGrad to our community, a best-in-class online resource for your continued financial wellness journey. Part of our mission as an office is to help college students prepare for their financial futures. With your iGrad membership, you will be able to take advantage of features such as:
- Researching outside scholarships
- Money management
- Simple budgeting tools
- Student loan and debt management
- Salary, debt-to-income, loan payroll and other calculators
Take advantage of this benefit and join us in our efforts to make sure every Hawk lives a financially healthy life during their time at Saint Joseph’s and beyond.
Financial Aid Office | Tel:610-660-2500
Office of Student Accounts | Tel:610-660-2400
Admission & Financial Aid Counselor (freshmen/transfers only) | Tel: 610-660-1300
Federal Direct Loan Servicing: 800-848-0979
Federal Direct Plus Loan Applicant Services Dept.: 800-848-0979