Financial Aid Award

Once your financial need is determined, a financial aid award that is equal to your need will be offered. Notices of financial aid awards will be sent soon after admission letters are mailed to first-year and transfer applicants. The award is sometimes called an "aid package" because it may include both self-help (employment) and gift aid (scholarships and grants). Students with lower financial need will be offered self-help.

Amherst College is "need blind" with respect to admission.  Amherst will not take into account whether or not you have applied for financial aid in the admission process.

The College has a comprehensive program of financial aid that provides assistance in the form of scholarships and grants, loans, and student employment.

Browse the links on the left to learn about Amherst's aid program and procedures for applying.

Self-Help: Student Loans

Amherst College financial aid packages do not include student loans to meet demonstrated financial need. Students may still decide to borrow to purchase a computer, replace the student income contribution, replace work in the financial aid package, or as a family financing option. All student loan programs provide for long-term repayment at moderate interest rates. The repayment period may be as long as ten years and a monthly minimum payment is required. Repayment of principal is not required while a student is enrolled at Amherst or another recognized post secondary institution.

Self-Help: Student Employment

The usual expectation is that a student will be able to earn about $2,000 from work during the 2015-2016 academic year.  This represents about six to eight hours of work each week.  Job opportunities include work on campus in the College's food service, physical plant, libraries, laboratories, art gallery and studios, and academic and administrative offices. The range of hourly wages for student employment on campus in 2015-2016 is from $10.00 to $12.00 (as of January 2016, Massachusetts minimum wage increased to $10.00 per hour).

There are two kinds of student employment:

Gift Aid

Federal and State Programs

All students who seek assistance from the College are expected to apply for all federal and state scholarship and grant programs for which they may be eligible. These programs include:

Frequently Asked Questions for U.S. and Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents

Is Amherst "need-blind"?

Yes, our admission policy is "need-blind." This means that our admission decision is based solely on your achievements, talents and promise. Your and your family's financial situation is not considered - it has no bearing on whether we offer you admission.

Financial Need

All financial aid at Amherst is awarded on the basis of demonstrated financial need. Financial need is determined from information that you and your parents supply to the College. The College follows the need analysis procedures of the College Scholarship Service (CSS) of the College Board, as amended by College policy, to estimate the amount that you and your family may reasonably be expected to contribute toward your student expense budget/cost of attendance.