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Paying for Northwestern University

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Northwestern University offers need-based financial aid to its incoming students. Although they recognize other outside scholarships based on merit, this university dedicates itself to providing financial aid packages to students by meeting their full demonstrated financial need.

Northwestern’s Undergraduate Financial Aid Office provides need-based aid and it is usually renewable up to four or five years (depending upon a student’s co-op status). Students who wish to be considered for financial aid at Northwestern University must complete the CSS and FAFSA form by the posted deadlines. Students may be awarded a combination of need-based scholarships, federal and state grants, loans, and/or federal work-study opportunities. On-campus there are plenty of federal work-study jobs. Students who do not qualify for work-study jobs can look for jobs to earn extra money through Quad Jobs.

Additional financial aid resources include outside scholarships that students can apply for. Veteran financial aid and Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps scholarships are available to qualified students. Students interested in studying abroad, pursuing summer aid opportunities,

resident assistant financial aid needs, co-op student financial aid needs, or transfer students may also have assistance available to them. International first-year students are eligible for need-based aid and have the opportunity to have aid for subsequent years of attendance, although transfer international students are not eligible for need-based financial aid

The Undergraduate Financial Aid Office provides links to  Frequently Asked Questions, a Financial Aid-related Glossary Page, and a Financial Aid Brochure in PDF form. Students are also able to link to a net price calculator, helpful tax information, student consumer information and resources providing information on financial regulations, consumer protection and other community resources for students and a WildCard Advantage Program that partners with local websites and businesses to offer discounts to Northwestern University students. Students can manage their aid and monitor their accounts through the use of CAESAR, its online student portal.

Graduate financial aid is available to graduate students with some colleges (such as the Medill and Kellogg Colleges offering their own graduate level financial aid).

Northwestern University’s Financial Wellness initiative to educate students and alumni on matters related to becoming and remaining financially well. The Financial Wellness Page contains four primary areas of wellness and education. There is also a link to a comprehensive financial wellness resource list. The four primary resource areas are:

  • Money 101  with information on budgeting, money management, banking, credit cards, etc.  Financial Planning is the next section and includes articles and topics on taxes, housing, loans, living off campus, and job searching.

  • The Student Loan Management section contains resources and articles on student loans. Nearly everything you would need to know about borrowing and repayment can be found either on this page or through a link provided in this section.

  • The Saving in College section is dedicated to college students currently navigating the ins and outs of financing their education on an everyday basis including information on buying books, student employment, computer savings, and commuting.

The Financial Wellness Initiative sponsors ongoing events on campus including a recurring Financial Wellness Wednesdays. Events are generally free, but may require pre-registration or RSVP. Other topics include budgeting, loans, financial aid management, living off-campus, and scholarships to name a few.

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