Resources for Funding Your Education

Financial Aid

Funding your education is a concern for many students, and yet there are a range of resources available to help make it affordable.  In addition to the information below, Mount Holyoke's Office of Student Financial Services works closely with students to talk about what can meet your needs.


 

Mount Holyoke College Partnerships

Teach Western Mass M.A.T. Fellowship (a Mount Holyoke College Partnership)

A fellowship and stipend for students enrolled in Mount Holyoke College’s Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) degree program.  In addition to a $9,999 living stipend, Fellows will have unique development opportunities through one-on-one mentorship, monthly professional development sessions, and continued access to the resources of Smith Education & Child Study Program and Mount Holyoke College.  Students enrolled in the Fellowship Program will graduate and enter a two-year full-time teaching commitment with one of twenty-six Teach Western Mass partner schools.

Peace Corps Scholarship (a Mount Holyoke College Partnership)

In partnership with the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program, we offer 50% tuition remission to Returned Peace Corps Volunteers. Students who wish to apply for this must submit an essay for the M.A.T. Promising Teacher Award, as well as a certificate from Peace Corps illustrating that they have completed (or expect to complete) their program.

City Year Scholarship (a Mount Holyoke College Partnership)

In partnership with City Year, we offer 50% tuition remission for City Year alumni who are aspiring school teachers. 

Holyoke Public Schools Urban Teacher Pathway (a Mount Holyoke College Partnership)

The Urban Teachers Pathways Program, an initiative that allows district educators the opportunity to pursue master’s degrees at the College while they continue to work.  Program applicants must have a bachelor’s degree, be nominated by a supervisor, and have successfully completed the Communications and Literacy Massachusetts Test for Education Licensure examination. 


 

Mount Holyoke College Scholarships & Fellowships

Scholarship and Fellowship Applications for 2018-2019 are available online.  

Community Scholars Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to nondegree seeking students taking a course for credit.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must address the following question in 500-1000 words: How will this course and award empower you in your work or to achieve your professional goals?  How might you use the knowledge you gain from it to pay it forward?

Award: Scholarship amounts usually range from $200-$500 per credit. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who received their bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College who are committed to serving students in order to build a stronger education system.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and their professional goals as they relate to being educational leaders.

Award:  Scholarship amounts usually range from $1,000 - $3,000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.

Promising Teacher Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who demonstrate a dedication to education, student learning, and aspire to affect change in their school, district, or beyond. Preferred candidates should demonstrate evidence of academic and professional potential and personal commitment to social justice, equity, and/or leadership in education.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and their dedication to educational excellence and leadership.

Award: Scholarship amounts usually range from $1,000 - $4,000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.   

Sonia Nieto Diverse Educator Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who demonstrate a dedication to education, student learning, and aspire to affect change in their school, district, or beyond. The purpose of this scholarship is to create a pathway for preparing teachers who represent the diverse range of children we serve in schools. Preferred candidates will be from underrepresented groups, demonstrate evidence of academic and professional potential, and have a personal commitment to social justice, equity, and/or leadership in education.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and explore how your work will either (1) address the issue that “A community that is diverse, but not equitable and inclusive, cannot achieve its full potential”, or (2) reflect on how you believe diversity drives innovation and fosters creativity, and how you would anticipate incorporating and supporting diversity, equity and inclusion into your professional practices. 

Award: Scholarship amounts usually range from $3,000 - $5,000, with a maximum of $10,000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.

Global Educator Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who have demonstrated behaviors focused on “thinking globally and acting locally” and who demonstrate a commitment to integrating global themes into their work. The themes addressed could include: global languages and culture; intercultural competence, environmental sustainability, or human dignity and rights.  Preferred candidates will demonstrate (1) evidence of global experience thought academics, extracurricular participation, community involvement, or work experience, and, (2) professional potential and personal commitment to social justice, equity, and/or leadership in education.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and discuss what it means to be a global citizen and how they would anticipate incorporating global perspectives in their academic and professional endeavors.  

Award: Scholarship amounts usually range from $3,000 - $5,000, with a maximum of $10,000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.  

Critical Impact Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who demonstrate a dedication to working in areas of high need in underserved areas or communities.  Current areas of high need include: English as a Second Language, Special Education, STEM, and urban schools. The purpose of this scholarship is to prepare educators to contribute in the areas of highest need. Preferred candidates will demonstrate evidence of academic and professional potential, and personal commitment to excellence and leadership in education.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and their professional goals as they relate to the area of high needs they would like to work in.

Award: Scholarship amounts usually range from $3,000 - $5,000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available. 

Emerging Leader Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who show potential and interest in assuming a leadership role in their field.

Scholarship Application: To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a 500-1000 word personal statement on their qualifications for this scholarship and their professional goals as they relate to being leaders in their field.

Award: Up to $5000. Several scholarships are awarded each year depending on funds available.

Kevin Grover Distinguished Teacher Leader Scholarship

Qualification Criteria: This award is open to students who have been selected as State Teachers of the Year or were runners up for the State Teacher of the Year. Teachers may use the scholarship or nominate one colleague for transfer of the scholarship. (Transfer does not guarantee admittance to the program.)

Scholarship Application: State Teachers of the Year automatically receive this scholarship upon acceptance into the program and verification of their State Teacher of the Year status. Colleagues of State Teachers of the Year who are nominated to receive a transfer of the scholarship must provide the name of the nominating Teacher of the Year and a personal statement on their commitment to excellence and leadership in education.

Award: $10,000

Global Teacher Leader Fellowship

Qualification Criteria:  This award provides tuition remission for students who are seen as leaders in the field who have the potential to support scholarship in the field of education.  Graduate student fellows are responsible for contributing to Mount Holyoke College’s efforts in research, professional engagement, global initiatives and they work closely with faculty to develop unique projects. Up to two fellowships will be awarded each year.

Fellowship Application: To be considered for a fellowship, applicants must address the following question in 500-1000 words: How do you see yourself contributing to Mount Holyoke College’s efforts in research, professional engagement, and global initiatives. Please include information about why you need the fellowship to attend, including any relevant information on your background, particularly what your goals are, and how having the opportunity to would help advance those goals. A letter of recommendation is also required.

Award: Fellowship amounts usually range from $6,000 - $8,000 up to a maximum of $12,000. Two fellowships are awarded each year depending on funds available.


 

Other Sources of Funding

Private Scholarships

Professional organizations, community organizations, and fraternal organizations are all places to consider when looking for private scholarships.  Additionally, there may be career-specific scholarships, or scholarships based on particular aspects of your life (for women, for veterans, for people living in certain counties, etc.).  For instance, many students in our Mathematics Teaching graduate program apply to National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Education Trust for scholarships and support.  Mount Holyoke College undergraduate alumnae may apply for Alumnae Fellowships.

Employer Tuition Assistance

Students should also explore tuition benefits that may be offered by their employer.  Benefits may include tuition reimbursement, scholarships, or waivers.  Employers may provide up to $5,250 in employer education assistance benefits for undergraduate or graduate courses tax-free each year, per section 127 of the Internal Revenue Code. You do not necessarily need to be seeking a degree to be eligible. Many employers will require that you stay at the organization for some time once you’ve completed the degree.

Veterans Benefits/GI Bill

For veterans who qualify, GI Bill benefits may offet the cost of tuition, fees, books and housing.

Loans and Grants

There are a variety of federal and private types of financial aid available for graduate students, including (see below for more information):  

Mount Holyoke's Office of Student Financial Services works closely with students to ensure that they are aware of the different financing options available to best suit their individual needs.

TEACH Grant

The federal TEACH Grant Program (https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/types/grants-scholarships/ teach) provides grants of up to $3,728 a year to full time graduate students who are completing or plan to complete the coursework needed to become teachers. (A graduate student may receive a total of two scheduled awards for a total of $7,456 provided they are in attendance full-time for two years.) There are a number of conditions and requirements (https://www.mtholyoke.edu/sfs/federal-teach-grant)  that must be met in order to receive the TEACH grant.

Federal Direct Student Loan

Graduate students are eligible for the Federal Direct Student Loan (FDSL) for up to $20,500 for the academic year, provided they are enrolled in at least four credits per semester. The FDSL loan interest rate for the 2016-17 academic year is 5.31% and the loan is unsubsidized (interest accrues on the loan during periods of enrollment). Repayment begins six months after the student is no longer enrolled in at least four credits. Graduate students may borrow a maximum amount of $138,500 for their graduate/professional education. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and complete entrance counseling and a promissory note  

Grad PLUS Loan

Grad PLUS loans are available for up to the cost of attendance minus any other awarded financial aid (including loans). The interest rate for the 2016-17 academic year is 6.31% and repayment begins two months after the last disbursement for the academic year. Graduate students must be enrolled in at least four credits to be eligible for federal loans. Students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and a Grad PLUS application to be considered for a Grad PLUS loan.

MEFA Graduate Student Loan

Massachusetts Educational Financial Authority (MEFA) is a non-profit state agency that offers financing to U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are studying at least half time at accredited degree-granting non-profit colleges and universities. The MEFA Graduate Student Loan for the 2016-17 academic year has a fixed interest rate of 6.09% during the in- school period and 6.89% during repayment. The deferred repayment fixed interest rate is 6.29%.

Private Student Loans

Student Financial Services strongly suggests that all federal financing options be maximized prior to turning to non-federal financing alternatives. Federal loans offer repayment options based on income and have forbearance and deferral options during times of extreme economic hardship that other loan programs do not offer. Also, some federal loan programs offer loan reductions or forgiveness for public service and teaching in high need areas.

Students interested in private (alternative) student loans may find more information on Student Financial Services’ website ( https://www.mtholyoke.edu/sfs).

Teacher Loan Forgiveness

The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program is intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue in the teaching profession. Under this program, those who teach full-time for five complete and consecutive academic years in certain elementary and secondary schools and educational service agencies that serve low-income families, and meet other qualifications may be eligible for forgiveness of up to a combined total of $17,500 on their Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans and Federal Direct Loans. Those who have PLUS loans only are not eligible for this type of forgiveness. For more information, visit the Federal Student Aid website (http://www.studentaid.ed.gov).

Private Loans and Aid for International Graduate Students

Many of the private lenders who lend to Mount Holyoke undergraduates will also lend to graduate students who have qualified co-signers who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Tax Benefits for Education

There are a variety of Qualified Tuition programs that allow for tax-free college savings plans, including 529 plans, Coverdell Education Savings Accounts, and others.  Please see IRS Publication 970 “Tax Benefits for Education” (https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p970.pdf) for more information.<p >Graduate students may also be eligible for education related tax credits, including the Lifelong Learning Tax Credit (up to $2,000 annually), qualified educational expense deductions, student loan interest deductions, and business deductions.  Please see IRS Publication 970 “Tax Benefits for Education” (https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p970.pdf) for more information. 

 

What else are you wondering about?  Let us know so we can add more resources for you! Contact us at: graduateadmissions@mtholyoke.edu or 413-538-3478