Harvard Extension School Student Forum

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Financial Aid Topic

This is my second go around with education. The first time i was funded by the Bank of Dad but this time I have been funding myself up to this point. After this spring semester I am assuming I will be a degree candidate and so I am curious if anyone can offer me any insight as to how financial aid works and any tips would be appreciated. Also, one question I have is to qualification. I plan on quitting my job, renting out my house, and moving to the area in order to go full time, starting with fall semester. So technically at that point I will not have any income (other than rent from my home) however I have a positive net worth. Would I still qualify for financial aid? Theoretically I have enough capital to fund myself, including room and board, over the next 2 years however I prefer to use student loans because at the end of it i'd rather have cash and debt as opposed to no cash no debt. Does anyone know how this works and if HES students are given the same financial aid opportunities as the 'normal/traditional' students? Is it hard to get financial aid in amounts sufficient enough to also cover room and board? Was anyone ever in a similar situation to me? And also, Thank you so much in advance for any information anyone can share with me.


  • GratGrat Posts: 293
    Every year, make sure to apply for the FASFA on time (which starts way before the school year and ends earlyish too) or else you won't qualify for financial aid. If you're full time, you can definitely get loans of various sorts. The federal ones are best but might not cover all expenses, in which case private loaners such as Wells Fargo or Discover Student Services among others can help you out. For degree candidates, there are some scholarship opportunities too.

    For all the specifics, definitely contact HES's financial aid office at sfs@dcemail.harvard.edu
  • Fill out the 2017-2018 FAFSA now.
    When you register for fall classes and indicate you are applying for aid make sure you get the application in ASAP.
    I am part time student who receives financial aid and each academic year the amount of the loan offered is way more than I need (I only take what I need for tuition). As a full-time student, you may be surprised how much is offered. Whether or not it is subsidized is another question.
    After you have been enrolled for a full academic year (it may be one semester, I can't remember), have a satisfactory GPA and submit your financial aid application by the priority deadline each semester you may get an Extension School Grant to pay for part of your tuition. I have been given one each semester for the last two years that has covered the cost of one class per semester which translates in half of my part-time tuition. Once you qualify for the grant you may also qualify for a Summer School Scholarship that pays for one class at the Harvard Summer School and covers the associated 250 dollar registration fee. From the Fall 2015 semester through the end of the coming summer I will have taken 10 undergrad courses and paid for only 4 of those classes.

    I should mention that income does matter, as it will affect the amount of money the Feds think you can pay, thus reducing the loan amount offered. However, where you may see this reflected most strongly is in the amount of the loan they are willing to subsidize (read: no interest until you finish). I don't believe it matters where the above-mentioned grant and scholarship are concerned. My wife and make a good living so I'm pretty sure it based on merit alone.
  • PhilipPhilip Posts: 2
    Thank you both for your responses. I really do appreciate it.
  • Also if you are over 21, you are automatically an independent student, so it's based on your earning, not your family.
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