Office of Financial Aid
A: Eligibility for federal, state and institutional financial aid is determined by a student's annual filing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the College Scholarship Service's (CSS) Financial Aid PROFILE form. Muhlenberg College's deadline for filing these forms is February 15.
A: There is no income cut-off for financial aid. The amount of financial aid you will receive is determined by your family's financial need as calculated by your filing of the CSS Financial Aid PROFILE form and FAFSA. These applications do look at the parents' and student's income and assets, however, they also look at the size of the family, the number of family members in college, and the age of the oldest parent. Muhlenberg College also takes into account the size of your unreimbursed medical expenses, expenses for private secondary school education, and home equity.
A: As is the case with many schools that Muhlenberg College competes with, we do have our own institutional methodology for awarding our institutional funds. In determining a family's financial need with this methodology, we do include home equity as part of the calculation, which we currently cap at parent AGI.
A: Muhlenberg College not only looks at who else (siblings only) in the family is enrolled in college, but also at the costs and financial aid involved at the other institution. We will divide the expected parent contribution accordingly. For example, if a sibling is enrolled at a community college, the parent contribution will not be divided in half as it would have been had that student been attending a school with a similar cost to Muhlenberg. Instead, it will be divided proportionally.
A: The federal government and Muhlenberg College require that the custodial parent (or the parent with whom the student lives with for 50% or more of the year) complete the PROFILE form and FAFSA. If this parent has remarried, then the step-parent's financial aid information IS REQUIRED. The federal government feels that as part of the marriage the step-parent assumes some responsibility for the student. In addition, Muhlenberg College requires the non-custodial parent to complete the CSS Noncustodial Parent's Profile Form that is available online.
If the whereabouts of the non-custodial parent are unknown or if the non-custodial parent refuses to complete the Noncustodial Parent's Profile Form, please contact the Office of Financial Aid in writing. These situations are handled on an individual case-by-case basis.
A: In order to be considered independent for federal and state purposes for the 2012-2013 academic year, you must meet one of the following criteria:
Be born before January 1, 1989
Be a veteran of the US Armed Forces
Be an orphan or ward of the court
Have legal dependents other than a spouse that receive half of their support from you.
Been adopted at the age of 13 or older
Currently serving on active duty for other than training purposes
Muhlenberg College will review a student's independent status on a case-by-case basis.
A: 78.6% of the Class of ‘15 is receiving need based grant money from Muhlenberg College. 82.9% of the class is receiving some type of financial assistance.
A: The typical financial aid package for a Muhlenberg student will usually consist of one or more of the following:
Muhlenberg College Grant Money: This is money from Muhlenberg
College that does not need to be repaid.
Federal/State Grant Money: This is money that does not need
to be repaid and is awarded by the federal or state govern-
Student Employment: This is money that the student earns.
Loans: This is money that the student needs to repay.
The make-up of the award (grant vs. self-help) is based on a student's financial need and the student's high school achievements.
A: When you submit your application for admission to Muhlenberg College, you are automatically considered for all of the merit scholarships that the college offers. If any additional information is required, the Office of Admissions will contact you directly. Muhlenberg College enrolls approximately 125 Merit Scholarship recipients. The scholarships range from $1,000-$16,000. However, the total Merit from all Muhlenberg sources is capped at $20,000. Merit Scholarship recipients typically have combined Critical Reading and Math SAT scores of over 1300 and rank in the top 10% of their high school class.
A: Merit award decisions are made independently from the need-based financial aid awards. However, because of federal guidelines, merit awards must be counted as a financial aid source and will be listed on your award letter. Because of Muhlenberg College's "preferential" packaging, Merit Scholarship recipients' packages are weighted toward grant as opposed to self-help (loans and student employment).
A: The average Muhlenberg College grant for the Class of '15 was $17,781. The total average financial aid package for the Class of ’15 was $23,110.
A: Students are awarded student employment as part of their financial aid package. The average student employment award is $1,800. It has been our experience that by working 8 hours a week, the students can easily earn the full $1,800 award. Students can find out about the jobs that will be open for the upcoming academic year during June Advising or in August from the bulletin board outside our office. Students are responsible for contacting the supervisor listed and obtaining their own job. They will receive a monthly paycheck for their work. Some of the jobs are in administrative offices, academic departments, security, the Center for the Arts, the Student Union, and the theater.
A: Students who wish to work on campus but who were not awarded student employment as part of their financial aid package should stop in the Office of Financial Aid at the beginning of the semester to fill out a job application. After the first two weeks of school, we will open all remaining jobs to eligible financial aid students. After the third week, we will open it up to all students.
A: A student's need-based financial aid package is renewed each year provided the student still demonstrates financial need as determined by the annual filing of the FAFSA, is making satisfactory academic progress and is in good standing in the College Community. However, if your financial need decreases due to a change in your family's circumstances (i.e., the size of your family decreases, the number in college decreases, your family's income or assets increases), or you are having difficulty with your academic performance, your need-based financial aid award will be affected.
A: Muhlenberg College students on financial aid, including merit scholarship recipients, are required to report their outside awards to the Office of Financial Aid as soon as they are notified of them. No amount of aid, including outside awards and merit scholarships, can ever exceed Muhlenberg’s cost of attendance. If necessary adjustments to Muhlenberg financial aid awards will occur only to the self help portion (federal loans, student employment) for the first $6000 a student receives in outside scholarships. Once a student exceeds a total of $6000 in outside scholarships, a dollar for dollar reduction in need based Muhlenberg College Grant will occur.
A: There are several loan options available to students and their parents.
Federal Direct Subsidized Student Loan : This is a need-based loan that goes in the student's name. It is subsidized by the federal government so there are no payments required as long as the student is enrolled in school on at least a half-time basis. Freshmen may borrow $3,500, sophomores $4,500 and juniors and seniors $5,500. The interest rate for AY 12/13 is fixed at 6.8%
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Student Loan: This is also a loan that goes in the student's name. Interest payments can be deferred until after graduation or are made while the student is in school. Beginning with the 2008-2009 academic year, all students are eligible for a $2,000 unsubsidized Stafford Loan.
In addition, students that do not qualify for the maximum subsidized loan for their grade level may borrow the difference in the unsubsidized loan. Freshmen may borrow $3,500, sophomores $4,500, juniors and seniors $5,500 less any subsidized Student Loan they received. The interest rate is fixed at 6.8%.
Federal Perkins Loan: For the AY 10/11, this is a need-based loan that also goes in the student's name. The interest is subsidized by the federal government so there are no payments required as long as the student is enrolled on at least a half-time basis. The interest rate after graduation is fixed at 5%. This loan is currently being discussed in Congress and could change. More details should be available by early 2012.
Federal Direct PLUS Loan: This is a loan that the parent(s) of the student take out. The maximum amount that may be borrowed is the Cost of Education minus any other financial aid. Principal and interest payments or interest only payments are required and the interest rate is FIXED at 7.9%
Alternative Educational Loans: These are loans that go in the student’s name. Students normally have a co-signer for the loan. The maximum amount that may be borrowed is the cost of education minus any other financial aid. Principal and interest may be deferred while the student is enrolled in school. They have variable interest rates. Students my contact their lenders, credit card lenders or search the web for programs available.
A: For the 2012/2013 academic year, tuition, fees, room (standard) and board (Gold Plan) total $51,345. The 2013/2014 charges will be announced in April of 2013.
A: Muhlenberg College will send out bills for the Fall Semester in June prior to the start of the Fall Semester. The Spring Semester bill will be sent out in December. Bills are usually due 30 days after they are sent. Muhlenberg College also participates in a 10-Month Payment Plan. This plan allows students and their families to begin making payments in May/June prior to starting the Fall Semester. There is simply an application fee of $50 and families indicate in the application how much they wish to spread out over the 10-Month period.