Reason #54 You Should Visit
Art on campus
A Smith College education is the investment of a lifetime. Yet if you're concerned about the financial strain of paying for college, you're not alone. Families at all income levels wonder how to finance a private college education. The good news is that you don't have to be wealthy to afford Smith. The college welcomes students from all economic backgrounds, and we meet the full documented financial need of all admitted students.
Resources for financial aid include loans, campus jobs and grants, and students' financial aid packages will include one or more of these. A loan and a job (considered self-help) are usually the first components of an aid package, and remaining need is met with grant aid. In 2014–15, college grants given to traditional-aged Smith undergraduates totaled more than $54 million.
Smith's fixed fees are comparable to fees at other selective private colleges. Many families who feared they wouldn't qualify for financial aid are glad they checked out the possibilities. We strive to ensure that every admitted applicant can afford the benefits of a private education. Financial planning services are offered to all families, whether or not they apply for aid. Nearly 75 percent take advantage of flexible payment plans that help families spread costs over time.
Students must not wait until they have been accepted to Smith to apply for aid. Any student who may need financial assistance during her tenure at Smith should apply for aid by the financial aid deadlines; financial aid is not available to applicants who do not meet the published deadlines. The Office of Student Financial Services determines a family contribution toward tuition costs based on information you provide, as documented by tax returns. Standard factors such as incomes, assets, the size of your household and how many family members are already in college are just the beginning. Other significant factors, such as unusual medical costs or an imminent retirement, are also considered.
Smith College offers a limited number of awards based on merit rather than need. All applicants for admission are automatically considered; there are no special application forms. Students are selected by the Office of Admission and must maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to have their scholarships renewed annually. Many of Smith's merit awards include a reduced loan expectation for those merit scholars with additional financial need. Merit aid is only offered at the time of admission.
It is helpful to stay organized and apply early. Reply promptly to requests for further information, and keep copies of everything. Be in touch with the colleges. Ask questions!