Our Financial Partnership with Families

We are so excited that Emerson is among the colleges you are considering for your education. As you learn about the many options available to you here, we want you and your family to know we are here to help as you explore ways to finance your education.

Our knowledgeable and friendly staff is here to assist you and your family with navigating the financial aid application process. We are available to answer any questions you have regarding the applications, required forms, and awarding policies. We also provide information on our website as well as through webinars and information sessions during the application season. Our goal is to assist you in obtaining an Emerson degree. We want to guide you through the financial aid process, ensuring an understanding of opportunities throughout your Emerson experience.

Emerson offers a wide variety of financial assistance programs. Sources of support may include merit scholarships, need-based grants, loan programs, work-study, and a convenient payment plan. Approximately 75 percent of Emerson’s student body receives financial assistance. Last year, we awarded more than $40 million in institutional gift aid.


Scholarships and grants are considered gift aid and do not need to be repaid. We are pleased to offer a variety of scholarships and grants to qualified students through both institutional and alumni-supported funds.

Please note that only US citizens and permanent residents are eligible for need-based assistance. However, international students will be considered for merit scholarships.

Need-Based Grants

Need-based grants are awarded through our Office of Financial Aid. You must file both the FAFSA and CSS PROFILE forms to be considered. Awards are offered based on several factors, including calculated financial need, academic achievement, and availability of funds.

When applying for need-based aid, make sure you adhere to financial aid deadlines and submit any forms or additional pieces of information requested by the Office of Financial Aid. We cannot offer financial assistance to families who miss our deadlines, so we encourage you to be vigilant about making sure all your documentation arrives on time.

Merit Scholarships

Merit scholarships are awarded by the Admission committee and do not require a separate application (with the exception of the Trustees scholarship, associated with the Honors Program). The Admission committee nominates candidates for merit scholarships based on qualifications in the candidates’ applications for admission. Emerson awarded merit scholarships to 40 percent of admitted students in last year’s class. Examples of some of our merit scholarships are listed below.

Aspire Scholarship

The prestigious Aspire Scholarship ($20,000 annually) is awarded to top candidates who have demonstrated a high level of academic distinction as well as qualities such as leadership and community service within their communities. No separate application for this scholarship is required, and selection is based on merit rather than financial need. This award is renewable each year as long as the recipient maintains a 3.0 GPA each semester. This merit scholarship is awarded to the most outstanding students at the top of Emerson’s applicant pool; last year, about 15 percent of admitted students received this award.