Massachusetts Financial Aid
For information on the Commonwealth of Massachusetts financial aid programs outlined below, and additional resources including grants, scholarships, tuition waivers, and no-interest loans contact the college financial aid office or the Massachusetts OSFA:
Massachusetts Office of Student Financial Assistance
75 Pleasant Street
Malden, MA 02148
Foster Child Grant
Eligibility – legal residents who are foster children attending accredited public, private or independent institutions of higher learning within the continental U.S. who have signed an agreement with the Department of Social Services for care and services beyond age 18.
Awards – grants of up to $6,000 annually for not more than five (5) consecutive years.
For application and information contact the Department of Social Services or OSFA.
Eligibility – legal resident of at least one year with an Eligible Family Contribution (EFC) between $0 and $5,328, who will attend any approved institution of higher education in the state of Massachusetts or a state approved public, private or independent institution in Vermont, Pennsylvania, or District of Columbia that has a reciprocity agreement with Massachusetts.
Awards – vary, depending on financial need, type of institution, and enrollment status.
Application is made by completing and submitting the FAFSA.
Massachusetts Cash Grant
Eligibility – permanent resident of at least one year who can demonstrate financial need and is enrolled in a Massachusetts public college or university for a minimum of three undergraduate credits.
Awards – up to the cost of tuition and fees. Amounts are determined by the FAFSA and the college financial aid office. Typically, Cash Grants are utilized as supplemental grants in campus-based financial aid packages.
For application and information contact the college financial aid office or OSFA.
Eligibility – permanent resident of at least one year who is considered financially needy according to program guidelines and is enrolled for at least six but less than twelve undergraduate credits in an approved postsecondary institution.
Awards – range from $200 to a maximum that depends on the type of institution that the student attends.
Application is made by completing and submitting the FAFSA.
Massachusetts Public Service Grant
Eligibility – residents of one year, who plan to enroll full-time at Massachusetts institutions of higher education, who are children or the widowed spouse of deceased permanent, paid members of police, correction, or fire departments; or children of POW, MIA, or veterans whose death resulted from injuries received in the performance of duty.
Awards – the cost of full-time annual tuition for a student attending a Massachusetts public college or university or an amount equal to the full-time annual tuition charged at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst for a student attending a Massachusetts independent college or university.
Paraprofessional Teacher Preparation Grant
Eligibility – legal residents who are currently employed as paraprofessionals in Massachusetts public schools, have held such position for at least two years, and who enroll in an undergraduate degree program leading to teacher certification. Persons employed for less than two years may qualify if the course of study leads to certification in a high needs discipline.
Awards – vary according to type of institution attending: up to $4,000 at community college, up to $6,000 at state college, up to $7,500 at public or private university. Awards are not available to use at out-of-state colleges.
Agnes M. Lindsay Scholarship
Eligibility – legal residents from rural areas of Massachusetts who are enrolled full-time in a public institution of higher education within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and can demonstrate financial need.
Awards – vary.
Christian A. Herter Memorial Scholarship
Eligibility – permanent residents enrolled in either 10th or 11th grade who demonstrate severe personal or family related difficulties or have overcome a personal hardship. Students are nominated by counselors, social workers, ministers, or educators who are familiar with the individual’s circumstances.
Minimum 2.5 GPA required for consideration.
Awards – may receive up to 50 percent of their calculated need; amounts vary and are based on educational cost, including tuition, room, board, required fees, books and transportation.
For application and information contact the high school counselor or OSFA.
The Early Childhood Educators Scholarship
Eligibility – legal residents who are currently employed as early childhood educators or licensed family care providers who enroll in an associate, bachelor, or master’s degree program in Early Childhood Education or related programs (i.e., elementary education, psychology, sociology) at an eligible Massachusetts public or private college or university.
Awards – maximum of $2,250 per semester at community colleges; $3,600 per semester at public state colleges; $4,500 per semester at public or private universities. The recipient agrees to continue employment as an early childhood educator or childcare provider in Massachusetts upon completing the degree requirements, or repay funds.
High Demand Scholarship
Eligibility – community college students who are pursuing a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) degree.
Awards – up to $5,000 per year for full-time students; up to $1,375 per year for part-time students.
The John and Abigail Adams Scholarship
This scholarship rewards high student achievement while helping to attract more high-performing students to Massachusetts public higher education.
Eligibility – legal resident who scores in the Advanced category on one of three high school state assessment tests in English Language Arts, Mathematics, or STE (Biology, Chemistry, Introductory Physics or Technology/Engineering); scores in the Proficient or Advanced category on the remaining two high school state assessment tests; and has a combined MCAS score on these assessments that ranks in the top 25 percent in the school district.
Awards – non-need-based tuition waiver for state-supported undergraduate courses not to exceed the resident undergraduate tuition rate at the participating institution.
There is no application for this scholarship. Eligible students are notified in the fall of senior year.
One Family Inc. Scholarships
This program provides support and opportunities for growth to low-income heads of households in the form of financial assistance, training, and additional support services that are needed to successfully manage the demands of higher education, work, and raising a family.
Eligibility – candidates must qualify as a head-of-household, with children under age 18; be at risk of homelessness, based on federal poverty standards, or has experienced homelessness within the previous 12 months; have clear and realistic academic and career goals, strong potential for success in chosen academic program, and a desire to actively participate in all aspects of the program.
Awards – based on the scholar’s individual needs, tuition assistance for up to full-time attendance plus additional living expenses. Recipients must participate in leadership training, retreats, and workshops.
For more information, contact:
One Family, Inc.
423 West Broadway
South Boston, MA 02127
Paul Tsongas Scholarship
Eligibility – legal residents who have graduated from high school with a GPA of 3.75 and highly competitive SAT scores or ACT equivalent. Candidates must also have pursued other endeavors for a minimum of five years.
Awards – waiver of tuition and mandatory fees at a Massachusetts state college. Each of the nine state colleges awards five Paul Tsongas Scholarships annually. Recipients must maintain a 3.3 GPA for continued eligibility.
For application and information contact the state college you wish to attend or OSFA.
Tuition Waiver Programs
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts offers a number of Tuition Waiver Programs. These include:
• Career Advancement Program Tuition Waiver
• Categorical Tuition Waiver
• Collaborative Teachers Tuition Waiver
• Commonwealth Hurricane Katrina Emergency Tuition Waiver
• DCF Foster Child Tuition Waiver and Fee Assistance Program
• DCF Adopted Children Tuition Waiver and Fee Assistance Program
• Graduate Tuition Waiver
• High Technology Scholar/Intern Tuition Waiver
• Incentive Program For Aspiring Teachers Tuition Waiver
• MASSTransfer Tuition Waiver
• MEFA Prepaid Tuition Programs Waiver
• Need Based Tuition Waiver
• September 11, 2001 Tragedy Tuition Waiver
• Stanley Z. Koplik Certificate of Mastery Tuition Waiver
• University of Massachusetts Exchange Program Tuition Waiver
• Valedictorian Program Tuition Waiver
• Washington Center Program Tuition Waiver
No Interest Loan Program
Eligibility – legal resident for at least one year attending a participating college or university.
Awards – zero percent interest loans of $1,000–$4,000 depending on financial need, payable within ten years.
For application and information contact the college financial aid office.