Applying for Financial Aid
Financial assistance, whether in the form of loans or fellowships, is not automatically renewed each year. Students must reapply during their first year at Bard in order to be considered for any form of financial assistance in the second year. Second-year financial aid awards reflect financial need and availability of program funds. Second-year fellowships are generally the same percentage of tuition as the first-year fellowships; however, good academic standing and the availability of program funds are taken into account.
All applicants are strongly encouraged to research external sources of funding and to apply for scholarships and grants that will support the tuition costs and living expenses of the program. Many states sponsor loan programs. Commercial banks also offer private loans for students. Grant monies are available from a number of national organizations and private corporations that support education at the graduate level. External awards can be held concurrently with a Bard MBA Graduate Fellowship.
Applying for Financial Aid (U.S. Citizens)
All incoming and returning students who are U.S. citizens seeking financial aid should complete the FAFSA form, available online
or by request from the Bard College Office of Financial Aid (845-758-7526). For incoming students, the FAFSA should be submitted by the admission deadline that applies to you (e.g., if you apply by the March 15 deadline, you should also submit your FAFSA by March 15). Students in default of a federal student loan or owing a refund on a federal grant are not eligible for federal financial aid. Financial assistance is not automatically renewed for the second year of the program. Second-year Bard MBA students wishing to reapply for financial aid must submit a FAFSA by May 1 in order to be considered for any form of financial assistance in their second year. For questions regarding financial aid and student loans, please visit the Bard College Office of Financial Aid online
Applying for Student Loans
Federal Direct LoanStudents who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States and who file a FAFSA are eligible to borrow through the federal Direct Loan Program, which provides subsidized and unsubsidized loans. Eligible students may borrow up to $8,500 annually through a federal Direct Loan. Eligible graduate students may also take out a supplemental, unsubsidized Direct Loan of up to $10,000 annually in addition to the basic subsidized or unsubsidized Direct Loan awarded, provided the total amount of assistance does not exceed the graduate program’s annual cost.
The loan is subsidized when the student demonstrates financial need according to a federal formula that ascertains the difference between the budgeted educational expenses and the student’s financial strength. In those cases, the federal government pays the interest on the loan while the student is enrolled in school; repayment of the loan principal and remaining interest begins six months after the student ceases to be enrolled on at least a half-time basis.
An unsubsidized federal Direct Loan does not require demonstration of financial need. The student begins paying interest charges on the loan while enrolled in school; repayment on the loan principal begins six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half time.
Loans are disbursed in two equal payments, one each semester, provided all Bard Financial Aid Office requirements have been fulfilled. Electronic disbursements are credited to the student’s account when they are received. Check disbursements are sent to the Student Accounts Office; the student must sign the loan check before it can be credited to his or her account. If the check is not signed within a designated period, the Student Accounts Office is obliged to return it to the lender for cancellation. In such a case, the student becomes responsible for the entire account balance and is charged a $100 penalty fee for late payment and duplication of the loan-disbursement procedure. For more information, contact the Financial Aid Office.
Federal GradPLUS LoanGraduate students can now access the federal PLUS Loan Program to pay for the cost of education not covered by other financial aid. This loan is guaranteed by the federal government and may be deferred while the student is enrolled at least part-time. A credit check is required. These loans are disbursed in the same way as the federal Direct Loan.
Fellowships and Other Assistance
The Graduate Committee awards MBA Graduate Fellowships to students who show uncommon promise and commitment to graduate studies in the fields of business, finance, and sustainability. These fellowship awards, which average thirty percent of tuition, are given to incoming and returning full-time students and may be given in combination with federal loans. More than 90 percent of Bard MBA students receive fellowship awards. Fellowships are reviewed yearly and are not renewed automatically.