A high-quality Macalester experience relies on
outstanding faculty members, small classes, individual study opportunities,
and excellent equipment and facilities—all of which are expensive to provide. The primary responsibility
for meeting this cost rests with students and their families. If costs are
a concern, we encourage students to apply for financial aid to determine
eligibility for federal, state, and institutional assistance.
The amount of each admitted student’s financial
aid package is equal to the difference between the student’s
calculated family contribution and the cost of attending Macalester. The
Macalester Financial Aid Office evaluates the family’s financial aid
application data and determines the student’s financial need.
Prospective students interested in seeking financial
aid must apply for admission according to admission application deadlines
and submit financial aid application materials by the priority filing date
published in admission application materials and on the Financial Aid
Office web site. Macalester financial aid staff members are available for
consultation throughout the year and encourage students to contact the
Financial Aid Office with questions.
Macalester’s financial aid program is open to
all degree-seeking full-time students enrolled during the academic year.
Institutional financial aid is not available for summer study. A student may receive
Macalester aid up to eight semesters assuming other eligibility criteria
In most cases, a student must be 24 years old to apply
for financial aid as an independent student. Students considering filing
for aid as independent students are encouraged to contact the Macalester
Financial Aid Office before completing their applications. Students
entering Macalester as dependent students will remain so for institutional
financial aid purposes.
Students must apply for financial aid each year.
Renewal financial aid application materials are made available on the
Financial Aid Office website by January preceding the academic year.
Financial aid award letters are mailed beginning in June to returning
students who meet the priority filing deadline. Students with student
employment awards are encouraged to find their jobs for the next academic
year during spring semester.
How to Apply for Financial Aid
Prospective students who are candidates for financial
aid at Macalester College must take the following steps:
1. File an application for admission with the
Admissions Office. The applicant must indicate his or her intent to apply
for financial aid at the time the admission application is filed.
2. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student
Aid (FAFSA) and Financial Aid PROFILE forms, submit them to the appropriate
processing services, and request that the results be released to Macalester
3. Submit signed copies of their parents’ and
their own federal tax returns and W-2 forms to the College Board
Institutional Documentation Service (IDOC).
4. If the applicant’s parents are separated or
divorced, a Noncustodial PROFILE is required.
NOTE: Students who are not U.S. citizens or U.S.
Permanent Residents apply for financial aid to the Director of
Changes in Financial Aid Policies
Macalester’s financial aid policies do change
from time to time due to federal and state requirements and the
College’s continued effort to serve students. Students should refer
to the Financial Aid Office website for the most current and complete
Types of Assistance
Financial aid is generally awarded in the form of a
package including grant, work, and loan funds. The amount of each type of
aid varies according the student’s financial need, College funds, and
College aid policies. During 2010–2011, more than two-thirds of Macalester’s full-time students received
financial assistance amounting to over $40 million.
Macalester College Grants and Scholarships
General Grants. General
grants, provided from the College budget, are awarded to first-year
students, transfer students, and upper class students who demonstrate
financial need. Students need not apply separately for specific Macalester
grants since they will automatically receive consideration for all funds
for which they may be eligible through the financial aid process.
Endowed Scholarships. A
large number of endowed scholarships are available as a result of generous
gifts from friends and alumni of the College. Endowed scholarships are an
integral part of financial aid at Macalester and contribute significantly
to meeting the financial needs of students. The income from these funds is
generally awarded to sophomores, juniors and seniors who have shown strong
academic performance and have demonstrated financial need.
Macalester College National Merit Scholarships are awarded to prospective National Merit Finalists
who have designated Macalester as their first-choice college.
DeWitt Wallace Distinguished Scholarships are awarded to prospective students on a highly
competitive basis to selected National Merit Semifinalists and Commended
Students. The scholarship is named for DeWitt Wallace ’11, founder of
Reader’s Digest, who was a longtime benefactor of Macalester.
DeWitt Wallace Scholarships are
awarded to selected prospective students who need assistance in order to
attend Macalester and whose academic records have shown them to be worthy
Catharine Lealtad Scholarships are awarded to African American, Hispanic, and Native
American students with strong high school records. This scholarship is named for Dr. Catharine Lealtad,
Class of 1915, the first African American woman graduate of the College.
National Presbyterian Scholarships are awarded to members of the Presbyterian Church.
Recipients selected by the National Presbyterian Scholarship Committee
receive annual awards up to $1,400 per year, depending upon financial need.
Applications may be obtained from local church offices.
Macalester Student Employment is a significant part of the College’s financial aid
program. Almost three-fourths of students are employed part time on campus.
In addition to federal and state funding, almost 75% of the employment
program is funded by Macalester dollars. Macalester provides more than
1,100 on-campus jobs in administrative and service offices, academic
departments, the library, grounds crew, etc. Job placement is determined by
the student’s interest and abilities, as well as the pool of
available jobs. Upper-class students may participate in internships and
Federal Government Assistance
Federal Pell Grant Program. This
is the largest federal grant program. Awards to students are based on their
enrollment status, their financial need and the cost of education at the
school they plan to attend.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
(SEOG). This federal grant program
provides colleges with funds to help financially needy students with their
Federal Work-Study Program (FWS). Jobs are offered to selected students who demonstrate
financial need. Under the program, Macalester pays 25% of the
student’s wages and the federal government pays the remaining 75%.
Federal Perkins Loan Program. This federal program provides loans to students
as part of their aid packages. The exact amount of the loan depends on the
financial need, the funds that are available, and the aid policies of
Macalester. Repayment and the 5 percent interest rate begin nine months
after graduation or after a student drops below half-time enrollment.
Federal Direct Stafford Student Loan (Subsidized and
Unsubsidized). Federal Direct Stafford student loans are
available to students enrolled at least half time and who complete the
FAFSA. The exact amount of the loan and type, Subsidized or Unsubsidized,
depends upon federal guidelines. The student may be required to pay a loan
fee. Under the Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan program, no interest is
charged, nor is repayment required while the student is in college. Under
the Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan, the student is charged interest
while in school, but may defer payment of this interest during the
Federal Direct PLUS Loan is
a federal loan program under which parents may borrow up to the cost of
attendance less other financial aid.
State of Minnesota Aid
Minnesota State Grant Program. All Minnesota residents who are applying for financial aid
apply for a state grant. Application is made by completing the FAFSA.
Minnesota State Work-Study Program. Minnesota residents who have demonstrated financial need are
eligible to receive state work-study funds.
Satisfactory Academic Progress for Federal Student Aid
According to the Higher Education Amendments of 1976,
post-secondary institutions are required to establish standards of
Satisfactory Academic Progress for students receiving Federal Student Aid
(financial aid from the federal government). The concept of satisfactory
academic progress mandates that both grade point average and the number of
credits completed are monitored. In compliance with the requirement,
Macalester College has developed the standards outlined below for
Satisfactory Academic Progress. This policy also applies to aid programs
that require the student to be eligible for Federal Student Aid, such as
the Minnesota State Grant program.
Each full-time student is allowed eight semesters to
complete an undergraduate degree and receive Federal Student Aid.
Satisfactory Progress Requirements
At the completion A student must have With at least
of this full-time accrued at least cumulative grade
semester this many credits average
1 8 1.70
2 16 1.70
3 28 1.85
4 40 1.85
5 54 2.00
6 68 2.00
7 82 2.00
8 96 2.00
9 112 2.00
10 128* 2.00
For the purposes of monitoring satisfactory academic
progress, grade point average is calculated by the Registrar’s
Office. Information about grade point average calculation can be found in
the Instructional Policies section of the College Catalog.
Progress is monitored at the end of each academic
year. Students who do not meet these standards will be placed on Federal
Student Aid probation. A student on probation must register for and
complete twelve credit hours with at least a 2.00 term grade point average
during the next full-time semester of enrollment. Students who fulfill
these requirements will continue to be eligible for Federal Student Aid and
will remain on probation until satisfactory academic progress as defined by
the chart above has been achieved.
If, during the probation semester, the student fails
to earn twelve credits with at least a 2.00 term grade point average,
Federal Student Aid eligibility will end until the student achieves
satisfactory academic progress as defined by the chart above. The student
may apply for Macalester financial aid, but Macalester’s financial
aid will not be increased to replace lost Federal Student Aid or other aid
lost based on failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress.
Students who lose Federal Student Aid eligibility
based on this policy may appeal by submitting a written request to the
Financial Aid Office. The appeal should explain extenuating circumstances
that affected the student’s academic performance.
Satisfactory Academic Progress for Macalester Financial
Any degree-seeking student is eligible to apply for
Macalester financial aid. Eligibility for Macalester financial aid is
limited to eight full-time semesters. A semester in which the student
enrolls for eight credits or fewer and receives financial aid counts as
one-half of one semester. A semester in which the student enrolls for nine
to eleven credits and receives financial aid counts as three-quarters of
Macalester financial aid eligibility will be prorated
for students who are admitted as transfer students. For example, a student
who transfers to Macalester as a first-semester sophomore is eligible to
apply for six semesters of Macalester financial aid. Only credits accepted
by Macalester for credit toward a Macalester degree are used to determine
the student’s class standing at the time of transfer.
Students who desire Macalester financial aid for a
semester beyond their eighth must request an exception to this policy in
writing. Such requests should be sent to the Financial Aid Office as early
as possible and no later than the end of the eighth semester of enrollment.
Exceptions to the eight semester limit will be made rarely, and only in
situations where circumstances beyond the student’s control prevented
degree completion in eight semesters.