Macalester meets 100 percent of each admitted student’s demonstrated financial need.

Financial aid counselors complete a thorough assessment of each student’s background and assemble a package of grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study employment stipends. Macalester’s endowment contributes to the financial aid budget every year, and many generous alumni have established endowed scholarships for crucial financial aid, study away, or research opportunities. Our approach to financial aid opens up the entire vibrant Macalester experience for students, allowing them to focus on the rigorous coursework and rich campus life instead of worrying about the next tuition bill.

“It’s very important to me personally to be able to have a financial aid program that allows any student whose family is committed to Macalester to be able to attend and graduate from Macalester.”
—Brian Lindeman ’89,
Assistant Vice President of Admissions and Financial Aid

Financial Aid at Macalester

Need-based financial aid Awarded to U.S. First-Years by Family Income: Fall 2017
Based on Comprehensive of $64,136

Financial Aid Awarded to Those Who Qualified
Parent Income
(including interest, dividends,
non-taxable income, etc.)
Percentage of Applicants receiving a need-based award
Maximum Average
$0-$49,999 100% 25,387 67,036 61,970
$50,000-$74,999 96% 16,440 64,780 58,807
$75,000-$99,999 100% 11,603 64,280 52,828
$100,000-$124,999 97% 6,591 59,539 45,911
$125,000-$149,999 98% 16,440 58,201 40,329
$150,000-$174,999 90% 2,554 56,056 33,920
$175,000-$199,999 92% 11,973 54,183 32,031
$200,000 and up 48% 2,554 49,240 24,102
Totals 89% 2,554 67,036 47,908

*This chart does not project an individual’s financial aid eligibility. Visit Admissions & Financial Aid for more information.

Need-aware update

The college’s 2006 shift from a need-blind to a need-aware assessment in its admissions and financial aid evaluation has left campus demographics relatively unchanged. In fact, the percentage of students receiving financial aid and the percentage of students from low-income backgrounds has remained the same or increased. The chart below illustrates the range of family incomes among Macalester students.

Students from every economic background attend Macalester.