Federal Financial Aid | Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis
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Federal Financial Aid

Many students find it necessary to utilize federal funding opportunities to cover remaining educational and living expenses after all other funding opportunities have been exhausted.

Students who would like to be considered for Federal Financial Aid (work-study and student loans) must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the appropriate academic year. The FASFA is available on October 1 of each year and should be completed with the student’s prior year federal tax return. The Washington University school code is 002520.

You are able to submit your FAFSA through the myStudentAid mobile app. The app includes an IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT), which electronically transfers your federal tax return into your FAFSA form.

Note: Students working toward completing a graduate degree are automatically considered Independent for FAFSA purposes. No parent income information will need to be included.

Before borrowing a loan, students are encouraged to utilize a loan repayment calculator to estimate monthly repayments, which will go into effect after a six-month grace period.

Federal Student Loans

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

This loan is available to all graduate students as long as a valid FAFSA is on file with the university. The maximum award for each academic year is $20,500. The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan has a current interest rate of 1.06 percent that begins accruing when the loan is disbursed to the school. However, students are not required to begin paying on the principal or the interest until after they complete their program or drop below half-time status, with a six-month grace period.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

If a student needs financial assistance beyond the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, they may apply for the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan, a credit-based loan which has a current interest rate of 4.23 percent. If a student is approved for the PLUS loan, they may borrow up to their annual Cost of Attendance (as calculated by the university) minus any other financial aid (scholarships, loans or work-study). The PLUS loan begins accruing interest when the loan is disbursed to the school. However, like the Unsubsidized loan, borrowers are not required to begin repayment until after they complete their program or drop below half-time status, with a six-month grace period.

Note: The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan and the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan have variable fixed interest rates. The interest rates for these loans may vary between academic years. However, once a student borrows a loan, the interest rate is fixed for the life of that loan.

Federal Work Study

Federal Work-Study (FWS) is a federal aid program through which you can work and earn money for your education. Students may be eligible for up to $2,000 in work-study aid per academic year.

To be eligible for Federal Work-Study, a student must meet the following requirements:

  • Be eligible for U.S. federal student aid and submit a completed FAFSA for the applicable academic year.
  • Have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of $2,000 or less. Your EFC will appear on your Student Aid Report after you have completed the FAFSA.
  • Enroll full-time for the upcoming academic year.

Many students acquire part-time employment at the Brown School through the FWS program. Students may be hired for clerical positions, information technology, facilities or library services, or as research assistants to faculty members. Students are responsible for securing a FWS position, and are encouraged to explore the many work opportunities offered at the Brown School.