Financing Your Medical Education
About 63% of our students finance their medical education through the use of low-cost student loans. Approximately 54% of those who borrow also receive scholarship assistance from the School. The amount of such assistance is based upon analysis of family financial strength—the resources of student, spouse if married, and regardless of student age, marital, or IRS dependency status, parents. In the case of divorced parents, both parents are expected to provide financial information. Parents are not, of course, required to provide financial support. While this information is used in determining scholarship eligibility, many students borrow additional resources in lieu of parental support.
Applicants intending to seek scholarship assistance are urged to involve their parents early in the financial aid application process. Many families mistakenly assume that students at the graduate level will be aided without regard to parent circumstances and, while this may be typical for many graduate programs, it is not traditionally the case for professional programs such as medicine, law, business, and theology.
Applying for Financial Aid
Applying for financial aid is an annual process that takes place in the spring prior to the year for which support is sought. Applicants receive financial aid applications and instructions on their interview day.
Annual requirements for students seeking only loans include a Free Application for Federal Student Assistance (FAFSA), a University Application and various other verification and documentation forms.
Annual requirements for University scholarship applicants include, in addition to the documents listed for loans, the CSS Profile and copies of parent and student/spouse federal income tax returns and W2s.
To assure optimal consideration for all types of financial assistance, applications for financial aid should be submitted as soon as possible after March 1st. Individuals offered admission whose financial aid applications are complete by April 1st can expect to hear from the Financial Aid Office by April 15th. Matriculants should be aware that August 10 is the due date for payment of first term tuition and fees.
Qualifying for Scholarships
The formula used to determine University scholarship eligibility is a simple one, but presumes an understanding of the terms Family Expectation and Unit Loan:
- Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the calculation which results from analysis of an applicant’s CSS Profile. It represents that amount which families in similar financial circumstances should theoretically be able to provide toward educational support. "Family" includes parents, and the final figure is the result of careful analysis of all of the information provided by the family in the aid application process.
- The Unit Loan component of a financial aid package is the amount of combined loans offered to meet a student’s financial need before any University of Rochester need-based scholarship is offered. This means that a student’s financial need must exceed the amount of the unit loan before the student is eligible for scholarship aid through the University of Rochester. The Unit Loan level will be calculated annually, and takes into consideration the financial needs of the student body in conjunction with the available University scholarship resources. For the 2018-2019 academic year, the Unit Loan is $23,900.
Scholarship eligibility is the amount, which remains after subtracting Expected Family Contribution and Unit Loan from total costs.
Reducing Debt Through Outside Scholarships
While no financial aid resource can be ignored in the final packaging of one's financial aid, every effort is made to assure that students with the initiative to seek outside scholarship support are able to use most of it to replace family expectation or reduce borrowing. Toward that end, outside scholarships do not generally reduce institutional scholarship awards unless the outside award exceeds $3,000 and, even then, by only a third of the amount which exceeds $3,000. For example, an outside award of $4,500 would result in an institutional scholarship reduction of $500.
There may be exceptions to this treatment if certain other institutional policies prevail, such as the policy that total non-service commitment scholarship assistance cannot exceed the total cost of tuition.
Visit the Financial Aid Office web page for more details.