Need-based financial aid is awarded on the basis of the financial need of the student. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid application (FAFSA) form as well as additional supplemental documents are used to determine your federal, state, and institutional need-based aid eligibility. 

How to apply for aid


The Office of Undergraduate Admission awards a variety of merit and achievement awards each year to new student applicants as part of the admission process.

Maintaining your scholarship

Private Scholarships

Private scholarships are awarded from various organizations, private agencies, foundations, community-based organizations, and civic groups to help worthy students meet the cost of attending college. 

View a list of private scholarships

Restricted Scholarships

Emerson College has a number of restricted scholarships that are awarded to eligible students, according to donors' standards. All undergraduate students are automatically considered once they complete their applications for assistance. There is no separate application for restricted scholarships. 

State Scholarship & Grant Programs

The following states allow their scholarships and grants to be used at Emerson:

Student residents of these states should apply for their state scholarship and grant program. Please contact your individual state program for application procedures and filing deadlines.


Students who complete their financial aid applications may be eligible and considered for the following grants:

Emerson Grants

These grants are awarded to full-time students who demonstrate financial need and academic achievement.

Federal Pell Grant

Students must complete the FAFSA to apply for Federal Pell Grant consideration, a federal source of assistance available to students who demonstrate financial need. For the 2021–2022 standard academic year (Fall/Spring), Federal Pell Grant awards range from $661 to $6,495. Students who enroll in the Summer term may be eligible for an additional disbursement (year round Pell).

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

FSEOG awards, a federal source of assistance granted to students with the greatest demonstrated financial need, range from $100 to $4,000 per academic year.

Gilbert Grants

These awards are given to Massachusetts residents enrolled full-time who demonstrate need.

Kevin Bright Scholarship Fund

The Kevin Bright Scholarship Fund supports the experience of undergraduates enrolled in the Emerson Los Angeles program who have high demonstrated financial need. Scholarship awards can be used towards ELA program costs including travel fees, extracurricular programming, event attendance, and more.

Emerson Enhancement Fund (EEF)

These awards are given to students with an identified financial need to enrich their collegiate experience by securing additional funding for extra-curricular programming, event attendance, creative and/or research projects. Separate application by published deadlines is required.

Some or all of your award may be subject to taxation in accordance with federal, state and other regulations. For general guidance, you may refer to federal regulations included in IRS Publication 970 or contact Accounts Payable at 617-824-8520.

If you are not a U.S. resident, Emerson College may be required to withhold taxes from your award. Please contact either the Payroll Office or Accounts Payable who will instruct you on the documentation needed to determine if you are eligible for any treaty benefits.

Please consult with an outside tax advisor if you are uncertain of the implications of this award on your personal tax situation. Emerson College is not responsible for any taxes that may arise from this award, and does not provide tax advice.