Financial Assistance for Graduate Students

The Master’s Scholarship and Grant Priority Deadline for residential (on-campus) students has been extended to February 15, 2024 for Summer and Fall 2024 starts. Applications for admission must be submitted, verified, and completed by this deadline to be reviewed for scholarship consideration. More information about other funding opportunities are available below.

Online students are encouraged to visit the GW Tuition, Billing, and Financial Aid FAQ document for more information specific to online students.

Please complete the Scholarship Adjustment Request.

Merit-Based Scholarships

Merit-based scholarships represents the largest portion of institutional aid for students enrolled in on-campus degree programs at the Milken Institute School of Public Health.  Each year, we extend over $20,000,000.00 in offers of merit-based scholarship to applicants for the fall term.  Selection criteria for these awards can vary but in general award amounts will be determined by a combination of academic preparedness, relevant experience, and other qualities based on the department.  For the current academic year individual Merit Scholarship awards provided total tuition support ranging from $8,000 up to 100% tuition coverage.  Admitted students who submitted their admission application by the priority deadline are automatically reviewed for eligibility.

Need-Based Grants

Need-based grants will be awarded as part of our institutional funding for on-campus students only.

  • GWSPH will award institutional grants to students who demonstrate need based on the CSS Profile.
  • 2024-2025 CSS profile can be completed, using the GWSPH school code: 9608. 
  • Our scholarship & grant priority deadline is January 15th, 2024. Please submit your admissions application by this deadline. 
  • Our final need-based CSS Profile deadline is Jan 15, 2024. 

The CSS Profile is not required to apply for federal student aid.  The CSS Profile is only required for students who want to be considered for institutional need-based grants.  Applicants do not need to submit a CSS profile if they do not wish to be considered for institutional need-based aid. 

Coverdell Fellowships

GWSPH is a proud partner with the Peace Corps and the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program.  This program offers financial assistance and leadership opportunities to returned Peace Corps Volunteers. Additional program information is available online.

All applicants who meet the priority deadline and indicate Peace Corps service on their application for admission will be reviewed for eligibility. Students may only qualify for merit-based scholarship OR the Coverdell Fellowship, whichever award is greater. Eligible students will be notified by Financial Aid via email. For funding questions please contact our staff


Graduate Assistantships include opportunities to work with faculty in the classroom as well as serving in roles that support research and administrative functions.  Many students locate a position through the relationships they build with faculty and administrators. Please reach out to individual departments for graduate assistantship opportunities.

Capital Connection Fund

The Capital Connection Fund is supported by the Milken Institute SPH and the school’s alumni association.  The fund was established to provide financial assistance for students engaged in off-campus research, internship, conference, and other professional development activities. Funds cannot exceed $1000 total. Current students can apply for funds using the application.  In some cases, a CCF award may be extended to incoming students who demonstrate excellence in their field.  Current students are also eligible to apply for funding through GW’s Knowledge in Action Career Internship Fund, which provides funding for unpaid internship expenses.

Federal Unsubsidized Loans

GWSPH graduate students may be eligible for the federal unsubsidized loan.  For Fall 2024, Spring 2024, and Summer 2024, complete the 2023-2024 FAFSA.

 It takes approximately 10 business days for us to receive your FAFSA. Once we receive your FAFSA, please allow at least three business weeks for processing. This application needs to be completed annually in order to continue to receive federal financial aid and opens October 1st every year.

MPH and MHA students may be eligible for up to $33,000 between fall and spring terms ($16,500 in the fall and $16,500 in the spring) with minimum enrollment at 4.5 credits per semester. Students taking courses in the summer may be eligible for $1,389 additional unsubsidized funds per month. If your courses span two months, you may request an additional $2,778, if they span 3 months you may request an additional $4,167.

Continuing Students: If you would like to request the additional unsubsidized loan funds for the summer 2024 term, please complete the 2023-2024 Supplementary Loan Questionnaire (PDF)

Incoming Students: If this is your first time borrowing while a graduate student at the Milken Institute School of Public Health, be sure to complete the Loan Agreement and Entrance Counseling. This only needs to be completed once per loan and is valid for six years. Please note that it takes between five to seven business days to receive the Loan Agreement and Entrance Counseling from the Department of Education

Accepting Unsubsidized Loans: You can accept your loans on your BanWeb account. If you would like to make any changes, please email [email protected], and include your GWID email.

Previously Borrowed Student Loans: If you have previously borrowed any subsidized and/or unsubsidized loans from either an undergraduate or another graduate program, please note your aggregate lifetime loan limit for the subsidized and unsubsidized loans combined (undergraduate and graduate) is $244,000. Once you hit that lifetime limit, you will no longer be eligible for any unsubsidized loans, however, the Graduate PLUS loan will remain an option. 

Maintaining Loan Eligibility: Please note to maintain federal loan eligibility, you will need to be enrolled in at least 4.5 credits in the fall and spring terms and 3 credits in the summer. You will also need to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) by maintaining a 3.00 GPA both cumulative and each semester. you will also need to pass 67% of the credits you attempt each semester and cumulatively. For example, if you have taken 70 credits total, you will need to be sure to pass 47 of the attempted 70 credits (47 credits passed / 70 credits attempted = 67%). The first time you fail to meet SAP standards, you will receive a warning email and will continue to receive financial aid for one semester. The second term you will need to complete a SAP appeal (PDF). If you have any questions, please email [email protected]

Repayments: Repayments don't begin until six months after you graduate or drop below part-time. A loan servicer assigned by the federal government will be in touch about next steps. If you would like to make payments while you are enrolled, please contact the Federal Student Aid Office

Federal Graduate PLUS Loans

GWSPH graduate students may be eligible for additional loan funds by applying for the graduate PLUS loan. There is no lifetime limit and the amount that you borrow will be determined by your cost of attendance. The way to determine your eligibility is to use the Cost of Attendance excel document that is available on the Cost of Attendance page, input the number of credits that you plan to take each term which will calculate the total cost of attendance. Then subtract your scholarships and your unsubsidized loan, the remaining balance is the amount you can request in a graduate PLUS loan.

To borrow a graduate PLUS loan, please follow the steps below:

  1. Apply for the Plus Loan: In order to be considered for a graduate PLUS loan, please go to and click on the "In School" tab. Click on the second link on the right-hand side titles "Apply for a PLUS Loan for Graduate School." You will then be taken to another page that will allow you to log in using your FSA ID and password. 
  2. Complete a Supplementary Loan Questionnaire: Once you have completed this, make sure you complete the Supplementary Loan Questionnaire (PDF).
    • Write your name and GWID at the top.
    • Check the "Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan" and input the amount that you want. Please keep in mind that every time a disbursement is run, there is a loan fee that reduces your loan amount. 
      • The current loan fee is 4.228%. For example, if you take out $10,000 in PLUS loans, you will receive $9,577.00 (minus the loan fee).
      • If you are taking it out for two semesters, please make sure that you double the loan. For example, if you want $5,000 for the fall and $5,000 for the spring, make sure you take out the total $10,000
    • In Section 2, choose for which semester you would like the loan.
    • Complete the credits for all terms under the correct campus.
    • Check "No" for the last question, unless you are eligible for the full time / half time form. 
    • You can either print and sign the form or you can use the approved signature technology.
    • Once you're done, email the form to [email protected] and cc [email protected].
Private/Alternative Loans

If you are interested in borrowing a private/alternative loan, which is a non-federal loan, we do not have a preferred lender list and will work with any private lender of your choice. Once you have selected a lender and have been approved for a student loan, please complete the 2023-2024 Supplementary Loan Questionnaire (PDF) indicating the amount that you would like the borrow. 

External Scholarship Resources

The External Scholarship Resource document is a great tool to assist public health graduate students in funding their education. While this is not an exhaustive list of all external scholarships, this document serves as a great starting point. The Milken Institute School of Public Health does not endorse any specific external scholarships.

To maximize this resource:

  • Don't discount smaller scholarships. These scholarships may be less competitive and scholarships of varying amounts add up over time!
  • Stay organized throughout the process. You can use the external scholarship document as a guide. It may be helpful to keep track of when scholarships will announce awardees.
  • We want to hear from you if you were awarded any external scholarships. So please share your success with us by sending us a quick email at [email protected].