Graduate School Application Fee Assistance

Swarthmore Scene

There are a number of resources Swarthmore seniors may utilize in order to help defray the costs associated with graduate or professional school admission applications:

Graduate and professional school application expenses

As a matter of course, our financial aid office increases the federal student aid budget by $600 for all seniors. "Senior expenses" are automatically added for each senior so that they may access additional loan funds to use for job search or graduate school/professional school admission application expenses. Although our aid awards are loan-free, aid applicants are asked if they wish to borrow when they complete our aid application each year for the coming year. All U.S. citizens or permanent residents, whether aided or not, have access to the federal Stafford Loan Program. Seniors who have not yet borrowed the full $7,500 available for this year are still welcome to apply by contacting our loan coordinator, Joanne Barracliff (x8554).

Graduate or professional school application fee waivers

Swarthmore's financial aid office will send graduate or professional schools requests for admission application fee waivers for eligible students (those for whom we have assessed their parents' share of senior year Swarthmore expenses to be $1,000 or less). Eligible students provide the names and addresses of each graduate/professional school program and our office sends the request directly to the schools' admission offices. Please note, not all graduate or professional schools allow for the waiver of admission application fees, but we will certainly send our letters of request for any eligible student—U.S. and foreign national students.  Students should provide the school names and addresses, along with their name and Social Security number to administrative assistant, Gina Fitts (x8358).

Test fees for graduate or professional school applicants 

Low-income, high-need seniors who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents may have their graduate school testing fees paid.  Opportunities offered by the various testing programs include:

  • The GRE test:  The financial aid office is able to provide GRE fee waivers for students whose federal family contribution is less than $1,400 (that is, the eligibility index figure that the U.S. Department of Education provides to federal FAFSA applicants). Eligible students must complete the GRE testing application form and submit it to Kristin Moore (x8392), associate director of financial aid, no later than two weeks before the application deadline. The fee waiver will cover more than one test but only if the applications for all tests are submitted at the same time--only one fee waiver is possible for any student.  The GRE test application booklet describes this opportunity.  
  • The LSAT test:  Our financial aid office is not able to provide a fee waiver but law school admission offices may. A Swarthmore student interested in an LSAT testing fee waiver should contact any law school about this opportunity.  The LSAT test application booklet describes the testing fee waiver and process.
  • The GMAT test:  There is no GMAT testing fee waiver program.
  • The MCAT test:  Information about a possible testing fee waiver is available directly from AMCAS, the organization which offers the MCAT exam. The testing application booklet will provide additional information about the fee waiver process.