Reasonable cost and strong financial resources are two major benefits of the Master of Arts in Higher Education program. The program provides funding for students’ study abroad experiences (MHE students are responsible for purchasing personal items such as necessary travel documents, luggage fees, gifts, etc.) and a grant to attend a regional or national professional conference in the student’s second year. The apprenticeship host department also provides students with membership in a professional association and travel grants to attend state or regional conferences in their first year. In addition, there are no student fees for student activities, parking, technology, recreational facility, and cultural/athletic events, etc.
The Elon Master of Arts in Higher Education’s tuition cost for the fall 2020 cohort is $15,454 per year, with a significant amount of funding for scholarships awarded to qualified applicants. Tuition will not increase for the student’s second year.
Every MHE student who meets all requirements for final admittance to the program is hired as a paid graduate apprenticeship in a campus program or department. The apprenticeship is for the two-year duration of the program, (not including summers) with reappointment for the second year contingent upon satisfactory completion of academic and apprenticeship requirements. Stipends each year are $15,000, except for Residence Life GAs whose stipends are $12,000 with room and meal plan. Apprenticeship stipends are paid in equal installments over the 10 months (August-May) of their apprenticeship each year and can be used in whatever manner the student chooses (e.g., living expenses, textbooks, etc.). Given their role as apprentices, MHE students are also classified as Elon employees and receive some employee benefits (such as reduced meal plan costs, discounts, etc.) in addition to their student benefits. Students may use the university health and counseling services at no charge, but are responsible for providing proof of insurance.
Process & Timeline for Awarding of Scholarships
Scholarships range from $2,000 up to the full cost of tuition. Every student admitted to the program will be given full consideration for a scholarship. No separate application is necessary to be considered. There will be no tuition increases for the second year of this two-year program and the scholarship will automatically renew if the student meets the GPA requirement for their scholarship. Students may also apply for federal financial aid, if eligible.
Acceptance into the M.A. in Higher Education program is a two-part process. First, the MHE Admissions Committee will make a decision on conditional admission to the program based on the student’s application materials. Upon notification of conditional admittance, students will be invited to Preview Weekend. Note: conditionally admitted students will be notified of their scholarship amount no later than the week of January 20, 2020. Second, students will participate in Preview Weekend, during which they will interview for apprenticeships. Once a student is offered and accepts an apprenticeship, the student will be granted final admittance into the program. Note that the selection of apprenticeships is a “mutual selection process” – both the student and the apprenticeship host must select each other; thus, participation in Preview Day does not guarantee an apprenticeship.
Key dates to keep in mind are:
January 4: Deadline for application materials submitted. Applications completed after the deadline will be considered based on space availability.
January 24-30: Students conditionally admitted are notified of amount of scholarship awarded and invited to Preview Weekend.
February 23-24: Preview Weekend
March 6-12: Students notified of apprenticeship offers.
April 15: Deadline for students to commit to enroll for fall 2019.
Types of Scholarships
Scholarships will be awarded by the MHE Admissions Committee, with no set number awarded in each scholarship category.
Presidential Scholarship – A highly selective, merit-based scholarship awarded to students who demonstrate extraordinary academic achievement and great promise to become leading contributors to the higher education community. Presidential Scholarships are the amount of full tuition annually. Maintaining a 3.5 GPA is required.
Dean’s Scholarship – A selective scholarship awarded to students based on demonstrated high academic achievement, personal attributes such as leadership and/or life experiences, and promise to become significant contributors to the higher education community. Dean’s Scholarships range from $8,000 up to $12,000 annually. Maintaining a 3.3 GPA is required.
Leadership Scholarship – A talent-based scholarship awarded to students based on demonstrated strong academic achievement, campus and civically engaged leadership, and promise to become highly effective higher education professionals. Leadership Scholarships range from $2,000 up to $7,000 annually. Maintaining a 3.0 GPA is required.
To create a vibrant student learning environment, students’ contributions to a dynamic student cohort with a wide range of identities, experiences, thoughts and perspectives will be considered in the awarding of scholarships to otherwise qualified students.
Planning to cover tuition, books, housing, meals and miscellaneous expenses during graduate school requires advanced planning. Lynette Lorenzetti, Associate Director of Financial Aid for Graduate and Professional Programs, is available to provide you with information and options as you develop your financial plan. Feel free to contact her at 336-278-7640 or via email at email@example.com. She can assist you with overall planning. Students who need financial assistance beyond their scholarship and apprenticeship stipend will want to talk with her about when, how and for what type of student loans to apply. Should you require a student loan, she can also advise you on how to minimize your debt. For more information about financial planning, financial aid and student loans, please download the guide to Financing the Master of Arts in Higher Education at Elon. The guide for students enrolling in fall 2020 will be available this winter.
When to Apply for Financial Assistance
Students should apply as early as possible, and certainly no later than mid-June 2019, to ensure loan proceeds will be available at the commencement of the 2019 term. You do not need to wait until you have been admitted into the MHE program to begin the financial aid application process. However, students will not be notified of aid eligibility until they are admitted.
Billing and Payment Process
For the 2019-2020 academic year, students will receive a bill from the Bursar’s Office for fall and winter terms in early July that will be due at the beginning of August. Students will receive a bill for spring term in December that will be due in January.
How to Apply for Student Loans
If you intend to apply for the Federal Stafford Loan for the 2020-2021 academic year, we encourage you to submit your FAFSA at the time you apply for admission. For example, if you plan to enroll in fall 2020, you will fill out the 2020-2021 FAFSA.
1. Complete and submit to the Office of Financial Aid the 2020-2021 Elon Graduate Financial Aid Application. The application may be submitted by fax or mail only. Emailed applications will not be accepted.
2. Complete and submit electronically the 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Elon’s Federal Title IV School Code is 002927.
For additional information, please contact Lynette Lorenzetti in Elon’s Office of Financial Aid at firstname.lastname@example.org, (336) 278-7640.
Student Loan Programs
The Federal Stafford Student Loan Program
The primary source of financial assistance for MHE students attending Elon University will be the federal Stafford Student Loan Program. Graduate students may borrow up to $20,500 through the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan program. The student will be charged interest from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. If the interest is capitalized (allowed to accumulate) it will be added to the principal amount of the loan and will increase the amount the borrower will have to repay. If the choice is made to pay the interest as it accumulates, the total interest charges paid during repayment will be considerably less. The maximum unsubsidized loan for graduate and professional study is $20,500 per year.
The total amount a graduate or professional student may borrow from all Stafford Loans combined is $138,500 (no more than $65,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans). The graduate borrowing limit includes any Stafford Loans received for undergraduate study.
Under current law, the fixed interest rate charged on Federal Stafford Loans is set each year by the Department of Education at the beginning of July. There are also small origination and guarantee fees associated with each loan. These fees are deducted up front and thus lower the actual amount of each disbursement.
Repayment of Stafford Loans begins six months after graduation or withdrawal from the MHE Program. This is called the grace period. During the grace period on a Stafford loan, no payment of any principal is due.
Federal Stafford Loans are disbursed in two payments; one at the start of the academic term in late July and one at the midpoint of the term in late January. The loan funds will be sent to the university in equal disbursements.
First-time borrowers are required to complete student loan entrance counseling and a Master Promissory Note, which are available at StudentLoans.gov. For information on how to obtain a Federal Stafford Student Loan, see How To Apply for Student Loans.
The Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Program
For students who need financial assistance beyond the $20,500 Stafford Loan maximum, there is the federal Graduate PLUS Loan program. The PLUS Loan allows for the deferment of repayment while the student is enrolled in the MHE program. Under current law, the fixed interest rate charged on Federal Grad PLUS Loan is set each year by the Department of Education at the beginning of July. There are also small origination and guarantee fees associated with each loan. These fees are deducted up front and thus lower the actual amount of each disbursement.
The maximum amount a student may borrow from the PLUS Loan program will be Elon’s Cost of Attendance for the MHE program, less any Stafford Loans and other forms of financial aid a student may be receiving. Information about the Graduate PLUS Loan may be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid.