Scholarship/Financial Aid

Financial Aid Manual:

The financial aid section guides students through the financial aid application process, helping applicants pay their educational expenses including tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, etc. for programs and courses at European Graduate School. The eligibility for student loans depends on the country of origin.

For United States citizens and permanent residents, it is possible to obtain loans for the full cost of attendance, including books, travel, and room and board. The European Graduate School is registered with the new Direct Loan Program of the U.S. Department of Education (European Graduate School School Code: G35183), which makes these government loans available.

Financial Aid Eligibility:

To be eligible for Financial Aid under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program of the U.S. Department of Education, students need to fulfill the following requirements:

  • a) Have a high school diploma, General Educational Development (GED) test, or have passed a similar independent test approved by the U.S. Department of Education.
  • b) Be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, a permanent resident of the United States, or able to present evidence from the Immigration and Naturalization Service that you are in the U.S. for other than a temporary purpose and with the intention of becoming a citizen or permanent resident.

The William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program of the U.S. Department of Education gives eligible students the opportunity to obtain low-interest loans directly from the federal government without the need of going through private lenders. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Education permits students with outstanding loans to defer payment while studying in the Media and Communication Division at European Graduate School.

Students who are accepted in the Media and Communication Division at European Graduate School and who wish to take out loans under the Direct Loan Program of the U.S. Department of Education should follow the following instructions, which will guide them through the loan application process.

For more information, please contact the Financial Aid Office of European Graduate School via email financial.aid(at)egs.edu.

Payment begins six months after graduation or enrollment on less than a half-time basis.

Required Forms and Documents:

Students need to submit several signed documents for the loan, some documents will be made available online or sent via mail; others will be provided in Switzerland (CH). The following documents are required:

  • a) Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (online)
  • b) Current Master Promissory Note / one per year (online)
  • c) A statement of Education Purpose (in Switzerland)
  • d) A Certification Statement on Refunds and Default (in Switzerland)
  • e) An Anti-Drug Abuse Act Certification (in Switzerland)
  • f) A Statement of Updated Information (in Switzerland)

Note: It is important that students file a promissory note specifically for EGS and for the current school year. Promissory notes filed for EGS in other years and promissory notes filed for loans for attending other schools will not apply and will delay the processing of the loan until the proper promissory note is filed.

Amount of Financial Aid:

Each year, students are eligible to borrow the amount of the cost of attendance (COA). Applicants may borrow money for only one year at a time. The maximum amounts are listed below:

  • a) First year: US $17,000
  • b) Second year: US $17,000 (An additional US $1,000 is available to students taking extra seminars.)
  • c) Third year/ First year supervision: US $8,700
  • d) Fourth year/ Second year supervision: US $8,700 (An additional $600 is available to students who pay their examination fees in their fourth year.)
  • e) Fifth year: US $8,700 (A fifth-year supervision fee will be charged to students who choose to take out a loan in that year.)

Note: In years past, it was possible to borrow more than these amounts; this is no longer the case. Due to regulations of the U.S. Department of Education, students may not borrow more than the above yearly amounts.

Exception: Students who enroll for coursework in additional summer sessions — in order to earn additional credits — may be eligible for larger maximum loan amounts, at the discretion of the Program Director of the Media and Communications division.

Loan Procedure:

Students will have their loans sent first to the Controller's Office of the Media and Communication division of  the European Graduate School. The Controller will deduct the tuition payment and a deposit for lodging in Saas-Fee. The remaining loan amount will be mailed to the address listed on the student’s loan application. The turn-around time, after all paperwork is completed, is approximately one month in most cases. The U.S. government assesses a 1% origination fee on each loan.

Payment Policy:

If loans are not repaid according to the terms disclosed on the promissory note, applicants may eventually be in default on the loan. Consequences may include:

  • a) An adverse effect to credit rating and possibly a limit on the ability to borrow for a car, home or credit card.
  • b) A requirement to pay the entire amount of the loan, including interest immediately.
  • c) A withholding of wages to pay debt after the loan is claimed by the guaranty agency or the federal Department of Education.
  • d) Inability to get additional federal or state financial aid, including student loans.
  • e) Withholding of federal and state tax refunds.

Many borrowers, even those who are unemployed or earning a little, can avoid default by participating in an income-based program that began in 2009 but is not as widely used as might expected. Under the program, borrowers who pay 15% of their discretionary income for 25 years – 10 years if they are in public service – can have the rest of their federal student loan debt forgiven;  in 2014, that will go down to paying 10% of discretionary income for 20 years.

In the age of income-based repayment, there is no reason for a student to default, since even a payment of zero dollars is acceptable payment, if students have zero discretionary income. But until April 2011, only about 350,000 borrowers have entered income-based payment, a small subset of the eligible population. Students need to understand the options, the European Graduate School will share the information, and the Media and Communication division will make it as easy as possible for students to enroll.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form must be completed and submitted. The following shall be noted:

Student loan amounts are processed by the Financial Aid Office (financial.aid(at)egs.edu) at European Graduate School.

Loan Application Process:

Detailed information about the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, in which the Department of Education is the mandatory lender, is available at the Federal Student Aid website. After completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the Direct Loan application process will be completed at the StudentLoans website. The StudentLoans Web site should provide any answers to questions regarding the application process, technical or other difficulties with the site can be addressed directly.

Students who have never applied for a student loan at European Graduate School before, will need to complete the site’s “Entrance Counseling.” Otherwise, students should proceed to sign the Master Promissory Note. (Note: Even students who have completed a Master Promissory Note in the past for European Graduate School must complete a new one for the new school year.)

Half of the loan will be received in approximately one month (from when it is processed) and half in April, at the mid-point of the academic year.

Please note that European Graduate School EGS does not participate in the PLUS Loan program.

Financial Aid Office:

At this point, applicants should contact the Financial Aid Office via email (financial.aid(at)egs.edu) to convey the amount they wish to borrow. To reiterate, processing loans generally takes about a month. Seven days prior to the first disbursement date on the loan, the U.S. Department of Education will mail a statement that notifies the borrower of the terms, conditions, and responsibilities related to the loan, e.g., amount, anticipated disbursement dates and amounts, etc. If chosen (via a checkbox on studentloans.gov), this disclosure is also made available for online downloading seven days prior to the disbursement date.

The Financial Aid Office at European Graduate School EGS (financial.aid(at)egs.edu) should be contacted for any questions on the disbursement side or issues related to new loan requests. The Financial Aid Office will be able to advise on the amount of the loan to be received and other such pertinent details.

The Controller of European Graduate School EGS (controller(at)egs.edu) should be contacted for issues related to disbursement, loan deferment paperwork, returning unneeded loan funds, and delivery of loans.

The Office of Admissions (admissions(at)egs.edu) shall be contacted for issues related to tuition payment and receipts and coursework inquiries.