Financial Aid Info

Here's an overview of available resources for graduate students at US schools: financial aid, scholarships, fellowships and loans.

Please note that NASPAA does not provide scholarships or financial aid to students.

Financial Aid

Financial aid refers to funding intended to help students pay education expenses including tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, etc. for education at a college, university, or private school.

Federal Student Aid programs Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and learn about federal aid for graduate students. FinAid A nonprofit website with a range of information on financial aid, scholarships, loans, grants, and fellowships. Loans

Loans are debt that you must pay back, usually with interest. Student loans are issued directly by the federal government (Stafford, GradPLUS, and Perkins loans), with limits.  Many banking institutions offer "private" loans, generally with higher limits, but also with higher rates.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness program Borrowers who have completed ten years of full-time employment in public service, while making continuous payment on their loans, may qualify to have the balance of their loan forgiven.


A fellowship is a merit-based scholarship tied to the student's field of study.

Types of fellowships This list is somewhat outdated, but provides a good overview of types of fellowships, with examples. 

Listing of Policy-related fellowships An extensive database of fellowships for graduate students in public affairs and related fields, compiled and maintained by Columbia University.