MES Financial Aid
The 2014-15 FAFSA will be available January 1, 2014. The 2014-15 MES Financial Aid application will be available in December 2013.
MES aims to support all students who have financial need. To do so, Evergreen offers loans, grants, scholarships, fellowships, awards, and tuition waivers that can help offset the cost of tuition. In 2013-14, 71% of students who applied for non-loan aid received some kind of award ranging from $250 per year to 100% tuition. In addition, admitted students are encouraged to seek financial help from sources outside Evergreen. MES typically has more financial aid for new students than continuing students because we expect you to find funding through other sources, such as internships, in your second year. The program will support you in finding these outside resources throughout the year.
- Non-loan Financial Aid
- Funding Your Research
- FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid
- Military Veterans and Families Funding
- Native Americans Eligible for Resident Tuition
- Other Funding Sources
- Related Information
Funding from the MES Program
In addition to loans, MES students are eligible for a number of scholarships, fellowships, and tuition waivers offered by MES. Awards can be merit-based, need-based or both. Some awards are offered based on new students' admissions applications. Others require the FAFSA or a separate application. Please see the MES Awards page for complete award descriptions and application. Applications are typically due March 1 for the following academic year and prospective and current students will be notified by email when applications are available sometime in December. Award summaries:
- Evergreen Alumni Association Graduate Scholarship - $1,000 for one continuing student
- Evergreen Foundation Graduate Fellowship - Variable amounts, for new students
- Evergreen Graduate Endowed Fellowship - Variable amounts, for continuing students
- MES Academic Achievement Award - One quarter of tuition for two years, new students
- MES AmeriCorps/Earth Corps Service Award - $500 for each full-time AmeriCorps/Earth Corps term, $250 for each term less than full-time, renewable for up to two years, all students
- MES International Student Award - Up to one quarter of nonresident tuition for two years, new international students
- MES Tuition Waiver - Variable amounts, for all students
- Sara Ann Bilezikian Fellowship - Two years of resident tuition for a new student
Evergreen Need Grant - Special Funding for Washington Residents
Evergreen offers a limited number of Evergreen Need Grants to graduate students with need who are residents of Washington. Each award is worth $2700 for the entire year (that's almost one quarter's worth of tuition!) and is prorated for students taking less than 8 credits. Students with an Estimated Family Contribution of $3000 or less on the FAFSA will be considered for this award on a first-come, first-served basis. Students who submit their FAFSA by Evergreen's priority deadline (typically March 1), will be more likely to receive the award. No application is needed, and the Financial Aid office will notify you if you receive this award.
If you take the time to research and apply, there is a lot of funding out there for graduate students. Some funding is in the form of scholarships, in which you just receive a certain amount of money, and some is in the form of fellowships, in which you receive a certain amount of money while also working for an organization as a "fellow." Many fellowships are also available for recent graduates.
- Bullitt Environmental Fellowship: $50k over two years; application every spring
- EPA STAR Graduate Fellowship: up to $42k per year; application in November
- Marc Hershman Marine Policy Fellowship: $45k for one year, application every spring
- MES Listing of Outside Scholarships
- MES Listing of Outside Fellowships
- Monterey Institute listing of scholarships (PDF)
- University of Washington listing of fellowships
- Antioch University scholarship database
Throughout the academic year, a number of grants and fellowships are advertised to enrolled MES students for research or projects. Here are are a few that are typically offered on an annual basis.
Evergreen offers students the opportunity to receive up to $500 to present academic work at conferences. Please fill out a Conference Funding Application (PDF) and submit to the Deans' Office if you are interested. The MES student organization and the MES program sometimes have funding available for conferences; if so, the opportunity will be publicized by email. Also, some conferences offer scholarships to graduate students to pay for their attendance.
Funds campus sustainability projects. Open to any member of the Evergreen community. Offered throughout the year.
Up to $1000 per student per grant cycle.
Up to 25 grants for Evergreen students and faculty for a variety of academic projects. MES students often receive these awards. FAFSA not required.
Up to $3333 per student per project.
Fellowship awarded to several students for sustainability-related projects that are based on or off campus. All Evergreen grad students are eligible. Application available Winter 2014 for a Spring 2014 project. FAFSA not required.
Two awards up to $1300 available.
Award supports faculty-student collaborative projects that unify artistic, scientific, and spiritual elements.
An innovative approach using crowdsourcing. Create a profile about your thesis project and ask friends, neighbors, family members, and science lovers to financially support your research.
Writing Your Own Research Grant
Writing your own grant is good experience for a future environmental career. Here are some resources to get you started.
- Grant Writing Tips (PDF)
- List of Outside Grants
- Michigan State's list of grants for individuals.
- Foundation Center: a searchable grant database that can only be accessed in the library. Please work with a reference librarian to use this resource.
- MES Listing of Fellowships sometimes function like grants.
- The MES student organization and the MES program sometimes have funding available for research; if so, the opportunity will be publicized by email.
In addition to scholarships, MES students also qualify for loans. To apply for loans, you must fill out the FAFSA. The good news is that grads who work for 10 years in public service will have their loans forgiven! There are also ways to reduce your payments depending on your income. Check out the IBR Info website for more information or this helpful blog post. You can also check out these repayment tips and this helpful repayment calculator. And, don't forget that the IRS offers education tax credits for students.
- Federal Direct Loans - MES students qualify for $20,500 at 5.41% in federal unsubsidized loans per year (starting July 2013), unless they have defaulted on a previous federal loan.
- Graduate PLUS Loans - Another federal loan that students can apply for if the $20,500 isn't enough. The interest rate is 6.41% as of July 2013.
- Private Loans
- Short-Term Emergency Loans
To apply for most financial aid, including loans, the Evergreen Need Grant, and need-based scholarships, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the appropriate academic year and submit it to the federal processing center. Be sure to submit your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1 of each year to increase the likelihood of receiving funds. Evergreen's priority deadline is March 1. This means that to have your file reviewed in the first awarding cycle, you must file your FAFSA by March 1. It does not mean that you will be unable to receive financial aid next year if you do not meet the deadline, but in order to receive the best possible aid, and to know at the earliest possible date what your offer will be, make sure that your FAFSA is filed by March 1. Note that international students are not eligible to fill out the FAFSA. Not all forms of MES financial aid require the FAFSA.
Evergreen's Office of Veteran's Affairs offers financial aid information for veterans and their families. The college offers a 50% tuition waiver to eligible veterans who are Washington residents and a 100% tuition waiver to eligible dependents of disabled/deceased veterans. Spouses or dependents of active military living in Washington may be eligible for resident tuition if not already a Washington resident. See the residency page for more details. Starting in Fall 2014, veterans who apply to MES can have their application fee waived. Please contact Gail Wootan for fee waiver instructions. For information about federal veteran programs, please go to The Department of Veterans Affairs.
American Indian students who meet the following two conditions are eligible to pay resident tuition at colleges and universities in Washington State:
- For a period of one year immediately prior to enrollment at a state institution of higher education, students must have been domiciled in one or a combination of the following states: Idaho, Montana, Oregon, or Washington.
- Students must be a member of one of the federally recognized Indian tribes, as determined under Title 25 of the Code of Federal Regulations (25CFR), whose traditional and customary tribal boundaries include portions of the state of Washington, or whose tribe was granted reserved lands within the state of Washington.
If you received an AmeriCorps Education Award, you can use that award to fund your studies at Evergreen.
MES classes are in the evening, enabling students to find a full- or part-time job during the day.
We encourage all MES students to participate in at least one internship while in the program. It is often the case that internships provide a stipend, and there are several available every year both on and off-campus for MES students. Once you are a student in the program, you will be notified of open internships.
- Appeal for More Financial Aid
- Evergreen's Financial Aid Office
- Evergreen listing of financial aid resources
- Idealist.org: financing your education
- Loan Repayment Plans and Calculators
- MES Estimated Costs
- Residency Requirements
The Evergreen State College's programs of study are approved by the Washington State Higher Education Coordinating Board for enrollment of persons eligible to receive educational benefits under Title 38 and Title 10 USC.