Determination of Financial Need is:
College Expenses - Family Contribution
- All Other Financial Resources
= Amount of Demonstrated Financial Need.
Once your financial need has been determined, it will be met either by a single type of aid or by a combination of grants or scholarships, student employment, and low-interest loans. Such a combination is called a financial aid "package."
Grants and scholarships, which include those provided both through Caltech and by the Federal and state governments, do not have to be repaid. Employment wages are funds earned during the academic year either on or off campus. Many on-campus employment opportunities exist for students to work to help meet their educational costs. Loans are a sound means of meeting a portion of current educational expenses by borrowing against future earnings. Loans, of course, must be repaid.
A self-help award is a combination of loans and work students are expected to contribute during the year to help meet school expenses. An eligible student is first awarded a combination of work and/or loan towards her/his demonstrated need, with any remaining need met with grant assistance. Since entering students are not permitted to work on campus in the fall, we've limited student employment awards for entering students to $1350 in their first year. Students can choose how much they wish to earn and how much they wish to borrow. Alternatively, they may decide to work or borrow less than the standard self-help amount. These choices will not affect the amount of their grant.
Grants and scholarships are disbursed to each student's Caltech account, one-third at the beginning of each term. After a promissory note is signed (usually at registration), Federal Perkins Loans, Direct Loans, and Caltech Loans are also disbursed to the account in thirds. Wages for on-campus employment are paid biweekly as earned through the Caltech payroll system and may be used to pay on the student's account or for all those miscellaneous expenses.