In this time of financial constraints and economic challenges, we know that area families are more concerned than ever about their ability to finance a college education.
We share that concern. Indeed, we have always looked upon our efforts to help students and their families meet the cost of a Pitt-Johnstown education as one of our most important partnerships with our current and prospective students. Approximately 85% of our students receive some form of financial assistance.
That is why I want to inform you that the University of Pittsburgh has announced that tuition at the University regional campuses will not be increased for the 2009-10 academic year. Therefore, the tuition cost for undergraduate programs at Pitt-Johnstown will remain at the current 2008-09 levels.
In conjunction with our long-standing commitment to maintain a strong financial aid program, this “tuition freeze” will be a significant contribution toward keeping your Pitt-Johnstown education an affordable investment in your future.
This is also an excellent time to outline some relevant aspects of financial aid at Pitt-Johnstown.
The first step is to apply for financial aid by completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). You can complete this form on-line at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
Pitt-Johnstown is committed to making as much scholarship assistance available as possible to students who qualify for merit-based scholarships and need-based scholarships, from both University sources and Pitt-Johnstown gifts and endowments. In addition, Pitt-Johnstown has received an increase in its allocation of Federal Perkins Loan funds, to award to eligible current and prospective students.
Additional Federal funds have been allocated to increase the award amounts of the Federal Pell Grant Program. The maximum grant a qualifying student may receive will increase to $5,350 in 2009, and to $5,550 in 2010.
Under the guidelines of the 2008 Higher Education Act, dependent undergraduate students may now borrow the following amounts from the Federal Stafford Loan Program:
- $5,500, of which $3,500 may be subsidized for first-year students;
- $6,500, of which $4,500 may be subsidized for second-year students;
- $7,500, of which $5,500 may be subsidized for third and fourth-year students.
Private education loans are also available to students, usually at higher interest rates than the Federal Perkins Loans or Stafford Loans. In almost all cases, a credit check and approval are required. You can visit www.pelalenders.org, or check with banks or other financial institutions with which you have accounts for a list of private loan sources. It is advisable to apply for these loans as early as possible.
These and other programs are made available to help families afford a high-quality Pitt-Johnstown education that prepares students for the increasingly challenging real world of the 21st century.
To help you navigate the financial aid processes that are so critical in these difficult times, I encourage you to contact the Pitt-Johnstown Financial Aid Office.
The toll-free number is 800-881-5544.
The local number is 814-269-7045.
You can e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Or, you can visit the Financial Aid Office website at www.upj.pitt.edu/financialaid for information, deadlines, downloadable forms, and links to other relevant web sites.
Financial Aid counselors will also be readily available to discuss college financing at all New Student Academic Planning Days for new students on the following dates:
June 12, 2009
June 15, 2009
June 22, 2009
July 6, 2009
Despite the uncertainty that we all feel, we share with you a hope for a better economic outlook, and a belief that our resiliency will help us overcome these obstacles. And we remain committed to helping you afford a Pitt-Johnstown education.