Recognizing that many students who want to attend Pacific Lutheran University would be unable to meet all expenses of enrollment from personal or family sources, the university attempts to provide financial assistance to all eligible students. Any student approved for enrollment or currently enrolled may request financial aid. Approximately 90 percent of the university’s students receive help in the form of gift assistance (that is, scholarships, artistic achievement awards, or grants), low-interest deferred loans, or employment. In many cases a financial aid award will be a combination of these forms of assistance.
The offer of financial aid is based on the cost of attendance, which is the university’s estimate of how much it costs students in various circumstances to attend PLU. A student’s resources are subtracted from the projected costs to determine financial need.
Several different budgets are used, taking into account a student’s tuition, the cost of books, supplies, housing, food, transportation, and personal expenses.
Parents’ contributions are computed for all dependent students by the federal processor. It is based on a federally established formula for determining parental ability to contribute toward a student’s education. The university also expects students (and their spouses, if married) to contribute toward expenses.
All applicants are offered the maximum amount of aid for which they qualify, as funds permit.
If financial circumstances change, students may contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss their situation with a financial aid administrator at any time.
If students or their families have unusual circumstances (such as loss of employment or major medical expenses) that might affect the need for student financial aid, the Financial Aid Office should be contacted. Unusual circumstances must be described in writing, with the student’s name, student ID number, and all pertinent dollar amounts indicated.
Students who receive scholarships from sources outside the university must inform the Financial Aid Office in writing with the name of the scholarship and the yearly amount. In most cases, PLU may be required by federal regulations to adjust a financial aid package. Loans and work study will be adjusted first. Scholarships and grants will be adjusted only as a last resort.
Financial assistance is available to all qualified students regardless of race, color, creed, religion, gender, national origin, age, mental or physical disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or any other status protected by law.