First-Time Families

First-Time Families picture of a McDaniel first time family

Tuition and Financial Aid

McDaniel offers need-based financial aid and merit-based academic scholarships. Need-based aid depends on a family's financial resources. Merit-based aid is awarded for high school academic achievement and you will be automatically considered for scholarships after you are admitted to McDaniel. For most students, it is normal to apply for both and most receive a financial aid award that includes both types of assistance.

Our goal is to make a McDaniel College education as affordable as possible. Scholarships, grants, and loans are received from the College, the federal and state governments, and private scholarship organizations.

You have the opportunity to find out now how much gift aid may be available to you. Try our McDaniel Net Price Calculator to help with early financial planning for college. This calculator will provide a preliminary estimate of federal, state and institutional aid eligibility to help families gauge what aid the student may be awarded and to make arrangements to cover the cost of attendance. This calculator is based on the awarding policies of McDaniel College for the 2015-2016 academic year and results will vary based on the year you will enter college. Check it out- then you’ll see just how possible a McDaniel education can be.

2015 - 2016 Cost of Attendance

The Cost of Attendance (COA) is the estimated total cost of attending college for one year. It includes tuition and fees, room, board, books & supplies, personal expenses, and travel expenses. The Financial Aid Office estimates the COA for a typical resident and commuter student to attend McDaniel College for the 2014-2015 year.

Student Budget (COA) 2015-2016 Campus Resident Commuter
Tuition (12-22 Credits) $39,500 $39,500
Fees $400 $400
Room $4,800 $0
Board $5,500 $2,000
Books & Supplies $1,200 $1,200
Loan Fee $70 $70
Personal Expenses &
Miscellaneous Fees
$900 $900
Transportation $350 $1,000
Total $52,720 $45,070

For a variety of reasons, the actual cost for any given student might differ from these standard budgets. Most notable are students who live in an off-campus apartment (without their parents) and independent students. A student cannot receive more than the Cost of Attendance from any combination of institutional, federal, state, or private funding source. This includes merit and need-based aid as well as tuition benefits, ROTC awards, and RA contracts.

The table below displays the range of estimated awards by family income.

Family Income Scholarships/Grants Total Aid*
Less Than $30,000 $28,960 - $34,860 $34,160 - $39,630
$30,001 – $50,000 $24,100 - $32,780 $29,300 - $36,630
$50,001 – $70,000 $21,500 - $25,000 $26,700 - $34,630
$70,001 – $100,000 $14,700 - $19,000 $18,200 - $29,130
$100,001 and over $8,000 -   $13,000 $11,500 - $19,630

*Actual awards will vary based on the academic achievement of the student, as well as the factors used to determine need-based financial aid.

If the amount you and your family must pay is more than you think your family can afford-- don't panic! The process used to evaluate your eligibility for need-based aid is based on national norms and ordinary situations. Since individual circumstances vary, some applications require a more personalized approach. Talk to a member of the Financial Aid staff about your situation.

Recognize, however, that the primary responsibility for meeting college costs rests with you and your family. Financial aid is intended to supplement, not replace, family effort.

Applying For Financial Aid

Here’s how to apply for financial aid to attend McDaniel College:

  1. You and one of your parents apply for a PIN at The PINs will allow you and your parent to electronically sign your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  2. Complete the 2015-2016 FAFSA at by mid February, 2015.
    • This form will ask for income information for the 2014 tax year. It’s okay to estimate this information if the 2014 federal tax returns have not yet been filed.
    • To make sure McDaniel gets the results of your FAFSA, be sure to list our school code – 002109 – in Step 6.

That’s it! Once you are accepted to McDaniel and we have a valid FAFSA we will mail you an award letter showing the estimated costs and your eligibility for scholarships, grants, loans and federal work study for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Some students will be selected by either the federal government or McDaniel College for a process called verification. If you are selected you will receive instructions on how to complete the McDaniel Verification Form and how to submit verification of 2014 income. Your financial aid award will be finalized once you have completed the verification process.

Important Links

FAFSA on the Web
Complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid here.

This site provides the most comprehensive information about all aspects of financing a higher education.

Funding your Education
The U.S. Department of Education's site about financial aid.

A good place to start looking for scholarships.

Scholarship Scams
Don't waste your money and time on organizations that make scholarship promises they can't keep.

Federal Student Financial Aid Penalties for Drug Law Violations

A student who has been convicted of any offense under any Federal or State law involving the possession or sale of a controlled substance for conduct that occurred during a period of enrollment in which federal student aid was received shall not be eligible to receive federal student aid (including any grant, loan, or work assistance) during the period beginning on the date of such conviction and ending after the interval specified in the following table:

If convicted of an offense involving:
The Possession of a controlled substance:
Ineligibility period is: First offense 1 year
Second offense 2 years
Third offense Indefinite
The sale of a controlled substance:
Ineligibility period is: First offense 2 years
Second offense Indefinite

Rehabilitation - A student whose eligibility has been suspended may resume eligibility before the end of the ineligibility period if the student satisfactorily completes a drug rehabilitation program that is approved by the U.S. Secretary of Education.

Finance FAQs

Is it necessary to have an ID Card?
Your ID card (aka the McDaniel1Card) is a declining balance debit card. It is necessary to gain admittance into the dining hall, to check out books from the library, to cash checks at the Bursar's office and to gain admittance into campus functions. You may acquire an ID card from the ID Office located in Hoover Library.

How do I remove the Health Insurance Charge from my Tuition Account?
A student Health Insurance fee is charged to all full-time students each academic year. If you have your own insurance and wish to cancel the College’s plan, you must complete the online waiver by September 15th.

What is a Bursar's Hold?
A Bursar's Hold is placed on a student's tuition account with an outstanding balance and/or when a student needs to take immediate action on incomplete financial aid. The hold will restrict students from registering and withdrawing from classes, receiving grades and requesting transcripts.

Is there a payment plan option?
McDaniel College partners with Tuition Management Systems. TMS offers an interest-free payment plan. Learn more by calling 1-800-722-4867 or go to

Bursar's Office Important Dates and Deadlines

Fall 2015 bills are mailed late June 2015 to all registered students. Payment is due August 7, 2015.

Changes to meal plans need to be reported to the Bursar’s Office by September 4, 2015.

If you are waiving the optional student health insurance, the on-line waiver must be entered by September 15, 2015. (You may deduct the amount from your fall bill if you plan to submit the waiver)

Spring and Jan Term 2016 bills are mailed mid-December to all registered students. Payment is due January 8, 2016.

Changes to spring meal plans need to be reported to the Bursar’s Office by February 5, 2016.

Tuition Refund Policy

Fall & Spring Semesters

  • First week = 80%
  • Second week = 60%
  • Third week = 40%
  • Fourth week = 20%
  • After fourth week = No Refund

Summer Session

  • Less than 3 days = 80%
  • Betwen 3 and 4 days = 60%
  • Between 5 and 6 Days = 40%
  • Between 7 and 8 Days = 20%
  • Over 8 Days = No Refund

There will be no refund, unless the room can be occupied by a nonresident student. If the room is filled, the refund will be prorated from the date of withdrawal.

A pro rata refund will be made from the date of withdrawal. For students enrolled in the McDaniel1Card Meal Plan, there is no refund of monies deposited in the plan except upon official withdrawal from the College. A $20 administrative fee will be charged.

Effective Date of Withdrawal
The effective date of withdrawal is the date upon receipt of the Withdrawal Form in the Office of Academic Affairs.  Students receiving financial assistance may have a portion of their original award returned to the programs as required by federal regulation and the McDaniel College refund policy, thus creating a balance due to the College.  If the result is a credit balance, the credit balance will be mailed to the billing address within 3 weeks of the withdrawal date.  Please review the financial aid brochure for more information.

Credit Balances
Refunds will be automatically refunded starting the second Friday of each semester.  Student refunds will be sent to the student via CAMPUS MAIL.  PLUS loan refunds will be mailed as designated per the PLUS loan application.  If you would like to use a portion of the credit toward books we can transfer up to $600 to your McDaniel1Card.  Please stop by the Bursar’s Office to authorize that transfer.  If you participate with Tuition Management Services and the payment plan creates a credit that will not be available until the end of the semester.