Financial Aid

All About Financial Aid

The Office of Financial Aid is here to answer your questions and help you find a financial strategy that works best to help you pay for your Cornish education. You may call 800-726-2787 for more information or if you have been admitted to Cornish, you may log on to compass.cornish.edu

Types of Aid

Review your award letter or aid offer to consider the various fund types available to you and what this can mean for you and your family.

Scholarships and grants do not need to be repaid. Sources of scholarships and grants are the federal and state governments, Cornish and private organizations. All students are considered for institutional aid at Cornish and no separate application is required.

Federal Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans need to be repaid and have different terms depending on the loan. Subsidized loans have no interest accruing while in school but unsubsidized loans do. The unpaid interest on the loan is added to the loan principal at repayment making it a slightly larger loan than initially borrowed. The one-year fixed interest rate beginning July 1, 2017 is 4.45% and the loan fee beginning October 1, 2016 is 1.069% of the loan amount. A new rate and loan fee respectively will be assessed and published July 1, 2018 and October 1, 2017. Stafford loans are automatically deferred while the student is enrolled at least half-time.

A credit-based Federal PLUS loan is available to parents of undergraduate students. Interest accrues and is capitalized quarterly unless interest payments are made. The interest rate beginning July 1, 2017 is 7.00% and the loan fee beginning October 1, 2011 is 4.276% of the loan amount. Applicants can borrow up to cost of attendance minus other aid. Upon receiving Plain Language Disclosures, a parent borrower may request a PLUS in-school deferment form from the Loan Servicer. The request to the Servicer should be made approximately 10 days before the start of classes. Deferments for PLUS loans are available while the student is enrolled at least half-time. More information or assistance is available from Cornish Financial Aid Staff at 206.726-5014 or finaid@cornish.edu.

A private educational loan is available but not listed on your award offer. The private loan is credit-based and undergraduate students typically need a credit-worthy co-borrower. Various lenders offer private loans with varying terms and products. A benefit sometimes offered is an early co-borrower release for meeting certain repayment conditions. A private loan can be used to pay a tuition balance and other educational expenses such as housing, books and supplies and more.

Federal or state work study does not lower tuition cost. The student is paid for hours worked through the employer payroll. Work study jobs are not guaranteed. You must apply for the job and be hired by the employer.

The Net Price Calculator

Post-secondary institutions that enroll full-time, first-time degree or certificate-seeking undergraduate students must provide a Net Price Calculator (NPC). The Net Price Calculator measures the financial strength of your family and uses answers you provide to estimate the amount of grants, scholarships and other financial aid that could be available to you. Your net price is the difference between your estimated gift aid and the cost of attendance. Your answers are not stored in any system for future reference.

If you are a prospective or new student and would like to speak to someone, please contact the Office of Admission at 800-726-ARTS (800-726-2787). If you are a current Cornish student, please call the Office of Financial Aid at 206-726-5014. You will find more financial aid information in Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the Office of Student Account


The Office of Student Account works with students and families regarding their tuition charges, fees, housing and meal plans. Learn more about student accounts.

Application Priority Deadline -- February 15

Complete your Admission and FAFSA applications by the February 15 priority deadline to qualify for your best financial aid package. 

New & Transfer Student Applications

  • All incoming freshmen and transfer applicants must be admitted to the college in order to receive an offer of financial aid. 
  • Cornish College of the Arts practices rolling admission. Applications will be accepted as long as space is available in your major until August 15 (fall semester) and December 15 (spring semester). 
    • Space is currently available in all majors and fall 2017 applications are accepted.
    • Complete your FAFSA online as soon as possible after submitting your application for admission. 
    • Financial Aid packages will continue to be awarded to qualifying students throughout the spring and early summer. Some limited funds are awarded to early applicants.
    • Financial aid and scholarships are awarded to all who apply for aid.

Continuing Student Applications

  • Recipients of the Cornish Scholarship enrolled full-time, who meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards of a cumulative 2.00 grade point average and 67% pace of progression, qualify for their renewal scholarship.
  • Complete your FAFSA online using Cornish School Code 012315.
    • Use 2015 tax estimates as needed to apply early. 
    • DO NOT report your scholarships or grants on the FAFSA.
    • DO report your work study earnings on the FAFSA under Taxable earnings from need-based employment programs, such as Federal Work Study…

Drug Convictions & Financial Aid Eligibility

Note that federal and state drug convictions have an effect on financial aid eligibility. The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 advises students of the penalties for drug violations. See this separate, clear and conspicuous written notice for details and an explanation of how to regain eligibility for any lost grant, loan or work study assistance.