Thomas Aquinas College is committed to making its program of Catholic liberal education available to accepted students, regardless of financial need. The College receives no subsidy from Church or state. It relies, rather, on contributions from individuals and charitable foundations to make up the difference between what students are able to pay and the actual cost of their education.
Through the generosity of its donors, the College is able to offer financial assistance to young men and women who would otherwise not be able to attend. Nevertheless, the financial resources of the College are limited, and financial aid can be offered only on the basis of demonstrated financial need as determined by the College. Students and families are therefore expected to make a maximum effort to cover the cost of tuition plus room and board from their own resources. If, after assessing his resources, a student finds his financial means insufficient, he should apply to the Financial Aid Office for assistance.
The College will try to meet the demonstrated financial need of each student with a program of loans, Service Scholarship (work-study) and grants.
Summary of Basic Information
(For more detailed information about these and other topics, see the menu on the right-hand side of this page.)
- What is financial aid?
- Who may receive financial aid?
- What financial aid is available?
- Does the College offer merit scholarships?
- How may I apply?
- When is financial aid awarded?
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What is financial aid?
Financial aid is assistance to students in meeting the Cost of Attendance (COA) at Thomas Aquinas College. The “Cost of Attendance” includes tuition, room and board, books, transportation and miscellaneous expenses related to the current academic year.
Who may receive financial aid?
Any student accepted into the College may receive aid to meet demonstrated financial need.
What financial aid is available?
Pell Grants, California State Scholarships (Cal Grants), Canada education grants, local and national scholarships, student loans, Veterans Administration benefits and institutional aid are available to those who qualify. Since the College receives no federal campus-based funds or contracts, some federal aid that is normally available to college students elsewhere, is not available to those who attend Thomas Aquinas College. The College does, however, have its own institutional aid program that is funded through contributions made by benefactors of the College. This program provides Service Scholarships (work-study) and need-based grants. Institutional aid is given only for the purpose of assisting with the direct costs of tuition, room and board.
Does the College offer merit scholarships?
No, the College does not offer merit scholarships, although many students bring with them merit scholarships from outside sources (e.g., National Merit Scholarships, local service club scholarships, high school awards, etc.). The College’s resources are used to enable accepted students to attend who would otherwise not be able to do so. Accordingly, College assistance is based on financial need.
How may I apply?
All applicants applying for financial aid must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form is used to determine a student's eligibility for federal and state grants and federal loans. The FAFSA can be completed on-line at www.fafsa.ed.gov. (An excellent tutorial showing how to complete the FAFSA can be found here.)
California residents must complete a FAFSA and a Cal Grant GPA Verification Form to be considered for a Cal Grant.
If you would like to be considered for Thomas Aquinas College’s institutional, need-based Service Scholarship program (work-study) and grant program, you will be required to complete not only the FAFSA, but also the Confidential Family Financial Statement (CFFS) of Thomas Aquinas College and provide other supporting documentation, such as a signed copy of their parents’ and their own federal tax returns with all supporting schedules, W-2s and K-1s.
The CFFS can be downloaded from the College’s website.
When is institutional financial aid awarded?
If all financial aid documents have been submitted, Freshmen are notified of their institutional financial aid as soon as possible after they have been accepted into the College. Continuing students are normally awarded institutional financial aid in June for the upcoming academic year.
“At Thomas Aquinas College, I learned that the world makes sense. It was so wonderful to discover that there is a real order in things and that I could understand it.”
– Frater Simeon Goodwin, O. Praem. (’10)
St. Michael's Abbey, Orange County, Calif.