Financial assistance at Hampshire

Financial assistance at Hampshire is based on demonstrated financial need, defined as the difference between the cost of attendance and what a family can contribute toward that cost from its own financial resources. Need is determined by the Financial Aid Office using a standard formula that is applied without regard to sex, gender, race, color, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or national and ethnic origin. Academic merit is not a consideration in granting need-based awards, but any merit award is included in the total need-based financial aid package. For example, if a student receives a merit scholarship through the Admissions Office, any need-based Hampshire Grant will be reduced by the amount of the merit scholarship

Cost of Attendance

The cost of attendance (COA) includes both direct costs (expenses billed to you and directly paid to the College), and indirect costs (expenses not billed to you but incurred as a result of attendance that the student/family may pay). The COA includes tuition, fees, books, course materials, and supplies, housing, food, transportation***, federal loan fees, and other miscellaneous expenses. These expenses are used and reviewed along with the FAFSA application (or CSS Profile for international students) to determine a student's financial need.

Total aid, including grants, outside scholarships, parent tuition benefits, work-study, and loans, cannot exceed the student's cost of attendance.

For a complete summary of fees and other charges, please visit our Tuition and Fees page.

Family Contribution

A family's estimated contribution consists first of the amount that we determine the parents can reasonably be expected to pay, based on the information supplied on financial aid application forms. Consideration is given to the parents' income (taxable and non-taxable); assets; household size; the number of children enrolled in college; taxes paid; and any unusual circumstances that may affect the family's financial situation. The number of children in college is a large factor in the analysis.

Second is the amount the student is expected to contribute from their own savings and assets (trust funds, certificates of deposit, investments, savings accounts).

You can get an estimate of what the calculated family contribution is for your particular situation by using the Net Price Calculator.

Cost of attendance minus expected family contribution equals need. See our Award Packages section for information on how we meet a student's need for assistance.

** Students assigned to on-campus apartments (mods) or living off-campus and not on a full meal plan will have a reduction in their cost of attendance and their Hampshire Grant. Students living at home with their parent(s) or other relatives will have a larger reduction in their cost of attendance and their corresponding Hampshire Grant eligibility. Please contact the financial aid office for more details.

*** Hampshire uses the following travel allowances for students living on campus: $484 for residents of Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont; $674 for residents of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia; $784 for residents of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin; $836 for residents of Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas; $1,060 for residents of Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming; $2,120 for residents of American Samoa, Canada, Guam, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Micronesia, Northern Marianas, Palau, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and foreign countries.  Students not assigned to campus housing have a travel allowance of $1,060.

Availability of Professional Judgments

Section 479A of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, gives financial aid administrators the authority to exercise “professional judgment” to address the special circumstances that may arise for students and their families who apply for federal financial aid. The FAFSA Simplification Act distinguishes between different categories of professional judgment by amending section 479A of the HEA.

  1. Special Circumstances refer to the financial situation (loss of job, reduction of income) that justify adjusting the data elements in the cost of attendance (COA) or in the Student Aid Index (SAI) calculation.
  2. Unusual Circumstances refer to the conditions that justify making an adjustment to a student’s dependency status, commonly known as a dependency override. Situations may include, but are not limited to, homelessness, unable to locate parent, imprisonment of parent, abuse/neglect, etc.

Financial aid administrators may make adjustments that are appropriate to each student’s situation with appropriate documentation. It is possible for a student to have both a special circumstance and an unusual circumstance. Professional judgments must be made on a case-by-case basis.

Students may request an adjustment during the time they are applying for financial aid assistance to attend Hampshire College or when a change in circumstances arises. Adjustments made for special circumstances are only valid for one year, however, students can request a review for special circumstances each year they are enrolled. A student with a dependency override is assumed independent for subsequent years at the same institution unless there is a change in circumstances.

Please contact the financial aid office at 413-559-5484 or via email financialaid@hampshire.edu to discuss your Special or Unusual Circumstance. We will guide you to the next steps and inform you of the documentation required to review your situation.