Chatham University

Undergraduate Financial Aid Programs

Accepted students who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States are eligible to apply for financial aid. International students are not eligible for the federal financial aid and must rely on personal financial resources. The following is a list of several federal, state, and institutional aid programs offered at Chatham University.

+Grants and Scholarships

Chatham Merit Scholarships and Awards for Students: In recognition of the academic achievements of our students, Chatham offers a comprehensive merit scholarship program. Scholarships are awarded to full-time students without regard to financial need. All applicants with proven records in academic achievement are considered. Chatham aid is available for eight terms of full-time study, provided students are maintaining the cumulative GPA requirements necessary for renewal.

  • Presidential, Trustee, and Founders' Scholarships: Based on academic excellence, students may qualify for the Presidential, Trustee, or Founders’ Scholarship. The scholarship amount will be determined once the student is admitted to the College. Scholarships are renewable annually based on a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher. The Presidential Scholarship and President’s Circle Scholarship require a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
  • World Ready Women Scholarships (in addition to Presidential, Trustee, or Founders' Scholarship): Students must have received the Presidential, Trustee, or Founders’ Scholarship, have demonstrated a record of extracurricular achievement in school or community, and be a senior in high school. Scholarships are renewable annually based on a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher.
  • Girl Scout Gold Scholarship: Offered to Girl Scout Gold Award Recipients (must provide proof of award). Scholarships are renewable annually based on a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher and participation in Chatham’s community service activities.
  • Girl Scout Leadership Award: Offered to women who were members of Girl Scouts for a minimum of two years but not Gold Award recipients (must provide proof of membership). Scholarships are renewable annually based on a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher and participation in Chathams community service activities.
  • Boy Scout Scholarship: Candidates must provide copies of their medal and/or badge, proof of membership, and completed application. Renewable provided students maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Eagle Scout Scholarship: Candidates must provide copies of their medal and/or badge, proof of membership, and completed application. Renewable provided students maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Scholarship Interview Day: For students who display outstanding leadership qualities. Prospective students should attend a Scholarship Interview Day event. Only accepted, prospective, students are eligible to attend this event, and not students who are currently enrolled. Renewable based on a cumulative GPA of a 2.0 or higher.
  • Heffer Scholarship: The Heffer Family Scholarship for Women is awarded to female students who have a proven record of academic achievement, leadership capacity, as well as community, and co-curricular involvement.
  • Sustainability Scholarship: For students who attend the Scholarship Interview Day.
  • Rotary Scholarship: For students who have participated in American Field Service, Youth for Understanding, or Rotary Programs. Renewable with a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • S-STEM Scholarship: For students majoring in biology, chemistry and biochemistry. Students must be planning a career in research or applied science to qualify. Student must maintain a 3.25 cumulative GPA for renewal.
  • Legacy Scholarships: Scholarships are made available to students who are children, grandchildren, and siblings of Chatham alumni. Applicants may contact the Office of Admissions for details. Renewable based on a cumulative GPA of a 2.0 or higher.
  • Pittsburgh Promise Housing Scholarship: For students who meet Promise eligibility requirements. This scholarship requires a minimum 3.0 high school GPA, Two awards are offered annually, and requires a 2.0 cumulative GPA for renewal.
  • Minna Kaufmann Ruud Music Scholarship: An audition is requires and students are selected by the music department. Requires an audition each year and at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Visual Arts Scholarship: Students are selected after a portfolio review. Renewable based on 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Interior Architecture Scholarship: Students are selected after a portfolio review. Renewable based on 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Rachel Carson Book Award: Awarded to high school juniors showing excellence in science and writing. Renewable based on a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Dollar Bank: Awarded to first-year students based on academic excellence from certain counties and is renewable provided a 2.0 cumulative GPA or higher.
  • Transfer Scholarships: Transfer students to Chatham University may be eligible for scholarships based on their academic records. Applicants may contact the Office of Admissions for details. Renewable based on a cumulative GPA of a 2.0 or higher.
  • Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) scholarship for transfer students: Awarded Phi Theta Kappa members. Renewable based on a 2.0 cumulative GPA.

Federal Pell Grants: federal grant awarded to undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need, as determined by the Federal Processor on an annual basis.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG): federal grant awarded to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need.

Pennsylvania State (PHEAA) Grants: State-funded grants awarded to undergraduate Pennsylvania residents with demonstrated financial need as determined by the state. The state grant deadline is May 1, each year. Students must have a completed FAFSA by this date to be considered for the grant.

Grants from Other States: Grant and scholarship programs are offered by various states for their residents to use toward educational costs outside the home state. Students should provide the Office of Financial Aid, with award information, if they have been awarded a grant from another state.

Chatham Grants and Endowed Scholarships: These funds are made available by the University and awarded to full-time undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need. Award amounts vary. Chatham aid is available for eight terms of full-time study only, and is renewable provided students are maintaining specific cumulative GPA requirements.

+Campus Employment

Federal Student Employment Program: This campus employment program is provided through federal funds and available to students with demonstrated financial need. Students employed under this program work approximately 10-12 hours per week in various jobs on campus or in off-campus community service, tutoring, or career-related positions. Listings of opportunities are available through Career Services or College Central Network at

+Student Loan Programs

Chatham University participates in the Direct Loan Program. Loan funds are sent to Chatham University through electronic funds transfer. This means loan funds are sent to Chatham electronically and applied to the student's account. Funds are typically disbursed each semester. All other forms of student financial aid are disbursed to Chatham University via electronic funds transfer or check.

To be considered for a federal student loan, a student must meet certain minimum requirements:

  • Be enrolled in a degree-seeking program at Chatham on at least a half-time basis, which is six (6) or more credits per semester.
  • Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or eligible non-citizen (with appropriate INS documentation.)
  • Maintain “Satisfactory Academic Progress” as defined as follows: Students must complete at least 67% of credits attempted and maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Please note that some programs have specific academic guidelines, which must be met to continue enrollment.

Loan funds will be processed for students who have completed a FAFSA, and have a valid Master Promissory Note, and Entrance Counseling on file, unless the student declines the loans via the award letter, or notifies the financial aid office in writing that they are reducing or declining the loans.

Federal Perkins Loan This low-interest loan is administered by Chatham University and awarded to students who have demonstrated financial need. Repayment and interest charges begin nine months after graduation or cessation of at least half-time enrollment. Students awarded a Perkins Loan must sign a promissory note and complete Entrance Counseling once when they first borrow.

Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan This low-interest loan is awarded to students who have demonstrated financial need. Repayment and interest charges begin six months after graduation or cessation of at least half-time enrollment. Students must complete the Federal Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note at This application is completed once and can typically be used for a ten year period. The Federal Student Aid log-in that was used to sign the FAFSA is also used to sign the Master Promissory note. All new students to Chatham University and those students who have never borrowed before must also complete Entrance Interview Counseling at

Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan This low-interest loan is available to all students regardless of financial need. This loan also provides additional loan eligibility to independent students or to dependent undergraduate students whose parents are denied a federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). While re-payment begins six months after graduation or cessation of at least half-time enrollment, this loan does accumulate interest while the student is enrolled. The student may make interest payments while enrolled, or choose to defer and have the interest capitalized during in-school, grace, or deferment periods. Students must complete the Federal Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling in order to receive Federal Stafford Loan funds. There is only one application for both the Subsidized and the Unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans.

Direct PLUS LoanCredit based loan available to parents of dependent students, who are enrolled at least part-time. In order to determine eligibility for this loan program, parents must first complete a credit check or PLUS Loan Application at If the loan is approved, the parent must also complete the Direct PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note. The loan is deferred while the student is enrolled at least par-time, which is six credits per term. This loan does accumulate interest while the student is in school. There is a six month grace period available upon graduation or cessation of half-time enrollment. In school deferment options are available.

Alternative/Private Loans Other Non-Federal/Private Loans, sometimes called Alternative Loans, are available to all students to help fill the gap that sometimes exists between the cost of a Chatham education and a financial aid award. These credit-based loans are deferred until six months after graduation, provided you are enrolled at least part-time, which is six credits. Private loans do accumulate interest while you are enrolled. These programs require credit worthiness or a co-signer.

Eligibility requirements and funding for the programs described here are subject to change without notice. Federal loans are available to U.S. citizens and permanent residents only.

+Chatham Policies That May Affect Your Aid

  1. Financial aid awards can be made only when a student has been accepted to a degree or a teacher certification program at Chatham and has completed the FAFSA. If the student has submitted the FAFSA with estimated information, the award may be adjusted once the student or family has completed the IRS data retrieval, adjusted the tax information via the FAFSA website, or complete the verification process.
  2. Students are responsible for reporting to the University all financial assistance received from other sources such as outside scholarships, grants, Office of Vocational Rehabilitation assistance, or tuition waivers. All outside assistance must be taken into account in the packaging of the student’s financial aid and may result in an adjustment of the aid package if notification is received after the initial package is awarded.
  3. Chatham financial aid is available for eight terms of full-time study. Scholarships and Chatham Grants require at least a 2.0 minimum cumulative GPA for renewal, however, check each individual scholarship above as some require higher GPA's for renewal. The Chatham policy may be found here.
  4. Students may only receive federal aid for classes that are required for a degree.

Financial aid is awarded annually and requires completion of the FAFSA by March 15 each year. Class standing outline is found in The Office of Academic Affairs section of the catalog.

Refund of Excess Financial Aid. Students may be eligible for a refund if their financial aid and/or other credits exceed current semester charges. Student refunds are issued 7-14 days after the student account develops a credit balance. Refunds will be processed electronically through Education Computer Systems, Inc. (ECSI). Please go to and sign up to receive electronic refunds.
If a student wishes to retain a credit balance from one semester to the next within the same academic year they should email this information to

Satisfactory Academic Progress. Good academic standing and satisfactory academic progress are necessary for financial aid eligibility. Full-time undergraduate students must complete at least 67% of credits attempted each term in order to be making progress towards a degree. The maximum timeframe in which students are expected to finish a degree is 150% of a program’s length. For example, a BA/BS requires 120 credits for graduation. At most, a student may attempt or enroll in 180 credits, with the objective of earning the 120 credits needed to graduate. 120 divided by 180 is a pace of 67%. Students are required to maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA. For graduate students the maximum timeframe is 150% of the published length of each educational program.

The following grades do not count as successfully completed credits in the calculation:
Audit     Incomplete     Failed     Withdrawn

Transfer credits are accepted towards completion of a student’s degree as both hours attempted and hours completed. A previously passed course may be retaken once and a failed course may be repeated until it is passed. Although students are permitted to repeat courses, they will need to make sure they are completing enough credits to ensure they will complete their degree in the maximum allowable timeframe.

Students will be evaluated for academic progress at the end of every term, including the summer. Students must meet both pace and the qualitative measures in order to continue to receive federal financial aid. Each evaluation is a cumulative review of all grades and coursework.

When a student fails to meet satisfactory academic progress, they are given one semester of financial aid warning, in which they will continue to receive financial aid. If after the one term of financial aid warning, they do not meet the satisfactory academic progress standards, they will lose their federal financial aid eligibility. Students who do not meet satisfactory academic progress will be notified in writing. The definitions of each status are below:

Financial Aid Warning - Status assigned to a student who fails to make satisfactory academic progress. Student may continue to receive financial aid for one semester only.

Financial Aid Suspension - Student has not met progress requirements. Students are not eligible for any Federal aid when assigned this status. Federal financial aid includes the following: Federal Pell Grant, SEOG, Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Stafford Loan, Federal Graduate PLUS Loan, Parent PLUS loan, and Federal Work Study. A student will remain on financial aid suspension until they have met the requirements for satisfactory academic progress.

Reinstatement of Financial Aid – Appeal Process:
Students who have lost their Federal financial aid eligibility are permitted to appeal provided the following:

  • Student submits letter to the financial aid appeals committee. In the letter the following questions must be answered in order for the appeal to be considered:
    • Why the student failed to make satisfactory academic progress? Please provide specific examples, such as; medical, family emergency or hardship, or other extenuating circumstances.
    • What has changed that will allow the student to make satisfactory academic progress at the next review?
  • Contact information for appeals letter:
    • Appeal Letter may be submitted via e-mail at:
    • Fax Number: 412-365-1871
    • Address: Financial Aid Office; Braun Hall; Woodland Road; Pittsburgh, PA 15232

Students will be notified of the outcome of the appeal in writing. Students who have an approved appeal will then be placed on Financial Aid Probation, and will be eligible for their Federal Financial Aid. Students may also be placed on an Academic Plan, which is a term by term outline of courses and GPA requirements that students would have to meet as determined by academic advising. Students would be required to take the courses and meet the GPA requirements as outlined in the plan. If a student fails to meet the requirements of the plan, they will then be placed, back on financial aid suspension, and will not be permitted to appeal. If a student re-establishes SAP, after being on an academic plan, after one or two semesters, although, their original academic plan, may have been longer, they will then be removed from the plan, and their regular financial aid eligibility reinstated. The student would then be able to register for classes on their own accord.

+Financial Aid for Study Abroad

Students enrolling in a study abroad program through a consortium agreement between Chatham University (home institution) and an accredited American institution (host institution) may be eligible to use their federal grants and loans to assist with educational costs. Chatham’s institutional financial aid cannot be used to assist with educational costs associated with a study abroad program.

Students must also complete a Study Abroad Application with the Office of International Programs. This form must be completed and approved before financial aid eligibility can be determined.

A student must initiate the completion of a consortium agreement in order for Financial Aid to determine if her costs permit the use of federal grants or loans. The consortium agreement requires the student to obtain confirmation from the host institution of the actual program costs. In addition, the student must supply a list of the courses she will be enrolled in during the term abroad.

Upon receipt of the consortium agreement from the host institution, the director of financial aid will then calculate the student’s federal aid eligibility based upon the abroad cost of attendance. The student will then be notified of the exact amount of aid to be made available for the study abroad term. Students must make payment arrangements with the host institution. The majority of institutions require payment in full before financial aid is disbursed.