Lab Research

Costs, Financial Aid, and Scholarships

Financial aid—whether in the form of loans, grants, work-study, grants, or scholarships—can be an important part of putting a Penn State degree within reach. Penn State and the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences have numerous resources and ways to help eligible students and their families help pay for a Penn State education. Through the generosity of our alumni and friends, the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences provides financial aid to our students in good academic standing and awards nearly 500 scholarships annually.

Here are some resources that will let you know more about the costs of college and ways that Penn State students commonly receive student aid.

  • Undergraduate Admissions Costs and Aid
    Information on scholarships, tuition and other costs, financial aid, and eligibility for being considered a Pennsylvania resident.
  • Penn State Office of the Bursar
    This office maintains student accounts pertaining to tuition billing, acceptance fees, charges, payments, financial aid disbursements, and refunds of excess funds, when available.
  • Penn State Office of Student Aid
    This office handles requests for federal financial aid. On this site, you can learn about important aid-related policies, different types of assistance such as scholarships, grants, and loans that you may be eligible for, and how to apply for financial aid.

All students who are offered admission to the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences as first-year students are automatically considered for the Dean's Freshman Scholarship on the basis of their academic record and their performance on the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), without regard to financial need. No applications are required. These awards are offered in the spring prior to enrollment on a funds-available basis.

NOTE: Freshman awards are for the freshman year only.

Scholarships for the sophomore through senior years are awarded on the basis of academic excellence. The completion of an online application between January 1 and April 15 is required in order to receive consideration. Because some of these awards are “need-based,” it is important that you submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in a timely manner each year in order to be eligible for support.

Deadline: April 15 annually (Application opens Janauary 1 each year)

Low-interest loans are available to entering first-year students as well as upperclassmen and graduate students. Students may borrow up to $1,200 per semester ($2,400 per year) through the fund. Repayment is not required until after graduation. Currently, no interest accrues until graduation. After graduation, the University assesses a 6 percent simple interest rate on these loans. The college, subject to the approval of the University Financial Aid Office, grants these loans. If you have any questions, please visit Ashlee Kochik in the Office of the Dean (116 Deike Building).


Emergency grants are awarded to students who encounter extraordinary events or circumstances that could negatively affect their ability to continue their studies in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences. Emergency grants are awarded on a case-by-case basis and can be given to a student no more than once per academic year. Limited funding is available.

Millennium Scholars are high-achieving STEM students aiming to be leaders in their field with a commitment to increasing diversity in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math disciplines. Millennium Scholars receive scholarship, academic, and advising support and are expected to work hard and study in a collaborative environment, conduct research with a faculty mentor, and maintain an excellent academic record. 

If you believe you are ready to give what it takes to be a Millennium Scholar follow the link to learn more

Penn State Scholarships are awarded to exemplary students and are highly competitive due to limited funding. Scholarships are a form of gift aid that does not need to be repaid.

Pathway to Success: Summer Start (PaSSS)
Receive a scholarship of $250 per credit for the summer classes ($1,500 for your first summer based on 6 credits; $3,000 in your second summer based on 12 credits).

Student Transitional Experiences Program (STEP)
Receive STEP Award of at least $1,500 applied toward summer tuition.

Complete Penn State
Complete Penn State helps students who are in their last two semesters of study and who experience a situation that may negatively affect their ability to complete their degree. 

Earn micro-scholarships as early as 9th grade and discover your path to the best college for you.

Office of Student Aid
Penn State offers many other sources of financial aid. Visit the Office of Student Aid to understand the financial aid system and access private scholarship databases.

Work Study
Federal Work-Study allows you to earn money to help cover non-billable educational expenses by working within your college or campus, University office, or at an off-campus, nonprofit organization. Positions are available at every Penn State campus.

Other Employment Opportunities
There are many employment opportunities other than Federal Work-Study. Start here if you're interested in finding wage payroll positions in and around the University.