Scholarships, Grants, Labor Earnings, and Loans

Scholarships and Grants

Scholarships and grants are monetary gifts for which repayment is not required. Some scholarship and grant monies defray the cost of tuition and essential student expenses, and others are used for special purposes or programs. Many scholarships and grants are reserved for students who meet specific criteria without the need for special application procedures. (See Scholarships, Awards, and Prizes section for details about some of these institutional scholarships and grants.)

In addition to institutional scholarship and grant funds, Berea College participates in the following federal and state programs providing student aid that does not require repayment: Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Kentucky College Access Grants, Kentucky Tuition Grants, and Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarships (KEES).

Earnings from Work

An integral form of financial assistance at Berea College is available through the Student Labor Program. All students enrolled in an academic term (Fall, Spring, Summer One, or Summer Two) earn a work scholarship, in which a portion of that, the Labor Grant, is applied directly to the cost of education (“tuition”) each term. The amount applied is: $3,000 (Fall); $3,000 (Spring); and a pro-ration for summer term(s). The final portion of the work scholarship is the primary source of direct aid, providing $1,540 to $2,530 per year to assist in covering educational costs and personal expenses. Based on the total work scholarship and total hours worked per term, a student receives between $12.00 and $24.00 per hour in scholarship. The direct aid portion received (based on hours worked), in combination with the student’s earnings on and off campus during the summer months, are used to pay a portion of the student’s room, board, personal expenses, fees, and other educational expenses incurred during the academic year.

Berea College expects every student to save approximately $1,000 from summer earnings to assist with costs associated with attendance. While the College does not bill students for an additional $1,000 as a result of the summer savings expectation, some students choose to use their savings to assist with their Term Bill. Ideally, when the Term Bill obligation is met through the family’s contribution, the summer savings can be used to assist with indirect college expenses like transportation, books, supplies, and personal and miscellaneous expenses. Jobs available on campus for those who wish to remain in Berea during the summer are paid at a rate sufficient, with careful budgeting, to save approximately $1,000. However, some students find it easier to save summer earnings when living at home in a rent-free environment.


Low interest, long-term loans may be obtained from Berea College when needed to pay essential school expenses. Award letters do not reflect loans.  Students need to contact Student Financial Aid Services to inquire about other options before considering a loan. Most loans do not accrue interest as long as the borrower is a full-time student. Long-term loans become due six months after graduation or withdrawal from college and must be repaid within an agreed upon schedule. Special non-interest-bearing loans are available to students who have significant financial need and who plan to serve in the Appalachian region after graduation.

Berea College also participates in the Federal Perkins Loan Program and the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program, both of which have fixed interest rates. For more detailed information concerning the financial assistance program, please contact the Student Financial Aid Services Office at (859) 985-3310.  The Federal government will determine the rate of interest depending on amounts agreed upon by Congress.