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Financial Aid & Scholarships

Aid Basics

On this page:
Costs at Machias
Eligibility Requirements
Completing the FAFSA
Loan Requirements
Types of Aid


Costs at Machias

Far too often, students do not pursue a college education because they do not know how to pay for it. The University of Maine at Machias is committed to helping you understand your educational expenses and assisting students and families in creating a plan for your financial aid, work earnings, and other income that will go toward these costs

2023-2024 Academic Year Costs
*The below 2023-2024 costs are based on approved figures from the May 22, 2023, UMS Board of Trustees meeting.

Maine/Canadian Resident

Out-of-State /
INTL Resident

New England
Regional Program (NEBHE)***


$8,700 $16,950 $15,240

Mandatory Fees

$720 $720 $720

Housing and Food*
(Room and Board)

$10,850 $10,850 $10,850

Books & Supplies**

$800 $800 $800

Travel & Miscellaneous**

$2,570 $2,570 $2,570

Academic Year Total

$23,640 $31,890 $30,180

The above undergraduate costs are based on 15 credit hours per semester, for a total of 30 credit hours per academic year (fall and spring).  

*Housing and food costs are based on most commonly selected on-campus housing and meal plan options.

**Books/Supplies and Travel/Miscellaneous costs are estimated amounts. Actual student expenses will vary.

***New England Regional Program (NEBHE) eligible programs.

****This UMaineOnline rate applies to out-of-state students accepted into a fully online degree program.



Eligibility Requirements

In general, to receive aid from the Federal Student Aid Programs, a student must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen;
  • Have a valid Social Security Number (your name must be the same as on your Social Security card);
  • Have a high school diploma or a General Educational Development (GED) certificate;
  • Enroll in an eligible program as a regular student seeking a degree or certificate at the University of Maine at Machias;
  • Be registered with Selective Service if required (in general, if you are a male age 18 through 25);
  • Meet satisfactory academic progress toward a degree;
  • Not be in default on a federal loan or owe money on a federal grant;

And, only if you have previously received federal student aid:

  • Certify that you were not convicted for a drug offense that occurred while you were enrolled in school and receiving federal student aid.

Students who meet the above criteria are encouraged to apply for financial aid using the FAFSA.


Completing the FAFSA

The only application needed to apply for financial aid at the University of Maine at Machias is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  Review the timeline below for important dates and information to be aware of when completing the FAFSA.

  • File the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by going to
  • Students and Parents should never pay to file a FAFSA.
  • All filers will need an FSA ID from the Department of Education in order to electronically sign the FAFSA.
  • Click here for more information about the FSA ID
  • The University of Maine at Machias’ School Code is 002053

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool will be available to use

  • Available to student applicants and parents who have filed their most recent taxes.
  • Allows students and/or parents to transfer income information directly from the IRS and transfer it into your FAFSA.
  • Click here for more information about IRS Data Retrieval
  • Confirm that the Financial Aid Office has received your FAFSA by accessing your MaineStreet Student Center and clicking on the “FAFSA Status” link.

Submit Additional Documents, if Required:

  • Students and/or parents may be required to provide the Financial Aid Office with additional documentation to verify data provided on FAFSA.
  • Specific verification requests and instructions will be available to students on their MaineStreet To-Do list.

Additional Documentation

After completing the FAFSA, students and/or parents may be required to submit additional documentation.  This process, known as verification, is to ensure accuracy of the data that was put on the FAFSA. Information that could be requested includes, but is not limited to:

  • IRS Data Retrieval
  • Official Tax Returns (from student and/or parent)
  • Dependent or Independent Verification Forms

Requests information will be done through the MaineStreet To Do List and will include additional information and links to any forms that must be completed.

Additional information must be submitted before any financial aid can be awarded/and or disbursed to the student account.

Loan Requirements

Loan Agreement/Master Promissory Note (MPN)

The Loan Agreement/Master Promissory Note (MPN) is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loans(s) and any accrued interest and fees to the U.S. Department of Education. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan(s); for example, it will include information on how interest is calculated, when interest is charged, available repayment plans, and deferment and cancellation provisions.

To complete an Loan Agreement/MPN online you will need your FSA ID. You can complete your Direct Loan Agreement/Master Promissory Note at

Entrance/Exit Counseling

Entrance Counseling Students who are first time borrowers of subsidized or unsubsidized Federal Direct loans must receive entrance counseling at or before the date the school can release the first loan disbursement. Entrance counseling helps ensure that the borrower understands the terms and conditions of the loan as well as his or her rights and responsibilities, before receiving the loan proceeds.

During Entrance Counseling, you will learn about the following:

  • What a loan is and the loan process works
  • Managing your education expenses
  • Other financial resources to consider to help pay for your education
  • Your rights and responsibilities

To complete Entrance Counseling online you will need your FSA ID. You can complete your Direct Loan Entrance Counseling at

Financial Literacy

The University of Maine at Machias is committed to providing financial literacy and money management tools and resources to our students.

Contact our office for more information on our Financial Literacy programming and resources!

Special Circumstances

Please contact our office if you believe you have special circumstances that need to be brought to our attention, such as:

  • changes in an independent student’s or dependent parent’s employment
  • loss of a benefit or other type of income
  • changes in marital status
  • payment of large unreimbursed medical expenses
  • or unexpected costs

Types of Aid


Grants are awarded to students demonstrating high financial need. Grants are free money and do not have to be repaid. The only application required to be considered for these grants is the FAFSA. See below for additional information on the different types of grants.

Federal Pell Grant

A federal grant that is based on the information from the FAFSA.  The amount of your Federal Pell Grant depends on your EFC and enrollment status.  There is a maximum lifetime limit of 12 semesters or its equivalent for the Pell Grant.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants

Awarded to students who demonstrate exceptional need, generally as a companion award to the Pell Grant.  Amounts vary according to funding available, student need, and enrollment status.

State of Maine Grant

The State of Maine Grant is a need-based grant program for Maine residents. To apply, students must file the FAFSA by May 1 and meet EFC eligibility requirements for the given year.

Institutional Grants

Financial support may be available through University of Maine at Machias institutional grants to help you with college costs. All you need to do is complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and you will automatically be evaluated for eligibility for UMaine Machias Grants. A timely FAFSA application maximizes your financing options and March 1 is UMaine Machias’ priority funding deadline.

Federal Work-Study

The Federal Work-Study Program provides students with the opportunity to work part-time and earn a bi-weekly paycheck.  Funds earned can be used to help pay education expenses. Work-study funds are not applied directly to the student’s bill.

  • To qualify, students must file the FAFSA (and answer YES to the Federal Work-Study  question on the FAFSA) and meet certain need-based criteria
  • The total amount of work-study awarded is what the student is eligible to earn for the academic year.  Work-study award amounts are listed as part of the financial aid award in MaineStreet.

For more information on Federal Work-Study, available jobs and the procedure for beginning work as well as for general assistance and guidance, please contact our office.


There are a variety of loan programs available to help finance your college education. Before applying for any loan, evaluate each loan program carefully to choose the loan program that best suits the needs of you and/or your family paying special attention to repayment terms. Some loans defer repayment until after the student leaves school and some enter repayment immediately.

Federal Direct Loans

Federal Direct Subsidized Loans are need-based loans. The government pays the interest on the loan while the student is enrolled at least half-time and during other authorized periods called deferments. The amount of loan offered is based on academic grade-level.  Students borrowing Federal Direct loans on or after July 1, 2012 but before July 1, 2014 do not receive this subsidy during the 6-month grace period due to sequestration.   Loans disbursing on or after July 1, 2014 will receive the subsidy during the 6-month grace period. Once the grace period has been used, generally interest begins accruing on the principle as soon as the student is no longer enrolled or has dropped below half-time enrollment.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available to students in addition to Direct Subsidized Loans and are not need-based. Also, all students are offered $2,000 in Direct Unsubsidized Loans for the academic year. The government does not pay the interest; the student can choose to either pay the interest while in school or have the interest added to the loan principal to be repaid later.

Interest Rates & Fees

For the most up to date information, please visit the Federal Student Aid webpage.

Alternative Loans

Private organizations provide alternative educational loans to students as either a supplement to other types of educational loans or to provide an additional source of loan funds. Most are credit-based loans, and some will require periodic payments of principal and interest once disbursed. Interest rates vary, and a separate application is usually sent directly to the lender which is then forwarded to our office for certification of the student’s status.

We strongly recommend that students apply for all Federal Direct Loan eligibility before applying for an alternative loan. Please be aware that if you do not apply for your entire Federal Direct Loan eligibility, certification of your alternative loan could be delayed. Please contact our office if you have applied for an alternative loan and do not wish to borrow your Federal Direct Loan.

How to Apply
  1. Initiate the application process by choosing a lender and contacting them directly to begin the pre-approval process.
  2. Your lender will perform a credit review. If approved, your lender will mail you a pre-printed promissory note that you will need to complete and return to your lender.
  3. Complete the Private Education Loan Applicant Self-Certification form and return it to the lender.
  4. Once we have received notification from your lender that you have returned your completed promissory note and self-certification, we will certify your loan.
  5. Once your lender has received all necessary information from you and our office, you will be sent additional disclosures from your lender. Once all requirements are met, your lender will send your loan funds to the Bursar’s Office.
Questions to ask the lender before you apply for an alternative loan:
  1. Can the loan be used to pay for prior balances?
  2. Is there a minimum amount I have to borrow?
  3. Are interest payments required while I’m in school?
  4. What is the interest rate and is it fixed?
  5. What are the repayment terms?

These are private loans that are not associated with the Federal Direct Loan programs and also require credit checks and most often a co-borrower. It is advised to carefully compare and research all of your options to find out which is the best option for you, we do recommend accepting any Federal Loans before considering private loans.

Use the lender comparison tool at Enter ‘University of Maine’ to view alternative loan lenders.

University of Maine and University of Maine at Machias Alternative Loan Code of Conduct

The University of Maine and the University of Maine at Machias abides by the NASFAA Code of Conduct and Statement of Ethical Principles.  Our list of alternative loan lenders has been researched carefully and compiled based on interest rates, origination fees, Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements, payment of prior balance options, repayment terms and options, enrollment options, as well as other factors.  The information that is provided will be reviewed and then updated every two years to give the best possible alternative loan options to our students.  There is no obligation for students to use the lenders listed and may apply for an alternative loan with any lender they choose.  The list is available as a tool for students to start their search and a way to compare different alternative loan options.  Please contact our office with any questions about your alternative loan options.

Parent Loans

Federal Direct PLUS Loans are fixed-rate loans provided by the Department of Education to graduate students and parents of dependent undergraduate students. The lender must perform a minimal check of the borrower’s credit history. There is a 10-year repayment schedule and deferment options are available. For graduate students, payments are automatically deferred while in school.  All Undergraduate and Graduate students MUST file a FAFSA in order for their eligibility to be determined.

How to Apply

Parent Borrowers:

  1. Go to and log in using the parent’s name, SSN, Date of Birth, and FSA ID.
  2. Choose option Request a PLUS Loan (the Request a PLUS Loan process will determine whether you are approved or denied)
  3. If you are approved, you must choose the option Complete Master Promissory Note (new borrowers and borrowers who use an endorser need to complete the MPN)

Entrance Counseling

Entrance counseling is required ONLY for the Grad-PLUS Loan. Parents of undergraduate dependent students do not need to complete entrance counseling.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan – Endorser Process

If denied for the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan or Graduate PLUS Loan, a borrower can obtain an endorser for the Federal Direct PLUS Loan. An endorser is someone who agrees to endorse a PLUS Loan, similar to a co-signer, and will repay the PLUS Loan if the borrower is unable to do so. The student cannot serve as an endorser for their parent for a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan. Upon credit denial, an application ID number will be provided to the borrower (parent or graduate student). The endorser will need the PLUS Application ID number of the borrower’s credit denial in order to endorse the PLUS Loan.

Endorser Process

  1. The endorser must obtain the application ID number of the borrower’s credit denial.
  2. The endorser needs to create a Federal Student Aid ID (username and password) at
  3. The endorser signs into and selects, “Endorse a PLUS Loan” under “Apply for Aid” to complete the process or click here.

Borrower Process

  1. The borrower (NOT THE ENDORSER) will need to complete a PLUS Master Promissory Note.  Though MPNs allow for multiple year borrowing under the same terms, when an endorser is used, the MPN is used for that loan only.  Therefore, a borrower who has previously received a PLUS Loan with or without an endorser will need to complete a new PLUS MPN for this endorsed loan.

When the borrower is initially denied and then approved with an endorser, the borrower must complete the PLUS Counseling before the PLUS Loan can be disbursed.  This counseling is a review of loan and repayment obligations, and is available at

Parent PLUS Loan Denial

(for parents of undergraduate dependent students)

If a parent is denied a Parent Direct PLUS Loan, the student may be eligible for an additional Unsubsidized Direct Loan up to $4,000 as a freshman and sophomore, and $5,000 as a junior and senior.  Additional Unsubsidized Direct Loan eligibility will be posted to the student’s award letter when we get confirmation of the denial