1556 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington DC 20007           202-333-2202

Approximately 45% of the Conservatory’s students have been eligible for federal financial aid in the form of grants and/or loans.  Eligibility is based on need, as determined by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application.

Financial Aid FAQ

You’ve got questions about financial aid. We’ve got answers.

  • Are all Conservatory students eligible for financial aid?
    • ​The US Department of Education determines which grants and loans you’re eligible for, based on an official form you submit to the government called the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If the Department determines you have extreme financial need, you may also be eligible for grants, which do not have to be repaid. If the Department determines you have financial need but that need is not extreme, you may be eligible for student loans, which do have to be repaid.
  • What kinds of grants might I be eligible for?
    • The two grants you may be eligible for are Pell Grants, which range from $400 to $2,600 per semester, depending on eligibility; and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, which range from $100 to $600 per semester, depending on eligibility.
  • What kinds of loans might I be eligible for?
    • The two types of loans you may be eligible for are
      called Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct
      Unsubsidized Loans. Direct Subsidized Loans are
      loans where the federal government pays the
      interest on your loans while you are in school and
      for six months after you leave school. The only
      amount waiting to be paid off when you graduate
      is the principal. The interest which you have to pay
      on the principal begins to accrue six months after
      ​you complete your education. Direct Unsubsidized Loans are loans where the interest begins to accrue immediately upon your receipt of the loans. You can, however, elect to pay off this interest while you are still in school to keep the ultimate loan-repayment costs down. Most students are eligible for between $2,750 and $4,750 in loans per semester. Approximately 45%* of the Conservatory’s students have been awarded federal student loans and grants.
  • What do I need to do to complete the FAFSA application?
    • To complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you will need to have the following information at your fingertips: Your federal tax return from last year (ignore this requirement if you didn’t work last year or weren’t required to file taxes last year); your parents’ federal tax return from 2011; and the official “school code” issued by the US Department of Education to the Conservatory: 014941.
  • What is a Federal Student Aid PIN?
    • Federal Student Aid PIN is a personal identification number that you set up for yourself online, which the Department will use to identify you and track your application. Setting up your PIN is the first step in the FAFSA application process.
  • What if I already have a student loans from prior education I received?
    • If you already have other  student loans obtained through the FAFSA application process, you cannot be in default on your loan payments if you apply for a new loan through FAFSA to attend the Conservatory (or any school). In general, whenever you have prior student loans, you can defer paying off these loans while you seek additional education – e.g., while you are enrolled at the Conservatory. To do this, you need to contact the organization servicing your loan and ask for an “in-school deferment form.” Once you’re enrolled at the Conservatory and have started your classes, our financial-aid representatives will fill out and submit this form to your loan-service company to confirm that you are enrolled in school again.
  • Are there any tax breaks associated with student loans?
    • Yes. The interest on your student loans is deductible on your federal tax return. Some of your tuition costs may also be deductible on your federal tax return. To find out if you qualify for a “Lifetime Learning Credit,” see IRS Publication 970.
  • Can I use my Veterans Benefits to attend the Conservatory?
    • Yes. Training at the Conservatory is approved under the Montgomery GI Bill for both Chapter 30 and Post 9-11 Chapter 33 benefits. Simply supply your DD-214 information to the Conservatory and we will process your benefits through the Veterans Administration. If you’re a veteran who’s never used your education benefits before, you’ll need to file Form 22-1990 with the Veterans Administration. Our financial-aid representatives can assist you with this process.
  • Can the Conservatory help me with the financial-aid application process?
    • Yes. You can fill out the FAFSA application online on your own or, if you find the language or questions daunting, arrange a time to complete it online at the Conservatory in the company of an experienced financial-aid representative. If you’d prefer to submit your FAFSA application online at the Conservatory, call us at 202-333-2202 or click here to arrange a time to meet with an financial-aid representative.