Graduate Financial Aid

We're here to assist you with financial aid as you take your education to the next level.

If you've gone through the financial aid process as an undergraduate or with an undergraduate, you'll notice some changes at the graduate stage.

Don't worry. We'll help you understand:

  • How many credits you need to be eligible for financial aid in your particular program.
  • How a changing course load can affect your financial aid.
  • How your financial aid gets applied to your account.
  • How your loans will impact your financial future.

Our Student Financial Services team provides the guidance you need so you can focus on your classes, your career and all of life's other responsibilities.


To be eligible for financial aid as a graduate student, you be considered at least half-time (carrying at least 6 credits a semester). Please note that select programs feature different enrollment eligibility requirements.

Any change in enrollment may impact your financial aid. If you experience or anticipate a change in course load, please contact us so we can talk through your options.

Half-Time Enrollment

Six to eight credits a semester.

Full-Time Enrollment

Nine or more credits a semester.

How to Apply

The graduate financial aid staff is here to help, but you need to apply for financial aid before we can put our expertise to work. There is no income cutoff to apply for federal financial aid and the FAFSA is key to determining your eligibility.

The process may seem overwhelming, but the FAFSA website offers helpful tips while you complete the application. Once the federal government processes your FAFSA, we'll receive your results and send you an email notification to log in to the student portal to review your financial aid package.

Register for Your FSA ID

Your FSA ID is a unique username and password that you’ll need to complete items related to federal financial aid. An FSA ID acts as your legal signature on the FAFSA and Master Promissory Note. It also allows you to complete loan counseling and apply for repayment plans.

Register for your FSA ID external website

Complete the FAFSA

You need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the award year in which you are seeking aid. The 2023-24 FAFSA covers classes from July 1, 2023, to June 30, 2024. The 2024-25 FAFSA covers classes from July 1, 2024, to June 30, 2025 and will be available for completion after Jan. 1, 2023.

Be sure to use 003394, Wilkes University’s school code, so we receive the results as soon as possible.

Complete the FAFSA  external website

Complete Federal Student Loan Entrance Counseling (LEC)

The Department of Education requires all borrowers to complete this online session to promote understanding of student loan responsibilities with a goal of reducing delinquency or default.

The website will lead you through the step-by-step process:

  • Sign in using your FSA ID.
  • Select Complete Loan Counseling.
  • Select Start Entrance Counseling.
  • Choose “I am completing entrance counseling to receive Direct Loans as a GRADUATE Student.”  

Complete entrance counseling external website

Complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN)

If you continue to this step after completing your entrance counseling session, you won’t need to sign in a second time.

Simply proceed to the Master Promissory Note section for graduate/professional students.

  • From My Home Page, select Complete Loan Agreement.
  • Choose the loan type you are receiving. If you receive both types of loans, you will need to complete an MPN for each one.
    • Direct Unsubsidized Loan
    • Direct PLUS Loan

Complete the MPN external website

Receiving Your Financial Aid Package

Once you complete your FAFSA and are enrolled at Wilkes, you will receive an email with your financial aid package.

Please note it may take several business days for your FAFSA to process. If you have any questions while you are waiting for your financial aid package, we offer multiple ways to connect with us and get the answers you need.

Contact Us

Financing Your Education

Wilkes works to keep our tuition competitive so your graduate education can be as affordable and accessible as possible. We offer a convenient payment plan if you choose to self pay and tuition deferment if your employer contributes to tuition costs, plus a few financial aid options.


If you plan to pay for your own educational expenses, your bill will be posted to your account as an e-statement on the secure Wilkes Portal. You can pay online with a major credit card, send a check or set up a bank transfer. You may also sign up for a payment plan prior to the start of each semester.

Pay Your Tuition

Tuition Deferment

Some employers may pay all or part of your tuition costs via tuition deferment. You will need to complete an employer deferment form (.pdf) and submit it to the Bursar’s Office before the start of each semester. Payment will be due 30 days after course completion, or you, as the student, will be responsible for the costs.

Download the Employer Deferment Agreement (.pdf)

Questions about Your Bill?

If you have any questions about your paying your bill or tuition deferment, please contact:

Wilkes University Bursar's Office

Financial Aid Options

Wilkes features a few different financial aid options for graduate students:

Graduate Assistantships

Wilkes offers a limited number of graduate assistant positions for full-time students in departments across campus.

Application Criteria

Open Positions

Graduate Scholarships

A few private foundations, civic organizations and other groups offer scholarship funding to encourage graduate students to continue their education.

Graduate Scholarship Opportunities


Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans

Administered by the Department of Education, this is the primary loan type for graduate students. You do not need to demonstrate financial need but you do need to complete the FAFSA external website. Remember to choose the FAFSA year corresponding to your course enrollment period.

Federal Direct Graduate Plus Loans

This federal loan is available for graduate and professional students who require additional funding beyond the Stafford Loan. You do not need to demonstrate financial need but you do need to complete the FAFSA external website. Remember to choose the FAFSA year corresponding to your course enrollment period.

Private Loans

You may choose a private lender to help you pay for the costs of your graduate education. While the University does not feature a preferred lender, we suggest you use ELMSelect external website, a free online resource that can help you compare lenders and choose the best one for you.


We are happy to help you get the financial aid information you need!


The Ask John Wilkes Chatbot provides 24/7 support for questions about financial aid, admissions other general questions about Wilkes University.

You can access Ask John Wilkes on this page and other admissions pages on

Wilkes Portal

The Wilkes Portal is where you can access important student service information, including tuition payments, bills and more.

Access the Wilkes Portal

Bursar's Office

Contact the Bursar's Office for questions about:

  • Your bill.
  • Payment plan.
  • Tuition deferment.
Bursar's Office

Financial Aid

Contact Financial Aid for questions about:

  • Loans
  • Financial aid after an enrollment change
Office of Financial Aid