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Financial Aid Office

The Financial Aid Office provides assistance to students who are interested in obtaining funds to help pay educational expenses at the School. The office administers all student loan programs plus the Federal Work-Study program.

Johns Hopkins University sets high ethical standards for all administrators, faculty, and staff. The University's Statement of Ethical Standards, as revised and updated annually, guides the professional conduct of employees of the Financial Aid Office.

Overview: Financial Assistance Options

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health offers several financial aid programs to help students pay for educational expenses. In addition to federal loans and work-study, eligible students may receive institutional, state, and private scholarship funds. Sources of funding for students enrolled in the Bloomberg School are outlined below.

Eligibility for Federal Student Aid

Federal loan and work-study programs are administered by the Financial Aid Office. Applicants for Federal Student Aid must establish eligibility for federal aid by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). All Federal Loan and Federal Work-Study funds are to be used solely for expenses related to your attendance at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School Public Health.

To be eligible for Federal Student Aid (FSA) you must:

  • be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen (see the FAFSA instructions for details)
  • be accepted for enrollment as a regular student
  • be enrolled at least half time in a degree program and meet satisfactory academic progress standards established by the school
  • have financial need as defined by FSA program regulations
  • not owe a refund on a federal student grant or be in default on a federal student loan
  • comply with the Selective Service registration requirements and have a valid Social Security number
  • not have been convicted for the possession or sale of illegal drugs for an offense that occurred while you were receiving federal student aid.

Federal Direct Student Loans

If you qualify for an unsubsidized loan, the federal government will charge you interest from the day the loan is disbursed until it is repaid in full. Interest will accrue while you are enrolled in school, during a grace period, and during authorized periods of deferment. You may pay the interest during these periods or it can be capitalized; that is, the interest will be added to the principal amount of your loan.

The combined annual maximum for the Direct Loan program is $20,500 per year. The aggregate loan limit is $138,500, which includes loans received for undergraduate study.  Due to the phase-out of the Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program, the Department of Education has increased the aggregate loan limit to $224,000 for students who are enrolled full-time (12 or more credits per term) in eligible health professions, including public health.  Students enrolled at SPH on a full-time basis may be eligible to borrow up to an additional $15,278 on an unsubsidized basis. 

The interest rate for unsubsidized Direct Loans is a fixed rate of 5.41% for any Unsubsidized loan disbursed after July 1, 2013. Interest accrues from the date of first disbursement.  The Department of Education charges the borrower a 1.053% origination fee. The origination fee will be deducted proportionately from each disbursement of the loan proceeds.

Federal Perkins Loan

This is a low-interest loan for students with exceptional financial need. Priority is given to students who complete the application process within the recommended filing dates. The annual maximum for this program is $8,000 dependent upon financial need and availability of funds. The aggregate amount you can borrow is $60,000. This amount includes any Perkins Loans you borrowed as an undergraduate. The interest rate is fixed at five percent (5%) per annum on the unpaid balance. After ceasing to register at least half-time, a nine (9)-month grace period is granted, during which time no payment is required.  Funding for the Perkins Loan Program is extremely limited.

Federal Work-Study Program (FWS)

The Federal Work-Study Program provides jobs to students with financial need. Students who are employed under the Federal Work-Study Program earn money to help pay their educational expenses. This program encourages employment related to the student’s course of study and community service work.

Graduate PLUS Loans

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans are available to graduate students who meet the general eligibility requirements for federal aid. This program is available without regard to financial need. Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan amounts do not count towards the aggregate loan limit.  A credit review is required to make sure the applicant does not have a record of adverse credit but there are no requirements regarding debt to income ratio. Students may borrow up to the full cost of education less other aid. Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans have a fixed interest rate of 6.41% for any PLUS loan disbursed after July 1, 2013.  Interest accrues from the date of first disbursement.   The Department of Education charges the borrower a 4.212% origination fee.  The origination fee will be deducted proportionately from each disbursement of the loan proceeds.

Private Loans

Private lenders provide these loans to supplement other forms of assistance. A student may apply to borrow up to the cost of education minus other aid. You are not required to complete the FAFSA to apply for a private loan.

There are many lenders that offer alternative private loans. Johns Hopkins University recommends that students exhaust their eligibility for all federal loan programs before considering a private or alternative loan. Lenders require an applicant who is not U.S. citizen or permanent resident to have a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. If you are uncertain about your loan eligibility, please contact Public Health’s Financial Aid Office prior to submitting a private loan application.

As a service to students and their families, Johns Hopkins University makes available this link to the Maryland Student Loan Marketplace website which assists in comparing private loans and in identifying potential lenders.  The Maryland Student Loan Marketplace was designed by the Maryland Independent College and University Association (MICUA) to help students and their families navigate the world of private student loans.  The Marketplace is an online, education financing resource that provides students with a transparent process to evaluate private loans.  In addition, it provides access to a Learning Center which supplies critical information needed to engage in smart borrowing practices.  It is one of many tools that may be helpful when selecting a private loan lender.  The University does not endorse or recommend any lender, nor does the University have any financial interest in any lending institution.  Students and their families have the right to select the educational loan provider of their choice.

Disclosure for a Preferred Lender Arrangement:

Truth-in-Lending Forms for each Participating Lender:

Maryland's College Loan Code of Conduct:

Before considering a private student loan, students are encouraged to complete the process for determining eligibility for federal student loans which are normally less costly and offer better repayment terms.

Questions to ask a Private Lender

  • What is your lowest interest rate and fee combination and how can I get it? Is the rate only for a limited period or is it for the life of the loan?
  • For variable rate loans, is there a limit on how high the variable rate can go? How often is the interest rate adjusted, and how is it determined?
  • What interest rate can I get on a fixed-rate loan?
  • How long will I be repaying the loan? Is there any penalty for paying it off early?
  • When do I have to start making payments? How long can I defer payments while I'm in school? If I go to graduate school and defer payments, how much will I owe when I do start making them?
  • Will I lose my discount for paying on time if I have only one late payment or if I ask for a change in the payment schedule?
  • What proportion of your borrowers get the discounts you offer? Are your discounts guaranteed or are they subject to change later?
  • Would you allow me to defer or reduce my payments temporarily because of economic hardship? Under what circumstances and for how long?


Institutional scholarship aid is awarded by the department or program that authorizes your acceptance into a degree program. Additional information is available at Institutional Scholarship.

State Aid

Maryland residents must complete and file the FAFSA by March 1 in order to apply for a scholarship funded by the state of Maryland. For further information, contact the Maryland Higher Education Commission at 410-767-3301 or 800-974-0203.

Funding for International Students

Financial assistance for students who are not citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. is extremely limited. The Department or Program that authorizes a student's acceptance into a degree program determines eligibility for institutional aid. International applicants may research funding opportunities through International Student Resources. 

Other Funding Resources

The Student Funding Resources Office helps students identify and apply for education and research funding typically in the form of grants and scholarships. For more information visit their website.

Return of Title IV Federal Funds Policy

The Financial Aid Office is required by federal statute to recalculate federal financial aid eligibility for students who withdraw, drop out, are dismissed, or take a leave of absence prior to completing 60% of a payment period or term. Federal Title IV financial aid must be recalculated in these situations.

If a student leaves the institution prior to completing 60% of a payment period or term, the Financial Aid Office recalculates eligibility for Title IV funds. Recalculation is based on the percentage of earned aid using the following Federal Return of Title IV funds formula:

Percentage of payment period or term completed = the number of days completed up to the withdrawal date divided by the total days in the payment period or term. (Any break of five days or more is not counted as part of the days in the term.) This percentage is also the percentage of earned aid.
Funds are returned to the appropriate federal program based on the percentage of unearned aid using the following formula:
Aid to be returned = (100% of the aid that could be disbursed minus the percentage of earned aid) multiplied by the total amount of aid that could have been disbursed during the payment period or term.
If a student earned less aid than was disbursed, the institution would be required to return a portion of the funds and the student would be required to return a portion of the funds. Keep in mind that when Title IV funds are returned, the student borrower may owe a debit balance to the institution.

If a student earned more aid than was disbursed to him/her, the institution would owe the student a post-withdrawal disbursement which must be paid within 120 days of the student's withdrawal.

The institution must return the amount of Title IV funds for which it is responsible no later than 45 days after the date of the determination of the date of the student's withdrawal.

Refunds are allocated in the following order:

  • Federal Direct  Loans
  • Federal Perkins Loans
  • Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Other assistance under this Title for which a return of funds is required (e.g. LEAP)

SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS                                                         

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) refers to the minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) and cumulative attempted credit limitations that a student must achieve in order to remain in good academic standing. A student must maintain SAP (as defined by the School’s Academic Standards Policy) in order to be eligible to receive Federal Title IV funds.

If a student has a registration record in ISIS for a specific term,  then the student’s academic advisor provided signed consent to the student’s registration. Any student who is eligible to register is classified as maintaining SAP and is eligible to receive financial aid.  This policy applies to all Federal Title IV programs administered by the School.


  1. Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average  (GPA)

A student must maintain the cumulative GPA that is equivalent to the graduation standards established by his/her program of study.

  1. Minimum Time Frame

A student must complete his/her program of study by attempting no more than 150%  of the total credits required by the designated program. Attempted credits include all grades of Incomplete (I), Withdrawal (W), and Audit (A). Each department / division at the School determines the number of credits required for completion of a degree.         

SAP will be reviewed annually at the end of each academic year. The student’s complete academic course work at the School will be considered in the review process.

Unsatisfactory Progress                                                                                                  

A student who does not maintain SAP is not eligible to receive Federal Title IV funds until he/she attains the required SAP standard. A student who has his/her eligibility suspended may submit a written appeal to the Financial Aid Office. The Director of Financial Aid will review all appeals.