Discover an Affordable College Experience at St. Mary’s

The Office of Financial Assistance connects students and families with the financial resources required to finance a St. Mary’s education. Our staff works personally with students and their families to explain available options and help them to choose the best methods to meet the cost of attendance.

Graduates employed in positions that align with their life goals
Incoming freshmen receive some sort of financial aid
University in the West for Best Value (U.S. News & World Report)

Financial Aid Basics

The theory underlying the financial aid system is that parents and students contribute to the cost of college attendance to the extent they are able. If they are unable to contribute the entire amount, financial aid is available to meet the remaining cost.

The basic formula to determine financial aid eligibility or need is:

Cost of Attendance – Expected Family Contribution = Financial Need

Keep in mind, students from families of all income levels can demonstrate financial need based upon their particular circumstances. Most students who apply are eligible.

  • Net Price Calculator

    The Net Price Calculator at St. Mary’s University is designed to give you and your family a sense of the financial commitment you can expect to make to pursue a degree at St. Mary’s University.

  • Scholarships

    St. Mary’s University offers a wide variety of scholarships. You’ll automatically be considered for most of these scholarships when you submit your completed application. Explore which scholarships and other financial aid you may be eligible for when you enroll.

Filing the FAFSA®

To be considered for aid, students must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) every year and list St. Mary’s University. The application is now open.

Use school code 003623.

The Priority Deadline to submit your FAFSA® has been extended to May 6, 2024. You are encouraged to submit your FAFSA® as soon as possible to ensure the most aid possible.

  • Changes have been made to the 2024-2025 FAFSA®.

    The new FAFSA® features fewer questions and retrieves tax information using a direct data exchange from the IRS instead of the previous IRS Data Retrieval Tool. Review 2024-2025 FAFSA® Simplification changes.

Special Circumstances

We understand that unforeseen circumstances arise and your family might need assistance. If you have either incurred additional expenses or if your household has experienced loss of income, this process might be one to consider. Fill out the Special Conditions Form found on the Financial Aid Forms page to be considered.

The Student Emergency Fund (SEF) provides limited emergency financial assistance to currently enrolled St. Mary’s University students who are unable to meet immediate, essential expenses because of temporary hardship related to an unexpected situation. The fund is designated to offset a short-term financial need and is not intended to replace or supplement financial aid. 

Student Emergency Fund

Have you lost your job due to COVID-19? Rattler Readiness is a virtual workforce development workshop open to Bexar County residents. The workshop is in partnership with Project Quest and is no cost to participants.

Rattler Readiness
  • Here to Help

    Prospective students and those without a St. Mary’s University username can call 210-436-3141 to speak with a financial aid counselor.

    Students with a St. Mary’s username can schedule an appointment with the Office of Financial Assistance. If you need to submit documents, please submit in Gateway.

Financial Aid Options

Our financial assistance staff will work one-on-one with you to provide the personal financial solutions that best suit your family. Gift aid includes scholarships, grants, and other benefits (such as Veteran’s Benefits); these kinds of financial assistance generally do not need to be paid back unless otherwise specified.

Vanessa Ortega stands in front of the Sarita Kenedy East Law Library.

If I had not gone to St. Mary’s, I would not have thrived the way I’m thriving here. The University gave me the opportunity to learn what it means to be in service to others.”

Vanessa Ortega (MBA ’23, J.D. ’23)


Yes. St. Mary’s does not require any additional application for financial aid.

Is the FAFSA® application the only application St. Mary’s requires for applying for financial aid?

You should be comparing “apples to apples” instead of “apples to oranges.” Financial aid is awarded in two primary categories: gift aid and self-help. Gift aid consists of financial aid that does not have to be repaid or earned. Examples include grants and/or scholarships awarded by the institution. Self-help is comprised of student loans and/or work-study.

Some institutions may inflate your financial aid offer by including an alternative loan (such as a parent loan and/or private loans). St. Mary’s University does not pre-package these loans since this is a family decision and most, if not all, are based on a credit check. Our Financial Aid counselors can assist you with this process, but we do not automatically add this to your financial aid award.

One of the key resources you will have is your award letter, which will outline charges and your awarded financial aid. What is your bottom line after you factor in all the aid you are receiving? Even though charges might appear to be high, it might be more manageable than you think given your financial aid award and additional aid options.

How do I compare financial aid offers from several schools?

Academic scholarships are awarded by the Office of Undergraduate Admission during the admission process. Students are also encouraged to seek additional scholarship opportunities in their communities. Once a student has their Gateway credentials, they can log in and access iGrad which has an outside scholarship search tool.

How do I apply for scholarships?

Various factors can impact the amount of financial aid you receive at any point in your academic career. In awarding financial aid, several factors are taken into account:

  • When was your financial aid file completed?
  • How much financial need do you have?
  • How much does your family make, and what is your family size?
  • What is your cumulative grade point average?
What factors impact my financial aid package?

If you will be receiving an outside scholarship from your community or an organization outside of St. Mary’s University, you will want to send us a copy of your scholarship notification letter as soon as possible. We will need to update your award to reflect this. We will then work with the Business Office to apply the scholarship to your account when the donor sends the funds.

How do I report an outside scholarship to St. Mary’s?

If you accept Work-study, you will be sent an email in July with a link to the job board. Jobs are not guaranteed. You will go through the process of applying for jobs. If hired, you will then work with your supervisor and Human Resources to make sure the necessary paperwork has been submitted.

How do I receive a work-study assignment?

It depends on when you make the change. We award undergraduate financial aid on the basis of full-time enrollment (and full-time charges). If you drop during the tuition credit period, you will no longer be charged full-time tuition, which is what your aid is designed to cover. In this situation, your aid will be reduced.

If you drop after the tuition credit period, your aid will not be changed. However, to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress, students must complete 67 percent of the hours attempted. Please review the information under the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) section of our web page.

What happens if I drop below full-time status?

  • Questions?

    For any questions you or your family may have, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to support you.

    Office of Financial Assistance
    St. Louis Hall, Room 301


    Office Hours

    Monday – Thursday
    8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Closed from noon to 1 p.m.

    Noon to 5 p.m.

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