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Federal/State Assistance

Pepperdine University requires that its students understand and agree to certain terms and conditions regarding all financial assistance awards.

At Pepperdine University there are five primary sources of financial assistance available to help students pay for their education:

  • Federal assistance
  • State assistance
  • Private assistance
  • Outside assistance
  • University assistance

You may be eligible for one or more of these depending on your academic record and your family's financial situation. One thing is certain: Pepperdine wants to assist you in finding the resources to meet the costs--and reap the rewards--of a private education.

Listed below are several sources of federal and state assistance available to Pepperdine students as long as the qualifications are met:

 Federal Financial Assistance


Federal Pell Grant

The Federal Pell Grant is federally funded and is awarded to families who demonstrate high financial need. All financial aid applicants must apply by filing the FAFSA form by the posted deadline. Grants are available to students pursuing their first baccalaureate degrees. Funds may be used for tuition, fees, books, room, board, or other personal expenses. Awards vary from year to year. Additional information regarding Pell grants may be found here.

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants (FSEOG)

The FSEOG is available to families who demonstrate high financial need. The FSEOG is only offered along with the Federal Pell Grant. The amount of this grant varies from year to year and is based on availability of funds and the timeliness of application.

Federal TEACH Grant Program

Through the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007, Congress created the Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program that provides grants of up to $4,000 per year to students who intend to teach in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families. If you are interested in learning more about the TEACH Grant Program click here.

Federal Direct Loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized)

Federal Direct Loans are estimated and adjusted due to changes in enrollment status and/or federal, state or university funding. Eligibility for the Federal Direct Loan is determined from the information you submit on the FAFSA. "Need Based" students qualify for the Federal Direct Subsidized Loan (no interest while attending school). Students who do not demonstrate financial need may borrow from the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan (interest is accruing while in school). The interest rate on the Federal Direct Loans for the subsidized and unsubsidized is fixed 4.53%. Loan amounts are determined by the student's grade level: Freshmen (0-29 units) $3,500, Sophomore (30-59 units) $4,500, Junior and Senior (60 + units) $5,500. Repayment begins six months after graduation or after a student drops below half-time status. Visit our loan page for additional information.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Undergraduate Students

The Federal Direct PLUS Loan program is for the parents of dependent undergraduate students. Parents may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus any other financial assistance which the student is receiving. Federal Direct PLUS Loans are estimated and adjusted due to changes in enrollment status and/or federal, state or university funding. Federal Direct PLUS Loans are based, in part, on credit and are subject to approval by the lending institution. Federal Direct PLUS Loans are made by private lending institutions such as banks, savings and loan associations, and credit unions. The interest rate on a Federal Direct PLUS Loan is fixed at 7.08%. Income level is not a criteria for determining eligibility for this loan. A loan origination fee of up to four and a half percent will be deducted from the loan proceeds by the bank prior to disbursement of the loan. Visit our loan page for additional information.

Return of Title IV Aid (R2T4) 

The Office of Financial Assistance is required by federal statute as stated in Federal Regulations, 34 CFR parts 668, 682, and 685 Return of Title IV Aid to recalculate federal financial aid eligibility for students who withdraw, stop attending classes, are dismissed, or take a leave of absence prior to completing 60% of a payment period or term of enrollment. Federal Title IV financial aid programs must be recalculated in these situations. If a student withdraws from all classes prior to completing 60% of a payment period or term of enrollment, the Office of Financial Assistance recalculates eligibility for Title IV funds. A student will earn 100% of the Title IV funds when more than 60% of the payment period is completed. Title IV financial aid includes Federal Direct Loan Programs, Federal Pell Grant, Federal TEACH Grant and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program (FSEOG).

Students that received Federal Aid/Title IV Funds on their student account and/or through a refund, are subject to a Return of Title IV Funds Calculation if they withdraw from all enrolled classes in a semester. The Return of Title IV Calculation will be completed within 30 days after the date the institution determines the student is withdrawn.

The withdrawal date will determine the amount of unearned aid. The amount of federal funding returned is determined by the Return of Title IV Funds Program calculation. Funds are returned in the following order: Federal Subsidized Direct Loan, Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan, Federal PLUS Loan, Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG and Federal TEACH Grant. Additional information regarding the return of federal funds may be obtained from the Office of Financial Assistance. The return of federal funds may result in an outstanding balance on the student's account. If a student's account is not paid in full by the due date, it will accrue finance charges. Outstanding balances on a student's account may prevent students from registering for classes.

Review the R2T4 calculator for an estimate of your unearned aid if applicable.

Federal Work-Study Program

Federal Work-Study provides an opportunity for student employment while enrolled in college. Most of the jobs are campus based. Through the Federal Work-Study program the student may earn up to the amount of his/her award by working for an on-campus or non-profit, off-campus employer in an approved Federal Work-Study job. Wages are paid in part by the federal government and in part by Pepperdine. An applicant must demonstrate financial need to qualify for this program. Award amounts are based on availability of funds and number of applicants. Current award amounts are $3,000 per academic year. Current pay rates vary, starting at minimum wage. If you are interested in learning more about the student employment program, please contact the Office of Student Employment at (310) 506-4177 or visit the Student Employment website.

 State Financial Assistance

California Grant (Cal Grant)

Cal Grant awards are offered by the State of California to California resident students who are U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens. The Cal Grant A program provides funds to be used for tuition only. The Cal Grant A award is based on academic achievement and financial need. The current Cal Grant A award range is $8,322 to $9,708. The Cal Grant B program provides a stipend for living expenses in the first award year; in subsequent years, funds for tuition and fees as well as the stipend are provided. The Cal Grant B award is based solely on financial need. The current Cal Grant B award is a $1,551 stipend payment and up to a $9,708 grant for tuition and fees. Students should apply for the Cal Grant by filing the FAFSA form and the G.P.A. verification form by the deadline of March 2. These amounts are subject to change based on pending legislation. For additional information regarding assistance available from the state of California as well as tips to apply for California aid, feel free to visit the California Student Aid Commission's web site.


To be considered for a Cal Grant award, students must list a four year California College or University as one of their first six choices of schools on the FAFSA.


CalFresh is a nutrition program that can help households buy healthy foods. In California, CalFresh used to be known as the Food Stamp Program. Nationally, the program is called SNAP. It is funded by the federal government. CalFresh benefits are issued on an EBT card that works like a debit card and can be used at most grocery stores and many farmers markets to purchase food.

Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 as it relates to students of higher education and their eligibility for CalFresh. The Act introduces two temporary changes to the CalFresh student eligibility rule to expand eligibility to students who are eligible for federal or state work study or who have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of zero dollars.

ACL 21-11 (January 22, 2021)
CalFresh Student Eligibility: COVID-19 Relief Package

Please contact the Office of Financial Assistance for Verification of Work Study form completion.