Carnegie Mellon University

Access & Affordability

Carnegie Mellon works closely with families who are eligible for financial aid to develop a comprehensive financial aid package tailored to their circumstances. 

Student financial aid packages may be comprised of scholarships and grants, student employment, and loans. In addition, options like the monthly payment plan may be suggested as a way to help budget payments of educational expenses and to limit debt. Like any major investment, most families pay for education with a mix of current income, savings and borrowing. Finding the right balance among these resources can save money. 

Financing a Carnegie Mellon Education

Financing a college education takes creativity, commitment and support. Carnegie Mellon commits tens of millions of grant dollars annually to support students with financial need.

Of those grant dollars in 2015-2016, $9.6 million were generated by contributions from generous donors who contribute to scholarship funds in the Carnegie Mellon endowment. Also in 2015-2016, 85 percent of our full-time undergraduate students had their financial need met with packages that consisted of a combination of federal financial assistance and Carnegie Mellon dollars. Some packages also included state grants and outside scholarships. 

Pie Chart ($78.8 million in CMU grants awarded)

In 2015-2016, 76.5% of Carnegie Mellon's $102.9 million financial aid expenditure was from CMU grant dollars (including SEOG). The remainder of the expenditures included student loans (14.4%), ROTC and outside scholarships/grants (4.1%), federal and state grants (3.6%), and work study (1.4%).
Source: Institutional Research and Analysis ( 

CMU Enrollment Bulletin

The CMU Enrollment Bulletin showcases the latest research on financial aid, national student data, higher education topics and more. 

Topics include:

Financial Aid Landscape (pdf) >>

Return on Investment (pdf) >>

Managing Your Money

Personal financial literacy is more than just being able to balance a checkbook, compare prices or get a job. It also includes skills like long-term vision and planning for the future, and the discipline to use those skills every day. 

Carnegie Mellon has established a Financial Literacy Program - CMU MoneySense - to help educate our students and assist them in making informed decisions to reach their financial goals. 

Learn more about financial literacy at CMU

Line Graph (CMU Default Rate vs. Others)

Our graduates have a very low loan default rate as compared to similar institutions. In fiscal year 2013, CMU's default rate was 0.6% compared to other private, non-profit institutions, which was 6.5%. 

Source: Institutional Research and Analysis ( using data from the Department of Education.