Scholarships & Financial Aid

We invest in musicians with the potential to make a difference in the world. Whether you found music at age 2 or 22, there’s a place for you at Longy. Here, all lived experiences and skills are welcome and all kinds of musicians succeed. We pledge to remove barriers to your conservatory education. For example, when we award scholarships, we look to how you’ll contribute, both artistically and personally.

Average Aid Received by Each Student: 55%

Sources of Financial Aid

At Longy, we understand that an education is a significant financial investment. We do our best to work with each student to make this investment possible. The following sources of aid can help students find the means to finance their education:

Merit Scholarships
Longy offers competitive scholarships based on merit and institutional need. All applicants are considered for institutional aid after completing the  standard application procedures. 97% of Longy students receive merit scholarships.

Teaching Assistantship
Teaching Assistants receive up to a $10,000 yearly deduction from tuition and work 10 hours per week within the public-school system and/or El Sistema nucleos that participate in Longy’s Sistema Side by Side Orchestra. Teaching is an essential skill for every musician, and Teaching Assistantships enable students to gain valuable, hands-on classroom and pedagogical experience. Though primarily music mentors, Teaching Assistants also have the opportunity to lead sectionals, help plan lessons, and work collaboratively with expert instructors. Applicants to Longy wishing to be considered for an assistantship can note their interest in the online application.

Graduate Fellowships
Graduate Fellowship opportunities offer real-world professional experience, enabling students to broaden their horizons while reducing tuition fees by up to $8,000 annually. By working in academic or administrative departments, Longy’s Graduate Fellows receive training in valuable skills which will serve them well in the changing professional music world. Graduate fellows work in their assigned position for 10 hours per week. Applicants to Longy wishing to be considered for a Fellowship can note their interest in the online application.

Federal Aid (available for US Citizens and Permanent Residents)
Includes Pell Grant, Direct Loan, Direct PLUS Loan, and Direct Grad PLUS. More information is available  here.

Private Loans
Private education loans are considered last-resort financing. Longy does not maintain a preferred lender list. Students may explore this option online.

Instructions for applying for aid are located  here.

To be eligible for the full range of financial aid available, US citizens and permanent residents must apply for financial aid each year.  Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress to retain Longy scholarships/assistantships and cannot default on prior student loans to be eligible for federal funds.

2022-2023 Estimated Cost Of Attendance

Your cost of attendance includes billed and non-billed expenses.

Billed items include full-time tuition & fees
Master of Music $49,500
Undergraduate Diploma $49,500
Master of Music in Music Education Online $25,750 (one year)
$27,400 (two years)
Master of Music in Music Education In Person $49,500
Graduate Performance Diploma $40,000
Graduate Diploma in Composition $40,000
Fees Per Year
Student Services Fee $450
Technology Fee $400
Matriculation Fee (one time, first term) $125
Library Fee (per year) $200
$250 (MM/ME programs)
Repertoire Coaching (Vocal Studies, per semester – optional) $900
Accompanying Fee (Vocal Studies, Hist.Perf, Strings, WW & Brass) $175
Graduation Fee (last term, all graduating students) $75
Student Health Insurance Fee* $5,049 (Graduate)
$3,255 (Undergraduate)
Non-billed expenses include
Estimated Off-Campus Living $12,430 (MA campus)
$17,199 (CA campus)
Books, supplies, instrument repair $500
Transportation $1,000 (MA campus)
$978 (CA campus)
Miscellaneous/Personal (includes estimated health insurance) $3,000
Additional MAT fees
Estimated Certificate of Teaching Credentialing (CTC) Fee* $1,200**

*The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires all students enrolled three-quarter time or more in a higher education institution to maintain adequate health insurance. Some U.S. citizens and permanent residents may be permitted to waive insurance provided through Longy School of Music of Bard College. U.S. citizens or permanent residents in California are not required to enroll but may be covered upon request. International students are required to purchase the School’s insurance.

Fees related to requirements for California single-subject credentials are incurred by the MAT student. These requirements include:

  • CTC application for teaching credential
  • California Technology Assistance Project (CTAP)
  • U.S. Constitution course or exam
  • California Basic Education Skills Test (CBEST)
  • California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET)
  • TaskStream registration
  • Certificate of Clearance (fingerprinting and TB test)
  • Certificate of Clearance
Apply for Aid

All applicants will be considered for merit-based financial aid based on their application for admission and audition. There is no additional application.

Prospective graduate students may apply for a Graduate Fellowship or Teaching Assistantship through the online application.

Candidates for Longy’s teacher preparation programs will be considered for fully-funded fellowships. Recipients will receive full tuition remission to these one-year, El Sistema-inspired degree programs leading to teaching licensure. The award will be given to a qualified candidate in each program who demonstrates a passion for working in underserved communities and the potential for leadership in the field through their application materials.

Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress to retain Longy merit-based aid. Returning students must complete a Scholarship Renewal Form each spring to maintain their awards.

To be eligible for the full range of aid available, students must apply each year. Students cannot default on prior student loans to be eligible for federal funds.

To receive federal financial aid, U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Longy is listed as Bard College-Longy School of Music and the FAFSA school code is 021430. Priority deadline for submission is the last Friday in February.

All Federal student aid programs are administered in accordance with applicable regulations concerning eligibility, awards, and disbursement.  Students will receive revised notification if funding changes. Federal funds are tentative awards until final disbursements are processed.

Types of Federal Financial Aid can be found in the section below.

Students may apply for privately funded scholarships from outside sources on their own. It is recommended that students apply at least a year prior to the start of the academic year. Be cautious of scams and only apply to legitimate scholarship organizations if conducting your own online scholarship search. Students are advised to research the organizations thoroughly and submit applications before deadlines. Many fraternal, industrial, community, and religious organizations sponsor scholarship and loan programs. Financial plans should be made well in advance of any payment deadlines. Students should never pay to apply for a scholarship.

Types of Federal Aid

The Pell Grant program provides Title IV grants to U.S. Citizens, Permanent Residents, and certain groups of eligible non-citizens who have not yet completed an undergraduate program. Applicants must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The duration of a student’s eligibility for Pell Grant is 12 semesters or its equivalent. The 12 semester life-time limit is the equivalent of six years of Pell Grant funding for the four-year Undergraduate Diploma. Attention transfer students: Pell Grant used at previous institutions count toward the six year Pell Grant, life-time limit.

Pell Grant amounts are based upon the expected family contribution (EFC) as determined by the FAFSA and enrollment level.

The William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (DL) program provides a host of loans to students and parents of dependent undergraduate students directly from the U.S. Department of Education (ED).  Direct Loan is the source for Subsidized or Unsubsidized Direct Loans, PLUS and GradPLUS loans, and Consolidation loans. Detailed Direct Loan information and application is available here.

The PLUS Loan is available to parents of dependent, undergraduate students who are U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents. Loan amounts range up to the Cost of Attendance, which includes non-billed expenses based on Longy’s nine month budget for items such as living expenses, books, supplies, travel, and miscellaneous personal expenses, minus any other aid. Parents may apply for the PLUS loan after May of the upcoming academic year. Students are advised to use the Subsidized Stafford and Unsubsidized Stafford Direct Loans, prior to a parent applying for the PLUS loan.

Graduate students are eligible for the Graduate PLUS loan. A student must have first applied for, and accepted, the annual maximum allowed for the Unsubsidized Stafford Direct Loan. To be eligible for the Graduate PLUS loan, the Department of Education must determine that the student does not have an adverse credit history. Eligible graduate students who have accepted their Direct Loan may borrow up to the Cost of Attendance, minus any other aid.

Federal Direct Loans are low-interest, long-term loans made to U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents enrolled in graduate and undergraduate programs. Students must be enrolled at least half-time, complete the FAFSA, and satisfy all other Federal Title IV eligibility guidelines.

The annual loan limits for Direct Subsidized loans and Direct Unsubsidized loans are based on academic levels as follows:

Dependent Undergraduate Students Subsidized Stafford Loan Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
Freshman $3,500 $2,000
Sophomore $4,500 $2,000
Junior/Senior $5,500 $2,000
Independent Undergraduate and Dependent Students Whose Parent Cannot Borrow a PLUS Loan Subsidized Stafford Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
Freshman $3,500 $6,000
Sophomore $4,500 $6,000
Junior/Senior $5,500 $7,000
Graduate and Professional Students Subsidized Stafford Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
N/A Up to $20,500

Aggregate Loan Limits:

Undergraduate Dependent Students: $31,000 (no more than $23,000 of which can be subsidized)

For first time, Direct Loan borrowers on or after July 1, 2013 there is a maximum eligibility period of time that an undergraduate can receive Direct Subsidized loan. You may not receive Direct Subsidized Loans for more than 150% of the published length of your program. This is called the “maximum eligibility period”. For example, if you are enrolled in a 4-year undergraduate program, the maximum period for which you can receive Direct Subsidized Loans is 6 years (150% of 4 years = 6 years). For detailed information regarding “maximum eligibility period” and becoming responsible for paying interest on Direct Subsidized Loans, please click here.

Undergraduate Independent Students: $57,500 (no more than $23,000 of which can be subsidized)

Graduate and Professional Students: defined by the Department of Education. Last published aggregate limit was $138,500.

Title IV Information

For Direct Loans and PLUS loans, students must be enrolled at least half-time. The definition of half-time for Longy’s programs, for financial aid purposes, is as follows:

Program Minimum attempted credits per semester
Undergraduate Diploma 6
Master of Music Degree 4
Graduate Performance Diploma *
Master of Art in Teaching *
*Students must be enrolled full-time in these programs.

For the Pell Grant program (undergraduates only), a Pell eligible student’s expected family contribution (EFC) and enrollment level determines the award amount and will be based on the following:

Number of Credits Enrollment Level
12 Full-time
9-11 Three-quarter-time
6-8 Half-time

Loans and grants issued by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) are classified by the federal government as Title IV funds; this includes Pell Grant, and William D. Ford Direct Loans: Subsidized/Unsubsidized Stafford loans, and PLUS/Graduate PLUS loans.

If a student withdraws (officially or unofficially) after the start of classes and is receiving federal financial aid, a Return of Title IV calculation determines the type and amount of aid that is earned and the amount that must be returned to the ED.

The amount of Title IV aid that is earned is based on the percentage of the semester completed by the student. This percentage is computed by determining the total number of days the student attended in the semester (excluding breaks that are five or more consecutive days in length) and then dividing this number by the number of days in the semester. For example, if there are 106 days in the semester and a student withdraws after attending 30 days, the percentage of Title IV funds earned is 30/106 or 28.3%. After a student has attended more than 60% of the semester, that student is considered to have earned the aid awarded for the semester.

The Registrar is responsible for notifying the Office of Student Financial Assistance of a student’s official withdrawal date. If a student unofficially withdraws, the Registrar will examine the student’s situation and sets a withdrawal date if circumstances such as illness, accident, or grievous personal loss warrant it. If a student takes a Leave of Absence (see Leave of Absence detailed under Academic Policies) during any semester, the school is required to perform this Return of Title IV calculation. Longy will follow ED rules for all other unofficial withdrawals, and the mid-point of the semester shall be considered the withdrawal date.

The order in which Title IV funds are returned are first grants (Pell Grant), second Direct Loans (Unsubsidized Loan, Subsidized Loan), and finally PLUS loans.

Students who owe a balance after they withdraw will receive a bill from Longy. Until the bill is paid, students will not be able to register for classes or obtain copies of their academic transcripts.

A student who must return funds to the Department of Education as determined by this calculation must repay the funds to the school and/or to the U.S. Department of Education within the timeframe dictated by ED. If the student is required to return unearned funds, they have 45 days from the date of the bill to do one of the following: pay in full or make satisfactory repayment arrangements. If the student has not repaid or made satisfactory repayment arrangement within 45 days, the overpayment will be reported to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) and referred for collection to the Department of Education.

Funds returned to the ED based on this calculation have no relationship to the student’s incurred institutional charges (see the Tuition and Fees section for details [link to Tuition and Fees]). Students planning to withdraw may visit the Office of Student Financial Assistance for further information.


  1. Longy does not participate in revenue-sharing arrangements with any lender. Longy does not engage in any arrangements that would result in a lender paying a fee or other benefits, including a share of the profits, to the school, its officers, employees, or agents, as a result of the school recommending the lender to its students or families of those students.
  2. Longy bans employees of the Office of Student Financial Assistance from receiving gifts from any lender, guaranty agency, or loan servicer. This is not limited just to those providers of Title IV loans but also private education loans offered to students. Lenders, guarantee agencies, or servicers may offer specific types of activities or literature including:
    • Brochures or training material related to default aversion or financial literacy
    • Food, training, or informational materials as part of training that contributes to professional development
    • Entrance and exit counseling as long as the institution’s staff is in control and provides neutral information about student debt
    • Philanthropic contributions from a lender, guaranty agency, or servicer unrelated to education loans
    • State education grants, scholarships, or financial aid funds administered by or on behalf of the state
  3. Longy bans contracting arrangements whereby an employee of the school’s financial aid office would accept a fee, payment, or financial benefit as compensation for any type of consulting arrangement or contract to provide services to or on behalf of a lender relating to education loans.
  4. The school is prohibited from steering borrowers to particular lenders or delaying loan certifications. This includes assigning any first-time borrower’s loan to a particular lender as part of their award packaging or other methods.
  5. Longy does not request or accept offers of funds in exchange for private loans. This includes any offer of funds for loans to students at the institution, including funds for an opportunity pool loan, in exchange for providing concessions or promises to the lender for a specific number of loans, or inclusion on a preferred lender list.
  6. Longy bans staffing assistance from a lender. This includes any assistance with call center staffing or financial aid office staffing. Lenders may offer assistance related to:
    • Professional development training for financial aid administrators
    • Providing educational counseling materials, financial literacy materials, or debt management materials to borrowers, provided that such materials disclose to borrowers the identification of any lender that assisted in preparing or providing such materials
    • Staffing services on a short-term, nonrecurring basis to assist the school with financial aid-related functions during emergencies, including state-declared or federally-declared natural disasters, and other localized disasters and emergencies identified by the Secretary of the Department of Education.
  7. Longy bans advisory board compensation. Longy employees may not receive anything of value from a lender, guarantor, or group in exchange for serving in this capacity. They may, however, accept reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred while serving in this capacity.

A post-withdrawal disbursement of Federal Title IV aid occurs when the amount of Title IV aid earned by the student is greater than the amount of the Title IV aid disbursed for the semester. A student eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement will receive written notification. Students have the right to accept or decline, some, or all, of the post-withdrawal disbursement that is being offered. Students are given 14 days from the date of the notification to respond. Students are encouraged to seriously consider whether it is beneficial to accept a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the Title IV disbursement is the result of a Federal Direct Loan, it must be repaid under the terms of the appropriate promissory note. Also, any disbursement received from Title IV funds may reduce award eligibility for the corresponding award(s) at Longy or another college attended during the same award year. Any opportunity to keep loan debt at a minimum should be considered.

Repayment Options
  • Standard: monthly payments for 10 years.
  • Graduated: initial payments are lower and then increase gradually during the repayment period.
  • Income Sensitive: available through Direct Loans only, the monthly payment is based on the student’s income.
  • Extended Repayment: allows for a longer repayment period.
  • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) available to FFEL (Federal Family Education Loan) and Direct Loan borrowers repaying loans on or after July 1, 2009. This will help borrowers keep their loan payments affordable with payment caps based on income and family size and could offer loan forgiveness after the repayment period.
  • Pay As You Earn: A ‘new borrower’ as of Oct. 1, 2007 who also received a Direct Loan disbursement on or after Oct. 1, 2011 and who has partial financial hardship (determined by ED) is eligible to use this repayment plan. A ‘new borrower’ means you have no outstanding balance on a Direct Loan or FFEL as of Oct. 1, 2007.

For more information on loan repayment plans, click here.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness is available to federal student loan borrowers who work in certain types of ‘public service’ jobs. When you make each of those payments, you must be working at a qualifying public service organization. Qualifying employment is any employment with a federal, state, or local government agency, entity, or organization or a non-profit organization that has been designated as tax-exempt by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC). It may forgive remaining debt after 10 years of eligible employment and qualifying loans. During those years the Income-Based Repayment (IBR) plan can help keep your loan payments affordable. Click here for further details.


How do you file a FAFSA?
The fastest and easiest way to file a FAFSA is online at which is available annually on January 1 for the upcoming academic year. If you are filing online and are required to submit parent information, you and your parent must each sign the form electronically using your own FSA ID (available at Independent students should simply list their own information and own FSA ID.

What happens next after submitting the FAFSA?
If you are selected for Verification, you must complete the Verification Form Worksheet and submit copies of your and your parent’s IRS Tax Returns Transcript (if dependent) or go back to the FAFSA and use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool. Written notification of scholarship awards and financial aid eligibility will be emailed beginning in the spring for students whose files are complete by the priority date (last Friday in February) and then on a rolling basis based on the received dated of the FAFSA data. Then, you must sign and return one copy of the award letter indicating the amount of financial aid you wish to receive.

Do I need to file my taxes before completing the FAFSA?
No. If you have not completed your tax returns by the FAFSA priority deadlines, you can use estimates to submit the FAFSA. It is better to use estimated financial information than to miss the deadlines. Once the IRS filing date has passed, it’s best to use the completed tax information.

When will I receive my financial aid?
Financial aid and scholarships will be credited to the student’s account at the beginning of the term or as funds are received, whichever is later. All proceeds received by the School are disbursed within 3 days.

When will I get a refund check?
If the amount of aid exceeds the amount billed, the student will be notified of a refund check by the Business Office within ten days. Students are asked to pick up and cash the refund check as soon as possible, preferably within a week. The Business Office will return any unclaimed checks to the Department of Education after the final notification.

What are the tuition charges for the academic year?
Complete tuition and fee information for all programs can be found here.

Are Longy Scholarships need-based?
No. Longy Scholarships are based on merit combined with the programmatic needs of the school.

What is Longy’s FAFSA school code?
Longy’s school code is 021430 and the school is listed as Bard College-Longy School of Music.

What are the important dates in the financial aid process?

  • December 1:  Priority admissions application deadline
  • January 1:  FAFSA is available online for the upcoming academic year
  • January 5: Regular admissions application deadline
  • Last week of February:  Priority FAFSA deadline
  • April 10:  Continuing student deadline to submit their “Scholarship Renewal Form

When will students receive notification of their financial aid award?
Admitted applicants whose financial aid paperwork is complete will be emailed a letter containing information about their award beginning in March. Award letters are emailed on a rolling basis to returning students whose files are complete after the priority date. Students are responsible for maintaining updated email address with Information Systems and Academic Affairs and checking their Longy email correspondence on a regular basis.