May 26, 2024  
ARCHIVED 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog 
ARCHIVED 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Fees, Expenses, and Financial Aid

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Western Carolina University holds its charges to the minimum commensurate with the provision of needed services. The following schedule of fees, due and payable by the payment deadline for each semester, will be effective beginning with the fall semester of the 2012-2013 academic year. The university reserves the right to alter any charges without prior notice upon direction from appropriate governing authorities.

Application for admission must be accompanied by a $50, nonrefundable application processing fee, in the form of a check or money order made payable to Western Carolina University unless exempted by one of the following conditions:

  1. The applicant has been enrolled previously for courses at WCU.
  2. The applicant has filed an application for admission within the previous two calendar years.
  3. Applicants who meet one of these conditions are not required to pay the $50 application fee.

Payment of Fees. All charges are due and payable on or before the payment deadline for each semester. Payment may be made by mailing a check, cashier’s check or money order, to the Student Accounts Office, in-person at the One Stop in the Killian Annex, or on-line by credit card or check through MyCat. In accordance with state policy, a processing fee of $25 is assessed for returned checks. A processing fee of $5.00 will be assessed for ACH payments with incorrect account information.

Any fees or fines not paid will cause the university to withhold the issuing of transcripts and block registration for classes until all debts are cleared.

Students who preregister will be required to remit full payment of tuition and fees by August 1 for fall semester (December 15 for spring semester) in order to retain their preregistered class schedules. After this deadline, schedules of undergraduate students who have preregistered and not paid will be canceled. The class seats made available thereby will be offered to these and all other students who register in the regular registration and drop-add periods at the beginning of the semester.

Tuition and Housing Deposits


Tuition and Fees. New students who are admitted to Western Carolina University for the fall semester are required to remit a $150 nonrefundable tuition deposit as soon as possible but no later than May 1st. By doing so, the student reserves a place in the entering class and establishes eligibility to preregister for courses to be taken in the first term of enrollment. This amount is due and payable upon notification of acceptance for admission and must be paid prior to participation in course preregistration. The payment is fully creditable to charges for the first semester of enrollment. The tuition deposit is not required for summer semester enrollees except for students enrolled in the Academic Success Program.

Housing. New students who intend to live on the University campus must remit a $150 nonrefundable housing deposit as soon as possible but no later than May 1st. Freshmen students are required to live on campus. Freshmen living in Jackson, Macon, Haywood, and Swain Counties may apply for a Housing Waiver to live at home. This amount is due and payable upon notification of admission and is fully creditable to housing charges for the first semester of enrollment. Returning students are required to remit a $150 nonrefundable housing deposit by June 1 of each year to secure residence hall spaces for the next academic year. This payment is fully creditable to first semester housing charges.

After June 1, requests and payments for campus housing will be accepted on a space-available basis.

Resident and Distance Learning Tuition and Fee Charges

The university classifies its programs and courses into two categories: resident and distance learning (DL). Students should become familiar with the classification of their programs, because each has a different tuition and fee structure. Resident programs are located on campus in Cullowhee or at resident centers in Asheville/Buncombe County and Cherokee. Degree or certificate programs that are approved for DL serve students away from the Cullowhee campus and its resident centers. Course sections are classified as resident or distance based on the intended population to be served. Although course section classifications as resident or distance typically follow program designations, there are exceptions. So, during the on-line registration process, students should look at the CAMPUS designation to determine whether the course section is a resident or distance course for tuition purposes.

Tuition and fees are based on program and/or course section campus classification and are applied to all academic terms. Typically, resident and distance students enroll in course sections in the same classification as their program (e.g. distance students enroll in distance courses). Occasionally, students may find it necessary to enroll in a course section whose designation is different from the classification of their approved programs. When this occurs, distance and part-time resident students will be charged the tuition and fees associated with the classification of each individual course section (resident or distance). Full-time resident students will be charged their full-time rate regardless of the combination of resident and distance course sections. Since there is no full-time rate for DL students, they will be charged the part-time rate for resident courses in which they enroll unless their program has a special provision to be charged otherwise. Special provisions may be approved for specific programs (e.g. Military and Jamaican programs).

Fees Per Semester


Tuition rates are reviewed and set annually by the North Carolina Legislature. The University reserves the right to alter any charges without prior notice.

*Pending approval by the Board of Governors

Full-time Student

UNDERGRADUATE—tuition and required fees, NC  


UNDERGRADUATE—tuition and required fees, out-of-state  


GRADUATE—tuition and required fees, NC  


GRADUATE—tuition and required fees, out-of-state  


GRADUATE—*CRNA Program tuition and required fees, NC   $6,270.00
GRADUATE—*CRNA Program tuition and required fees, out-of-state   $11,062.50

*CRNA-Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist

DOCTORATE—Physical Therapy tuition and required fees, NC    $4,205.00
DOCTORATE—Physical Therapy tuition and required fees, out-of-state   $9,956.00
Residence Halls
  Standard Residence Hall
    •Single Room  


    •Double Room  


    •Single Room  


    •Double Room  


  Central Drive Hall
    •Single Room  


    •Double Room  


  Balsam/Blue Ridge  
    •Single Room   $2,830.00
    •Double Room   $2,459.00
  Robertson (Married Students)
    •Double Room   $1,881.00


    •One bedroom  


  Madison (Graduate Students)
    •3rd Floor  


    •4th Floor   $2,713.00
  Village   $2,513.00




  Norton Road    
    •Single Room  


    •Double Room  


Meal Plans**
CATAMOUNT PLUS —Unlimited All-you-care-to-eat meals per semester   $1,719.00
   plus $260.00 declining balance    
GOLD—125 All-you-care-to-eat meals per semester  


  plus $718 Declining Balance  


CATAMOUNT UNLIMITED — Unlimited All-you-care-to-eat meals per semester   $1,459.00
PURPLE—80 All-you-care-to-eat meals per semester plus $799.00 declining balance   $1,356.00
Any 21 Meal Plan   $1,459.00


COMMUTER COMBINED—$25 All-you-care-to-eat plus $374.00 declining balance  




Add on Block Meals (15)   $102.00

**Freshmen must choose either the Catamount, Catamount Plus, or Gold Plan.

Per Semester Charges Detail
Full-time Student   North Carolina

$ 1,698.50



*Required Fees  

$ 1,754.00


$ 1,745.00

**Book Rental Fee  

$ 107.00


$ 107.00

***Room (standard double)  




****Board (125 AYCE + $718DB)  

$ 1,570.00


$ 1,570.00





*Fees include $383.00 for Health Insurance Fee. May be waived by verifying coverage at

Fall 2011 & Spring 2012 Distance Learning Tuition and Fees


Tuition and Fees per Semester Hour
  In-State   Out-of-State  
Undergraduate $133.78  



Graduate $213.58  



Military see above  

$ 250.00


Fees for Distance Education include Education and Technology, Association of Student Government, and Administrative Computing.

Late Registration and Payment: A Student who registers after the last regular registration date will be charged a late fee of $10. Delinquent accounts will be assessed a one-time 1% late payment penalty and monthly interest at an interest rate established by the North Carolina Department of Revenue. 

Western Carolina University is a publicly supported institution. Tuition payments and other required fees meet only a part of the total cost of the education of students enrolled. On the average, for each full time student enrolled in an institution of the University of North Carolina, the State of North Carolina appropriated $12,668 per year in public funds to support the educational programs offered.

Students and parents can also find detailed information concerning the cost of college at

Dining Services

Meal Plan Requirement
University policy requires students who live in a residence hall to purchase a meal plan from the residential plans each semester. Unused declining balance points at the end of fall semester will transfer to spring semester for continuing students. Unused declining balance points are forfeited at the end of spring semester. Block Plan meals must be used in the semester for which they were purchased. Unused Block Plan meals do not transfer to the following semester and will be forfeited at the end of the semester. The balance remaining at the end of fall term does not change the requirement to purchase a meal plan for spring semester. No refunds will be issued for unused block meals or declining balance points.

Meal Plan Changes
Deadline for students to change their meal plan is the last day of course drop/add each semester.

Block Plan Meals
Block Meals are prepaid all-you-care-to-eat meals that can be used at Courtyard Dining Hall for any meal served. Block Plan meals are available to use throughout the semester. There is no limit on the number of meals that may be used during a specific day or week, but meals must be used in the semester for which they are purchased. Block Meals do not transfer from semester to semester. Block Meals may only be used at Courtyard Dining Hall.

Declining Balance Points
Declining Balance Points work on the same principle as bank debit cards. Each time you make a food purchase, the total cost of your purchase is subtracted from the point balance in your account. Declining balance points may be used at any campus dining location including the convenience stores and snack vending machines. Unused declining balance points at the end of fall semester will transfer to spring semester. Unused declining balance points at the end of spring semester are forfeited. No refunds will be issued for unspent declining balance points.

ID Card
A valid WCU Cat Card is required to use your meal plan. You must personally present your Cat Card to access your meal plan. You may not loan your card to another student. Cards presented in dining locations by someone other than the card owner will be confiscated. Cards and replacements may be obtained in the Killian Annex at One Stop Student Service Center. Cards that are damaged or the picture is impaired may be confiscated. Lost or stolen cards must be reported immediately to the Cat Card office or to University Police in order to have the card declared invalid. The University and Dining Services are not liable for purchases made with lost or stolen cards.

Serving Dates
Your meal plan can be used during scheduled service times from lunch on the day residence halls open until residence halls close at the end of the semester except during these University holidays: Thanksgiving Break (Wednesday – Sunday lunch), Winter Break, and Spring Break. Serving dates and hours of operation at individual dining locations are described on our website at Holiday hours will also be posted several days in advance at each location and will be available on the website.

Meal Plans

Standard Declining Balance ($1,071.00 per semester)
(Available to sophomores, juniors,
seniors and graduate students based on
credit hours)

Catamount ($1,459.00 per semester***)
(Available to all students)

Catamount Plus ($1,719.00 per semester))
Unlimited “All-you-care-to-eat” meals plus $260.00 declining balance points
(Available to all students)

Gold 125 Block Plan ($1,570.00 per semester)
125 “All-you-care-to-eat” meals
+ $718 Declining Balance Points
(Available to all students)

Purple 80 Block Plan ($1,356.00 per semester)
80 “All-you-care-to-eat” meals
+ $799 Declining Balance Point
(Available to sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduate students based on credit hours)

Commuter ($547.00 per semester)
25 “All-you-care-to-eat” meals
+ $374 Declining Balance Points

Part-time Student

Undergraduate, enrolled for eleven or fewer hours; graduate, enrolled for eight or fewer hours.

  Undergraduate   Graduate
  In-State   Out-of-State   In-State   Out-of-State



$ 534.78


$ 1,734.78


$ 565.38


$ 1,763.38



























































































For each course scheduled for audit, a charge will be made equal to the credit hour value of the audited course.

Other Fees

Undergraduate admission application fee (one time only)   $50
Graduation fee   $60
Late fee   $10
Cap, gown, and hood   Obtained through WCU Bookstore
CLEP, GRE, NTE, etc.   Fee set by Educational Testing Service
Kimmel School of Construction Management and Technology   $75 per semester
Transcript Fee – Non-enrolled students   $10.50

* Required fees include: Health Services, $130.00; Recreational and Cultural, $265.00; Athletics, $344.00; Athletic Facilities, $48.00; Documents Fee, $10.00; Education and Technology, $255.00; ASG, $.50; Student Recreation Center Debt Fee, $77.00; Transportation Fee, $40.00, Administrative Computing, $26.00; University Center Debt Fee, $12.00; Dining facility debt fee, $56.50; Health Insurance, $383.50 (Nonrefundable. Required by degree-seeking students enrolled for at least 6 hours. May be waived by verifying coverage at
** Textbooks are available to graduate students by purchase only.
***With standard residence hall - double room rate.
****The all-you-care-to-eat meal plans combine an All-You-Care-To-Eat program located at Courtyard Dining Hall and a declining balance account that can be used at the other food-service locations on campus. “All You Care to Eat” plans include block meals that can be used any time during the semester, within normal facilities operating hours. Declining balance meal purchases are deducted throughout the term from a student’s available balance of declining balance points. During the semester, any student with a declining balance account may make additional prepayments in minimum increments of $50 to increase the balance .

***** The student fee supports the high tech laboratories and computer software utilized by these majors.

Refund Policies


Academic Year Tuition and Fees. During a fall or spring semester, a full-time or part-time student who withdraws from the university before the first day of classes will be refunded 100 percent of tuition and fees. Students who withdraw from the university beginning the first day of classes are entitled to refunds of tuition and fees in accordance with the following schedule (with the exception of the non-refundable health insurance fee):

First day of classes   95 percent
1 to 11 calendar days following the first day of classes   90 percent
12 to 28 calendar days following the first day of classes   50 percent
29 to 57 calendar days following the first day of classes   25 percent
58 calendar days following the first day of classes   0 percent

Students who withdraw from the university as a result of involuntary recall to military service, pursuant to a Presidential order authorizing the call-up of reservists, and who are thereby prevented from receiving credit for the courses in which they are enrolled will be entitled to a full refund of tuition and fees. Refunds of room and board charges will be prorated based on the number of days the dormitory room was occupied and the meal ticket was used. Students having the declining balance meal plan will be refunded the actual account balance at the time of withdrawal. Students who reduce their course loads during the registration period for the semester as defined in this catalog but who continue to be enrolled in the university will have their tuition and fees adjusted fully to reflect only the number of semester hours in which they remain enrolled. Part-time students are eligible for a refund based on the semester-hour tuition rate. Full-time students are eligible for a refund only when course loads are reduced below the minimum hours required to qualify as full-time. No adjustment will be made for reduced loads after the close of the registration period. However, students who drop all courses must withdraw from the university. They are, therefore, eligible only for the partial refunds that apply to university withdrawals.

Summer School Tuition and Fees. A student who withdraws from summer school before the first day of classes will be refunded 100 percent of tuition and fees. Students who withdraw from the University beginning the first day of classes are eligible for refunds through the first fifty percent of the summer session. The refund prorations for summer school are available from the Student Accounts Office. Summer school students who reduce their course loads by one or more semester hours within three days following regular registration or on or before the date of the second class meeting, whichever is later, will have tuition and fees adjusted to reflect the number of semester hours in which they remain enrolled.

Room and Board. Refunds of room fees for any semester or summer term will be calculated at the same rate as tuition and fees. Meal plan refunds for standard meal plans will be calculated based on a prorated daily balance. Meal plan refunds for declining balance plans will be based on the actual balance remaining on the student account at the time of withdrawal. All-you-care-to-eat meal plans have a standard declining balance component. Refunds for all-you-care-to-eat plans will be based on the policy applicable to each component. Refunds will not be made for the last two weeks of a semester or for the last week of a summer session.

Exceptions. Exceptions to these policies may be made if a student withdraws from the university for reasons of hardship. These reasons are defined as: (1) death of the student, (2) death in the student’s immediate family, (3) a medical condition that compels withdrawal upon recommendation of the director of Student Health Services, or (4) a mental health condition that compels withdrawal upon recommendation of the director of Counseling and Psychological Services. Requests for exceptions should be submitted to the Refund Appeals Committee, Academic Advising Center. Approved exceptions for refunds or account adjustments will be forwarded to the Student Accounts Office to make final settlement of the student’s account. All refunds, regardless of the source of payment, will be made by a check payable to the student.

Tuition Surcharge Policy


Effective Fall 2010, undergraduate students seeking a baccalaureate degree at Western Carolina University will be subject to a 50 percent tuition surcharge as required by the North Carolina General Statute Section 9.10.(b) § 116-143.7. Session Law 2009-451. Prior to Fall 2010, the surcharge is 25%. No surcharge will be imposed on any student who exceeds the degree credit hour limits within the equivalent of four academic years of regular term enrollment, or within five years of regular term enrollment in a degree program officially designated by the Board of Governors as a five-year program. As of Fall 2009, Western Carolina has no five-year programs approved by the Board of Governors.
Additional details can be found on the university’s website; keyword search “surcharge”.

Book Rental Plan


The WCU Bookstore Book Rental Department offers textbook rentals to on-campus undergraduate students for courses numbered 100-499. Students pay a flat fee of $107.00 each semester and are entitled to the adopted textbook used in each course for which they are registered. Part-time students pay a pro-rated amount equal to the number of semester hours for which the student is registered times the established hourly rate. This plan does not provide notebooks, workbooks, paperbacks, manuals, or supplemental books and materials; these are available for purchase at the Bookstore. Students may purchase Book Rental textbooks at replacement cost (list price less 20 percent), but this does not exempt them from paying the rental fee. Book Rental fees are included with tuition and can be paid in the One-Stop Office. Further information about the Book Rental Plan can be found at


Rental books must be returned no later than five working days after the last day of final exams each term (including Mini-Mester and Summer School). Unreturned books will be charged to your student account at replacement cost. Books returned after this five-day period will be credited to your student account at 1/2 the charged amount. Grossly mistreated books must be purchased. There are no exceptions to the above policy. Textbooks may be returned by mail. Include your full name and student ID number to:

WCU Bookstore
Attention Book Rental
Western Carolina University

Cullowhee , NC 28723Graduate students must purchase all required texts, regardless of course level. Textbooks for courses numbered 500 and above are available at the Bookstore. Textbooks for courses numbered below 500 are available for purchase at the Book Rental Department.

Residence Status for Tuition Purpose


Consistent with North Carolina’s public policy of providing the benefits of higher education as free as practicable to the people of our state, the General Assembly has placed stringent criteria on who qualifies as a bona fide resident of this state for tuition purposes. Residence status for tuition purposes in North Carolina is governed by general statute and the North Carolina State Residency Committee maintains a manual to assist students and their families in understanding both the legal and procedural requirements of resident classification for tuition purposes.

Section 1.C (page 5) from the North Carolina Resident Classification Manual is reprinted below:

Three broad points may be helpful in understanding and implementing state law governing the determination of residency for tuition purposes at institutions of higher education:

First, to appreciate the difference between residence and domicile. Residence is a place of abode, and may be either permanent or temporary. By contrast, domicile is never temporary; rather, it is one’s permanent, established home. To be domiciled in a particular place, one must intend to remain there for an indefinite period of time (permanently), and it is the place where one intends to return if absent. A person may have many residences, but may only have one domicile. For purposes of this Manual, “domicile” is synonymous with “legal residence.”

Second, generally speaking, state law mandates that only those who can demonstrate 12 months of uninterrupted domicile in North Carolina are eligible for in-state tuition. State law also places on applicants the burden of establishing, by a preponderance of evidence, that they are domiciled, rather than merely residing, in North Carolina. The 12-month (365 days) qualifying period begins at the time that a cluster of domiciliary acts is established as confirmed by valid evidence.

“To be eligible for classification as a resident for tuition purposes [in-state tuition], a person must establish that his or her presence in the State currently is, and during the requisite 12-month qualifying period was, for purposes of maintaining a bona fide domicile rather than of maintaining a mere temporary residence or abode incident to enrollment in an institution of higher education.” G.S. 116-143.1(c)

In short, a 12-month presence in North Carolina, even when coupled with a declaration of intent to remain permanently, does not, in and of itself, entitle an applicant to in-state tuition. Campuses still must evaluate evidence of domiciliary acts and make an independent determination of whether a bona fide domicile has been established.

Third, state law also makes the legal residence of an individual’s living parents or legal guardian prima facie evidence of the individual’s legal residence.8 This means that, at first view without further investigation or presentation of evidence, the legal residence of the applicant is the same as that of his or her living parent(s) or legal guardian. That prima facie evidence may be rebutted or reinforced by other evidence relative to the applicant’s age and general circumstances. Generally speaking, for an applicant with out-of-state parents, the older the applicant and more independent the applicant is from his or her parents, the more likely it is for the applicant to be able to demonstrate domicile in North Carolina.

Additional Resources. The North Carolina State Residency Classification Manual and additional information including information on the effect of marriage to a North Carolina resident, special treatment for certain members of  the military and their dependents, statutory grace period following the loss of domicile and other specific exemption written into general statute are available on the University’s website at . This website also includes deadline information as well as  links to the State Residency Committee’s website and the North Carolina General Statute governing residency. The burden of proof of in-state residence status rests on the student.

Financial Aid


The Financial Aid Office administers programs that assist students in meeting educational costs while attending Western Carolina University. Awards are offered on the basis of both need and academic eligibility. Applications for consideration of eligibility are filed annually at no cost to the student and family. Students interested in applying for financial aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This must be submitted as soon as possible after January 1 of each year the student will attend. The FAFSA can be accessed online at Western Carolina University should be listed as a recipient of the information by using school code 002981. The application should be completed as accurately as possible and conform with income tax information, since discrepancies require resubmission of information and consequent delay. The WCU Terms and Conditions form will be available in My Cat to applicants upon receipt of FAFSA information from the federal processor. Receipt of this information generally completes the application process, provided applicants are not selected for verification, which requires additional documents. Since the most attractive sources of financial assistance are very limited, applicants are encouraged to complete the FAFSA by the institutional priority deadline date of March 1st. Failure to complete the application may result in the loss of institutional grants or scholarships. Federal guidelines regarding student financial aid require that a recipient be making “satisfactory academic progress” toward a degree. A student must be progressing both qualitatively and quantitatively toward graduation within a prescribed time frame. To comply with these guidelines, Western Carolina University has defined minimum satisfactory academic progress for a full-time undergraduate student to remain eligible for financial aid according to the following criteria:

  • all undergraduate students must complete at least 67 percent of all hours attempted at Western Carolina University
  • students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 

Maximum Time Frame. A student cannot receive any financial aid funding after he or she has attempted 150% of the hours required to earn a degree. For example, students in programs requiring 120 hours earned for graduation will be eligible for financial aid during the first 180 attempted hours as an undergraduate. All attempted hours are counted, including transfer hours, whether or not financial aid was received or the coursework was successfully completed. This allows for double majors or change of majors.

Notification of Awards. Notification of awards, beginning with completed applications for aid received prior to April 1, will begin April 1 and will continue thereafter.

Types of Aid. Three principal types of aid are available: (1) scholarships and grants, which do not have to be repaid, (2) loans, usually long-term and low- interest, to be repaid after the student leaves college; (3) work-study, which is often related to the student’s field of study. .




Federal Pell Grants. Eligibility for assistance under the Pell Program is based on financial need as determined by a formula of the U.S. Department of Education that is applied uniformly to all applicants. Awards range from $831.00 to $5,550.00 per academic year depending upon the cost of attendance. Students who complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) are considered for Federal Pell Grant eligibility.

UNC Campus Scholarship. The UNC Campus Scholarship awards grant funds in support of advancing the academic benefits of a diverse student body. These limited funds are awarded to North Carolina residents who demonstrate financial need and who would bring an element of diversity to Western Carolina University’s campus environment. All applicants must apply for financial assistance by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

UNC Campus Scholarships for Native Americans. Under this Board of Governors program, North Carolina residents demonstrating need who are Native Americans enrolled in a tribe recognized by North Carolina are eligible. All applicants must apply for financial assistance by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students must demonstrate financial need and be enrolled as a full-time student. Awards are for $700 per academic year.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants. This program provides funds through participating educational institutions to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need who would be unable to enter or remain in an institution of higher education without such assistance. This grant is generally awarded only to students who are eligible for Pell Grants.

North Carolina Tuition Grants. Established by the General Assembly of North Carolina, these grants are awarded to North Carolina residents who are eligible for Pell Grants. The value of the grant is determined by the Pell Grant eligibility.

University of North Carolina Need-Based Grant. Students must be North Carolina residents for tuition purposes and enrolled in at least six credit hours at one of the UNC system universities. Eligibility is based on a calculation of need, using income data from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Award amounts may vary, based on legislative appropriations.

North Carolina Education Lottery Scholarship. Students must be North Carolina residents for tuition purposes and enrolled in at least six credit hours at one of the UNC system universities. Eligibility is based on a calculation of need, using income data from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Award amounts vary, based on an estimated family contribution of $5,000 or less.

Applying for Scholarships


A scholarship application is not required for incoming students to be considered for merit-based or need-based scholarships. Returning students will need to contact their academic department to see if an application is required for departmental scholarships.

Each year WCU awards hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships. Generally, these scholarships can be categorized as:

Merit-Based Scholarships

Available to all students, merit-based scholarships recognize achievement and not financial need. Academic records are used to match students with scholarships, so additional applications are not required.

For detailed information on these opportunities, contact the Honors College.

 Need-Based Scholarships

Available to students with demonstrated financial need as determined by Federal Methodology. To be considered for these scholarships, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) . Most need-based scholarships are renewable, but students must complete the FAFSA every year in order to establish eligibility.

 When exploring WCU scholarships, be sure to consider: 

  • Scholarships for entering freshman: An admissions application and acceptance to the university gives automatic consideration for many of these awards. Additionally, completing a FAFSA application may increase a student’s eligibility for other scholarship opportunities.
  • Academic Scholarships: Students with declared majors should contact their academic departments about scholarships.
  • Athletic Scholarships: Each WCU athletic team coordinates scholarships for outstanding students. For more information, contact WCU Athletics.
  • Leadership and Special Scholarships: Contact the Office of Student Affairs.

 For a full scholarship listing, please visit



Federal Perkins Loan. These loans are awarded to students who demonstrate financial need and meet the federal eligibility requirements. The maximum amount an eligible student may borrow is $5,500 per year as an undergraduate. The maximum aggregate loan amount for an eligible undergraduate student is $27,500. Interest and repayment start nine months after the student leaves school or drops below half-time status. The interest rate is five percent.

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan. These government-subsidized loans are available to students through the U.S. Treasury. They are insured by the federal government and are available to undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need and meet the federal eligibility requirements. Depending on demonstrated need, a student may borrow up to $3,500 as a freshman, $4,500 as a sophomore, and $5,500 per year for the third through fifth years of undergraduate work. There is a one percent origination fee with a variable interest rate. Repayment begins six months after the student leaves school or drops below half-time status.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan Program provides loans to students after their demonstrated need has been met. They are insured by the federal government and are available to undergraduate students. The maximum amounts to borrow are based on the grade level of the students. There is a one percent combined origination fee. The interest rate is different from the subsidized loan and the borrower is responsible for accrued interest.

Direct PLUS Loan for Parents. These loans provide funds to parents to help meet the cost of education. They may borrow up to the cost of education per child minus other financial aid. Borrowers may not have an adverse credit history to be determined eligible. There is a four percent origination fee with a variable interest rate, currently 7.9%. Interest starts upon disbursement of funds. The repayment period begins at the time the PLUS loan is fully disbursed, and the first payment is due within 60 days after the final disbursement.

Forgivable Education Loans for Service. The Forgivable Education Loan for Service (FELS) provides financial assistance to qualified students who are committed to working in North Carolina in fields designated as critical employment shortage areas. For additional information regarding this program, please visit




Federal Work-Study Program. Employment is available to eligible students to help them pay for college expenses. An effort is made to assign students to work related to their fields of study or to use their special interests and skills. This program is administered through the Financial Aid Office.

Resident Assistants. Positions as assistants in the residence halls are available to qualified undergraduate students. Contact the Department of Residential Living.

Other Part-time Work Opportunities. A part-time job service for students is operated through the Career Services/Cooperative Education Office. All non work-study job opportunities on the campus and some off-campus jobs are posted with Career Services/Cooperative Education. Students should check the on-line posted vacancies at


 Special Assistance


Veterans Administration Programs. Most veterans who served on active duty for more than 180 days, any part of which occurred after January 31, 1955, are generally eligible for financial support. Before communicating with the university about these benefits, prospective recipients should make inquiries and complete all requirements at their local Veterans Administration Office.

Vocational Rehabilitation Assistance. Assistance covering fees, books, and supplies is provided. To be eligible, an individual must have a disability that interferes with employment; show reasonable promise of becoming suitably employed within an acceptable period of time; and be of, or close to, working age. Further information can be obtained from local Vocational Rehabilitation offices.

War Orphans Education Assistance Act. Sons and daughters of deceased veterans and of totally disabled veterans who are eighteen through twenty-six years of age are eligible for financial aid if the death or disability of the parent was a result of service in the armed forces. Local Veterans Administration offices can supply complete details.