Grants and scholarships are free financial assistance available to fund your education.
Federal grants are funded by the federal government and awarded by the College based on our review of your financial aid application.
Individual states often have educational grants available to their residents (California offers the Cal Grant program). Although many state grants may not be transferable to out-of-state schools, all students should check with their state government for information on available assistance.
Merit Scholarships* are awarded by the Office of Admission during the admission application process. Merit scholarships are based on academic ability, achievement, motivation, and promise. Merit scholarships are awarded for four years (8 semesters) as long as the student maintains the minimum GPA required by the scholarship program.
Need-based grants and Opportunity Grants differ from merit scholarships as they are not linked to academic promise, but rather to a family’s financial situation. These awards are re-determined each year by the information you provide on your annual financial aid application. This aid is not guaranteed year-to-year.
The Barack Obama Scholars Program at Occidental College will empower the next generation of leaders in active pursuit of the public good. Obama Scholars will receive a loan-free financial aid offer covering tuition, room, board, books and other school-related expenses. This fully funded program will provide a comprehensive experience for exceptional students of all backgrounds who seek the opportunity to create lasting and meaningful change. Applicants to the College who demonstrate outstanding academic achievement and a commitment to the public good will be selected by the admission committee. There is no separate Obama Scholars application. This program is not being offered for entering fall 2021 students.
Occidental College is a proud participant in the Yellow Ribbon program. Qualifying veterans and their spouse/dependents receive assistance to cover the full cost of tuition and fees at Occidental. If you are a veteran and are interested in attending Occidental, please also visit the Office of Admission page regarding Veterans. Qualifying veterans may also be eligible for additional institutional aid.
Normally funded by private corporations and organizations, outside scholarships offer students additional assistance for college. Outside scholarships normally help students reduce the amount of loans they borrow.
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