Financial Aid and Scholarships

Aid Programs: Prospective Credential Students

Costs  |  Aid Programs  |  How to Apply for Aid (FAFSA)  |  How to Apply for Aid (DREAM)  |  After you Apply


The Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships at Cal Poly Pomona is your main resource for questions related to paying for your education.  We oversee the awardingdistribution and coordination of aid – including grants, loans, work-study funds, scholarships and tuition waivers.  

There are many tools available to help you pay for your education - from student loans with lower interest rates that get paid back, to grants (federal and state) and scholarships that don't, to work study and student employment to help you earn funds.  Learn more about the options available at Cal Poly Pomona below. 

Students in the Credential Program are considered 5th year undergraduate students, not graduate, for Financial Aid purposes. The types of financial aid available to students pursuing a teaching credential are very specific and different from undergraduate or graduate aid types. 

If you already possess an initial Teacher Credential, you will only be eligible for scholarships, federal loan funds (at the 5th year undergrad level) or for private education loans.

Scholarships are available to FAFSA and DREAM Applicants. 

Scholarships are considered gift-aid:  They don't need to be repaid!  There are thousands of them, offered by schools, employers, individuals, private companies, nonprofits, communities, religious groups, and professional and social organizations. 

A scholarship might cover the entire cost of your tuition, or it might be a one-time award of a few hundred dollars. Either way, scholarships are worth applying for as they can help you cover your educational costs, and reduce your dependence on loans. 

Our Scholarships page is your resource for information on a variety of Cal Poly Pomona, CSU and outside scholarship opportunities.   

Teacher Credential students, who filed a FAFSA, might be eligible for federal grants (Federal Grants are available only to FAFSA Applicants)

Students in the Education Specialist Credential program are not eligible for Federal Grants.

Federal Pell Grants

The Pell Grant is available only for your initial credential. These grants are awarded to eligible credential students who have not yet exhausted their Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility. The Pell grant varies based on financial need, as determined by your FAFSA application. 

Pell Grant lifetime eligibility is limited to 12 semesters at full-time enrollment or the equivalent (this includes all Pell Grant received for Undergraduate study).

Federal Teacher Education Educational Opportunity Grants (TEACH)   

The Federal TEACH Grant Program provides grants of up to $4,000 a year to students who intend to teach full time in a high-need field at a public or private elementary or secondary school that the U.S. Department of Education has designated as having a high concentration of students from low-income families. The Grant is available for selected credential programs, and requires the recipient to agree to fulfill certain teaching obligations – or risk having the grant will converted to an unsubsidized loan.

Eligibility for the TEACH Grant will be determined by Cal Poly Pomona, using guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Education. Check with the College of Education & Integrative Studies on whether your credential program meets the criteria for the TEACH Grant.

Federal Grant Fact Sheets 

California State Grants are available to FAFSA and DREAM Applicants. 

The California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) determines the eligibility for California State Grants – which are available only to California residents or students who qualify for the Non-Resident Tuition Exemption (AB540 status).   In general, you must submit your FAFSA or Dream Application by the March 2nd Priority Filing Deadline in order to be eligible for consideration for a State Grant.

Grants currently administered by CSAC and available to Credential Students from California State include: 

California Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) 

The California Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) is designed for Credential students with family incomes and assets (each) up to $201,000. MCS amounts are based on a sliding scale according to your family's income and the other kinds of support you receive. For more information on the program and eligibility requirements, visit the California Student Aid Commission's site about the Middle Class Scholarship.

Cal Grant – Extension of Eligibility for Teaching Credential Students

Cal Grants assist in paying for the State Tuition Fee for California Residents, who meet eligibility criteria established by CSACStudents who received a Cal Grant A or B as an Undergraduate, and who plan to enroll in a Teaching Credential Program (TCP) may be eligible to renew their grant in the first year of the credential program. Recipients must reactivate their Cal Grant benefits within 15 months of the term for which they last received payment. The Request for Cal Grant Teaching Credential Program Benefits Form (G-44) must be submitted to the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) to verify eligibility.

Golden State Education and Training Grant

The Golden State Education and Training Grant (GSETG) Program supports Californians who lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic with a one-time grant of $2,500 for reskilling, upskilling, or accessing educational programs to get back into the workforce.

Who Can Apply?

Both FAFSA and Dream Act students may apply for the Golden State Education and Training Grant program.  You are not required to submit a financial aid application to apply - but it is strongly recommended.


A Qualified Applicant:

  • Was displaced from employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Was not enrolled in a training program or institution of higher educatoin at the time they were displaced from employment
  • Has been unable to obtain employment that provides an average monthly wasge that is equal to or greater than the average monthly wage from their employment prior to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Meets the income and asset criteria to be eligible for a Cal Grant A grant (pursuant to subdivision (k) of California Education Code Section 69432.7)
  • Is now enrolled in an education program at an institution of higher education, an adult vocational or career training program provided by a K12 school or community college.

How to Apply

To apply, visit the CA Student Aid Commission's Golden State Education and Training Grant website.  

You will be asked to login to your existing CSAC account, or will be asked to create a new one.

Students with a FAFSA or CA Dream Application on file will not need to provide financial information.  This without an aid application on file will be required to complete a short, supplemental application form to verify financial eligibility for this program. 

If you have any questions regarding the program, please email GSETGP@CSAC.CA.GOV

Cal Poly Pomona Grants are available to FAFSA or DREAM Applicants. 

Cal Poly Pomona Grants are available only to California residents or students who qualify for the Non-Resident Tuition Exemption (AB540 status).  Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA or DREAM Application; you must file by the March 2nd Priority Filing deadline to be considered for a Cal Poly Pomona grant. 

Grants currently available from Cal Poly Pomona include: 

State University Grant (SUG) 

The State University Grant pays the Systemwide / State Tuition Fee. Students who are already receiving a financial aid award designated to pay the tuition fee (Cal Grant or Scholarship, tuition/fee waivers, vocational rehabilitation, etc.) may not eligible to receive a SUG.

The State University Grant is available only for your initial credential.

Federal Student Loans are available only to FAFSA Applicants. 

Low interest Federal Student Loans are offered as part of financial aid packages. Cal Poly Pomona is committed to reducing student debt, however, and student loan totals for our graduates are among the lowest in the country. 

Your FAFSA application will determine if you are eligible for subsidized or unsubsidized federal loans. 

Please note that eligibility for Federal Direct Loans for Credential Students is the same as for Undergraduate Students classified as seniors:

  • Dependent Credential Students:  Eligible for an annual maximum of $5,500 in loans (up to a lifetime limit of $31,000 – including any loans received as an Undergraduate)
  • Independent Credential Students:  Eligible for an annual maximum of $12,500 in loans (up to a lifetime limit of $57,500 – including any loans received as an Undergraduate).

Student borrowers eligible for need-based Subsidized Direct Loans will have their interest paid for by the federal government while the student remains enrolled at least half-time. 

All other students, including those who may qualify for only a partially subsidized loan, may apply for the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. This has the same terms and conditions except that the student borrower is responsible for the interest that accrues while in school. For current interest rate and origination fee information please visit the Federal Student Aid website. 

Parent PLUS Loan for Dependent Credential Students

Federal Loans are also available for parents to cover a student’s remaining education costs. PLUS Loans (Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students) are Federal Direct Loans in which the parent of a dependent student is the applicant/borrower. 

Additional Resources:

Federal Work-Study (Available to FAFSA Applicants only) 

Federal Work-Study (FWS) 

Federal Work Study is a federally funded program that provides the opportunity for employment  to students with the highest financial need. The amount a student may earn will be listed on the student's aid summary. A FWS offer does not guarantee placement in an actual position. 

Work experience is not required to secure a FWS position. The money earned is yours to use for out-of-pocket expenses, such as travel, books, and personal care items. Cal Poly Pomona students typically work 10-12 hours per week. Work-study funds do not reduce your bill with the university. 

You must file your FAFSA by the March 2nd Priority Filing Deadline and have indicated you are interested in Work Study on your FAFSA application.

Review our Federal Work Study page for more information about the Federal Work Study program at Cal Poly Pomona.

Student Employment & Other Options

Some students find jobs that are not part of the Federal Work-Study program. A part-time job can be a great experience even if you are not eligible for Federal Work-Study positions.

Loan forgiveness and cancellation programs are intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue in the teaching profession.

It is important to be aware of the options available to you – as well as the requirements of each, so that you can better plan for the financing of your credential program:

Fee Waivers are authorized by the California Legislature or the CSU Board of Trustees and may reduce the cost of attendance for eligible students.  If you will be receiving a tuition or fee waiver, you must notify our office as we are required to coordinate the waiver with your other financial aid.

The Cal Grant, Middle Class Scholarship, State University Grant (SUG), and most Tuition Fee Waivers are considered fee-paying resources and cover the exact same tuition/fees. Therefore, students are only eligible to receive one during a period of enrollment. students who have been awarded both a tuition-paying grant (SUG, Cal Grant, MCS) and a Tuition Fee Waiver will have the tuition paying grant cancelled or returned to the California Student Aid Commission.  Additional financial aid may also be affected by the waiver, up to the amount of the waiver, including grants and loans. 

Approved Fee Waivers Can Only Be Applied to State-Funded Courses

Approved Waivers are only applicable for state funded courses during the Regular Academic year (Fall and Spring terms). Fee Waivers cannot be applied to courses that are offered through CPGE (Open University, Extension Programs) - including Summer.

Below is information about the most frequently used waivers.  More information about Tuition and Fee Waivers is available from the CSU Chancellor’s Office.

Cal Vet Tuition Fee Waiver for Veteran Dependents

This is a waiver that covers the systemwide tuition fee at Cal Poly Pomona.  The Waiver does not cover the mandatory (auxiliary) campus fees which include student union fees, student health service fees, among many others.

If you are eligible for this waiver, you will not be eligible for California State aid (Cal Grant, Middle Class Scholarships, State University Grant).

For more information, contact your local County Veterans Service Office. You can also contact Samuel Kim, the VA Certifying Official for Cal Poly Pomona.


CSU Fee Waiver and Reduction Program

The California State University (CSU) Fee Waiver and Reduction Program (Fee Waiver) is a program designed to reduce or waive state fees for eligible  employees to take classes at a CSU campus in order to improve current job skills/abilities (work-related training) or to obtain the education needed to pursue CSU career goals (career development).

Employees eligible to participate in the Employee Fee Waiver & Reduction Program may transfer their fee waiver benefit entitlement to an eligible dependent (spouse, domestic partner, or dependent child).

A Fee Waiver application must be submitted for each semester participation is requested in the program for both new and continuing participants. Applicants are responsible for reapplying each semester.

Approved Fee Waivers Can Only Be Applied to State-Funded Courses

Approved CSU Fee Waivers are only applicable for Regular Academic Session (state-funded) courses and cannot be applied to courses that are Open University/Extension Programs. 

Fee Waiver Submittal When Enrolling at Cal Poly Pomona

If you (or your eligible dependent) are enrolling at Cal Poly Pomona, the timelines to submit your completed Employee/Dependent Fee Waiver forms to our campus are listed on the benefits website.

Review Cal Poly Pomona’s Educational Benefits page for more information about the Employee Fee Waiver and Dependent Fee Waiver