Founded in 1997 by the F.W. Olin Foundation, the Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering in Needham, Massachusetts, has been named as the college with the best financial aid. Students voted Olin College into the top place on the annual Princeton Review which ranks colleges nationwide. The college stands out as it offers every single student a tuition scholarship, regardless of family income.
The College’s mission is “to prepare students to become exemplary engineering innovators who recognize needs, design solutions and engage in creative enterprises for the good of the world.” Olin College has already established an excellent name in the engineering speciality.
Olin is a private college that offers a need blind admission policy. Originally it funded 100% of all students tuition costs through its endowment fund, but has needed to reduce this to 50% for the time being. It still means that every admitted student has half of their full tuition costs paid by the College which is an excellent initiative. Current costs of attending Olin are estimated at $57,700, of which $38,000 is tuition which is reduced to $19,000 by the Olin Tuition Scholarship. Student costs include health care which can be opted out of if there is already family cover in place.
Financial aid is offered to all students that demonstrate financial need. This is the difference between the cost of attending Olin and the expected family contribution which is assessed through the FAFSA application. Students who qualify for financial aid and receive the federal Pell grant will also receive an Olin need based grant.
Financial aid is comprised of federal and state grants, and institutional scholarships. Each student is expected to contribute a minimum of $3,500 per annum towards the cost of their education and this can be from earnings, savings or outside scholarships. There is no expectation that students who qualify for financial aid should take out student loans. If the student is able to obtain outside scholarships these firstly go towards reducing the expected self help student contribution rather than Olin College grants.
In addition to the Olin Tuition Scholarship and the Olin need based grant, there are also named need based scholarships which are awarded annually to students on the basis of financial need. These scholarships are named after their donors. Parents have the opportunity to pay their expected family contribution in ten instalments which are interest free.
Although the Franklin W. Olin Engineering College may appear pricey at first glance, its commitment to a need blind policy and financial aid makes it an affordable choice. It gives students from different financial backgrounds the opportunity to study engineering at the college of their choice.