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Guide to financial aid

More than half of Portland State’s students receive financial aid, and you could be one of them. But the money runs out quickly, so don’t wait to apply. Here’s what you need to know to get started.

Who: Anyone who wants grants, scholarships, loans and work study to help pay for college. While most aid is need-based, the income limits are higher than you might think: $70,000 for an Oregon Opportunity Grant, for instance. And scholarships have a range of selection criteria, from academic interests to community activities. 

How: Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the federal application for student aid. To apply, go to and use the school code 003216 for Portland State. Scholarships have separate applications. Go to for details. 

When: Submit your FAFSA as soon as you can after Jan. 1 for priority consideration. The deadline for general university scholarships and state grants is Feb. 1; some scholarships have earlier deadlines.

Help: Contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships in the lobby of Neuberger Hall, (503) 725-3461,,



By the numbers

Students receiving financial aid: 56%
Average dollar amount: $4,650
Breakdown of awards:
71% loans
22% grants and scholarships
7% other

Types of aid

Loans — Money that has to be paid back with interest after you graduate
Grants — Free state or federal aid, mostly awarded by financial need 
Scholarships — Free money with a wide range of selection criteria
Fee remission — Reduction in your tuition cost
Work study — Federal program that pays students to work up to 20 hours a week