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Scholarships

Presidio Graduate School offers need-based and merit-based scholarships to assist new and current students, based both on generous donations and our institutional commitment to creating affordable education for all.

Below is a summary of the scholarships we offer and an overview of how we allocate them based on funding availability, eligibility criteria, and application deadline. Please note that priority is given to full-time students.

Heather Openshaw
“I have been passionate about sustainability before I knew it was a career option. The reality of being able to dedicate my life to this work is of a value so great to me it cannot be expressed in symbols. Thanks to the support of our generous donors, I’m able to fully give myself to making the world a better place.”
Heather Openshaw
MBA/MPA Dual Degree Candidate
Demitri Fierro
“The power of lifelong education is a really gratifying experience. Not only are you achieving new levels of growth, but you attain community and influence in the process. Tell a story that is authentically you and others will notice. It's what led me to receiving my scholarship.”
Demitri Fierro
MBA Degree Candidate
Leilani
“Receiving the scholarship made it possible for me to step forward with a dream I've had for years. . . I had thought it would not be possible for me to be present in supporting that hope, then I got the scholarship and everything changed. Be open to possibilities, all your unique experiences lead you here. By applying for a scholarship you may find yourself exactly where you need to be.”
Leilani
MBA/MPA Dual Degree Candidate
Laura Rankin
“As a commuter student, applying for a scholarship from Presidio was a crucial step in my decision to enroll. The essay prompts allowed me to clearly express my interest in the program and how it will help me achieve my goal to create positive change within corporate sustainability. Earning a scholarship absolutely impacted my ability to pursue a graduate degree from Presidio and I’d highly encourage anyone who is feeling daunted by the cost of higher education to apply.”
Laura Rankin
MBA Candidate

We’re all about igniting the passion of changemakers and empowering them to create impact at scale. To us, there’s no greater honor than to witness the transformation of our students into leaders capable of effecting sustained systemic change. To that end, we’re committed to our goal that no qualified students are turned away due to lack of funding. We encourage anyone feeling the financial stress of paying for higher education to apply for this scholarship.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to our mission—from our staff to all of our programs—because we know that solutions to the world’s biggest challenges are best achieved when everyone contributes. In furtherance of this commitment, we launched a generous need-based scholarship in August 2020 with the main goal that no qualified students are turned away due to lack of funding.

To support this impactful scholarship effort, please visit our donation page and consider making a contribution.

How does this work?

The economic access scholarship is an aid fund available to new and continuing students who demonstrate a financial need based on the Economic Access Scholarship Application, which includes a 500-word “Personal Statement of Financial Need.”

How to apply (new students/applicants):

    1. Step 1: Complete the admissions application and submit the Economic Access Scholarship application by the corresponding admissions application deadline.
    2. Step 2: As part of the Economic Access Scholarship Application, complete the 500-word “Personal Statement of Financial Need”.
    3. Step 3: Our team will evaluate your needs based on your documents and the estimated family contribution per FAFSA® or the circumstances that you shared in your application.

Availability and renewal

This scholarship will be awarded for the duration of the entire program, and the criteria to continue receiving the award is to remain in good academic standing by maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Application Deadline

Our scholarship deadlines fall on the same dates as our general application deadlines. We consider scholarship applications on a rolling basis, and encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible.

First Round Deadline: October 2
Second Round Deadline: November 3

Solving the world’s unprecedented challenges in an era of disruption, uncertainty, and rapid business change requires a new brand of leadership. We’re proud to recognize selected students who embody our core values by demonstrating ethical leadership, an exceptional commitment to equity and inclusion, promotion of social justice, and a drive for sustainability.

How does this work?

We award academic leadership scholarships to students who can prove one or both of the following: exemplary academic track record as evidenced by academic transcripts and/or inspiring cases of community and/or organizational leadership shown to us through a letter of recommendation and/or publication(s).

The criteria for this scholarship are as follows:

  • One of the following:
    • Completed bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA of 3.25 or higher.
    • Promise and/or track record of community and/or organizational leadership as shown through one or more of the following: 1) letter of recommendation and/or 2) publication(s).
  • Plus, demonstration of commitment to become a changemaker in one of the areas aligned with PGS mission: social justice, sustainability, and/or systems thinking, as reflected in a 500-word essay.

Application Deadline

Our scholarship deadlines fall on the same dates as our general application deadlines. We consider scholarship applications on a rolling basis, and encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible.

First Round Deadline: October 2
Second Round Deadline: November 2

This scholarship is specifically for incoming students/new applicants who are members of the BIPOC community. Attracting a diverse student body is important to Presidio Graduate School not only because social justice is one foundation of our curriculum, but more importantly because equitable solutions cannot truly be created without equal representation. We believe careers in sustainable business and policy are in need of greater diversity. Our goal is to assist in filling the gap that currently exists within these areas.

How does this work?

This scholarship is specifically for incoming students/new applicants who are members of the BIPOC community. Attracting a diverse student body is important to PGS not only because social justice is one foundation of our curriculum, but more importantly because equitable solutions cannot truly be created without equal representation. We believe careers in sustainable business and policy are in need of greater diversity. Our goal is to assist in filling the gap that currently exists within these areas.

The criteria for this scholarship are as follows:

  • A track record of commitment to DEI work within your community and/or organization as evidenced by one or more of the following: letter of recommendation and/or publication(s).
  • A commitment to future DEI impact in your community and/or organization as demonstrated through a 500-word essay.

Application Deadline

Our scholarship deadlines fall on the same dates as our general application deadlines. We consider scholarship applications on a rolling basis, and encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible.

First Round Deadline: October 2
Second Round Deadline: November 2

John A. Spiekhout was a pillar of his community who believed passionately in social justice. The John A. Spiekhout Scholarship honors his legacy through generous funding from his family, including alumna Rebekah Helzel, Linda Mantel, and the Helzel Family Foundation, and is awarded to one student each year. This scholarship is specifically for incoming students/new applicants who are members of the BIPOC community, and is worth 50% of the total program tuition.

How does this work?

John A. Spiekhout was a pillar of his community who believed passionately in social justice. The John A. Spiekhout Scholarship honors his legacy through generous funding from his family, including alumna Rebekah Helzel, Linda Mantel, and the Helzel Family Foundation, and is awarded to one student each year.

The criteria for this scholarship are as follows:

  • Academic excellence as evidenced by academic transcripts and/or letter of recommendation from a professor, with preference given to applicants that have completed coursework and/or certificates in subject matter related to social justice, social impact, and/or race relations and to applicants that have been involved in school clubs or groups dedicated to social justice.
  • A commitment to embodying social justice values and principles as demonstrated through a 500 word essay.

Meet our current Spiekhout Scholar, Cathy Sims.

Application Deadline: December 1

We consider scholarship applications on a rolling basis, and encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible.

Eligibility

You can apply for any/all of the scholarships that you are eligible for. Please note that the availability of scholarships and the amount(s) awarded is limited to the level of existing institutional funds, in addition to any donor-based funds. On average, awards typically range from 5-10% of the total program tuition but vary on a variety of factors including eligibility criteria and the level of funds currently available for disbursement.

Additional Information and Resources

The Segal AmeriCorps Education Award is a post-service benefit earned by individuals who complete approved terms of national service in AmeriCorps programs. The award is named after Eli Segal, a pioneer of national service and the first CEO of the federal Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS).

Eligibility:

  • Prospective students who are applying for admission.
  • The award is a one-year award that is applied only to tuition in the first year of the program.
  • Matching (note that matching funds are contingent upon the student remaining in good academic standing as defined by our Student Catalog):
    • For 2021-2022 entering Dual Degree students, we will match 100% of your Segal Award.
    • For 2021-2022 entering MBA students, we will match 100% of your Segal Award.
    • For 2021-2022 entering Online MPA students, we will match 50% of your Segal Award.
    • For 2021-2022 entering certificate students, we will match up to 25% of your Segal Award.

Apply here

You can find additional scholarships through third-party online search sites and organizations, some examples of which are listed here*:

Notice: Presidio Graduate School does not sanction or endorse any company or organization providing scholarship funds. These are posted strictly as a courtesy in an effort to assist students looking for additional sources of funding. Each website has been reviewed, however, no in-depth background checks are performed on individual companies. We advise students to use good judgment when submitting applications. Please be aware of the potential for online scholarship scams and please contact our office immediately to report suspicious behavior.

Availability and renewal

For scholarships that are awarded to new students/applicants, the scholarship award will last the duration of the program as long as the student remains in good academic standing by maintaining a minimum 3.0 GPA.

For scholarships that are awarded to continuing students, the scholarship award will last for the remainder of the program as long as the student remains in good academic standing by maintaining a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Gifted funds

Scholarships are “free money” that you do not have to repay. Scholarships are awarded to the extent permitted by guidelines and funding levels. The level of scholarship aid can vary from year to year (or within a single year) depending on your eligibility, the availability of funds, and/or your budget. The information you provide allows us to determine the proper amount to award. This is known as equity packaging.

Loans

We award loans after we have determined your eligibility for scholarships and funding. These loans include unsubsidized federal loans; Federal Plus Loans; any Title IV program; and other federal, state, private, or institutional student financial aid programs.

From time to time, we must adjust standard budgets as a result of mandatory fee changes, required enrollment period changes, and so forth. To the extent possible, awards are re-adjusted to equity when this occurs.

If you receive additional loans and/or grants and scholarships (other than those awarded or administered by our office) after your aid is packaged, adjustments may be needed to avoid excessive awards. Depending on the additional aid and existing policies, loans and/or unmet needs are generally reduced first.

Eligibility determination

Complex federal and state regulations dictate the manner in which we determine eligibility and provide assistance. Our goal is to balance regulatory compliance with your day-to-day needs.

Generally, financial aid eligibility is determined based on the cost of attending PGS (which can be found on our website and the student handbook), accounting for your expected family contribution from earnings, assets, and other resources. Financial aid eligibility is the amount of need-based funding you may receive from University sources, federal programs such as unsubsidized or Plus loans, and fellowships and scholarships from outside organizations.

Other resources include, but are not limited to, untaxed income, gifts, and benefits from government programs (Social Security, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Veterans Benefits, and Vocational Rehabilitation, etc.).

Your expected family contribution is based on the income and asset information reported on the FAFSA. Some students may be selected for a process called verification. The U.S. Department of Education requires us to verify the information used to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by collecting supporting documentation from students who are selected for verification during FAFSA processing. If you are selected for verification, you will receive notification from the Department of Education via the Student Aid Report. The Student Financial Services Office also notifies you about the verification process and may request additional documents. Your financial aid package is conditional, and subject to change, until the verification process is completed, and funds cannot be released to you. Once the verification review is complete, the hold on your financial aid will be removed.

Note: The following should only be used to estimate a contribution from income and assets. The actual amount used to determine financial aid eligibility will be calculated when the completed application is reviewed.

Students’ rights and responsibilities

You have the right:

  • To know what financial aid programs are available at your school.
  • To know the deadline for submitting applications for each available program.
  • To know how financial aid will be distributed, how decisions are made, and the basis for these decisions.
  • To know how your financial need was determined. This includes how costs for tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, travel, personal and miscellaneous expenses, etc., are considered in your budget.
  • To know how much of your financial need had been met as determined by the financial aid advisor at the school or college.
  • To know what resources (such as parental contribution, other financial aid, your assets, etc.) were considered in the calculation of your need.
  • To know what portion of the financial aid you received must be repaid, and what portion is grant aid. If the aid is a loan, you have the right to know what the interest rate is, the total amount that must be repaid, the repayment procedures, the length of time you have to repay the loan, and when repayment is to begin.
  • To know how the school determines whether you are making satisfactory progress, and what happens if you are not.
  • To request an explanation of the various programs in your student aid package.

You have the responsibility:

  • To complete all application forms accurately and submit them on time to the right place.
  • To provide correct information. In most instances, misreporting information on financial aid applications is a violation of law and may be considered a criminal offense.
  • To return all documentation, verification, corrections, and/or new information requested by either the Student Financial Services Office or the agency to which you submitted your application.
  • To read and understand all forms that you are asked to sign and to keep copies of them.
  • To accept responsibility for all the arrangements that you sign.
  • To be aware of your school’s refund procedures.

All schools must provide information to prospective students about the school’s programs and performance. You should consider this information carefully before deciding to attend a school.

How to apply (current students):

Step 1: Register for the next semester.

Step 2: Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) for the 2020-21 academic year.

Step 3: Submit the relevant scholarship application form(s).

Step 4: Our team will evaluate your needs based on your FAFSA® and the circumstances that you shared in your application.

Scholarship application deadline for current students: Published course registration deadline for the upcoming term.

You should expect a response within two weeks after the published course registration deadline.

How to apply (new students/applicants):

Step 1: Complete the admissions application and relevant scholarship application form(s) by the corresponding admissions application deadline.

Step 2: Our team will evaluate your needs based on the circumstances that you shared in your application.

Scholarship decisions will be announced in your Admission Decision letter, which is sent via email within 2-3 weeks of completing your admissions interview.

You should expect a response within two weeks after receiving the acceptance notification and submitting the scholarship application form.

Additional scholarships and discounts are available through our growing network of partners. Please reach out to the Admissions team (email admissions@presidio.edu) to check your eligibility.

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