Financial Aid Guide for Nursing Students

Financial Aid Guide for Nursing Students

Pursuing a degree in nursing can come with a high financial cost. This expense is a significant barrier for many who dream of entering the nursing profession, particularly with the prospect of spending years repaying student loans. The issue also extends to public health concerns, given the Institute of Medicine (IOM)'s standard that all registered nurses should obtain at least a bachelor's degree, a goal hindered by the burden of existing student loans deterring further education.

While it may seem trite to lament the escalating costs of higher education and the heavy load of student debt, there remain viable avenues for nurses, aspiring nurses, or individuals looking into healthcare careers to complete their education debt-free or to obtain forgiveness for their loans post-graduation.

Private Loans

It's common to find that the support from federal student aid falls short of covering the entire cost of the ABSN programs in Kansas. It’s wise to investigate financing options through entities such as credit unions or banks, known for their competitive rates and beneficial loan agreements.

For those considering the route of private financing, there is an option between securing a loan with a stable, unchanged interest rate or one where the rate may adjust over time. It's advantageous to look into the various protections available to borrowers from lenders, including flexible repayment options or the ability to postpone payments.

Given that the eligibility and terms for private financing hinge on one's credit history, understanding your credit score becomes a necessity. A lower credit score could mean facing steeper interest rates than those seen with federal loans, potentially necessitating a co-signer to qualify.

Upon choosing a provider for your private loan, reaching out to our Student Financial Services Office is a crucial next step. They can clarify how loan durations align with academic periods, including the limitations on private loan certifications on both a semester and annual basis. Additionally, they're equipped to assist in determining the loan amount required to support your studies in nursing.

Assistantships and Fellowships

Fellowships and assistantships mainly aim to support graduate and postgraduate students by offering them a salary or stipend as they engage in work or further their education. These forms of financial aid are frequently given to doctoral candidates who are in the process of completing their dissertations, as compensation for their contributions in research assistance or teaching roles at their college or university.


Unlike loans, scholarships represent a type of financial support that doesn't need to be paid back. These awards are based on financial necessity, excellence in achievements, or sometimes, a mix of both. Contrary to grants, which are typically designed to provide support over a longer duration and might recur, scholarships are often awarded as a one-off lump sum.

Not limited to educational institutions, scholarships can also come from companies, individuals, charitable groups, and professional organizations. Each scholarship sets its own criteria for who qualifies, how much money is given, and the deadline by which applicants must apply.


Financial support is accessible to students from various backgrounds, nursing students included. Your eligibility for different financial aid programs will be influenced by your chosen educational institution and your family's income level. A plethora of financial aid opportunities exists, so it's advisable to begin your search and evaluation of these options promptly.