Financial Aid

The Financial Aid Office at SMU is committed to serving students by providing information to secure the necessary financial resources to meet their educational goals and financial obligations to the university.

Students wanting to apply for financial aid can complete and submit the FAFSA and CSS/Financial Aid Profile. Instructions on the financial aid process are found on SMU's Financial Aid website.

VA Educational Benefits and FAFSA

VA educational benefits are not impacted by the FAFSA. If you receive grants or loans through FAFSA, you will still receive the same amount of VA educational benefits as if you did not. Many undergraduate students are eligible for federal grants and we highly recommend that undergraduates file a FAFSA. If you are a graduate student and think that you might want to use loans, you should also complete a FAFSA.

Post-9/11 GI Bill® and Scholarships

Some scholarships may reduce the amount of tuition payment the GI Bill® sends. If your scholarship or grant is tuition and fee specific, it will be subtracted from your net tuition and fees before your tuition is reported to VA.

Undergraduate students, SMU Yellow Ribbon Scholarships are offered in lieu of all other SMU funded aid, including previously offered academic scholarships. If Chapter 33 benefits expire prior to graduation, academic scholarships may be reinstated as long as academic renewal requirements have been met.

Federal Tuition Assistance

Information for Service Members Receiving Department of Defense Tuition Assistance 

Under the Department of Defense Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (DoD MOU), Military Tuition Assistance (TA) is awarded to students currently serving in the National Guard, reserves, or on active duty. TA can be used for voluntary education programs that support professional and personal self-development goals. TA is available for courses that are offered in the classroom or by distance learning and are part of an approved academic degree or certificate program. TA enrollment requests must be submitted and approved prior to the course start date.

TA is awarded to a student under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded. When a student withdraws, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of TA funds originally awarded.

To comply with the Department of Defense policy, SMU will return any unearned TA funds on a proportional basis through at least the 60% portion of the period for which the funds were provided. TA funds are earned proportionally during an enrollment period, with unearned funds returned based upon when a student stops attending. These funds are returned to the military Service branch.

Instances when a service member stops attending due to a military service obligation, Southern Methodist University will work with the affected service member to identify solutions that will not result in student debt for the returned portion.

Service members should speak with their respective Service Educational Services Officers (ESO) or counselor within their Military Service prior to applying and enrolling at SMU.

In accordance with the Department of Defense Memorandum of Understanding:

  1. Southern Methodist University (SMU) is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  2. Individual academic program accreditations are evaluable online at
  3. SMU is approved for Veterans Affairs benefits
  4. SMU is approved for Federal student aid programs through the Department of Education

SMU prohibits the payment of any commission, bonus, or other incentive payment based directly or indirectly on securing enrollments or federal financial aid (including TA funds) to any persons or entities engaged in any student recruiting, admission activities, or making decisions regarding the award of student financial assistance.

SMU prohibits high pressure recruitment tactics such as making multiple unsolicited contacts (3 or more), including contacts by phone, email, or in-person, and engaging in same-day recruitment and registration for the purpose of securing Service member enrollments in non-credit courses/programs.

Students are never automatically enrolled in courses at SMU. Student will enroll themselves in courses. When a restriction prevents a student from enrolling themselves into a course, a student will only be manually added if they have provided signed, written authorization to be added.

Tuition Assistance Program Requirements

  • SMU assesses the same tuition and fee amounts to all Service members without regard to their Service component.
  • Course enrollment information, course withdrawal, course cancellation, course completion or failure, grade, verification of degree completion, and billing are reported to the TA issuing Service's education office.
  • Degree requirements are outlined in the SMU catalog ( and include course information, required and elective courses, and graduation requirements for the program. Academic advisors should be consulted to review the choice for a program of study and to review transfer course work that applies to the program of study. Once a student is admitted into an academic program, they can assess their degree plan outline through
  • Service members must obtain approval from their Service in order to use Tuition Assistance funds. All Military TA must be requested and approved prior to the start date of a given course.

TA enrollment requests must be submitted and approved prior to the course start date. For more information on using TA at SMU, please contact Ashley Rebello.

Follow the links below for your service branch's website for additional information:

Emergency Short-Term Loan

To bridge the gap for students waiting at the start of a semester for their first VA payment, SMU offers a short-term, no-interest loan.

Note: The term Veterans is used on this page to describe students wo are eligible for and/or claiming veteran benefits for the term. This includes veterans, active duty servicemembers, spouses, and dependents

The White Loan is managed through the Dean of Student Affairs’ office and offers up to $1,000 in assistance.  The Bursar’s Office processes these loans upon approval from Student Affairs.

  • Students are referred to Jennifer Jones, Executive Director for Student Development, Director of Social Change and Intercultural Engagement and Student Affairs Diversity Officer, for a White loan.

The Bursar’s Office will place a hold on the veteran’s future enrollment. The loan must be repaid no later than the day before continuing enrollment begins for the following semester. Once the loan is repaid, the Bursar’s Office will remove the enrollment hold.


GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at