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Scholarships and Financial Aid

Let's face it…
College can be expensive. But you might be surprised to learn that approximately 75% of our students receive scholarship and/or financial aid from SMU and/or from Meadows School of the Arts. Academically and artistically advanced students may be candidates for the Meadows Scholars Program or for Meadows Artistic Merit Scholarships. Plus, SMU offers a wide variety of additional scholarship opportunities.

At Meadows School of the Arts, we value talent, dedication and intellectual ability above all else. Don't let the price tag scare you.

Meadows Scholars Program

Open to All First-Year Admitted Meadows Majors

The Meadows Scholars Program provides renewable scholarships to 20-25 first-year students who have demonstrated high achievement in both the arts and academics, as well as the greatest potential for success. First-year students who have been admitted to SMU and indicate on their SMU admissions application that they plan to major in any of the performing, visual or communication arts disciplines within Meadows are considered for this award based on academic and artistic merit. Selection for this highly competitive scholarship is determined using SMU admissions application information. Students must be admitted to Meadows and have a minimum 1350 SAT (verbal and math) or minimum ACT composite score of 31 and a minimum 3.5 high school GPA. Artistic merit is also considered for accepted students based on their performing arts audition or visual arts portfolio review.)

Funding for the Meadows Scholars Program is made possible by generous support from Meadows' patrons of the arts.

Meadows Artistic Merit Scholarships

Open to Accepted Dual-Admission Performing and Visual Arts Majors

Entering first-year and transfer students majoring in Studio Art, Dance, Film and Media Arts (B.F.A.), Music or Theatre who have been admitted to SMU and one of these Meadows disciplines through audition or portfolio submission are considered for renewable artistic merit scholarships. Scholarship selection is based on audition performance or quality of portfolio as well as academic merit. A separate application is not required for Meadows scholarship consideration. Award amounts vary by discipline.

Deadlines for Meadows Scholars and Meadows Artistic Merit Scholarships:

  • Application to SMU:
    • Early Action and Early Decision I: November 1
    • Early Decision II and Regular Decision: by January 15
  • Auditions and portfolio submissions are typically held in fall and winter. Visit the admissions details in the Music, Theatre, Dance, Studio Art, and Film B.F.A. sections for the latest dates and information.
  • Submit CSS Profile and FAFSA between January 1 and February 15 for scholarship and financial aid consideration
  • Scholarship awards are made beginning March 15 with the bulk of awards offered during the month of April. Learn more about financial aid options at SMU.

*We encourage all qualified applicants to audition and apply for SMU admission and submit financial aid information as early as possible for optimal scholarship consideration. Early application to SMU gives students the advantage of receiving an admission decision by the end of December and provides more time for students to consider their options on what college to attend. Results from audition or portfolio submission may vary by discipline.

CSS Profile and FAFSA

All new undergraduate and transfer scholarship applicants are required to file the CSS Profile and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) between January 1 and February 15 of your application year. These forms are available online at and and have to be completed each year. Be sure to include SMU's school code on your submissions: 6660 (CSS Profile) and 003613 (FAFSA). The CSS Profile Student Guide provides valuable information to assist you with these processes. Upon completion, you may request that the information on the forms be sent to other colleges that you may be considering in addition to SMU.

Some applicants feel their family income is too high to qualify for need-based funds. If this is the case and you choose not to fill out the CSS Profile or FAFSA, you must complete the Meadows CSS Profile/FAFSA Waiver Form.

For More Information

Click here for frequently asked questions about scholarships, auditions and portfolios and Meadows School of the Arts.

For more information about scholarships and Meadows School of the Arts, contact SMU Meadows Director of Scholarships and Financial Aid Pam Henderson at


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