Types of Financial Aid

The Honors Incentive Scholarship is awarded to a select number of first-year entering students who have achieved academic excellence in their undergraduate course of study. The Honor Scholarship pays up to total tuition and fees for the first year of study. Each additional year is contingent upon your academic performance.

The National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholarship Program pays for tuition, required fees, and some other education costs, tax free, for as many as four years. Education costs may include books, clinical supplies, laboratory expenses, instruments, two sets of uniforms and travel for one clinical rotation. Recipients also receive equipment and a monthly living stipend.

The Armed Forces Scholarship pays full tuition and some fees, books, and supplies, plus a monthly stipend. There is a military service obligation.

The Tennessee Black Conditional Grant Program (TCG) awards a grant yearly to African-American residents of Tennessee. Students must complete an application that is sent to Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC) for certification. Each additional year is contingent upon funding from the State and the student maintaining satisfactory academic progress.

The State of Tennessee, funded through the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, provides grants to Tennessee certified residents participating in the medical and dental programs. In order to be eligible to participate in the said program, students must complete an application, submit all required documentation and be certified as a Tennessee resident by THEC.

The Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) provides state grants to certified residents of the contract states, i.e. Arkansas (dental only-one slot per classification). In order to apply for this grant, you must contact the Arkansas Department of Education at (501) 371-2000 or apply online at www.adhe.edu.

The Office of Student Financial Aid cannot guarantee approval of these funds.

The Federal Perkins Loan Program is a low-interest loan that must be repaid to Meharry Medical College; interest does not accrue while you are enrolled in school. The amount of the award depends on your need, the availability of Federal Perkins funds and the amount of other aid you are receiving. For loans made to medical school borrowers on or after July 1, 1993, you can no longer obtain a regular deferment while in residency; however, a forbearance deferment may be granted.

The Health Professions Student Loan Program (HPSL) is a long-term, low-interest loan to assist students who are undertaking the course of study to be a dentist. The maximum amount that you may borrow for each school year is the cost of tuition plus $2,500, or the amount of your financial need, whichever is the lesser. There is no cumulative maximum amount. The income, assets, and resources of the student and parents must be considered before the loan is made.

All HPSL loans for medical students granted after July 1, 1993, will be the Primary Care Loan (PCL). The PCL loan has an awarding stipulation that states if you decide not to practice primary care after graduating from medical school, the interest rate of 5% will increase to 7%, effective the day of default. Therefore, all borrowers are strongly encouraged to only accept the PCL loan funds if they are definitely going to be a practicing primary care physician after graduation. For this reason, MMC has decided to only award PCL funds to third- and fourth-year students.

Campus-based loans are repayable to Meharry Medical College over a 10-year period, which begins one year after you complete or otherwise cease to pursue the prescribed full-time course of study. Interest begins to accrue at the time the loan becomes repayable. You must pay no less than $30 per month. Please contact our office for more information.

The Loans for Disadvantaged Students (LDS) is a long-term, low-interest loan to assist students who are undertaking the course of study to be a physician or dentist. The income, assets, and resources of the student and parents must be considered before the loan is made.

The Federal Direct Subsidized Loan is a low-interest, fixed-rate and capped loan guaranteed by the United States Department of Education. This loan is only available to students in the 2012–13 award year whose academic program began prior to July 1, 2012. The federal government pays the interest on the Federal Direct Subsidized Loans. In order to be awarded the Federal Direct Subsidized Loan, one must demonstrate financial need. The Federal Direct Subsidized Loan proceeds will be disbursed in two disbursements to the institution via Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT).

The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan provides additional funds for educational expenses. This loan also has a fixed interest rate, but interest on the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan begins to accrue from the date of the disbursement. In addition, payments of the accrued interest may be deferred, paid, or capitalized, and added to the principal amount on a quarterly basis. Like the subsidized loan, these funds are guaranteed by the United States Department of Education. The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan may be used to offset the Expected Family Contribution (EFC).

Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loans are available to students who do not have an adverse credit history. These loans are not based on financial need. Students may borrow through this program to obtain money up to the COA in order to attend college. These loans carry a fixed interest rate, and the origination and insurance fees are different than those of the Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan programs. Beginning July 1, 2008, any Grad PLUS loan will be deferred until six months after completing your program of study or changing enrolled status to less than half-time, whichever comes first.

Alternative loan programs are credit-based and are approved solely by the lenders’ credit criteria. If denied, students are encouraged to obtain a co-borrower to increase chances of approval. (NOTE: A co-borrower does not automatically guarantee approval). Alternative loans are only awarded if the student’s total cost of attendance has not been met, and there is an unmet need.

The Federal Work-Study program (FWS) provides jobs for students who demonstrate financial need. It gives you a chance to earn money to help pay your educational expenses.

Additional Options

Once you have considered scholarships, grants, and federal student loans, you can find a private student loan using the Overture Private Student Loan Marketplace. The Marketplace is the only website that presents, side-by-side, the specific loan rates and terms you would see if you applied with each lender directly. Select the private loan that is most appropriate for you and continue on to your chosen lender to complete the loan process.


The Marketplace will pull your credit report in order to simulate the actual terms of loans available to you from local and national lenders—complete with APR, interest rate, total cost, monthly payment, borrower benefits, fees, and repayment options. Using the Marketplace will not harm your credit report. Remember that only by completing the lender’s application can you be sure to receive the product rate and terms you select in the Marketplace.


For additional information, please read the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) disclosure statement in regards to available loan funds, private loans, code of conduct for lenders, etc.

The Office of Student Financial Aid cannot guarantee approval of these funds.

Contact Financial Aid

Meharry Medical College
Office of Student Financial Aid
1005 Dr. D.B. Todd, Jr. Blvd.
Nashville, Tennessee 37208
Telephone: 615.327.6826
Email: finaid@mmc.edu