NEC is committed to providing financial support to the world’s best young musicians with scholarships based on merit and financial need. Each year, more than 90% of our students receive scholarships. NEC scholarships are typically renewable for the normal expected length of a student’s degree program.
NEC chooses to broadly distribute its scholarship resources to many students rather than concentrating awards on a few; this approach helps us support many young musicians while also assuring a consistently strong student body.
NEC scholarships are awarded to full-time students based on the student’s talent/merit (e.g. audition and application) and financial need. Merit is primarily determined through the audition process, while financial need is based on the FAFSA and/or additional financial information provided during the application process. To be considered for this award, new students must complete the file the Financial Aid Information section of the online application for admission. In addition, students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at fafsa.gov.
NEC tries to make our best offer of financial assistance in the initial award. This is part of our effort to work in partnership with you and your family in order to make an NEC education accessible. NEC is a small, independent non-profit trying to help you gain access to an amazing, transformative process.
NEC From the Top Scholarship
As part of NEC's long-time partnership with the From the Top program, NEC offers funding to students who have performed on the program and have been admitted to NEC. From the Top alumni are then guaranteed NEC scholarship funds of at least $7,500 per academic year. This funding is part of the student’s overall scholarship from the Conservatory; there is not a separate fund name for From the Top scholars.
Students enrolled in the Tufts/NEC 5-Year and Harvard/NEC 5-Year programs are not eligible for this funding.
The Tourjée Alumni Scholarship Award was established in 1985 by NEC's Alumni Council, “to encourage graduate study at the alma mater, thus refining talent to its highest potential.” The first award was made in the spring of 1986.
This special prize towards first-year tuition is given to a graduating student or NEC alumna/us who plans to pursue further graduate work at NEC. The award is based on outstanding musicianship, scholarship, and enterprise. Equal weight is given to these characteristics. Recipients must also exhibit high potential for success in graduate study and in the music field. Holders of full-tuition scholarships or funding are not eligible for the Tourjée Alumni Scholarship Award.
Scholarships for Current Students
NEC is pleased to offer the below awards to current students.
NEC scholarships (including Presidential and Dean’s scholarships) are awarded to entering full-time students based on the student’s talent/merit (e.g. audition and application) and financial need. Awards are eligible for annual renewal for the normal expected length of a student's program. NEC scholarships typically remain at the same dollar amount for each student from year to year. Returning students must file the NEC Application for Financial Aid and Scholarships annually via NetPartner. In addition, students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at fafsa.gov.
NEC Beneficent Society Scholarship
The NEC Beneficent Society has been helping NEC students address the costs of a conservatory education for more than 100 years. Funding for its scholarship program comes from a number of private sources. All returning NEC students who request additional financial assistance are considered for this one-time, need-based scholarship.
Federal and State Grants
U.S. citizens and permanent residents may qualify for grant aid from the federal and/or state government. Students must submit the FAFSA to be considered for these funds.
Federal Pell Grant
The Pell Grant is a need-based federal grant that does not have to be repaid. Eligibility is based on a student’s Expected Family Contribution as determined by the FAFSA. Pell Grants are only awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet earned a bachelor’s degree.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
The SEOG is a need-based federal grant that does not have to be repaid. Recipients are selected in accordance with federal regulations, which require SEOG to be awarded to students with exceptional financial need. SEO Grants are only awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet earned a bachelor's degree.
State grants are issued by the state in which the student permanently resides. An estimate of the grant may appear on the student’s award letter. However, the state agency will notify the student of actual award amounts, at which time adjustments to the student’s award letter may need to be made. State grants typically do not need to be repaid.
We are committed to helping students seek resources outside of federal and institutional financial aid programs. With this in mind, we have developed an outside/private scholarship page which lists a variety of organizations that offer funding resources to students.
Our scholarship listings are not exhaustive, and we encourage students to pursue scholarship opportunities in their local communities as well as on a national level. Always use caution when applying for private scholarship opportunities. Outside scholarships are sponsored, administered, and awarded by a variety of private agencies, organizations, and individual donors not affiliated with NEC. Inclusion on this list does not constitute endorsement. This information is provided for informational purposes only.
NEC admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.