Duke University Scholarships and Financial Aid

Duke University Scholarships and Financial Aid

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Duke University is a private university located in Durham, North Carolina. In this article, we will be covering scholarships and financial aid at this excellent university. The university is known to be a very prestigious university, and both the acceptance rates and the rankings show that. According to US News, Duke ranks in the 8th place in the US, and according to TIMES rankings, Duke ranks 7th in the US. These rankings show that Duke has higher rankings than some of the Ivy Leagues!

Also, Duke University has an acceptance rate of 11%. This means that for every 100 applicants, approximately 11 students get in. Because of that, only the top students in the applicant pool get accepted and attend Duke University. The university, therefore, has many talented students, and if you do get accepted at Duke, you will be challenged due to the intellectual students around you.

Now, let’s talk about how you can finance your education at Duke!

Cost of Attendance

Before we look at scholarships, it will be helpful to look at the cost of attendance at Duke. As a private university, Duke University charges the same for both in-state and out-of-state students. The tuition fee is approximately $58,000 a year, and room and board are around $17,000 a year. Including personal expenses, the total cost of attendance is estimated to be $78,000 a year.

Duke University Financial Aid

Duke University is committed to meeting 100% of the students’ demonstrated financial need. This need is calculated from FAFSA and CSS Profile, which are documents that ask for your financial information. Then, your expected family contribution will be calculated from the answers, and the difference between the cost of attendance and your expected family contribution is the demonstrated financial need. Duke University will cover the demonstrated financial need with need-based grants, limited loans, and work-study.

Although most of the Duke’s aid is need-based, there are merit scholarships that are also available.

Merit Scholarships

These awards are based on merit, which includes GPA, SAT/ACT scores, extracurricular activities, etc. Once you submit your application, you will be eligible for all but one scholarship, and that is Robertson Scholarships.

1. A.B. Duke Scholarship Program

A.B. Duke Scholarship Program is a fully-funded scholarship, which consists of full tuition, room, and board for all four years of college. Also, there are stipends for summer experiences as well. These enrichment opportunities include a one-time 6-weeks trip to Oxford University in England and study there. They will be exposed to a one-on-one tutorial system of this excellent university.

2. Alumni Scholars Program

The Alumni Scholars Program is full tuition, room, and board scholarship for all four years. Like the A.B. Duke Scholarship Program, there are stipend opportunities for summer experiences.

3. Benjamin N. Duke Scholars Program

B. N. Duke Scholars Program is full tuition, room, and board scholarship during the student’s entire stay at Duke. The additional benefits include a stipend for summer experiences, special seminars during freshmen year, and Carolina Summer of Service experience.

4. Clark Scholars

Clark Scholars receive $10,000 a year scholarships to help them finance their education. These scholars are chosen based on need and their academic and leadership achievements.

5. Rubenstein Scholars

Rubenstein Scholarship is given to low-income, first-generation students and covers full tuition, room, and board. These students have other benefits as well such as the six-week summer academy, loan-free graduation, and special seminars.

6. University Scholars

University Scholars provide full tuition, room, and board scholarships for all four years. There are also other benefits than the monetary award, including seminars, summer opportunities, etc.

7. Robertson Scholarship

Robertson Scholarship awards full tuition, room, and board scholarships to incoming freshmen at Duke. Please note that there is a separate application to apply. You can check the application process here.

There are other scholarships that are available. You can check the list at Duke Scholarships Page.

How to Apply for Duke Scholarships

As stated before, you are automatically considered for Duke Scholarships when you apply for admissions with one exception, Robertson Scholarship. To apply for Robertson, you will need to submit a separate application.

Duke Grants

Duke University awards need-based grants to students. These awards do not have to be repaid by the student, and in essence, it is the same as the scholarships except that grants are need-based, not merit-based. If you are accepted, they will meet 100% of your demonstrated need with grants, limited loans, and work-study.

How to Apply for Grants

To apply, you will need to file FAFSA and CSS Profile by certain deadlines. If you are applying Early Decision, the deadline to submit these forms is November 15th, and if you are applying Regular Decision, the deadline is February 15th. These forms become available on October 1st, so it is recommended that you submit these as early as possible. That way, it won’t be in the way when the application deadlines come.


Duke University gives out limited loans to students to meet their demonstrated need. The most loans that you will receive is $5,000 if your family income is above $80,000 a year. Incomes lower than that figure will receive less amount of in loans. Then, the rest of the demonstrated need will be covered by grants, which do not need to be repaid, and work-study.


The university often awards work-study as a part of the financial aid package. A typical award is $2,000 a year, which is not too bad for part-time work. A good thing about work-study is that they are not as hard as off-campus jobs, and they are around your class schedule. Also, you don’t have to drive off-campus to do work!

I hope that this article on Duke University Scholarships and Financial Aid was helpful. If you are from North Carolina, I suggest that you go to North Carolina Category to see what scholarships universities in your state offers. Also, if you are not from North Carolina, it will be worth your time to check Authority Scholarships Website to see what other universities offer in scholarships.