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Michael Stoff, Director 305 East 23rd St, CLA 2.102, (G3600) Austin, TX 78712-1250 • 512-471-1442

Scholarships, Financial Aid, Work-Study and Tuition Exemptions

  • The Office of Student Financial Services (OSFS) coordinates the University's scholarship programs.

  • The Freshman Scholarship Application (FSA) is required of applicants who wish to be considered for any/all available merit-based scholarships offered by the University of Texas, Plan II Honors and most college and departmental scholarships (with the exceptions of the Forty Acres Scholars Program and other Texas Exes scholarship). 

  • An applicant who submits the Freshman Scholarship Application (FSA), (see:, will be automatically considered for Plan II Honors scholarships.  The deadline is December 1.

The FSA goes to the University's Office of Student Financial Services (OSFS).  It does not come to Plan II.  But Plan II cannot consider an incoming student for scholarships without an on-time Freshman Scholarship Application.

  • There is not a separate merit scholarship application or financial aid scholarship application for Plan II Honors applicants.

Plan II Honors Scholarships

These Plan II Honors scholarships are awarded primarily on a financial need-basis, however some scholarships are awarded strictly for merit.  Most awards range from $1,000 to $5,000 for an academic year, although a few larger awards are available.

They include, but are not limited to:

  • The Leslie Dyess Blanton Scholarship
  • The Macey Hodges Reasoner Endowment Scholarship
  • The Corbin J. Robertson, Jr. Family Scholarship
  • The Kirsten Torgerson Endowed Presidential Scholarship
  • The Tucker Family Endowed Presidential Scholarship
  • The Louise and Ira Iscoe Endowed Presidential Scholarship
  • The Gregory George Shia Memorial Endowed Presidential Scholarship in Plan II

There is no separate Plan II Honors merit scholarship application or Plan II Honors financial aid scholarship application for Plan II Honors applicants.

Most, but not all, of the Plan II endowed scholarships have a donor specified need-based component.  However it’s important to make a few strong points:   First, applicants with serious financial need usually have that need met through state and federal entitlement programs funding almost all the costs of attendance (through the FAFSA application, but also using the University’s FSA).  Plan II is often unable to give those students a Plan II scholarship without affecting the level of grants and scholarships they have already received.  However if all or part of the award is through student loans or parent (PLUS) loans, a Plan II scholarship will first, reduce the size of the loan amount.  

Often the admitted applicants and continuing students who are left with “unmet” need are those who did not qualify for financial aid and those whose families made too much to qualify for entitlement programs.   So, a majority of all of the Plan II scholarships are awarded on the basis of “unmet” financial need. 

At Plan II Honors, we don’t consider applicants for scholarships who have not submitted both the UT Office of Student Financial Services (OSFS) Freshman Scholarship Application (FSA) and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).   The FSA is the basis of ALL UT (excepting Texas Exes scholarships),  and Plan II scholarships for BOTH merit and financial need.  The FAFSA, as its name says, is the application on which all federal aid is based.  As our Web site explains, an application to Plan II Honors makes an applicant eligible for Plan II scholarships IF other financial aid applications have been completed.

A few of our endowed Plan II scholarships are awarded strictly for merit.  Obviously, we consider all our incoming students meritorious, that's why they were offered admission.   Although top scores are important, they are only a small part of what we seek when we conduct admissions or award scholarships.  In all honestly, it's quite difficult to stand out for merit in the Plan II crowd.  Many of the strictly merit-based scholarships are restricted by UT rules or donor-specified instructions that exempt entering freshmen from consideration however.  They are designed by the donors to recognize academic excellence while a student is at Plan II and UT Austin. 

The FAFSA is worth your while, even if the family’s financial need level is low or even non-existent.  The FAFSA can qualify a family for much lower-interest education loans, if not for grants.  The OSFS information states that there is some kind of financial aid available for every student.  (This "aid" is often in the guise of parent and student loans.)  However, student loan resources and lower interest rates are certainly preferable to the alternatives—particularly in the scary financial straights we find ourselves in these days.  Again, if all or part of the award is through student loans or parent (PLUS) loans, a Plan II scholarship will first, reduce the size of the loan amount.  And that’s a very good thing!  

Finally, although we do have a small handful of scholarships which are strictly for incoming freshmen, the majority of Plan II scholarships are for continuing students, travel and thesis funding.  So, please also keep in mind that the first year will not necessarily be indicative all future years’ funding.  All continuing students will have the opportunity to apply for both UT and Plan II merit and need-based scholarships each year. 

Although the same holds true, that most of Plan II’s continuing scholarship funding is awarded primarily on a need-basis, there is funding available for student thesis research and travel, travel to professional conferences and funding for study abroad.  Additionally, students in Plan II Honors can apply to the College of Liberal Arts (all Plan II students are Liberal Arts students, regardless of other majors and college designations) for continuing student scholarships.

For an overview of the UT scholarship process, see TexasScholarships.

Fellowships and scholarships affect your total eligibility for aid. At the start of the awarding process, your total cost of education is determined. Next, OSFS will subtract any fellowships/scholarships/additional resources from this amount. The remaining balance represents your total eligibility for financial aid.

Financial aid must be re-evaluated whenever a scholarship or fellowship is awarded, even if you have already accepted/received awards.

Financial Need-Based Scholarships

All applicants (and their parents/families), regardless of income level,  should submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application by March 31, to be considered for the many federal and state grants that take financial need into account.

Most families will be eligible for some type of support.  At worst case, most families are eligible for low interest student and parent loan packages.

There is no separate financial/need scholarship application for Plan II Honors applicants.


Work Study is administered through the Office of Student Financial Services.

Work-Study is a part-time employment program for students who have demonstrated financial need.   Unlike other types of financial aid, students will receive their Work-Study award in the form of a paycheck once or twice a month throughout the semester. The student must find a job, work, and earn the award. Students may earn up to the amount of their Work-Study award each semester.

In order to be considered for a Work-Study award, students must complete the FAFSA every year, before UT-Austin’s priority deadline. They must demonstrate financial need, and maintain satisfactory academic progress. For returning students, preference is given to those who earned at least 80% of their award in the previous academic year.

The University of Texas at Austin through the Office of Student Financial Services offers a number of competitive merit-based and need-based scholarships and need-based work-study programs to entering students.

Valedictorian Exemption

This Accredited School Scholarship exempts the student from tuition charges during both semesters of the first regular session immediately following the student's high school graduation. Fees are not covered. No funds may be used to pay tuition for continuing education classes for which the college receives no state tax support.


Highest ranking graduate of an accredited Texas high school


Tuition during first two semesters (long session) following graduation

Where to apply:

Obtain certification from high school and present to Student Accounts Receivable, Main Building, Room 4

See other tuition exemptions at:  Exemptions.

National Merit

UT Austin no longer awards institutional scholarships to new students based solely on their status as National Merit Scholars; however, this does not mean the University has abandoned merit-based aid.  

UT Austin continues to offer merit-based aid and we fully expect National Merit Scholars to be strong candidates for scholarships not only from the university but also from outside sources. National Merit Scholars will continue to have the opportunity to compete for university scholarships by completing UT Austin’s Application for Freshman Scholarships (application deadline December 1).  The university does continue to disburse primarily merit-based aid via both the Office of Student Financial Services and its various colleges and schools.

Some National Merit scholarships are jointly funded by the College Board and corporate supporters.   If a student chooses UT as their first choice with National Merit and are a corporate sponsored or one time National merit winners, they will receive funds from either a corporation or National Merit. The University of Texas will not make a funding match, but the applicant could receive external National Merit funding use at UT.

It is our hope that when students consider what attending UT Austin can do to prepare them for the rest of their lives, they will not let the absence of a National Merit Scholarship stand in their way.

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