Many people who attend NOLS courses use a variety of financial aid and scholarships to help fund their expeditions. At NOLS, we’re committed to working with you to make your course a reality.
Take a look at the following options to see what’s available to you, and please contact us with any questions you might have.
Every year, NOLS awards more than $1.9 million in need-based scholarships. Our scholarships take into account unusual expenses, and special or changing circumstances. Scholarships can range from a small portion to larger amounts of the course cost.
NOLS accepts and reviews scholarship applications on a rolling basis. We recommend applying for financial aid early, as our scholarships are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Please use the timeframe below as a guide for when to apply:
For Fall courses: Apply by June 1
(Courses beginning Sept. 1- Dec. 31)
For Spring courses: Apply by November 1
(Courses beginning Jan. 1- Apr. 30)
For Summer courses: Apply by January 1
(Courses beginning May 1- Aug. 31)
Ready to apply? Choose the application for your course type:
You are eligible to use your 529 College Savings Plan or AmeriCorps Education Award to cover the costs of your course, thanks to NOLS' partnership with Western Colorado University.
You can use your AmeriCorps Education Award for any NOLS course five days or longer, and for a semester (not including the Pacific Northwest Summer Semester) or year-long expedition, NOLS will match your education award up to $4,000 dollars. AmeriCorps awards can be combined with other financial aid, such as scholarships or 529 Plan funding.
You can use your veterans benefits for a Wyoming-based expedition. These courses are gateways to new careers, exploration, and personal growth.
Expeditions are an opportunity to explore some of the most remote wilderness in the Lower 48 while developing interpersonal and outdoor skills. You’ll finish your course with a certification that employers respect, a sense of community, and the skills to take on new adventures. Benefits can be used for NOLS according to the Title 38 United States Code.
Read about using your Veterans Benefits with NOLS.
VA Benefits are eligible for the following expeditions
To learn more contact us.
Students attending a college or university can use federal financial aid or loans to help fund their NOLS course.
NOLS cannot accept federal aid or loans directly, as we are not a Title IV, degree-granting institution, but we do offer the possibility of a consortium agreement to make the transfer of this aid possible.
Read how to use Federal Financial Aid & Consortium Agreements (pdf) for a course.