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Admissions . Financing Your Education 

Financing Your Education

Together, we can fund your future

We understand that paying for college is not easy. At the Cleveland Institute of Art, we pride ourselves in offering a personal approach to finance your education. We are ready to clarify any requirements in the application process, answer questions, and discuss any concerns regarding your ability to afford CIA, or consider special financial situations.

Our Office of Financial Aid staff is committed to helping you find ways to close the gap between the cost of attending the Institute and your ability to fund this education. We will work with you to craft a personalized financial aid package that combines any available Institute-sponsored aid, federal aidscholarshipsloans, and work-study programs

As you begin to make important choices, keep in mind these numbers: 

  • Over $6,654,000 was awarded to CIA’s 2019 incoming class
  • 99%: percentage of Fall 2019 new students received financial aid 
  • 98%: percentage of enrolled 2019 first-year and transfer students received CIA merit scholarships
  • 86%: percentage of enrolled first-year and transfer for the 2019–20 academic year who received a merit scholarship of $15,000 or more.
  • $38,244: the average financial aid package for CIA's 2019 incoming class
  • 80%: percentage of CIA's 2013 graduates who participated in one or more internships while completing their studies at CIA.
  • Merit-based scholarships range from $6,000 to full-tuition.

Discover Actual Cost

CIA is a private college and, unlike most public colleges, can reduce the cost of tuition based on a student's portfolio, academic and financial profile. See the information included in the Investing in Your Future: Understanding Your Financial Aid Award brochure.

How does the financial aid process work at CIA?

Applying for financial aid is a straightforward process. Apply for admission and complete your FAFSA application—no special paperwork is needed. 

Once we have received your FAFSA, we'll prepare a Financial Aid Award Letter to send to you. This award letter will include, pending eligibilty, federal, state, and CIA-funded sources of financial aid.


Priority deadlines for applicants for admission are provided in the chart below. The financial aid deadline for currently enrolled students to submit the FAFSA is March 1.

 Application Priority Deadline
FAFSA Deadline

Notification On or About

Priority Deposit Deadline
Early Action 1 December 1 March 1 January 15 May 1
Early Action 2 January 15 March 1 February 15 May 1
Regular Decision March 1 March 1 April 1 May 1
Spring Transfer November 15 November 15 Rolling December 1
Fall Transfer June 1 June 1 Rolling August 1


Financial aid while studying abroad

If you plan on studying abroad while remaining a degree-seeking student at CIA, it may be possible to receive financial aid through CIA. Most students will not be able to retain the same aid package when studying elsewhere (including CIA Merit scholarships), but certain types of aid and loans may be available.

To be eligible for financial aid while not enrolled for classes at CIA, the foreign institution that you will be attending must have a U.S. Department of Education Title IV School Code, and you must meet specific enrollment, passport/visa, and financial requirements. This process takes planning and additional paperwork has to be processed, so please contact the Office of Financial Aid for details as soon as possible.

For more information:

Delores Hall
Associate Director of Financial Aid
216.421.7423 | Contact

- OR -

Caprice Odom
Financial Aid Counselor
216.421.8024 | Contact

- OR -

Michael Tocydlowski
Director of Financial Aid
216.421.7424 | Contact

Cleveland Institute of Art
Office of Financial Aid

M – F 
8:30am – 4:30pm


11610 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44106

216.421.7425 or



Financial Aid Forms

Financial Aid Forms

Click here to access financial aid forms, publications, and links for more information.

CIA Financial Aid Office Promise

We promise to assist you in achieving your educational goals by providing guidance and support in paying for your education. Through teamwork, we will promote professional and technical enhancements in an effort to be timely and accurate in the administration of financial aid. Each financial aid employee is held to the highest ethical principles as defined by our code of conduct.