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Affordability

The front of a Salem College campus building

Our rankings and student success make it clear that a Salem College education is valuable.  It will help prepare you for success at work, at home, and in the community.

But a Salem College education isn’t just valuable.  It is also affordable.  Let us show you how affordable it can be for you.

Costs

Like all colleges, Salem charges tuition and fees.  Our full-time tuition and fees for the 2024-25 academic year will be $33,848.  If you live on-campus (and there are many reasons you should), you will pay an additional $13,317 for the year. Tuition and fees and costs for living on campus are called direct costs.

There are a few other costs you may face when in college.  We call those indirect costs. They are for things like books and transportation to and from campus. Salem College doesn’t bill you for indirect costs, but you are responsible for paying for them.

Taken together, direct and indirect costs are called the total cost of attendance. You can learn more about the total cost of attendance and how it will apply to you here.

Making Salem Affordable

Salem’s tuition and fees, and food and housing costs are less than those at many other independent colleges. In addition, we offer very generous scholarships.

Scholarships

One-hundred percent of Salem College undergraduates receive a merit scholarship, recognizing their academic achievements. The average merit scholarship for a new full-time student will be $22,000  in 2024-25. In addition, Salem offers other scholarships associated with student interests and majors.  Our scholarships, then, significantly reduce the cost for you to attend college.

Grants

In addition to scholarships, you may qualify for federal or state grants to help reduce the cost of college. The most common grant is the Pell grant, but there are others. To find out if you qualify for federal and state grants, please complete the FAFSA.

Salem Promise

This innovative award provides up to 100 percent coverage of tuition and fees for North Carolina resident applicants who are Pell eligible. Salem is ranked 2nd in the nation for Social Mobility because of our outstanding record of graduating students who receive Pell grants. Priority for the Salem Promise will be given to students who have completed admission application and FAFSA by March 1.

Net Cost

When you subtract the scholarships and grants you receive from the direct cost of college, the amount left over is called the net cost. The net cost is the amount you will pay to Salem College.  And here is the great news: the net cost of going to Salem is less than that at many public and private universities.  Here are some real examples of the net cost for current Salem students.

 

Example 1: North Carolina Resident, Pell Eligible, Living On-Campus, 2023-24
Direct Costs
Tuition and Fees$32,236
On-Campus Food and Housing13,056
Total Direct Costs$45,292
Financial Aid
Institutional Scholarships$19,551
Federal Pell Grant6,245
NC Need-Based Scholarship6,440
Total Scholarships and Grants$32,236
Net Costs (Direct Costs minus Aid)$13,056

 

Example 2: Out-of-State Student with Top Scholarship, 2023-24
Direct Costs
Tuition and Fees$32,236
On-Campus Food and Housing13,056
Total Direct Costs$45,292
Financial Aid
Institutional Scholarships$32,236
Federal Pell Grant0
NC Need-Based Scholarship0
Total Scholarships and Grants$32,236
Net Costs (Direct Costs minus Aid)$13,056

 

Example 3: Transfer Student Living Off Campus, 2023-24
Direct Costs
Tuition and Fees$32,236
Financial Aid
Institutional Scholarships$17,500
Federal Pell Grant0
NC Need-Based Scholarship0
Total Scholarships and Grants$17,500
Net Costs (Direct Costs minus Aid)$14,736

 

Your net cost will differ from these examples above. You can calculate your potential net cost by going to our Net Price Calculator. This tool will help you get a sense of the scholarships and grants you may qualify for, and the net cost that remains.  Of course the tool only provides estimates.  Once you are accepted to Salem and complete the FAFSA, we will send you a financial aid offer summarizing all the costs and aid for the year at Salem College.

Paying the Net Cost

We are committed to helping you pay your net cost.  We can help you understand more about making payments, payment plans, student loans, and other things you can do to pay for college.  Just contact the financial aid office for guidance. You can reach them by phone at 336-721-2808 or by email at financialaid@salem.edu.

Outcomes

Investing in a Salem education is one of the best things you can do.  Salem is ranked #2 in the nation for advancing students’ social mobility (US News and World Report 2023), #2 in the nation for economic diversity (New York Times 2023) and #4 in the nation among all liberal arts colleges for graduation rate performance (Washington Monthly 2023).

A Salem degree shapes the lives of our graduates as well. Members of our 2022 graduating class found jobs at places like LinkedIn, Truist, and Labcorp. Other graduates from that class went to graduate school at places such as Duke School of Medicine, the University of Washington, UNC-Chapel Hill, and the University of Glasgow.

In our most recent survey, eighty-nine percent of our graduates were employed full-time or in graduate school within six months of graduation. Ninety-five percent of the students who applied  to graduate school were accepted into at least one graduate program.

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