The estimated cost of attendance (budget) used to determine your financial aid eligibility includes an amount for tuition and mandatory fees, based on your enrollment plans, as well as average amounts for standard educational expenses such as room and board.  Also included are books, supplies, local transportation, and miscellaneous expenses. For more information about the standard student budget, please visit the Undergraduate Costs or Graduate & Professionals Costs page.

If your actual school-related expenses are higher than your current budget, you may be eligible for a budget increase. Budget increases are considered on a case-by-case basis, subject to federal and university policy. If approved, budget increases are typically funded with PLUS loans or private financing. Before submitting a request we ask that you visit www.nslds.ed.gov to see your current total loan debt and consider how this additional loan may affect your repayment post-graduation. Prior indebtedness may be considered in determining whether a budget increase will be approved.

Types of budget increases that can be considered are listed below. To request a budget increase, submit a written request and include supporting documentation as indicated. To allow sufficient time for loan processing, appeals should be submitted at least two weeks before the end of your period of attendance.

  • Books exceeding the amount included in student budget:
    • Itemization of books required for courses.
    • Receipts to show amounts paid, or printouts from the Schedule of Classes website verifying cost.
  • Child care expense necessary for class attendance during your period of enrollment:
    • Letter identifying child's name and age as well as the name of the child care provider and days/hours that child care is provided.
    • A copy of the contract verifying child care expenses.
    • A Student Income & Expense Form.
    • In some cases, we may request copies of canceled checks or receipts to verify expenses.
  • Computer purchase and necessary computer software (One time and must be purchased no earlier than June 1 prior to the start of the academic year):
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
    • Receipt(s) to show item(s) purchases, or Internet printouts showing prices of items to be purchased.
  • Conferences required for your educational program
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
    • Memo from department chairperson verifying that attendance is required for the student's class or educational program.
  • Course/lab fees not included in student budget.
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
  • Course-related equipment and other expenses necessary for your educational program not included in the standard budget:
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
    • Letter or memo from department chairperson or other authorized person verifying that the expense is necessary for your class or program and that the amount requested is an average and reasonable amount.
  • Disability-related expenses during the period of enrollment:
    • Itemization of projected expenses not covered by insurance or other means.
    • Letter from the USC Office for Disability Services and Programs supporting the request.
  • Mandatory Student/Spouse/Family Health and Dental Insurance.
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
    • Increase is limited to the cost of the USC Plan.
  • MD student rotations and interview expenses:
    • Provide a written request indicating the dates of rotation, copies of canceled checks or credit card statements for travel expenses, and a copy of the rental/lease agreement bearing the student's name or hotel receipts.
    • Provide verifications of all interview dates, and documentation showing exact dates, exact flight and exact hotel you intend to reserve. Alternatively, if you are driving, provide documentation of mileage as well as the name and location of the hospital(s). (20 maximum)
  • Meal plan expense exceeding amount included in the standard budget.
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
  • Medical/dental expenses incurred for student during the period of enrollment that are emergency in nature and are not covered by insurance:
    • List of expenses incurred.
    • Billing statement or invoice showing procedure, cost, amount covered by insurance and the amount you must pay.
    • For non-dental expenses, a letter from the student's primary physician supporting the treatment.
  • Parking permit at USC
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.
  • Rent exceeding the standard budget ($856 per month for undergraduate and $1,200 per month for graduate students):
    • Copy of lease/rental agreement in student's name.
    • Copies of two canceled checks or money orders to verify payment of rent.
  • Professional licensing fees incurred during period of enrollment:
    • Documentation of expenses.
  • Transportation expenses exceeding amount included in student budget:
    • Itemization of expenses incurred during period of enrollment, including purpose of travel, number of times per week you travel, and documentation of the length of your commute.
  • Travel expenses for undergraduates from out-of-state/out-of-area (maximum of two round-trips home per school year):
    • Itemization of expenses.
    • Receipt or Internet printout to show expenses to be incurred.
  • Tuition exceeding amount included in student budget.
    • Itemization of expenses incurred or requested.

 

 

©2013 University of Southern California