Financial Aid


Office of Financial Aid
315-859-4962 (fax)

Types of Financial Aid

Loans for ParentsLoans for Students

Financing Options

While the financial aid package is intended to meet the demonstrated need of each family, most families must finance the "expected family contribution" over a number of months or years.

Monthly Payment Plan

  • Families can spread their payments out over 10, 11 or 12 months
  • Hamilton partners with the TuitionPay! by Sallie Mae Payment Plan
  • $45 annual fee
  • No interest charged
  • Consider financing through a payment plan before taking additional loans


Combination Plan

  • Calculate the amount your family can afford to pay per month and sign-up for the monthly payment plan
  • Take the maximum amount of Direct Loans for the student (subsidized and unsubsidized)
  • Bridge any remaining gap with a PLUS Loan and defer payments


Alternative Loan

  • Students should borrow the maximum amount allowed in a Direct Loan before an Alternative Loan
  • Parents should explore a PLUS Loan before an Alternative Loan
  • Compare rates, benefits and repayment options
  • Students will usually need a co-signer (i.e. parent)
  • Before the Financial Aid Office will certify an alternative loan, federal law mandates that we counsel a student on the benefits of federal loans over an alternative loan

Other Options (best to consult a Financial Advisor)

Home Equity Loans

pro:  interest is typically tax deductible; long repayment periods
con:  dependent on equity in home; home is collateral; may have closing costs

IRA Draws

pro:  early withdraws for qualified education expenses usually not subject to tax penalties
con:  future interest lost on investment; potentially putting retirement at risk

Life Insurance

pro:  usually borrowed from cash value or dividends of whole life insurance; usually low fixed interest rate
con:  if not repaid, reduces the investment earnings and death benefits; not usually tax deductible

Retirement Savings (401k and 403b)

pro:  withdraws may be allowed for qualified education expenses
con:  future interest lost on investment; potentially putting retirement at risk; taxed on withdrawal

Credit Cards

This is not recommended. Do not finance any costs associated with college on your credit card. Educational loans offer better rates and advantages than credit cards.