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Undergraduate Admission

Bentley University President E. LaBrent Chrite walks with students


For Fall 2025 Massachusetts Students (first year and transfer)

Attend Bentley for the Same Tuition as UMass Amherst

Education is about opportunity and ensuring that all students have access to a brighter future. Throughout our history, Bentley has demonstrated a commitment to developing programs that increase access to private education and improve the experience of first-generation students on our campus. The BentleyFirst program provides a scholarship that meets the difference between the tuition cost at Bentley and UMass Amherst, offering a private university education for the price of a state institution. This program does not require a separate application and all eligible students who complete their admission and financial aid applications will qualify.

Submit Your Application

BentleyFirst Requirements

Be a Massachusetts resident planning to graduate (or has already graduated) from a high school in Massachusetts 
Be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
Apply as a first-generation* college student 
Submit a complete financial aid application by the published deadline
Have a combined parent income of $125,000 or less for 2023 (see FAQ for more detail)
Plan to live on campus 
*First-generation is defined as those students whose parents or guardians have not attained a bachelor's degree at a college or university.

how the program works

Students who meet the criteria above and are admitted for fall 2025 will receive an aid award equal to the difference between the 2024-25 tuition at Bentley and UMass Isenberg School of Management -- $42,000. Students who have financial need in excess of $42,000 may be eligible for additional financial aid. Scholarships awarded through the admission process are included in our commitment to fund eligible students at least $42,000.

First Gen Forward Recognition Badge

Bentley Honored for Welcoming First-Generation Students

Bentley was named part of the 2021-2022 First-Gen Forward cohort for its dedication to improving the experience and advancing the outcomes of first-generation college students. 

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I chose Bentley because it will help me achieve my goal of building a school that helps low-income children with financial literacy.
Peterson Phillippe

First-Generation Student Resources

The First-Generation Student Support Committee was developed to celebrate this important part of the Bentley community and empower them to achieve academic and personal success. See what resources are available for students and check out past and upcoming events designed to help you make the most of your campus experience. 

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Students studying in the trading room
Aaron Jackson teaching students

FirstGen Presidential Fellows Programs

The FirstGen Presidential Fellows Program is a prestigious leadership development program for incoming first-generation students that comes with a financial aid package that covers the full estimated cost of attendance including tuition, fees, room and board, books, supplies and personal expenses. A distinguishing feature of the program is the signature work project, through which students work closely with a faculty mentor to explore the question: How can individuals and organizations be a force for positive change in the world?

Learn More

Questions about BentleyFirst?

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there any financial aid available in addition to the BentleyFirst Scholarship?

Yes. Bentley has an extensive program of both academic scholarship and need-based grants. By combining Bentley grants with federal and state financial aid resources, Bentley can be a very affordable option. Please note, your total combination of financial aid can't exceed the Cost of Attendance.

Can I receive BentleyFirst on top of a scholarship awarded through the admission process?

Our commitment is to provide all eligible students with at least $39,600 in financial aid, which includes any scholarships awarded through the admission process. Students who demonstrate financial need in excess of $39,600 will receive additional need-based aid on top of the $39,600.

Where can I find more information about the financial aid application requirements?

You can find the steps to apply for Bentley financial aid here.

Can I get help with my financial aid application?

The financial aid staff is happy to help you and your parents complete the financial aid application process. Find your counselor here.

Do I have to reapply for aid every year?

Yes. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and submit supporting federal tax documents annually. The total grant awarded to you represents the minimum grant aid you will receive from all sources (institutional, federal, and state) each academic year as long as there are no significant changes in your situation. These changes include: an increase of 25% or more in your parents' income from year to year, a change in the number of siblings in college, and/or a change in your housing status.

What if in any year my parents' income exceed the $125,000 maximum?

Bentley reviews changes in parents' income through the annual reapplication process. As long as your parents' wages don’t exceed 20% of the maximum BentleyFirst income range of $125,000 ($150,000), you will remain eligible for the BentleyFirst scholarship. 

What is considered income for purposes of determining my eligibility for BentleyFirst?

All positive forms of income will be counted toward the $125,000 maximum. This includes sources like wages, interest income, business income, rental property income, etc. Any negative income reported on the tax return does not offset positive income.

What if my parents move out of Massachusetts?

Your BentleyFirst eligibility is based on your status as a Massachusetts resident graduating (or has already graduated) from a high school in Massachusetts. Your eligibility will not change should your parents move to another state in a subsequent year.

Do I have to live on campus?

Yes. In order to remain eligible for BentleyFirst scholarship, you must continuously live in on-campus housing.

Can I keep my BentleyFirst Scholarship if I study abroad?

Students participating in a Bentley-sponsored semester Study Abroad program are eligible to utilize federal, state and institutional funding, including the BentleyFirst scholarship. Institutional funding is applicable to a single semester of study abroad. Eligibility for non-Bentley Study Abroad programs includes federal and state funds only.

Are current Bentley students eligible for BentleyFirst?

BentleyFirst is only available to prospective Bentley students as the program is designed to make a private education accessible to students who would only consider going to a public university due to cost. Current students already have access to a Bentley education and are able to work with our Office of Financial Assistance in order to keep/make Bentley affordable.