The Gustie Guarantee

Key Takeaways

With the Gustie Guarantee, newly admitted students:

  • Get a minimum of $100,000 in scholarships when you're admitted ($25,000 per year; filing the FAFSA is required).
  • Get free first-year tuition – and continuing tuition support every year – if you live in Minnesota and your family makes less than $80,000 per year.
  • Get a Signature Experience that seamlessly connects your coursework with real-world applications through practical, cultural, and experiential learning.
  • Get a degree in four years or Gustavus will cover tuition for a ninth semester.
  • Get to have fun and pursue your passions without compromise!

Gustavus is worth it. Here, you’ll get:

  • An unmatched education. You’ll be attending the best college in Minnesota as ranked by the Wall Street Journal
  • An affordable experience. You’ll be earning a degree from Minnesota’s most economically diverse college, according to the New York Times’ College-Access Index.
  • Personalized advising. You’re unique, and your tailored academic and career advice will be too. You’ll have your own academic advisor on day one.
  • Research and innovation projects. Our First-Year Research Experience (FYRE) program and our connection with the Mayo Clinic are just a few ways to dive in.
  • A career-centric experience. You’ll leave with a competitive edge in the job market with a degree from the best college in Minnesota for salary impact according to the Wall Street Journal.
  • Global perspective. You’ll be part of our diverse community and have tons of international and domestic study-away options. Historically, over 50% of Gusties study away!
  • Powerful skill development. You’ll become an expert in critical thinking, communication, adaptability, community, and leadership.
  • A 30,000+ alumni network. You’ll gain access to a wealth of invaluable mentorship and career opportunities, such as being paired with a Gustavus alum through our Mentorship Program and connecting with Gusties for internships that span a diverse array of professions.

Minimum ScholarshipYour talents earn you a scholarship

If you are prepared for a rigorous college education and meet our high standards for admission, we’ll give you a minimum scholarship of $25,000 for four years ($100,000 total). 

  • To receive the award each year, you and your family must file the FAFSA.
  • Whatever your family’s income is, you will receive this scholarship. 
  • You could receive additional financial aid depending on your family’s specific financial circumstances.

First-Year Free TuitionGet tuition assistance your first year and every year

We’ll give you $55,445 (the cost of tuition for the 2024-2025 school year) for your first year and, if you continue to qualify, we’ll provide this same amount for your sophomore, junior, and senior years.

You’ll pay any tuition increases (usually about 3.5%) after your first year, plus the cost of housing, meals, and fees each year.

To be part of the First-Year Free Tuition program, you’ll need to: 

  • Be a Minnesota resident;
  • Be admitted to Gustavus and start in fall 2024;
  • Be a first-time, full-time student;
  • File the FAFSA;
  • Have a family adjusted gross income less than $80,000; and
  • Receive the MN State Grant or MN Dream Act.

Learn more about how we can help with tuition

Gustavus nursing students working with Mayo doctors in an Operating Room.

Signature ExperienceTailoring your college journey

The Gustavus Signature Experience (SigX) represents a groundbreaking educational requirement designed to empower you to customize your college years. It serves as an overarching program that encapsulates the myriad ways in which Gusties can showcase their academic prowess to the world, all while engaging and impacting the community around them.

With a diverse range of SigX opportunities, you can fine-tune your choices to align precisely with your unique postgraduate aspirations. Upon completion of a Signature Experience, you'll earn a digital credential to enhance your resume and LinkedIn profile.

  • Internships: Leverage our extensive network of over 30,000 alumni and other professional connections to gain valuable work experience in your chosen field.
  • Student-faculty Research: Gustavus students enjoy unparalleled access to collaborative research opportunities typically found at the graduate level at much larger institutions.
  • Community Projects: Enroll in courses that immerse you in a community setting, enabling you to apply your liberal arts education in meaningful, real-world scenarios.
  • Study Away: Enrich your academic journey by selecting from a wide range of domestic and international programs, expanding both your personal horizons and professional prospects.

Learn more about creating your own Signature Experience

Four-Year GraduationGraduate on time with help from our incredible professors.

Complete your degree at the #1 College in Minnesota (Wall Street Journal) within four years or we’ll cover your ninth semester tuition.

This guarantee is based on:

  • the strength of our faculty-led advising program, which starts helping you before you even move onto campus;
  • our commitment to holding down the cost of higher education, putting you in a good financial shape after graduation ; and, 
  • our confidence in your ability to thrive as a Gustavus student – even though our academic program is rigorous, we know you can do well here.

See how the four year graduation guarantee works


Get moreGusties get involved and don’t need to compromise.

Gusties don't just attend college. They embrace challenges, max out every opportunity, and graduate with the skills to achieve more, live more, and contribute more to the world.

At Gustavus, you’re not just a Biologist. You can be a Biologist-Trumpeter-Kayaker-Entrepreneur-Superfan-World Traveler. You’ll get to explore and elevate every aspect of yourself, living your whole life, without compromise.

With 50+ on-campus events per week, 120+ student groups, 25 music ensembles, 23 varsity athletic teams, 400 alumni mentors, 50+ study away locations – and so much more! – you’ll be busy, have fun, and grow.

Learn more about living your whole life

Ready to apply?

Are you ready to embark on a transformative educational journey? Take the first step by applying now and unlock a world of opportunities. If you'd like to learn more about the application process, explore our comprehensive resources and get valuable insights. Don't miss out on the chance to shape your future at Gustavus!