College Financial Aid Counselors in the United States are not likely to strike it rich; they only make around $39K per year on average. Earnings sit near $28K on the lower side but can approach $50K per year on the higher side. A large number claim medical and dental insurance and the greater part get vision coverage. There are far more female College Financial Aid Counselors who answered the questionnaire than men, making up 81 percent. Though the majority of College Financial Aid Counselors do not report high levels of job satisfaction, most are moderately content with their role.

$29,128 - $50,787
(Median)
$29K
$39K
$51K
MEDIAN: $39,273
10%
50%
90%

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$12.77 - $21.29
(Median)
$13
$16
$21
MEDIAN: $15.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$17K$34K$51K
Salary
$29,128 - $50,787  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,020  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$27,681 - $49,833  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 137
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$12.77 - $21.29  
   
Overtime
$19.87 - $35.75  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,020  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$27,681 - $49,833  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 50
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Job Description for Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University)

Financial aid counselors are responsible for helping students at post-secondary institutions to obtain private and/or government financial aid, grants, and scholarships, as well as provide information regarding available student loans from both private and government institutions.

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Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) Tasks

  • Coordinate and administer financial aid appeals.
  • Package, award, and disburse funds to students.
  • Assist in the review of students' financial aid applications.
  • Counsel students and parents about self-help financial aid programs, eligibility requirements, and application processes.
  • Plan and perform financial aid workshops to staff and students.

Common Career Paths for Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University)


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College Financial Aid Counselors who move on to become Financial Aid Directors may enjoy significant pay raises, as Financial Aid Directors get paid an average of $55K per year. As College Financial Aid Counselors progress in their field, many go on to become Assistant Directors of Financial Aid. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and pay for the position is usually $45K per year. Another common career choice for College Financial Aid Counselors is to move into a Financial Aid Counselor role. Typically, Financial Aid Counselors get paid $34K.

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Popular Skills for Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University)


Just a handful of professional skills are reported by College Financial Aid Counselors who took the survey. Those who have experience with Microsoft Excel, Customer Service, and Microsoft Office can expect to be compensated well for these skills. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Microsoft Office and Customer Service. Customer Service and Microsoft Office are correlating skills — those who know the former usually know the latter.

Pay by Experience Level for Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $35K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $41K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $40K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't higher than less experienced individuals' earnings.

Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) Reviews

What is it like working as a Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University)?

Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) in Houghton:
"Financial Aid - being honest with families."
Pros: Helping students; awarding scholarships; learning about what students are studying and what plans they have for the future. I also found the level of stress to be much lower then my previous job. Being able to obtain my MBA while working is also a huge perk.
Cons: Having tough conversations with families; not having enough gift aid (institutional, state and federal) to help every student; explaining the rising costs of education and having absolutely no say in the matter (deflecting blame from our administration); dealing with educational policy is also frustrating.

What do you wish you knew about your job when you first started out?

Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) in Memphis:
Make sure your learn all the rules and regulations of the federal government such as Title IV funds to award students.

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Experience Affects Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) Salaries

Mid-Career
up arrow 8%

Experienced
up arrow 7%

Late-Career
up arrow 5%

National Average
$38,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 6%

Skills That Affect Financial Aid Counselor (School/College/University) Salaries

National Average
$38,000

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 3%



Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 27 votes.

Gender

Female
81 %
Male
19 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 83%
dental benefits
Dental: 79%
medical benefits
Vision: 63%
dental benefits
None: 13%
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