Scholarships & Loans

As the nation’s oldest college of Traditional Chinese Medicine, ACTCM is renowned for graduating many of the foremost experts in the field and having the most experienced faculty of any program. By joining a community of distinguished practitioners, you will develop your highest potential so that you can further transform the art and science of healing, wherever your calling may take you.

Scholarship Search Websites
Loans + Loan Resources
Entrance/Exit Loan Counseling
Student Employment

ACTCM at CIIS Scholarships

Diversity Scholarship

CIIS is a university deeply committed to diversity, inclusion, and advocating for social justice. The university, guided by these principles, is offering forty $5,000 Diversity Scholarships for the academic year 2020-2021. In line with our institutional mission of embracing traditions that enhance social and political liberation, these scholarships are intended to support the recruitment of a diverse student body, particularly students historically underrepresented in higher education. Apply for the Fall 2020 semester by March 15, 2020 by submitting the application below. Start the Diversity Scholarship application now!

We are offering five different types of Diversity Scholarships:

All eligibility rules and application instructions are on the form:

Opportunity Scholarships

For All New Students

All newly admitted students are considered for the CIIS Opportunity Scholarships, which range from $500 to $3,000. A separate institutional application is not needed for this scholarship.

International students wishing to apply for an Opportunity Scholarship should fill out this form and return it to the Financial Aid Office.

Quick facts/guidelines: Opportunity Scholarship

Scholarships Requiring an Application

The following scholarships must be applied for through the Financial Aid Office. These scholarships have different opening and closing deadlines so please check dates below. Please refer to the web form below or click here to download the application instructions, requirements, and form for scholarships requiring an application.

ACTCM@CIIS Specific Scholarships

These scholarships do not require an application (except for the Erlene Chiang Community Service Scholarship) and will be awarded similarly to the Opportunity Scholarships; all students will be considered based on need.

General ACTCM Scholarships

Use the link below to read about scholarships.

Click here to download the ACTCM scholarship application
Click here to download the ACTCM scholarship recommendation form

Acupuncture & Massage Scholarships

Mayway Scholarship: Mayway will be offering three scholarships to DAOM and Master’s level students who are currently enrolled in an ACAOM- accredited college of Oriental Medicine. Masters students should have completed the college’s in Materia Medica or Chinese herbs. These scholarships are available to students with a cumulative GPA of 3.25in their OM program. Three scholarships will be awarded:

*Mayway Scholarship – $2,000
*Modern Masters Scholarship – $1,500 (DAOM Students)
*Plum Flower Scholarship – $1,500

NuHerbs Scholarship: Nuherbs awards three scholarships to further the development of Chinese Medicine by supporting the brightest and most passionate students of acupuncture and Chinese medicine. These scholarships are available to students with a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA. Three scholarships will be awarded:
• Nuherbs® Scholarship ($2,000.00)
• Herbal Times® Scholarship ($1,500.00)
• Jade Dragon® Scholarship ($1,000.00)

Federal Benefits Scholarships

Americorps – Congress established the National Service Trust to provide an AmeriCorps Education Award for members who successfully complete service in AmeriCorps. You can use your AmeriCorps Education Award to pay educational expenses at qualified institutions of higher education, for educational training, or to repay qualified student loans. The award – recently renamed the Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards after Eli Segal, one of the pioneers of the national service movement and the first CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service – is $4,725 for a year of full-time service, and is prorated for part-time. You have up to seven years after your term of service has ended to claim the award.

GI Bill – Scholarships, veterans employment, GI Bill information, veteran jobs, veterans benefits, transition assistance and more.

Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation – One year, renewable, scholarships for the children of active duty and retired marines. One year, renewable, scholarships for the children of active duty and retired marines.

Federal Benefits

Veterans Administration Education Benefits:  The California Department of Consumer Affairs approves ACTCM on behalf of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to administer educational benefits for eligible students.  Eligibility varies on an individual basis.  Veterans interested in using their benefits are encouraged to begin the application process early, at least three months before enrollment.  For further information, contact the Veterans Administration at (888) GI-Bill-1.

Yellow Ribbon Program:  Starting October 2014, ACTCM will participate in the Post-9/11 GI Bill Yellow Ribbon Program agree to make additional funds available for your education program without an additional charge to your GI Bill entitlement. These institutions voluntarily enter into a Yellow Ribbon Agreement with VA and choose the amount of tuition and fees that will be contributed. VA matches that amount and issues payments directly to the institution.

AmeriCorps:  The AmeriCorps program provides full-time educational awards in return for work in community service.  You can work before, during, or after your post secondary education, and you can use funds either to pay current educational expenses or to repay federal student loans.  For further information on the program, call (800) 942-2677.

Tax Credits:  
Students may be eligible for federal income tax credits for the tuition and fees you pay at ACTCM.  A tax credit directly reduces your tax liability, often times regardless of your income tax bracket. The Lifetime Learning Tax Credit is available for undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education coursework to acquire or improve job skills. It provides a tax credit equal to 20% of qualified tuition and fees (less scholarships, grants, and tax-free tuition benefits) up to a $2,000 maximum credit each year per family, not per student.

Scholarships for International Students

Canadian and International Awards – Scholarships and grants for international students.

Canadian Student Loan Program – For Canadian students studying or planning to study in the United States.

International Scholarships – The premier financial aid, college scholarship and international scholarship resource for students wishing to study abroad. At this site, you will find the most comprehensive listing of grants, scholarships, loan programs, and other information to assist college and university students in their pursuit to study abroad.

General Scholarships

AAUW – Career Development Grants support women who hold a bachelor’s degree and are preparing to advance or change careers or re-enter the work force. Special consideration is given to women of color, and women pursuing their first advanced degree or credentials in nontraditional fields. Funds are available for tuition, fees, books, supplies, local transportation, and dependent care and for distance learning. Recipients must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Awards range from $2,000 – $12,000.

All U.S. Government Programs Benefiting Students – Comprehensive listings of all current U.S. federal government assistance programs benefiting students.

Everest Nutrition, Krill Oil – Educate Your Heart – Everest Nutrition, a leader in providing superior quality nutraceutical supplements across North America, awards two – $1,000 scholarships annually.

College Answer – Free college scholarship search. – Free scholarship search containing potential opportunities from over 2,300 sources.

FastWeb – The Internet’s leading free scholarship search service.  – Free scholarship search. – Free scholarship search with access to student loan origination and servicing records for loans.

Scholarship Deadlines

Scholarship funding is dependent upon foundation grants and other fund raising activities. In recent years ACTCM has offered several scholarships to ACTCM students based on foundation gifts. One example is the William and Mattie Harris Scholarship Foundation. Information on current scholarship competitions are announced during the year, contingent on continued funding.


Federal Direct Loan Program (Direct)
Federal Direct Loans are available to graduate students,  The Direct Loan a student is awarded is based on the FAFSA information and determined by U.S. Department of Education calculations and Cost of Attendance at the educational institution.

For Federal Direct loans, the federal government may deduct up to 4 percent total fees from the total amount borrowed.

Federal Direct UnSubsidized Stafford Loan
The Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is available to all students who meet the Federal requirements (or criteria) and will accrue interest at a fixed 6.21% upon the first disbursement. The annual Unsubsidized Stafford Loan Limit is $20,500 (per 9-month) loan period. The total aggregate loan amount is $138,500 including Subsidized Stafford loans. This loan does not begin repayment until the end of the six-month grace period.

Graduate Direct PLUS Loan
Federal Graduate PLUS loans are for graduate students who have educational expenses beyond the Federal Direct loans and/or other financial aid. Currently, the interest rate is 7.21% per annum and is subject to change every July 1st. The Cost of Attendance (COA) minus awarded financial aid equals the amount of a potential Federal Graduate PLUS loan. COA includes actual tuition plus general budgets for Books, Supplies, Room/Board, Transportation and Personal expenses. A separate loan application is required and credit worthiness check will be done by the U.S. Department of Education.

Alternative Loans
An Alternative Loan is a private loan that a student may apply for from a lending institution or organization. Alternative loans are not part of Federal Aid programs. A private loan has more stringent credit requirements. The lender will review your credit report and your credit score. Some lenders also consider your income-to-debt ratio. A co-signer may be required. Variable interest rates-may be as high as 18%- 21% and is not capped. Please speak to your financial aid professional before you borrow or if you have questions.

Loan Search Websites

Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation – One of the nation’s leading guarantors and servicers of student loans, Great Lakes serves more than 2,700 schools and 1,400 lenders across the nation. We work with schools, lenders, and community organizations to help millions of people pay for college and build brighter futures.

Sallie Mae – The nation’s leading provider of student loans, including: Private Student Loans, Federal College Loans, PLUS, Stafford, Consolidation, Undergraduate and Graduate College Student Loans.

Nelnet Education Planning and Financing

PHEAA (Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency)

MOHELA (Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority)

ACS Education Services

Loan Resources

Federal Student Aid Ombudsman – Works with student loan borrowers to informally resolve loan disputes and problems with federal loans.

Guide to Defaulted Student Loans – This guide published by the Department of Education provides information regarding loan consolidation.

National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) – This student access site is available for students to view their loan and grant records and obtain balance and loan holder information.

Entrance/Exit Loan Counseling

Entrance Loan Counseling

First-time borrowers of the Direct Federal Stafford Loan at ACTCM are required to complete a Student Loan Entrance Interview before they can receive their loan proceeds.

The purpose of the entrance interview is to provide the student with important information regarding their rights and responsibilities as a student loan borrower. A good rule of thumb is to complete it after you have received your Award Letter packet of information.

Go to to take the entrance counseling. It takes about 15- 20 minutes to complete. The Department of Education will notify ACTCM when you have completed and passed the exam.

Exit Loan Counseling

An Exit Interview is for students who are leaving or graduating from ACTCM, or are enrolled less than half-time status. Students who have borrowed Federal Stafford Loans and or Perkins Loans while attending ACTCM must complete a Student Loan Exit Interview prior to leaving the college.

The purpose of the Exit Interview is to provide the student with important information regarding loan repayment, including deferments, grace periods, loan consolidation, and loan default.

Exit Interview sessions are scheduled toward the end of each quarter, and can be completed online by logging onto . It takes about 15- 20 minutes to complete. will notify ACTCM when you have completed and passed the exam.

Related Links: – Direct Loan Entrance and Exit Counseling explains the obligations you agree to meet as a condition of receiving a Direct Loan.


Student Employment

The Federal Work Study Program (FWS) subsidizes employment for students with financial need.  The program encourages community service and work related to your course of study.  Your hourly wage is set by ACTCM as your employer and may vary depending on the responsibilities of your position.  Your total work-study award is based on financial need and available funding.

Student employees are paid by the college with a monthly payroll check and are not permitted to work more than 20 hours per week during periods of enrollment.  All FWS funds are subject to I.R.S. tax rules and regulations. Further details will be supplied with your award letter.  If you have not received a Federal Work Study award and wish to be considered, please contact the Financial Aid Office.

For information about Federal Work Study job openings at ACTCM, contact the Director of Student Affairs at (415) 282-7600 x216.  All jobs are located on the ACTCM campus. Students will apply and be interviewed directly by the department hiring for the position.  No student may be hired into any job until all required documents are submitted and all required approvals granted.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Deadline

Students must file the FAFSA once each year. We recommend that you complete your financial aid application no later than 90 days prior to the beginning of your quarter of enrollment. Be sure to enter the ACTCM school code: 030782. In addition to completing the FAFSA yearly, all MSTCM students must also complete the ACTCM Supplemental Financial Aid Form for the academic year you are applying for.

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