Foster, homeless and unaccompanied youth

Saint Martin's University supports foster, homeless and unaccompanied youth through our integrative Fostering Success program. We combine the resources needed to navigate your college career as an independent student and provide a network of contacts to help you with your journey.

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Financial assistance and scholarship opportunities

Foster Care to Success Scholarships

About the scholarships

  • Applications accepted Jan. 1 to March 31 each year
  • Recipients are notified via email annually at the end of June
  • $2,500-$5,000 awards are determined by a combination of need and merit
  • Award is renewable up to five years if you remain compliant with program requirements


You must:

  1. Have been in public or private foster care for the 12 consecutive months leading up to and including your 18th birthday OR have been adopted or placed into legal guardianship after your16th birthday OR have been orphaned for at least one year at the time of your 18th birthday.
  2. Be under the age of 25 on March 31 of the year in which you apply if you have not previously received scholarship funding from Foster Care to Success.
  3. Have been in foster care or orphaned while living in the United States. U.S. citizenship is not required.
  4. Have been accepted into or expect to be accepted into an accredited, Pell-eligible college or other postsecondary school.
  5. Be pursuing an undergraduate degree.

Apply for Foster Care to Success Scholarships

Continuing Education and Job Training Program (Casey Family Programs)

About the scholarships​

Foster Care to Success has provided scholarships since 1991; in 2000 we restructured the program and since then have awarded over $15M to 2,000 students in all 50 states. We are proud of our graduation rate of 65%, with a persistence rate of 75% – both higher than those of the general population of college students. 

Note: Eligibility is confirmed by the funder, not by Foster Care to Success


Casey Family Services Alumni Scholarship

About the scholarship

  • Applications are accepted throughout the year
  • Up to $10,000 over the course of a student’s academic career
  • Award is renewable until maximum award is disbursed


Note: Eligibility is confirmed by the funder, not by Foster Care to Success

You must:

  1. Have received foster care, guardianship or adoption services from Casey Family Services in Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island or Vermont
  2. Be between the ages of 16 and 49 at the time of application
  3. Be starting or currently attending a technical school, college or university in pursuit of a certificate, associate’s, bachelor’s or master’s degree or a professional degree including law or medicine
  4. Note Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees are not eligible for this scholarship

Apply for Casey Family Services Alumni Scholarships

Education and Training Voucher Program (ETV)

For information on the ETV Program including eligibility requirements and application dates, visit

ETV brochure
ETV application

Washington State Governor's Scholarship for Foster Youth

For information on the Washington State Governor's Scholarship for Foster Youth including eligibility requirements and application dates, visit

Umps Care Scholarship

For information on the Umps Care Scholarship including eligibility requirements and application dates, visit

Photo of a Student

Yeshi's story

"I never dreamed I would go to college, let alone make it this far. If you are willing to ask for help, you will find it at Saint Martins! I want everyone who has been through the foster system to realize you have great potential and there are many people who are willing to help you achieve your dreams. Life can be a struggle, but never give up!" 

Photo of a student smiling

Tallie's story

"Being a foster kid was not always easy. Many did not want to see me succeed. Attending Saint Martin's University has been a blessing in disguise. Not only have the professors, staff and other students helped me grow academically, but they also helped me grow as a person.'" - Tallie

Financial aid FAQs

What is the difference between a dependent vs. independent student status?

In general, FAFSA applicants under the age of 24 are considered dependent students, meaning that parent’s information needs to be included in the FASFA. That is not realistic, of course. Therefore a number of questions have been built into the application to determine whether criteria exists that change a student‘s status to independent, including students who are:

  • Married
  • A graduate or professional student
  • A veteran or active duty member of the armed forces
  • An orphan or ward of the court
  • Someone with legal dependents, other than a spouse
  • An emancipated minor
  • Someone who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless

Students should review the questions carefully and answer truthfully. In some cases, Student Financial Services may require supporting documentation to confirm status. If questions are confusing, or some inadequate, reach out to the Student Financial Services Center at 360-438-4397 or

Why should I complete the FAFSA?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the first step  in determining what kind of funding you have available to help pay for college:

  • Federal and state grants
  • Federal loans
  • Scholarships
  • Work-Study

Your potential for funds begins at

Can financial aid help cover my dorm and food plan charges?

Financial aid is meant to help you pay for the cost of completing your degree program, and that includes the room and board charges.

The Student Financial Services Center is required to determine a Cost of Attendance (COA) budget each academic year. If you are planning to live on campus (per their FAFSA), your room and board charges will be included in your budget and will this information on your billing account (along with tuition, fees, etc.). Financial aid awards will be determined on the FAFSA information and the COA for the year attending. You will be awarded as much funding as you are determined to be eligible for, up to the COA budget.

Financial aid will likely not cover the COA in its entirety, but funds can and will be disbursed to your billing account to help cover outstanding charges. In some cases, funds may disburse in excess of billing charges, resulting in a refund.

What is a book voucher?

If you have applied for financial aid and have accepted the award letter, you will have funds disbursed to your billing account after the 10th day of classes.

Students generally purchase books and supplies prior to the start of the term, but may not necessarily have resources available to them. If pending financial awards are in excess of semester charges, you may be eligible for a book voucher that can be used at the University Bookstore. Vouchers are available two weeks prior to the start of each term.

To request a book voucher:

Contact Student Financial Services Center  at 360-438-4397 or

Health and wellness

What you need to know:

  • You can apply all financial aid to on-campus housing and meal plans

  • There are opportunities for you to stay on-campus during Thanksgiving and winter and spring breaks at no charge

  • If you are 21 years or older, you may live in the Burton or Spangler apartments with no meal plan

  • If you are under 21 years old, you may live in ParsonsSpangler or Baran hall

Find community housing support:

Amenities for commuters:

  • Lounges in the Office of Campus Ministry (Old Main 316), Diversity and Equity Center (DEC; Harned Hall 211) and the Trautman Union Building (TUB) 

  • Spaces for you to bring a microwavable lunch, study and socialize with other students

  • Lockers are available in the TUB, which students can request to rent at the beginning of each semester (contact Office of Campus Life at 360-486-8877 to make a reservation)


  • At the beginning of each semester, go to the Office of Public Safety (Old Main 251) to get your Saint Martin's student ID validated for the semester

  • You may show your validated student ID to the bus driver and use it as a bus pass

  • There are several bus lines that pick-up at Saint Martin's. View maps of current routes at

  • View map of free parking available to students

  • Register your vehicle at the Office of Public Safety (Old Main 251)

  • You do not need auto insurance to register

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