Financing a Dental Education

A dental education is an expensive undertaking. While the major responsibility for financing a professional education rests with you and your family, external agencies, such as the federal government assist students by offering low-cost student loans to supplement family contributions.

Financial aid is only available to cover education-related expenses for the student for one academic year. Reapplication is required for each subsequent year. Federal and state laws prohibit the use of financial aid for non-educational expenses such as car loans, lifestyle choices, and credit cards.

Click on a link below for more detail. 

Mandatory Student Fees

2020-2021 Mandatory Student Fees Detail 

Student Activities $ 16.25
Diversity $ 6.00
Campus Modernization - Enhancing the Core $ 6.00
Student Government Association $ 12.00
Dental Student Health & Wellness Fee * $ 262.50
WRFL Student Radio $ 5.50
Kentucky Kernel $ 2.00
International Study Abroad Fee $ 6.75
Environmental Stewardship Fee $ 4.00
Johnson Center Fee $ 80.00
Technology Fee $ 99.00
Student Center Fee $ 131.25
Student Center Renovation Fee $ 81.00
Student Involvement Fee $ 27.25
Student Services Fee $ 13.50
Center for Community Outreach $ 4.00
Transportation Services $ 5.00
Total Fees (per semester) $ 762.00
Estimated Costs for 4th Year Licensure Exams/KY Application Fee/Juris Prudence Fee    
(These items were added to the budget for all 4th year student dentists.)    
SRTA $ 2,200.00
WREB $ 2,200.00
Est. Computer and Facility Fees (for above Exams) $ 500.00
Kentucky License Appl. Fee $ 325.00
Juris Prudence $ Free
Total Fees $ 3,025.00

If licensure exam is more than the budget provided, a receipt is required showing proof to increase the budget for additional funding.

Estimated Expenses

2020-2021 DMD Program Expenses

Curriculum Expenses   Dent I   Dent II   Dent III   Dent IV
Tuition & Fees *                
Kentucky Resident  $ 35,584.00 $ 35,584.00 $ 35,584.00 $ 35,584.00
Non-Resident $ 76,684.00 $ 76,684.00 $ 76,684.00 $ 76,684.00
Instrument Kit Fee (instruments, supplies, mock boards) $ 8,150.00 $ 6,084.00 $ 1,366.00 $ 228.00
Prepared Tray Service (sterilization) $ 1,522.00 $ 1,522.00 $ 1,522.00 $ 1,522.00
CPR $ 54.00     $ 46.00    
Required Books/Manuals (laptop for Dent I) $ 3,634.00 $ 1,462.00 $ 2,502.00 $ 1,126.00
National Board Exams Estimate (Part I and Part II)     $ 446.00     $ 490.00
Licensure Exams/KY Application Fee/Juris Prudence             $ 3,026.00
Other Fees** $ 304.00 $ 326.00 $ 348.00 $ -
Total Resident Curriculum Costs $ 49,248.00 $ 45,424.00 $ 41,368.00 $ 41,976.00
Total Non-Resident Curriculum Costs $ 90,348.00 $ 86,524.00 $ 82,468.00 $ 83,076.00

* Mandartory fees are $762.00 per semester and include such things as the student health fee, activity fee, technology fee Seaton Center fee, and are required of students attending the University of Kentucky and all of its Colleges.

** Other fees include standardized patient fee for 2nd & 3rd year, clinical management fee for 2nd, 3rd, & 4th year and pre-clinical supply fee for 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th year.

Living Expenses for 11 Months*    
Rent ($900.00 mth x 11 mth) $ 9,900.00
Utilities (gas, electric, phone, internet)($400.00 mth x 11 mth) $ 4,400.00
Food ($400.00 mth x 11 mth) $ 4,400.00
Transportation (gas, insurance, maintenance, parking) ($400.00 mth x 11 mth) $ 4,400.00
Personal (miscellaneous, clothing) ($400.00 mth x 11 mth) $ 4,400.00
Total Living Expenses  $ 27,500.00

Students having special circumstances may appeal, in writing, to the Financial Aid Coordinator for reconsideration of the budgetary restraints on living expenses. A form denoting specific guidelines may be obtained from the financial aid office.

* Living expense budgets are for the student ONLY, and will be increased for documented licensed child day care expenses. The living expense amounts are based on a collective annual survey by currently enrolled dental and medical students along with information derived from the Federal Consumer Price Index.

Cost of Attendance - KY Resident $ 76,748.00 $ 72,924.00 $ 68,868.00 $ 69,476.00
Cost of Attendance - Non-Resident  $ 117,848.00 $ 114,024.00 $ 109,968.00 $ 110,576.00

The average indebtedness for the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry Class of 2020 is approximately $268,737, this includes loans they borrowed while undergraduates.

Average indebtedness for (31) Resident - $214,904

Average indebtedness for (27) Non-Resident - $340,719

Three Steps to Financing Your Education

  • Step 1: Begin financing a dental education by tapping the nearest resource, which could be your family. Parents, grandparents, and/or other family members may be in a financial position to help you. If they offer, it is wise to accept their assistance. By reducing your costs, your overall debt will be kept in check.   
  • Step 2: Look for scholarships. Unfortunately, scholarships at the professional level are not as plentiful as they are at the undergraduate level, but they are out there. Contact civic organizations, your church, your employer or your parent’s employer for opportunities. Fraternities and sororities offer scholarships. There are books at public and college libraries,  and internet resources for accessing free scholarship searches. An increasing number of our students are turning to Military scholarships, which are a good investment. For a three- or four- year commitment, you can get a free education. Contact your local recruiter to see what they are offering in the area of health professions. 
  • Step 3: The last step is to take a look at the federal loan programs. You do have to re-pay loans, but thanks to the federal government, the Unsubsidized Loan Program is available at a 4.30 percent fixed interest rate. With the cost of tuition continuing to rise, sometimes the Unsubsidized Loan is not enough to cover your costs. In this case, you may have to rely on the 5.30 percent fixed interest rate Grad Plus Loan. This loan is credit based, so if you have bad credit, try to get your credit problems resolved before you apply to dental school. You may have to get a co-signer for this loan. 
If you must rely on loans, you want to keep borrowing to a minimum. A heavy debt burden when you graduate can and will limit what you do with your DMD degree. It is important to remember that even though dental school is expensive, it is a great investment in your future. 
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