Scholarship Initiative

The Washington Ballet announced its renewed commitment to supporting young people from all backgrounds in pursuing ballet study. The company will award more than $350,000 in scholarships and tuition assistance each year to students who otherwise would not be able to afford ballet study, with an emphasis on people traditionally underrepresented in ballet, such as people of color and young men.

Read through the document below for more information on our scholarship initiative:

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Tuition Assistance

The Washington School of Ballet (TWSB) is committed to creating pipelines and pathways for young people of all backgrounds to succeed in school, in dance, and in life. Each year, TWSB awards up to $300,000 in tuition assistance for students to receive classical ballet training from nationally and internationally renowned faculty. Support this initiative by donating or joining the Family Giving Circle today!

TWSB uses the federal Income Eligibility Guidelines (IEGs), commonly used to determine eligibility for free and reduced price meals in an academic setting, to determine eligibility for assistance. Tuition assistance is decided based on each family’s demonstrated financial need as well as available funds. Although we strive to help every eligible family, you may be placed on a waiting list if funding is not currently available. Tuition assistance awards apply to School Year programs. Assistance for Summer programs may be extended for current families who were enrolled during the school year as funding permits.

Tuition Assistance Application Process

Applications for School Year programs are accepted May through August of each year. Families who would like to apply for tuition assistance should do so prior to enrolling their child in classes.

Apply for Tuition Assistance

  • Decisions will be made within 4 weeks of submitting all required information. You will receive a decision by email. Please provide a valid email on your application. Early applications will be held until the processing window. Late applications will be processed as funding permits.
  • If you have received an award, you must register within the deadline listed, or your award will be applied to the first person on the waiting list. If you are on a waitlist, you will be contacted by email only if funding becomes available.

How does TWSB determine who receives Tuition Assistance? 

Priority is given to re-enrolling families who have previously received assistance and still qualify. All remaining funds are awarded to applicants on a first-come-first-served basis.

  • Re-enrolling students at the SE Campus who already receive tuition assistance and re-apply during the priority enrollment period.
  • Re-enrolling students at the SE Campus who do not yet receive tuition assistance and apply during the priority enrollment period.
  • Re-enrolling students at the NW Campus who have previously received tuition assistance.
  • New students who qualify for tuition assistance.

Why do we give priority to our SE campus at THEARC? Our special partnership with THEARC allows us to provide additional tuition assistance specifically to support enrollment and programming at our SE campus.

How is the award amount determined and what is it applied toward? 

Awards may vary depending on need and funds available at the time of application. Awards are applied towards tuition only and cannot be applied towards administrative fees, production fees, or other costs.

In order to qualify for Tuition Assistance, your household income must be within the limits defined by the 2023 Income Eligibility Guidelines

Total Family Size



1 $58,319.00 $4,859.00
2 $78,879.00 $6,572.00
3 $99,439.00 $8,286.00
4 $119,999.00 $9,999.00
5 $140,559.00 $11,712.00
6 $161,119.00 $13,426.00
7 $181,679.00 $15,139.00
8+ $202,239.00 $16,852.00

What do I have to do to maintain my award? 

  • All students must maintain above an 80% attendance rate and/or communicate attendance needs with their teacher.
  • The student and parents/guardians must abide the rules of conduct set forth by TWSB in the Parent Handbook and other similar materials.
  • Families, guardians, or friends of the student must commit to attend or volunteer at TWSB events that involve the student.
  • Meet all financial obligations to TWSB.
  • All returning students must submit an application for tuition assistance prior to enrolling for full school year programs.

Additional questions? Contact Kayla DeShields at

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DanceDC Merit Scholarships

The Washington Ballet selects talented students from DanceDC participant schools to receive a full merit-based scholarship to The Washington School of Ballet. DanceDC Merit Scholarship recipients have the opportunity to study classical ballet, free of charge, for a full school year. This program is vital for these TWSB students, many of whom would not be able to pursue their dance training without financial support.

“My appreciation for the DanceDC Merit Scholarship goes far beyond the monetary help they provide for my daughter’s dance education. This program has actually built a bridge from her dreams to reality, opening her eyes to her full potential in the world. How could I ever thank them for showing her there is no limit to what she can do, where she can go, and who she can be?”

-Lauren Dew, parent of a 2016 DanceDC Merit Scholar

Support DanceDC Merit Scholars Now

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Rory Schwartz Scholarship

Rory Schwartz Scholarship

The Rory Schwartz Fund honors the memory of Rory Jashinsky Schwartz and benefits students of The Washington School of Ballet who demonstrate Rory’s talent and passion, and who are striving towards a career in dance.

Rory Schwartz Scholarship Recipients

2013.14 Christianne Campbell, University of Oklahoma

2014.15 Stefan Goncalvez, Joffrey Ballet Company Member

2015.16 Aiden Carrasquel, Ballet San Antonio Company Member

2016.17 Rafael Bejarano, The Washington Ballet Studio Company Member

2017.18 Joshua Kiesel, The Washington School of Ballet, Trainee Program Member

2018.19 Jordan Lovelace, The Washington School of Ballet Professional Training Program Student

2019.20 Trae Mikus, The Washington School of Ballet Professional Training Program Student

2022.23 Francesco Messina, The Washington School of Ballet Professional Training Division Student

Support the Rory Schwartz Scholarship Fund

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Lynn Cote Memorial Scholarship

Lynn Cote Memorial Scholarship

Since 2019, friends and family have generously contributed in her memory to create this annual scholarship fund at The Washington School of Ballet. Recipients to this scholarship must demonstrate drive, commitment and joy of the art form, attributes Lynn would have appreciated. The award value is equal to one year of training at The Washington School of Ballet.

In Memory of Lynn Cote
Lynn Cote graduated from the Academy of the Washington Ballet (now The Washington School of Ballet) in 1977. She was a founding member of The Washington Ballet professional company where she danced and toured with the company all over the world. The majority of her performance career was with The Washington Ballet, where she spent over 20 years in addition to several years with the Boston Ballet. Later in her professional career with The Washington Ballet, she served as Ballet Mistress and Choreographer in Residence. She also choreographed for several dance companies nationally and received numerous recognitions and industry awards. Fellow dancers recall Lynn as a muse to Choo San Goh, Artistic Associate and resident choreographer at that time, who loved her sensitivity to music and her dare-devil approach. She brightened the stage with her presence, thrilled the audience and inspired younger dancers.

Lynn Cote Memorial Scholarship Recipients

2021.22 Michaele (Misha) Glouchkova, The Washington School of Ballet Professional Training Program Student

2022.23 Annie Bacon, The Washington School of Ballet Professional Training Program Student


Support the Lynn Cote Memorial Scholarship Fund

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