How do I apply for financial aid?
To determine what you might be eligible to receive, you must first fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.
Once you complete the FAFSA, the federal processor will review your application, and you will then be notified if you qualify for financial aid.
Does it cost to apply for financial aid?
It does not cost anything to apply for financial aid.
To apply, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid – known as the FAFSA – at www.fafsa.gov
If you do not have internet access at home, you may be able to access the Internet on a campus computer or at a local library.
Finally, if you have any questions about the FAFSA or the financial aid process, financial aid professionals on staff are available to help you, free of charge.
Beware of scams that charge for financial aid!
When should I apply for financial aid?
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available every year on January 1st. You should apply early even if you are not planning to start school until the summer or fall. This way you can figure out how you are going to pay for school before it begins. The latest date a student can apply for financial aid is June 30th of the following year. For example, June 30th, 2014 for academic year 2013-2014. However, a student must have a valid Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) received by the institution prior to the last day of enrollment at that campus to be considered for payment. The ISIR is generated and sent to any institution whose federal school code is listed on the FAFSA by the student at the time of application. The FAFSA can be found online at: www.fafsa.gov Please make sure to also check with your school and/or state for their deadlines which may apply to school or state funding programs.
When should I fill out a FAFSA?
The new FAFSA becomes available on January 1st of each year.
It is generally advised that you complete the FAFSA as early as possible.
Be sure to take your time to avoid making any errors.
If you or your parents have not yet filed taxes for the year, you can estimate your earnings by using your final pay stub of the year which will show your year-to-date earnings.
You can then go back and enter your actual tax return information when you file your Federal tax return.
By completing the FAFSA early, you will have the greatest access to financial aid funds.
There is an additional federal resource called the FAFSA4caster that you can use prior to January 1st to estimate your financial aid eligibility.
The FAFSA4caster can be found on the FAFSA website at www.fafsa.gov .
This is a great tool for seniors in high school who are looking at different colleges and want to get a head start on understanding possible funding options.
Do I have to reapply for financial aid each year?
Yes, you must apply for financial aid each year by completing the FAFSA for the new award year.
You can apply online at www.fafsa.gov .
The online FAFSA application is easy to complete, and does not cost anything.
If you completed a FAFSA in the previous award year, some of your information will auto populate on the current year application.
You will need to verify the information is still accurate.
To complete your application, you will need a PIN number to electronically sign your FAFSA.
This is to ensure your privacy and security.
If you do not remember your PIN, you can obtain a copy at www.pin.ed.gov .
The FAFSA is available every year beginning January 1st.
You are encouraged to apply early.
Do I have to wait for admission before applying for financial aid?
No, you do not have to be admitted in order to apply for financial aid.
However, you do have to be admitted and registered to receive financial aid.