Financial Aid Information
Schools recognize that in many instances individuals and their families are not able to meet the entire cost of education. Therefore, the Financial Aid Office will assist students with the process of applying for Federal Student Aid. The Financial Aid Administrator (FAA) is the designated official at the school for consumer information, and students or parents with questions should not hesitate to contact the FAA by simply calling the school’s main number, located on the school’s website, and asking to be connected to the Financial Aid Office.
TYPES OF FEDERAL FINANCIAL AID PROGRAMS
Eligibility for Federal Student Aid is based on financial need and several other factors. Generally, to be eligible for Federal Student Aid, a student must:
- Demonstrate financial need (except for certain loans).
- Have a high school diploma or a General Education Development (GED) certificate or state-specific equivalency credential, or complete a high school education in a home school setting that is treated as such under state law.
- Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a regular student working toward a degree or certificate in an eligible program.
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.
- Have a valid Social Security Number.
- Register with the Selective Service if required. A student can use the paper or electronic FAFSASM to register, register at www.sss.gov, or call 1-847-688-6888, or call Toll Free 1-888-655-1825. (TTY users can call 1-847-688-2567.)
- Maintain satisfactory academic progress once in school.
- Certify that he or she is not in default on a Federal student loan and does not owe money on a Federal student grant.
- Certify that he or she will use Federal Student Aid only for educational purposes.
The student will need to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form in order to apply for Federal Student Aid. These forms can be found on the Department of Education’s website, www.fafsa.ed.gov. Ask the financial aid advisor for your school’s code. The student’s actual eligibility amounts will be determined from the information reported on the FAFSA.
The Pell grant is gift assistance that does not have to be repaid. Pell grants are awarded to students who have a financial need as determined by the U.S. Department of Education standards. Annually, the U.S. Department of Education determines student eligibility for this grant. For the 2017-2018 award years, the minimum grant for a full-time student is $740.00 and the maximum grant is $5,920.00. The Pell grant is gift assistance that does not have to be repaid. Pell grants are awarded to students who have a financial need as determined by the U.S. Department of Education standards. Annually, the U.S. Department of Education determines student eligibility for this grant. For the 2016-2017 award year the minimum was 727.00 and the maximum was $5,815.00. For the 2015-2016 award years, the minimum grant for a full-time student is $587 and the maximum grant is $5,775.00. A student is eligible to receive a Pell grant for up to 12 semesters or the equivalent. If a student has exceeded the 12-semester maximum, he or she will lose eligibility for additional Pell grants. Equivalency is calculated by adding together the percentage of Pell eligibility that he or she received each year to determine whether the total amount exceeds 600%. For example, if Bill’s maximum Pell grant award amount for the 2012-2013 school years was $5,550, but he only received $2,775 because he was only enrolled for one semester, he would have used 50% of his maximum award for that year. If during the following school year (2013-2014), he were to enroll three-quarter time for the entire year, he will use 75% of his maximum award for that year. Together, he will have received 125% out of the total 600% lifetime limit.
The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant is gift assistance that does not have to be repaid. The Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant is awarded to students who have the most financial need as determined by the U.S. Department of Education standards. For the 2017-2018 award years, the minimum grant for a full-time student is $100 and the maximum grant is $4,000.
The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity program is administered directly by the Financial Aid Office at each participating school and is therefore called “campus-based” aid. Not all schools participate. Check with the Financial Aid Office to find out if the school offers the grant.
Federal student loans are required by law to provide a range of flexible repayment options, including, but not limited to, income-based repayment, income-contingent repayment plans, and loan forgiveness benefits, which other student loans are not required providing. Federal Direct Stafford loans are available to students regardless of income. Before taking out loans, students should visit the Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid website at https://studentaid.ed.gov/types/loans to learn more. Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan the Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan program provides low interest loans through the U.S. Department of Education’s Direct Loan Program. The maximum annual loan amount for undergraduate students is $3,500 for the first academic year, less origination and other fees (if applicable). Beginning July 1, 2012, only undergraduate students are eligible for subsidized loan funding. The Federal government pays the interest while the student is in school, in-grace, and during deferment periods. Effective for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2012, interest begins accruing on these loans when the student graduates or drops below half-time enrollment status. The minimum repayment amount is $50 per month, but it may be greater depending on the amount borrowed. However, subsidized Federal Direct Stafford loans provide many flexible repayment plans as outlined in the loan counseling materials. Payments are based on the repayment plan selected by the student. For subsidized loans first disbursed on or after 7/1/2017, the interest rate is fixed at 4.45%. Borrowers with other outstanding loans may be able to consolidate eligible loans and make only one monthly payment. Please refer to the loan entrance counseling materials found at https://studentloans.gov/ for additional information.
The Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan program provides additional loan funding to students who do not qualify for a full Subsidized Stafford Loan or who need additional loan funding. The Federal government does not pay the interest on unsubsidized loans while the student is in school, in-grace, and during deferment periods. Student loan borrowers are responsible for all interest that accrues on the loan while in school, in-grace, and during deferment periods. The student may elect to make interest payments while in school to avoid the capitalization of interest and to lower the overall repayment debt. Typically loan repayment will begin six months after the student leaves school or attends less than half time. Undergraduate independent students can borrow up to $9,500 (Subsidized and Unsubsidized combined) for the first academic year, of which no more than $3,500 can be subsidized. Undergraduate dependent students can borrow up to $5,500 (Subsidized and Unsubsidized combined) for the first academic year, of which no more than $3,500 can be subsidized. Graduate students may borrow up to $20,500 per academic year, depending on eligibility. For undergraduate unsubsidized loans first disbursed on or after 7/1/20176, the interest rate is fixed at 4.45%. For graduate unsubsidized loans first disbursed on or after 7/1/2017, the interest rate is fixed at 6.0%.
Please see the Financial Aid Administrator at the school to receive further information regarding the maximum Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford annual loan amounts for second or subsequent academic years.
The Federal PLUS loan is a credit-based loan, available to parents who wish to apply for additional assistance for their dependent child’s education. The amount of the PLUS loan cannot exceed the student’s cost of attendance less other student aid awarded. PLUS loans through the Direct Loan Program first disbursed on or after 7/1/2017 will have a fixed interest rate of 7.0%. The first payment will be due within 60 days after the final loan disbursement. Payments will include both principal and accumulated interest.
The Federal Graduate PLUS loan is a credit-based loan, available to students enrolled in a post-baccalaureate program who wish to apply for additional assistance. The amount of the Graduate PLUS loan cannot exceed the student’s cost of attendance less other student aid awarded. The interest rate varies and is adjusted each year, not to exceed 9%, and begins to accumulate on the date of the first disbursement. Graduate PLUS loans through the Federal Direct Loan Program first disbursed on or after 7/1/2017 will have a fixed interest rate of 7.0 %. Please refer to the loan entrance counseling materials found at https://studentloans.gov/ for additional information.
STATE AND LOCAL AID, SCHOOL AID, AND OTHER: PRIVATE AID PROGRAMS
The school catalog, available on the school’s website, lists other aid programs which may be available such as State and Local Aid, School Aid, and other Private Aid programs to enrolled students. Students should review the school catalog and see the Financial Aid Office for additional information on current aid programs.
Private loans may have fixed or variable interest rates. Private student loan lenders can offer variable interest rates that can increase or decrease over time, depending on market conditions. The interest rate on a private loan may depend on the borrower’s credit rating. Private student loans have a range of interest rates and associated fees. Students should determine the interest rate of, and any fees associated with, a private student loan prior to accepting the loan as part of a financial aid award package. Questions regarding private student loans should be directed to the lender or to the school’s Financial Aid Office.
Each student interested in receiving financial assistance must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or provide a copy of the Student Aid Report (SAR) if the FAFSA was previously completed for the current award year.
The Financial Aid Office will use the results of the FAFSA to determine the student’s financial aid eligibility.
A student’s application may be selected for a process known as verification. The verification process requires the school to validate certain information submitted on the FAFSA. The student will be required to submit supporting documentation. Financial assistance will not be awarded until the verification process has been completed.
Students should refer to www.studentaid.ed.gov website, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, for more detailed information.