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South Puget Sound Community College December 2011 Financial Aid 101: What it is and How to Apply Amy Ybarra, Program Specialist III

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Presentation on theme: "South Puget Sound Community College December 2011 Financial Aid 101: What it is and How to Apply Amy Ybarra, Program Specialist III"— Presentation transcript:

1 South Puget Sound Community College December 2011 Financial Aid 101: What it is and How to Apply Amy Ybarra, Program Specialist III Cookie Greer, Program Specialist II

2 Financing Your Education What is financial aid? Where does it come from? What aid is available? Who is eligible? How do I apply?

3 What is Financial Aid? Scholarships Grants Loans Employment opportunities

4 Types of Need-Based Aid Gift aid: Grants & scholarships (need- based or merit-based) Self-help aid: Loans & employment (need- or non-need-based)

5 Goals of Financial Aid Primary goal is to assist students in paying for college & is achieved by: –Evaluating family’s ability to pay for educational costs –Distributing limited resources in an equitable manner –Providing balance of gift aid & self-help aid

6 Definition of Financial Need Cost of attendance (COA) – Expected family contribution (EFC) = Financial need

7 What is the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Reasonably be expected to contribute, but not what the family will pay to the college EFC the same regardless of what college the student attends Two components: Parent contribution Student contribution Calculated using data from a federal application form and a federal formula

8 Cost of Attendance Tuition & fees Room & board Books, supplies, transportation, & miscellaneous personal expenses, including documented costs for personal computer Loan fees Study abroad costs Dependent care expenses Disability-related expenses Cooperative education program costs

9 Need Varies Based on Cost

10 Federal Methodology Federal Methodology is the formula created by Congress to determine the expected family contribution (EFC).

11 Types of Federal Aid Federal Pell Grant Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) Federal Work Study (FWS) Federal Loan Programs Available under: Federal Direct Student Loan (Direct Loan) Program with funds provided directly by federal government via participating schools Federal Perkins Loans PLUS loans for Parents

12 Types of State Aid Grants such as the Washington State Need Grant (SNG), Passport,TRIO, and GEARUP Work programs including the State Work Study and Literacy Work Study programs Scholarships such as the Washington Academic Vocational Excellence Scholarship (WAVE), Nurses Conditional Scholarship, and many more which are student specific. For additional information on state aid programs visit

13 Types of Institutional Aid Vary by college but generally include: –Institutional Grant Programs funded by tuition dollars –Tuition Waivers –Work Study Programs –Loan Programs –Foundation Partnerships for Scholarship funding –Targeted grant programs funded by students for students i.e. Daycare Grants

14 General Student Eligibility Criteria Must be enrolled or accepted for enrollment in an eligible program of study Must be pursuing an approved degree, certificate, or other recognized credential Must be U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen Must be registered with Selective Service (if male & required) May not have eligibility suspended or terminated due to drug-related conviction if convicted while receiving aid

15 General Student Eligibility Criteria Must have valid Social Security Number May not be in default on federal student loan Must not owe overpayment of federal grant or loan Must be making satisfactory academic progress (as defined by school)

16 Application Process Submit Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) prior to school’s deadline Most aid on “first-come, first-served” basis To ensure maximum consideration for federal, state, & institutional aid, check information from each school to determine: –Required application materials –Application deadlines Collects family’s personal & financial information used to calculate student’s EFC Must file FAFSA electronically via FAFSA on the Web –Special circumstance filers may be required to submit paper applications but this is a very rare situation

17 Role of Financial Aid Office Determines aid eligibility using federal formula Packages aid depending on availability of funds Sends award notification including: –Student’s Cost of Attendance (COA) –Student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) –Amount of student’s financial need –Award amount for each program for which student is eligible –Disbursement methods & time frames –Terms & conditions of each award

18 FAFSA on the Web Web site: FAFSA on the Web available on January 1, 2012 FAFSA on the Web Worksheet: –Used as worksheet for on-line entry –Questions follow order of FAFSA on the Web

19 PIN Site Web site: Sign FAFSA electronically Can request PIN before January 1, 2012 Not required, but speeds processing May be used by students and parents throughout aid process, including subsequent school years

20 IRS Data Retrieval Available early February 2012 for processing cycle Participation is voluntary Reduces documents requested by the financial aid office Not available to applicants with a recent change in marital status

21 FAFSA on the Web’s Homepage 2012–13 FAFSA on the Web Worksheet— 4-page booklet containing: Instructions 22 questions in 4 sections

22 This is the Login page for FOTW.

23 FAFSA Sections 1.General Student Information 2.Student’s Dependency Status 3.Parent Information (dependent student only) 4.Student Information 5.Signatures 1.Student 2.One parent (dependent students)

24 FOTW Worksheet: Section 1 Name Social Security Number Citizenship Marital status Selective Service registration status Parents’ educational background Drug conviction status General student information:

25 FOTW Worksheet: Section 2 Student’s Dependency Status Student’s dependency status: If all “No” responses, student is dependent If “Yes” to any question, student is independent. Student should be prepared to provide supporting documentation to prove dependency if requested by the school the student is attending.

26 FOTW Worksheet: Section 3 Parent’s Data for dependent students Dislocated worker status Tax filing status Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) for 2011 Income earned from work for each parent Receipt of benefits from certain federal means-tested programs Additional financial information Untaxed income

27 FOTW Worksheet: Section 4 Financial Data for Student Tax filing status Adjusted gross income (AGI) for 2011 Income earned from work Dislocated worker status Receipt of benefits from means-tested programs Additional financial information Untaxed income

28 Household Size & Number in College Household Size = Members of the household who receive more than 50% of their support from you (or your parents if you are a dependent student) Number in College = Members of the above household who are also enrolled at least half time in an eligible program of study (excluding parents)

29 FOTW Worksheet: College Information List up to 10 colleges to receive FAFSA data: Federal School Code for each college Housing plans for each college

30 College Codes

31 FOTW Worksheet Signature Block Required –Student –One parent (dependent students) Format –Electronic using PIN –Signature page

32 Signature Process

33 CAUTION! Avoid being charged a fee to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid –Processes of completing & processing FAFSA are FREE –If filing via FAFSA on the Web, be sure to go directly to –Contact financial aid office for help completing FAFSA

34 FAFSA Processing Results Central Processing System (CPS) notifies student of FAFSA processing results by: –SAR Information Acknowledgement if filed via FAFSA on the Web & student’s address was not provided – notification containing direct link to student’s on-line SAR if student’s was provided on paper FAFSA or FAFSA on the Web –Student with PIN can view on-line SAR at

35 Student Aid Report Student should review SAR Check for accuracy Contact school if corrections are needed for additional instruction Update information when appropriate

36 FAFSA Processing Results FAFSA Results are sent to colleges listed on FAFSA approximately 10 to 14 days after FAFSA submitted College reviews results –May request additional documentation, such as copies of federal tax returns, institutional application (data sheet), birth certificate, social security card, selective service confirmation, etc

37 Cannot report on FAFSA Send written explanation to financial aid office at each college Special Circumstances

38 Change in employment status Medical expenses not covered by insurance Change in parent marital status Unusual dependent care expenses Student cannot obtain parent information Special Circumstances

39 Qualified Tuition Programs (QTPs)/ 529 Plans and Coverdell accounts: Reported as an asset of the owner not the beneficiary except when the owner is a dependent student, in which case is it reported as an asset of the parent If the owner is some other person(non- custodial parent, grandparent, etc), the distributions to the student count as untaxed income as “money received” on the next year’s FAFSA.

40 Where Do I Go From Here? Obtain and review admissions and financial aid materials from each school to which you are applying Meet all application deadlines –Complete FAFSA –Other application materials, such as College Scholarship Service’s PROFILE application, if required by school or state agency Investigate other sources of aid

41 Other Sources of Funds State grants, scholarships, loans, and work programs School need-based and non-need-based programs –Academic, athletic, and other talent-based scholarships and grants Private business scholarships Civic organization scholarships

42 Avoid Being Scammed To check legitimacy of scholarship search services or individuals, for information about financial aid scams, and tips to avoid being scammed visit these Web sites: –Better Business Bureau: –U.S. Department of Education: html –Federal Trade Commission:

43 Scholarship Search Options Free Internet scholarship search engines: –FinAid.org – –The College Board – –FastWeb.com – The Washington Scholarship Coalition

44 Private Scholarship Search Local library resources Local businesses and civic organizations Parents’ employers

45 South Puget Sound Community College Amy Ybarra, Program Specialist III Cookie Greer, Program Specialist II


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