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Applying for Financial Aid 2014-2015 Academic Year Elaine Solinga Financial Aid Services Telephone: 860-439-2058

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Presentation on theme: "Applying for Financial Aid 2014-2015 Academic Year Elaine Solinga Financial Aid Services Telephone: 860-439-2058"— Presentation transcript:

1 Applying for Financial Aid 2014-2015 Academic Year Elaine Solinga Financial Aid Services Telephone: 860-439-2058 E-Mail:

2 What you will learn: What financial aid is Sources of financial aid When and how to apply How to pay the bill

3 Helpful Advice Learn the college’s financial aid application requirements and deadline date. Use the Net Price Calculator available on each college’s web site.


5 More Advice


7 How Much Financial Aid Will Be Offered? Dependent on a family’s ability to pay Dependent on the funding available from the federal and state governments and the college. Were the financial aid applications and supporting documentation submitted by the deadline date?

8 Definition of Financial Need Cost of Attendance Expected family contribution (EFC) Other financial assistance Financial need LESS EQUALS

9 Comparison of Need by Cost ( Assumes full-time enrollment ) 4 Year Private4 Year Public2 Year Public Cost of Education$60,000$25,000$ 7,000 Expected Family Contribution (EFC)$10,000 Need$50,000$15,000 0

10 Meeting the Full Need and Gapping CollegeAB Cost of Education$60,000 Expected Family Contribution (EFC) $ 10,000 Need$50,000 Aid Awarded$50,000$35,000 Unmet Need 0 $15,000

11 Cost of Attendance  Tuition and Fees  Room and Board  Books and Supplies  Transportation  Miscellaneous and Personal Expenses (purchase of a computer)

12 Family Contribution Components  Parent(s)’ 2013 income  Student’s 2013 income  Value of parent’s assets  Value of student’s assets  Number of household members  Number of dependents attending college at least half-time

13 Eligibility Assessed Using Federal Methodology  Based on information reported on the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid, 2014-2015)  Formula determined by Congress that is used to determine eligibility for federal and most state funds  No information required from the non-custodial parent  Custodial parent and stepparent financial information is included  If student’s parents live together, regardless of marital status or gender, financial information must be reported.  Home value and debt and value of retirement accounts are excluded  Parent contribution divided by the # of dependents attending college at least half-time

14 Eligibility Assessed Using Institutional Methodology  Based on information provided on the CSS Profile or a custom institutional application  Used by schools to award their own funds  Home equity might be added in  Information from the non-custodial parent is required  Tax losses may be added back  Depreciation associated with a business or investment property may be added back  Parent contribution might not be divided equally  No allowance for sibling enrolled in graduate school  Minimum student contribution

15 Student Eligibility Requirements U.S. Citizen or eligible non-citizen If male and age 18 must register for Selective Service; Have a valid social security number; Must be enrolled as a regular student in an eligible degree or certificate program; Must have a high school diploma or an equivalent; While enrolled in college, must make satisfactory academic progress. Must have resolved any drug conviction issue.

16 Forms Required CollegeABC State of CT GOV Sch. FAFSA XXXX CSS Profile XX College Form X Tax Returns & W2 Statements X Non- Custodial Parent’s Statement X Due Date 03/1502/0103/0102/15

17 FAFSA on the Web Homepage

18 FAFSA Free Application for Federal Student Aid, 2014-2015 Can’t file prior to 01/01/2014 Required by all schools Used to determine eligibility for federal/state need based aid Student and one parent should apply for a pin # now to sign the FAFSA electronically

19 Federal Student Aid Personal Identification Number (FSA PIN) Website: Sign FAFSA electronically Not required, but speeds processing May be used by students and parents throughout aid process, including subsequent school years

20 Helpful Tips When Completing the FAFSA  Print out the FAFSA on the Web Worksheet (available January 1, 2014)  Have your 2013 federal tax return and W2 statements in front of you or prepare a draft 2013 federal tax return.  You can also use your 2012 federal tax return if income will be similar to 2013.  It is okay to estimate in order to meet early deadline dates required by colleges.

21 Helpful Tips When Completing the FAFSA Must report as income: – Adjusted Gross Income as listed on your tax return – Wages as listed on your W2 or business income applicable to each parent. – Taxes paid according to the tax table, not what was withheld.

22 Helpful Tips When Completing the FAFSA Assets not to report: – Value of your home – Principal value of retirement plans (pension funds, annuities, non-education IRAS, Keogh plans)


24 Review of Tax Return



27 Helpful Tips When Completing the FAFSA When reporting assets, report the value as of the date the FAFSA is completed.  Cash, savings, checking  Investment property (market value less debt)  Stocks, bonds, money market funds  CD’s, mutual funds, stock options, trusts  Coverdell savings accounts, college savings plans  Business (market value less debt)  Investment farm value (market value less debt)

28 What is the Federal Definition of a Parent? If parents are divorced or separated, answer the questions about the parent the student lived with more during the past 12 months. If the student did not live with one parent more than the other, give answers about the parent who provided more financial support during the past 12 months. If parents live together, regardless of the marital status or gender, financial information must be reported for both parents

29 What is the Federal Definition of a Parent? If the student’s parent has remarried, information about the stepparent must be included. If the student’s parent is widowed or single, answer the questions about that parent. The following people are not the student’s parents unless they have adopted the student: grandparents, foster parents, legal guardians, older brothers or sisters, and uncles or aunts.

30 What if parent information is not available? – Student has no contact with the parent(s) and does not know where they are (and the student has not been adopted by someone else); or – Student has left home due to an abusive situation. Must gather third party documentation to verify your living situation: attorney, court officer, social worker Submit that third party documentation to the college that you will most likely attend.

31 How to Sign the FAFSA

32 Making Corrections to the FAFSA Corrections can be made after the FAFSA has been submitted and processed. Can add a college If you have submitted your IRS tax return, you can provide a PIN to link the IRS data to the FAFSA. Highly recommended!!!!!

33 FAFSA Processing Results CPS notifies student of FAFSA processing results by: – Email notification containing a direct link to student’s online SAR if student’s email was provided on paper or electronic FAFSA Student with PIN may view SAR online at

34 FAFSA Processing Results Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) sent to colleges listed on FAFSA approximately 10 to 14 days after FAFSA is submitted College reviews ISIR – May request additional documentation

35 IRS Data Retrieval Tool Available early February 2014 for 2014–15 processing cycle Participation is voluntary Reduces documents requested by financial aid office

36 IRS Data Retrieval Tool While completing FOTW, applicant may submit real-time request to IRS for tax data IRS will authenticate taxpayer’s identity If match found, IRS sends real-time results to applicant in new browser window Applicant chooses whether or not to transfer data to FOTW

37 IRS Data Retrieval Tool Some will be unable to use IRS DRT Examples include: – Filed an amended tax return – No SSN was entered – Student or parent married but filed separately

38 IRS Data Retrieval Tool

39 IRS Transcript If you are unable to successfully retrieve the IRS data into the FAFSA, then you might be required to provide an official IRS transcript. You can request one from here: – Available two weeks after an electronic submission – Available 6-8 weeks after a paper submission


41 CSS/Financial Aid Profile   Not required by all schools  $25 for the initial application and $16 for each additional college  Non-Custodial Parent’s Form = $25  Forms used to determine eligibility for need-based institutional grants.

42 CSS Profile Tips In addition to the assets reported on the FAFSA, you will be required to report: – Value of your home, purchase price, purchase date and current debt – Value of your retirement accounts

43 CSS Profile Tips Once the Profile has been submitted, you will not be able to make corrections. You will need to print out a hard copy, make the corrections, send a copy to each school that requires the Profile. Many colleges participate in IDOC which is a document imaging service offered by the College Board. You send your tax return to them and they will scan it and make it available electronically to the colleges.

44 Remember!  Grants/Scholarships do not have to be repaid (unless a student withdraws during a term). Grants are typically awarded based on need and scholarships are typically awarded based on merit or athletic ability.  Student loans must be repaid  Federal Work Study provides income, which does not have to be repaid, from a part-time job

45 Sources of Need Based Aid Federal Grants ( Funding for 2014-2015 has not yet been determined)  Federal Pell Grant – $5,645  Federal SEOG Grant – up to $4,000  Federal TEACH Grant – up to $4,000 for detailed information about these programs.

46 Sources of Need Based State Grant Aid State grants for CT residents attending a college in CT  Governor’s Scholarship Program- a student can only receive funding from one of these funding sources: 1.Need/merit based  FAFSA required  Deadline date- February 15  Award amount = $3,500-$4,500 based on expected family contribution less than $11,000  Class rank 20% or better  SAT of 1800 or ACT of 27

47 Sources of Need Based State Grant Aid Governor’s Scholarship Program 2. Need based  FAFSA required  Deadline date set by the college  Award range = $2,000 to $3,000 based on an expected family contribution less than $11,000

48 Sources of Need Based Aid – Federal Loans  Federal Perkin Loans – up to $5,500  Interest rate is 5% fixed  Cancellation and deferment benefits  Federal Direct Loan –  1 st year = up to $5,500 ($3,500 subsidized)  2 nd year = up to $6,500 ($4,500 subsidized)  3 rd -5 th year = up to $7,500 ($5,500 subsidized)  Current interest rates (2013-2014)  3.86% for subsidized loans  3.86% for unsubsidized loans  Fee = 1.051% (2013-2014)  Cancellation and deferment benefits

49 Sources of Need Based Aid – Student Employment Federal Work Study -  no limit but average range is $1,200 to $2,000  Students work approximately 8 – 10 hours per week  Most paychecks are issued via direct deposit  Employment can be on or off campus  Student must provide proof of eligible citizenship status to the college  Unexpired passport (original)  Social Security Card (original)  Photo ID (driver’s license or college issued identity card)

50 Sources of Institutional Grants and Outside Resources  Institutional Grants/Scholarships are provided by the college either from tuition revenue and/or endowed funds and annual gifts.  Outside Resources –  Employee Tuition Benefit  National Merit, Rotary, Garden Club, etc.  High school guidance office 

51 Tuition & Fees $45,000 Room & Board 13,000 Books & Supplies 1,000 Miscellaneous 500 Transportation 500 Total Cost $60,000 Federal Pell Grant $ 2,500 Federal Supplemental Educational Opp. Grant $ 2,500 State of CT Governor’s Sch. Program $ 2,500 College Grant $42,600 Total Grants $50,100 Net Price (Cost less grants) $ 9,900 Options to pay Net Price: Federal Direct Subsidized Student Loan $ 3,500 Federal Perkins Loan $ 1,000 Federal Direct Unsubsidized Student Loan $ 2,000 Remaining balance $ 3,400 Other options: Federal Work Study$1,400 Parent Payment Plan Parent PLUS loan Private alternative loan Shopping Sheet (Helpful when trying to compare awards)

52 How Aid is Applied to the Bill  Tuition & Fees = $45,000  Room & Board = 13,000 Total Charges = $58,000 Less aid:  Grants$50,100  Loans (subsidized)$ 4,500 Total Aid Applied to the Bill $54,600 Balance Due $ 3,400 Balance with unsubsidized loan $ 2,000 $1, 400 Usually paid in two installments: One-half of balance due on or about August 1 One half of balance due on or about January 1 Federal Work Study is not applied to the bill.

53 What if my family contribution seems unreasonable? Compare aid awards from similar colleges. If the family contribution is significantly different: Ask how the contribution was determined  Is there a contribution expected from the non- custodial parent?  Were losses reported on the tax return added back?  What is the minimum student contribution?  How were family members in college treated?  Was home equity included in the analysis? Has there been a change in family dynamics since the FAFSA was filed? Request procedures for an “Appeal” or “Review”

54 How do I pay the bill?  Prepare monthly income/expense flow  Put surplus monthly income to work for you with a payment plan. Each college arranges with a third party provider to participate in one or more plans.  Use savings but keep enough to cover surprises!  Investigate home equity loan, or other private parent loans. Factors to consider: age, job market, other children to educate, income/debt ratio, credit rating

55 Federal PLUS Loan  Borrowers are parents of dependent undergraduate students  Annual loan limit: cost of attendance minus other aid  Fixed interest rate – 6.41% (2013-2014)  Loan fees - 4.204% (2013-2014)  Repayment begins 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed.  Can defer payments (interest will accrue) while student is enrolled at least half-time.

56 Aid Award in Subsequent Years  Loan amounts increase as the student advances to the next grade level  If parent income/assets increase, the parent contribution will most likely increase.  If student assets decrease, the student contribution will decrease  If the number of dependents enrolled in college changes, the parent contribution will change.  Federal, state and institutional funding levels change from year to year

57 Thank you for your attention. What questions can I answer for you?

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