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FAFSA EFC = Zero... What does this mean?

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So I've been accepted to several medical programs and am currently focusing my attention on something that seems as daunting as the task of getting in... paying for it.

Every school basically gives you the same shpeel about financial aid and such, and tell you that they consider your financial status by looking at you as being solely dependent on yourself. But some schools say that they consider your FAFSA's EFC (expected family contribution).

I had a full-ride to finance college, so I have never had to take out any loans before. My questions is this: does having an ETC of zero help much? And how?

I mean, I'm sure that the bulk of my loans will be subsidized, but how much? Will this also effect my chances of getting other forms of financial aid?

Thanks much guys. As always, best wishes to all of you who are slugging it out with this cycle. :D
 

armybound

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it should help you get institutional need-based scholarships, if the school is nice to you. if not, it will just mean you'll need to take out loans to cover that amount.

moving to the financial aid forum where they can help you better.
 

Doctor Bagel

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Well, having an EFC of zero is better than having it be higher, but unfortunately it leaves you in the same boat as most other traditional students. You should qualify for all the subsidized loans available, but there aren't much available (the subsidized stafford cap is $8500/year). You might also get some Perkins loans, but that's not a guarantee since schools all seem to use different factors to determine how to award them.

Also, the EFC that the FAFSA gives you doesn't include parental information, which most schools will look at to determine if you qualify for their school-funded need-based grants/scholarships. So if your parents are in a high income group, you probably still won't get need-based non-loan aid from your school even though your EFC is zero.
 
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it should help you get institutional need-based scholarships, if the school is nice to you. if not, it will just mean you'll need to take out loans to cover that amount.

moving to the financial aid forum where they can help you better.

Thanks for the move army. In every thread I frequent, you always seem to be on top of things!

Well, having an EFC of zero is better than having it be higher, but unfortunately it leaves you in the same boat as most other traditional students. You should qualify for all the subsidized loans available, but there aren't much available (the subsidized stafford cap is $8500/year). You might also get some Perkins loans, but that's not a guarantee since schools all seem to use different factors to determine how to award them.

Also, the EFC that the FAFSA gives you doesn't include parental information, which most schools will look at to determine if you qualify for their school-funded need-based grants/scholarships. So if your parents are in a high income group, you probably still won't get need-based non-loan aid from your school even though your EFC is zero.


Hmm, so I guess an EFC of zero really doesn't mean much. That's a shame. Because having 200K in debt hanging over my head scares me more than the prospect of possibly not getting into medical school EVER did. :scared:
 

yadayadadude

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My questions is this: does having an ETC of zero help much? And how?

It mostly matters if you attend a school that offers need-based grants. Otherwise, you pretty much get the same old loans everyone gets. (With the possible exception of the Perkins loan, as noted by a previous poster.)

I mean, I'm sure that the bulk of my loans will be subsidized, but how much?

Nice try, but no. $8500/year will be a subsidized Stafford, and you might get a Perkins (up to $6K a year, but the amount appears to vary at the discretion of your school). The rest is unsubsidized.

Having 200K in debt hanging over my head scares me more than the prospect of possibly not getting into medical school EVER did.

I hear ya.
 

Doctor Bagel

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Are you going to a Texas school? If so, the good news is that you'll have about the cheapest tuition in the country. But yeah, it's still a lot of money. :eek:
 

Corker

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I've been curious what the thresholds are for parental income. What is considered very low/low/medium/high/very high, for instance? My mother lives on a fixed retirement and my father is deceased, so I'm guessing my parents aren't high, but is a parental income of about $45000-$50000 a year gross considered medium or low? Are there any statistical references someone could offer? Thanks.
 
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