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Financial aid package after acceptance - meaning?

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nychila

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After applicants get accepted (horray!), (private) schools typically say that we will send you a financial aid package sometime in the spring. My question is, what sorts of information are included in package? Is it different for every applicant? Do you usually have to fill in a financial aid application form before they send you the package (my school never said anything)?

I'm so confused about financial aid :confused:
 

Ismet

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After applicants get accepted (horray!), (private) schools typically say that we will send you a financial aid package sometime in the spring. My question is, what sorts of information are included in package? Is it different for every applicant? Do you usually have to fill in a financial aid application form before they send you the package (my school never said anything)?

I'm so confused about financial aid :confused:

Every school has a slightly different timeline and process. Call your school or look at their website to see what you should be doing.

Yes you need to fill out FAFSA if you want to be considered for federal financial aid. Some schools will have you fill out a NeedAccess application if you want to be considered for need-based aid. And most schools will require your parents' financial information (via FAFSA).

The financial aid "package" is just a piece of paper that tells you how much you have been awarded in loans and/or grants and/or scholarships, and also your estimated cost of attendance, which includes tuition and an estimate of what you might spend on living (depends on where your school is). The amount of loans they list is the maximum you can take out, but you don't have to take out all of it (and you shouldn't if you don't need to).

Again, your best bet is to call your school's financial aid office and ask them what your next steps should be.
 

Nymphicus

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It should be similar to the one you received for college and include a table of loans and scholarships:xf: adding up to the total cost of attendance. You can choose to accept or reject certain awards.

Schools differ in their requirements but normally require some combination of the FAFSA, a terribly long application called NeedAccess, and school-specific financial forms. Check with your specific school for details. They can often be found on the school website as well.
 

Nymphicus

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Every school has a slightly different timeline and process. Call your school or look at their website to see what you should be doing.

Yes you need to fill out FAFSA if you want to be considered for federal financial aid. Some schools will have you fill out a NeedAccess application if you want to be considered for need-based aid. And most schools will require your parents' financial information (via FAFSA).

The financial aid "package" is just a piece of paper that tells you how much you have been awarded in loans and/or grants and/or scholarships, and also your estimated cost of attendance, which includes tuition and an estimate of what you might spend on living (depends on where your school is). The amount of loans they list is the maximum you can take out, but you don't have to take out all of it (and you shouldn't if you don't need to).

Again, your best bet is to call your school's financial aid office and ask them what your next steps should be.

get out of here

:(
 

nychila

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I go to an inexpensive state school so I'm really new to all of this financial aid concept.

What exactly is need-based aid? Is "need" the amount that if you didn't get in either scholarships or loans, you wouldn't be able to afford next year's tuition? Alternatively, is the amount that you can contribute from bank loans but would accumulate interest also "need"?

In order for schools to determine "how much you have been awarded in loans and/or grants and/or scholarships", would't they first have to know your financial situation, unless it's merit-based?
 

Ismet

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In order for schools to determine "how much you have been awarded in loans and/or grants and/or scholarships", would't they first have to know your financial situation, unless it's merit-based?

Yes, you need to submit the FAFSA.
 

futureczar

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So scholarship information is usually included in financial aid packages? For some reason I thought it comes randomly depending on the school.

Also, aside from scholarships, what would cause financial aid packages froms schools to be different than other schools? Isnt max amount of federal loans determined by FAFSA (and thus should be the same for all schools?). Is it the grants/scholarships that make all the difference?
 

NickNaylor

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So scholarship information is usually included in financial aid packages? For some reason I thought it comes randomly depending on the school.

Also, aside from scholarships, what would cause financial aid packages froms schools to be different than other schools? Isnt max amount of federal loans determined by FAFSA (and thus should be the same for all schools?). Is it the grants/scholarships that make all the difference?

Some schools award scholarships with financial aid while others do it separately (and you might find out earlier or later).

Grants, institution-based aid (e.g., grants, low/no interest loans, etc.), and scholarships account for the difference along with the school's COA. School's that have healthy endowments can afford to give out more institutional aid, though it should be noted that those programs are usually need-based.
 

nychila

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Yes, you need to submit the FAFSA.

When should a successful applicant submit FAFSA? ASAP before the school sends you a financial aid package? How will the school see your submitted FAFSA information?
 

Ismet

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When should a successful applicant submit FAFSA? ASAP before the school sends you a financial aid package? How will the school see your submitted FAFSA information?

It's really never too early to submit your FAFSA, I think the earliest to submit is sometime in January. Again, contact your school to ask what their financial aid timeline is, or check their website. I think my FAFSA had to be in by mid-April last year.

FAFSA for grad school is the same as FAFSA for undergrad. You input a "school code" and you can have up to 10 schools on there. You can include schools you are on waitlist. That is how the school can access your information.
 

NickNaylor

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It's really never too early to submit your FAFSA, I think the earliest to submit is sometime in January. Again, contact your school to ask what their financial aid timeline is, or check their website. I think my FAFSA had to be in by mid-April last year.

FAFSA for grad school is the same as FAFSA for undergrad. You input a "school code" and you can have up to 10 schools on there. You can include schools you are on waitlist. That is how the school can access your information.

Agree - as soon as you have the available tax info for you and your parents you should submit it.
 

dsoz

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Every school has a slightly different timeline and process. Call your school or look at their website to see what you should be doing.

Yes you need to fill out FAFSA if you want to be considered for federal financial aid. Some schools will have you fill out a NeedAccess application if you want to be considered for need-based aid.

The financial aid "package" is just a piece of paper that tells you how much you have been awarded in loans and/or grants and/or scholarships, and also your estimated cost of attendance, which includes tuition and an estimate of what you might spend on living (depends on where your school is). The amount of loans they list is the maximum you can take out, but you don't have to take out all of it (and you shouldn't if you don't need to).

Again, your best bet is to call your school's financial aid office and ask them what your next steps should be.

Agree - as soon as you have the available tax info for you and your parents you should submit it.

I thought that as a graduate student, you are automatically considered independent from your parents. There is a box on the FAFSA that states that you don't want to include your parent's information. I checked that box and it didn't ask me a thing about my parental information.

This really does not affect me because neither of my parents filed a tax form last year because they both passed away 5+ years ago.

But yes, fill out a FAFSA as soon as possible. If I remember correctly, you need to apply for a PIN, and that can take a couple of weeks, or at least it used to. I did my taxes back in February, and I completed my FAFSA the same day.

dsoz
 

sector9

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I thought that as a graduate student, you are automatically considered independent from your parents. There is a box on the FAFSA that states that you don't want to include your parent's information. I checked that box and it didn't ask me a thing about my parental
This is brought up every year (probably a few times :laugh:)

You are considered independent as far as federal loans are concerned.

However, most schools want to know your parent's info (regardless of your age, marital status, etc) before they'll consider giving you institutional aid like grants, scholarships, etc. Since you want institutional aid, most students have to fill it out anyway.

Information about the school's requirements about FAFSA might be in your interview day packet. If it's not there, then call or email the school to find out if they want parent's info. You don't want to be left out of consideration for free money . (It sounds like this doesn't apply to you dsoz if your parents have passed away, though you may still need to provide information about your parents so the school knows that they're not living. I'm not sure about that)
 
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