Applying for Financial Aid

Applying for Financial Aid

The first step in being considered for financial assistance is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). We highly recommend all students complete the FAFSA on the Web to ensure the quickest and most accurate processing. FAFSA opens each year on October 1. Students are automatically considered for most scholarships, grants and loans upon completing the FAFSA.

Application Deadlines

  • First-year and transfer students: December 1
    For maximum consideration, complete the FAFSA by the December 1 prior to the academic year in which you plan to enroll.
  • Returning/current students: April 15
    For maximum consideration, complete the FAFSA by April 15 of each year.

State Grant Deadlines

The FAFSA is also used to determine eligibility for state grants programs.

  • For Pennsylvania residents, PHEAA has a FAFSA filing deadline of May 1.
  • Non-Pennsylvania residents should check on the deadlines that apply for their own state grant programs.

(Some student aid programs continue to be available throughout the year so if you miss the recommended deadline, still file your FAFSA as soon as possible.)

The FAFSA is a U.S. Department of Education form, and eligibility for most federal aid sources is determined by a formula developed by the federal government. Families experiencing special financial circumstances are advised through the application process to contact their financial aid office about such circumstances.