View our Sample Financial Aid Packages to help guide you on financial aid award letters.

You can apply for financial aid as an independent student if you meet one or more of the following:

  • Are at least 24 years of age by December 31 of the school year
  • Are a graduate or professional student
  • Are a married student
  • Are a veteran of the United States Armed Forces
  • Are an orphan or ward of the court
  • Have children who receive more than half their financial support from you
  • Have dependents (other than your spouse or children) who live with you and who receive more than half their support from you

Please visit the FAFSA website for a complete list of items you need to have on hand when applying.

Most financial aid will not be given directly to you. Funds will be sent to your school and credited to your student account at the start of an academic term.

Do not file another FAFSA form. Wait until you receive your Student Aid Report (SAR) and then contact your college’s financial aid office.

Yes. You should apply for financial aid as early as possible, preferably in October. The pool of funds for programs such as scholarships, grants, federal student loans and federal work-study programs at most colleges are pre-determined; it is possible that they could run out of funds if you don’t apply early.

You should apply for financial aid as early as possible. We recommend applying in October to potentially increase your chances for receiving more financial aid. The availability of some financial aid is limited and provided on a first-come first-served basis.

The Department of Education’s Student Aid on the Web and the FAFSA website are packed with valuable information. Another great source of information is your college or university’s website. Learn more about financial aid.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form determines eligibility for all federal financial aid programs. It helps determine how much a family can afford to pay toward a student’s college expenses based on household income and other factors, including how much you will need to meet the cost of attending college. A FAFSA form must be completed each year that you wish to be considered for financial aid.

You should start applying for scholarships as early as the summer after your junior year in high school.

From financial aid to student loans, there are many options available to help you pay for college. Learn more about types of free financial aid, the financial aid process.