Apply for Federal Student Aid in Just Five Steps
Applying for student aid and loans can
seem like an overwhelming task. Especially when you are
just beginning to research all the options. Here's a
step-by-step process that should clarify and simplify
things for you.
Fill out a FAFSA and submit it early.
The first step in the process is to fill out the
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
It is available from your high school guidance
counselor, local library, or you may request on
from the school to which you are applying. You
can also print out a FAFSA or submit it
electronically through the Department of
Education's Web site at the FAFSA
- Free Application for Federal Student Aid Web Site.
Fill the FAFSA out completely
since an incomplete application may be returned
creating an unnecessary delay for your
application. Make sure to answer "yes"
to the item on the FAFSA about your interest in a
student loan, so your eligibility for one will be
You stand a better chance of getting the best aid
package possible for your situation if you
complete the application process early. We
recommend submitting your application by March 31
(do not submit it earlier than January 1 or it
may be returned.) You should also check with the
school you wish to attend, as they often set
their own application deadlines.
The federal government determines your
The information you supply on the FAFSA allows
the federal government to determine your
eligibility for various financial aid programs
· Federal grants which do not need to be
· Federal work-study, which allows a student to
part-time on campus; and
· Federal loan program, which may be
Receive your SAR report.
Within four to six weeks a Student Aid
Report (SAR), summarizing the financial aid
programs for which you qualify, will be sent to
you and the school(s) to which you applied. If
you applied via the Web, you will receive an SAR
by mail about one to two weeks after a complete
application is received. Based on the SAR, your
school will determine the maximum amount of aid
for which you qualify under each program and send
you an "award" letter.
Receive your award letter.
The award letter breaks down the total
amount of federal aid for which you are eligible
in an academic year, into the specific types of
aid. And each type of aid is broken down further
by the amount per semester. If your award letter
shows you are eligible for a student loan, you
can fill out an application to get your loan
anytime after receiving the letter.
See the SFCU loan department if you are
eligible for a student loan.
If the award letter shows you are
eligible for a student loan or your parents would
like to take out a PLUS loan for you, please
Union for an application packet. We make
applying for your loan as simple and easy as
If you need more information on the financial aid
application process, contact your high school guidance
counselor or the financial aid office at the school you
will be attending. The Department of Education Web site
is another source offering a wealth of information at www.ed.gov, as is Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation