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When is the best time to apply for Financial Aid for the upcoming year?
The best time for you to apply for financial aid is during January or February preceding the academic year that you plan to attend. Students who file by the priority deadline of March 1st will receive the most generous financial aid packages. Students may still apply after the deadline but some funds may no longer be available. So get your taxes done early so you can file your FAFSA on time. You may apply for financial aid for the 2010-2011 school year by completing and submitting the 2010-2011 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). After January 1, 2011, you may apply for financial aid for the 2011-2012 school year. You should submit your FAFSA through the Internet by using FAFSA on the Web.
FAFSA on the Web
FAFSA on the Web is a free U.S. Department of Education web site where you can complete a FAFSA online and submit it via the Internet. You can use FAFSA on the Web on a personal computer in your home. The address is www.fafsa.ed.gov. If you do not have a computer, computers are available at DSLCC in the Library and Student Services. Processing time will depend on whether you have a pin number or must sign the signature page and mail it in. To apply for a pin, go to www.pin.ed.gov. This is the fastest and preferred method. Returning students may use their pin number to access a renewal application which is partially completed already.
How is my eligibility for Financial Aid determined?
When you file the FAFSA, you are given an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) number which is determined by the Federal government based on the information you provided on the FAFSA. To determine your eligibility for student financial aid, your EFC is subtracted from the College's cost of attendance (COA) budget. For example: If your COA Budget is $9,100 and your EFC is $2,500, then your Financial Need would be $6,600. Funds from various student financial aid programs are often packaged in an attempt to meet a major portion of the student’s need. Although DSLCC seeks funding from a variety of federal, state and local sources, funds are generally never sufficient to meet the total financial need for all students.
Reviewing your Financial Aid Awards On-Line
We encourage you to review your financial aid awards on the web go to www.dslcc.edu, click on Blackboard/OASIS and login to the SIS System. Once on the site follow the instructions below:
1. Click on SA Self Service
2. Click on Learner Services;
3. Click on the Finances;
4. Click on the View My Financial Aid;
5. Select the appropriate aid year. For example 2010 represents the 2009-2010 award year. Your awards for the academic year should now appear. Notice that your awards for each term are provided.
The award information provided is a projection based on anticipated full-time (12 credit hours) enrollment for each term. If you are planning to enroll on a less than full time basis you may want to use the following formula to determine an estimate of your awards. Please note that this formula is not exact in all cases but should give you a good idea of your prorated awards.
• If you enroll for 9-11 credit hours (considered 3/4-time) you would normally take 75% of the full-time award listed for the term.
• If you enroll for 6-8 credit hours (considered 1/2-time) you would normally take 50% of the full-time award listed for the term.
• If you are taking 1-5 credits, please contact the Financial Aid Office to determine if you qualify for any assistance. (Most financial aid programs require students to be enrolled for a minimum of 6 credit hours to qualify.) We do have some special part-time grants for less than half time students.
Stafford Loan recipients must be actively enrolled and participating in at least 6 credit hours at the time of disbursement in order to be eligible to receive loan funds. If you are awarded financial aid and decide not to attend any or all classes you had previously registered for, you must officially drop your classes prior to the start of the semester.
Search for Scholarships on the Internet at FastWeb.com
Fastweb, (Financial Aid Search Through the WEB) is a searchable database of more than 600,000 private sector scholarships, fellowships, grants, and loans from more than 10,000 sources worth more than $1 billion. Used by colleges across the United States, Fastweb is now available to you free through the Worldwide Web, courtesy of the DSLCC Financial Aid WEB Page and Fastweb.com, L.L.C. To use Fastweb, a student fills out a detailed profile through a series of online forms. After the forms are complete, Fastweb responds within 15 minutes with a list of matching award programs. Each entry in this list includes a deadline, a list of required majors, the amount of the award, a short description, and contact information. Fastweb is also the only site on the Internet where students can actually apply for scholarships directly online. Currently Fastweb has online applications (Fastweb calls them E-Scholarships) for some $35 million in scholarships.
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