An excellent resource of general information about financial aid is www.finaid.org.
What is financial aid?
Financial aid is money awarded to you to help pay educational costs. Financial aid is classified into three basic types: grants and scholarships are funds awarded as financial aid that are not required to be repaid; work-study is on-campus work that you find on your own initiative; and a loan is money borrowed from a federal or state government, or an alternative lender that must be repaid, including interest. Financial aid is distributed according to a variety of eligibility criteria within two categories:
- You are awarded need-based aid to make up the difference between your total cost to attend a college full-time and the amount of your family's contribution as determined by the federal government.
- You may use non need-based aid to replace your family contribution if you meet the necessary eligibility criteria, which may vary depending on the program.
Who is eligible for financial aid?
Families at all income levels can demonstrate financial need based upon their individual circumstances. Most families who apply are eligible. Families who demonstrate financial need can receive a package of financial aid which usually includes a combination of gift aid (scholarships and grants) and self-help (loans and employment) to meet the need.
Eligibility for financial aid is determined from information provided by the student and the dependent student's parent(s) on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and on the PMC Financial Aid Application. Pine Manor College uses a federally mandated formula to determine a family's contribution. The expected family contribution is based on information which you report on these forms (i.e. family members, number in college, and parent and student income and asset information). The calculated contribution is then used to determine your eligibility for aid as demonstrated above. Financial aid is awarded based on need and availability of funds.
Can I get financial aid?
Financial aid is awarded based on financial need. At Pine Manor College nearly 80% of all students receive some form of financial aid. The total amount of financial aid (need an non-need based) awarded to you cannot exceed your total educational costs. Because individual program requirements vary and funds are limited, your total financial need may not always be met. Most programs require that you:
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen and have a valid social security number. (Individuals in the U.S. on F1, F2, J1, and J2 visas are ineligible.)
- Be enrolled at least half-time in an eligible degree or certificate program.
- Demonstrate financial need as determined by review of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
- Not be indebted to any institution for repayment of any federal grant (Pell or SEOG) or be in default on any federal loan (Perkins or Direct Loan).
- Comply with the federal verification process.
How much financial aid will I receive?
Although many factors help to determine the amount you receive, your financial aid award is based primarily on your demonstrated financial need. You must complete the FAFSA each year to have your need determined. Your need is the difference between the cost of attendance and the amount your and your expected family contribution (EFC). Once you are admitted to the College, and your file is complete, the Financial Aid Office will send you a Financial Aid Award letter.
What is my family's share?
You and your family are primarily responsible for financing your education. Your family is expected to make a maximum effort to assist you with college expenses. You are also expected to contribute to your college expenses from sources that may include savings, summer earnings, monetary gifts from friends and relatives, or other sources. Financial aid should be viewed as supplementary to your family's contribution.
How is my family's share determined?
The income and asset information in which you (and your parents or guardians if you are a dependent student) provide on the FAFSA enables the U.S. Department of Education's Central Processing System (CPS) to determine your family's contribution. Certain allowances such as the standard cost of living, retirement needs, and future indebtedness are considered and subtracted from total income and assets.
How do I maintain my financial aid?
You must re-apply for financial aid every year. Pine Manor College makes every effort to maintain the level of funding initially awarded to you throughout your college career provided that academic progress is met and there is no significant change in the family's financial position.
Additionally, a student must maintain satisfactory academic progress to remain eligible for financial aid. Satisfactory progress as defined by PMC requires a full-time student to complete her bachelor's degree within six academic years, earn a minimum of 12 credits each semester, and maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0.
Academic progress for financial aid eligibility is monitored at the end of each academic year. If a student is not meeting minimum requirements at this time, she will not be eligible for financial aid until she improves her academic standing. In this case, a student may appeal her eligibility for one semester only based on mitigating circumstances. Such an appeal must be submitted to the Director of Financial Aid within two weeks of notification of loss of eligibility.
Am I eligible for financial aid if I am not a full-time student?
You may still be eligible for certain types of aid, providing that you do not drop below half-time.
Can I get aid if I am not admitted to a degree program?
No, you are not eligible for financial aid unless you are taking courses for entry into a degree program.
Are non-citizens eligible for financial aid?
A non-citizen who is in the U.S. as a permanent resident is eligible for federal student aid assistance. A non-citizen in the U.S. on a temporary visa is not eligible for federal aid but may be eligible for assistance through Pine Manor College merit-based scholarships and limited number of on-campus employment opportunities.
I am admitted to a degree program at PMC beginning in the fall. Can I receive financial aid for classes during the previous summer term?
No, you must be officially admitted to a degree or certificate program in order to receive financial aid. If your admission is effective the fall term, you will not be eligible for aid before the fall semester.
How can I get more information about borrowing and potential debt?
We are happy to provide you with more information on borrowing and average debt of Pine Manor graduates. Contact the office: firstname.lastname@example.org