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What is Financial Aid?

Financial aid is the financial assistance from all sources that can be used to help pay for your educational expenses. This aid can be provided in a variety of forms such as academic merit-based awards, need-based grants, scholarships, work-study, or loans from the institution, state, community-based organizations, and the federal government.

What is SU’s school code for use on the FAFSA?

What is the FAFSA?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the application used by higher education institutions to determine your annual eligibility for federal, state, and institutional need-based aid. You can watch some insightful videos about completing the FAFSA by visiting our Applying for Aid website.

What FAFSA version (year) should I use?

Select the school year for which you are applying for financial aid. The school year you select should correspond to the FAFSA form you will complete. For example, if you are applying for financial aid for the 2024–25 school year starting in the fall of 2024, select 2024–2025. If you are applying for financial aid for the 2023–24 school year that started in the fall of 2023 or spring of 2024, select the 2023­–2024 FAFSA.

What is SU’s recommended filing date for applying for aid?

SFS recommends prospective and current students complete the FAFSA annually by March 15. For current students this will allow SFS to process your financial aid information in a timely manner prior to the release of the next academic year’s award letter (at the conclusion of the spring term). For prospective students this ensures you receive all the pertinent financial aid information necessary to determine your college home in the fall. Pennsylvania students please note to be considered for PA state grants you must submit the FAFSA annually before May 1.

We’re probably not eligible for aid. Should we complete the FAFSA?

Yes. Here are the top 3 reasons to complete the FAFSA annually:

  1. It’s Free! On average it takes 20-30 minutes to complete the FAFSA application. The return on the investment of time is worth considering the amount of aid potentially at stake.
  2. It’s Required for Need-Based Aid. The purpose of the FAFSA is determine your financial need and identify if you’re eligible for aid you don’t have to pay back like scholarships, grants, and even federal work-study funds. Some private scholarships also require the FAFSA as part of their application process.
  3. There’s real money at stake. Filing a FAFSA may be the single most important thing you can do to finance your higher education goals. It’s the gateway to more than $150 billion in grants, work-study, and federal student loans as well as certain state-based aid.

What is Cost of Attendance?

The student’s cost of attendance (also known as the student’s budget) includes direct costs such as tuition, fees, housing, and food, as well as indirect costs such as other student’s living expenses that may be incurred (transportation, personal, etc.) while attending college but will not be charged to the student’s account.

The cost of attendance is estimated by the school, within guidelines established by federal regulations. The cost of attendance and the student’s expected family contribution are utilized to determine the student’s financial need.

How do I know my Student Aid Index?

The SAI, or Student Aid Index, is provided to students via email after their FAFSA® has been processed. This number is used to determine eligibility for need-based aid and is calculated using the information the student (and contributors, if required) provides on the FAFSA® form. Your federal award equates to the following formula:

  • Need = Cost of Attendance (COA) – Student Aid Index (SAI) – Other Financial Assistance (OFA).

What is the definition of financial need?

The cost of attendance (COA) minus expected family contribution (EFC) equals financial need. Schools, when speaking of financial aid usually speak to a percentage of financial need they may meet with academic merit and/or need-based financial aid.

What is the best way to calculate a “bottom line cost” of attending college that will have to be paid out of my pocket?

For prospective students, the best way to calculate the net cost or out-of-pocket is by using the following - Net Price Calculator – Susquehanna University. For current students, we encourage them to utilize their annual financial aid award letter along with the university’s Financial Plan website in order to determine how they will finance their education each year.

How do I apply for a PA state grant?

The FAFSA serves as your application for the PA state grant. We suggest you log into your PA state grant account to check the status of your grant application.

Do I have to be accepted to SU before I apply for aid?

No, you can apply for financial aid via the FAFSA before being accepted. However, you will not receive a financial aid package until you have been admitted to the university.

If I want to transfer to SU, what do I have to do to get financial aid?

When you complete the FAFSA, add SU’s school code (003369) to the list of schools that should receive your FAFSA.

Does SU have academic scholarships without regard to financial need?

Yes, our merit scholarships are based on high school achievement and are awarded without regard to financial need. Your application for admission to Susquehanna serves as your application for merit scholarship. This decision is made during the admission process.

When will I receive my financial aid package?

Provided you have submitted the required documents and you have been accepted to the university, new students begin receiving financial aid packages in March this year given the U.S. Department of Education’s FAFSA Simplification Act. Returning students who have completed the application process will begin receiving financial aid packages in June.

Does SU offer any athletic scholarships?

No, as a NCAA Division III school, SU is prohibited from offering athletic scholarships.

Where can I find information on outside scholarships?

The guidance counselor at your high school is a great source for information about outside scholarship in your local community. We suggest websites such as The College Board, scholarships.com and fastweb.com where you can sign up for a free account and receive information about national, state, and local scholarship opportunities that match your established profile.

What if I receive outside scholarships?

Please notify Student Financial Services of these external awards so they can be accounted for within your financial aid package and you can receive a revised comprehensive award letter.

If my FAFSA is selected for verification, what must I do next?

Federal verification is a process which requires institutions to verify the accuracy of the information provided on a student’s FAFSA to ensure federal aid is distributed to those who are eligible. If your FAFSA is selected for verification by the U.S. Department of Education, you are required to provide documentation to the school verifying the information you entered on your FAFSA. Students whose FAFSA forms are selected by the federal government to undergo verification will be further asked to complete and return a verification worksheet along with any additional, supporting documentation such as tax returns/transcripts, W-2s, etc.

What should I do if my family’s financial circumstances change after I apply for aid?

Contact the Student Financial Services Office to have a conversation regarding how the circumstances changed and we can work together to determine if these changes impact your eligibility for federal, state, or institutional financial aid.

Do I have to apply for aid every year?

Yes, to determine your need-based awards (federal, state, institutional) at SU we require an updated FAFSA each academic year. Academic merit-based awards are guaranteed for 8 semesters if the student remains in good standing academically.

Do I qualify as an independent student?

The Higher Education Amendment of 1965, as amended currently defines an independent student as a person who meets at least one of the following criteria:

  • is 24 years of age or older
  • is an orphan or a ward of the court
  • is a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces
  • is currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training
  • is a graduate or professional student
  • is married, as of the date applying for financial aid
  • has legal dependents other than spouse

If my parents are divorced or separated, whose information is reported on the financial aid applications?

If you are considered a college student dependent and your parents are not together—whether due to never being married or being divorced or separated—you will use the income of the parent with whom you lived for a majority (greater than 50% of the time) of the previous 12 months when you complete the FAFSA. If you lived with each an equal amount of time, you would use the income of the parent who provided a majority of your financial support during the last year. “Parent” means your legal (biological or adoptive) parent and/or stepparent, or a person determined to be your legal or custodial parent.

What is the difference between a subsidized versus an unsubsidized loan?

The primary difference is when the interest begins to accrue.

  • The interest is a fixed rate as of the date it is initially disbursed and is the same for both subsidized & unsubsidized loans.
  • Subsidized loans - interest does not accrue while the student is enrolled at least half time (not just attending). Repayment begins six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half time.
  • Unsubsidized loans - interest accrues from the date of disbursement and continues to accrue during periods of grace or deferment. When interest is capitalized, subsequent interest is assessed on the loan principal plus the accrued interest charges that were added to the loan principal, typically occurs when repayment begins. Repayment begins six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half time and any unpaid interest is capitalized.

I can pay the college bill out of pocket for my son/daughter so why would I go any other route?

A federal loan will be in the student’s name therefore making it a great tool to leverage your student’s accountability to completing the education hopefully in 4 years.

Where is the best place to look for information on account payments, arrangements, refunds, and statements?

The attached link provides information for those topics. It’s a great starting point. Student Financial Services – Susquehanna University

How do I pay my bill?

You can pay your tuition and fees through the new Student Account Center Portal available on myNest. Students may log in to myNest and from the Student Profile

  • Click Payment & Billing
  • Click Proceed to Processor

Parents will need their student to grant them access prior to viewing their student’s account. Service fees apply for credit and debit card payments. Electronic check payments have no fee. International students should submit payment here or send checks, made payable to Susquehanna University, to Susquehanna University, Attn: SFS Office, 514 University Avenue, Selinsgrove, PA 17870-0116. Student accounts include tuition, fees, housing and food, and other related charges, such as parking registrations, parking tickets, health center charges, music fees, library fees, shuttle fees and Global Opportunity fees.

How can I access my student account?

Here’s how students can access their Student Account portal via myNest, where you can make a payment, set-up a payment plan and invite authorized users to their account:

    1. Login to myNest and select the Student profile;
    2. Click My AID & STUDENT ACCOUNT;
    3. Click Payment & Billing;
    4. Click Proceed to Processor;
    5. Please follow the prompts to activate your account;
    6. After you set up your account, click the My Profile tab on the Home screen; and
    7. Click “ADD” under Manage Payers and complete the “Add Authorized Party” form.

When are semester bills due?

Typically, semester bills are expected to be paid in full or payment arrangement plans to be in place by August 1 (fall) and January 1 (spring).

How do I set up a payment plan?

To enroll in a payment plan please log into your Student Account Center Portal via myNest. Parents will need to be granted access by the student prior to logging in to the account. Please click this link for a video on “How to Set Up a Payment Plan”. If you have questions, please contact Student Financial Services via email (sfs@susqu.edu).

What is the financial authorization and responsibility form?

The Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a law that protects the privacy of your educational records, including your financial aid and account information. This information cannot be released to anyone, including your parents/guardians, without your written consent. By signing this Authorization form, you are giving your written consent to release any information regarding your university financial account to the individual(s) designated on this form.

When do I receive a statement?

Susquehanna delivers a monthly e-statement notification to students and authorized users via a student’s Susquehanna email address and the email address on file in Campus Commerce for authorized users. This e-statement is a snapshot in time of your account and does not include any transactions that take place after the delivery of the statement notice.

The following link is an example.

What does a negative amount mean on my bill?

A balance amount surrounded by parentheses “( )” or a “-” represents a credit on your account and no payment is due. A credit on your account means you have paid more than you owe the university at this time. This credit balance can be utilized in a future term, to receive a book voucher at the university store or requested to be refunded to your student or authorized user.

How do I request a credit balance refund?

The most effective way to request a refund is to email sfs@susqu.edu.

How can I utilize my 529 plan?

529 plans may be used for a wide range of higher education expenses. It is important to contact your 529 plan to determine how those funds can be utilized at Susquehanna and how the funds will be delivered to the school.

What if I withdraw from the university?

A withdrawal from the university is defined as a student removing themselves from all enrolled classes at any point in the term or dropping below 12 credits (full-time enrollment) during the Drop/Add period. Please see the university’s academic calendar for more details on the Drop/Add period specific to each semester. Once the semester begins there are many financial implications to consider when thinking about withdrawing from the university. Please note housing, activity, and health fees are neither pro-rated nor refundable. Additionally, students who are suspended or dismissed from the university after the first day of classes are not eligible for refunds. The attached link provides more information on the withdrawal process. Student Financial Services – Susquehanna University

To withdraw from all of your classes, a student must notify the Office of the Registrar in writing that he or she is officially withdrawing and provide the last date of class attendance. The form used to officially notify the university may be obtained at the Office of the Registrar. Mere absence from classes does not reduce a student’s financial obligation or guarantee that the university will not record a final grade. Note that housing charges and student activity and health fees are nonrefundable after classes have commenced.

What happens if I don’t pay my bill?

The university does reserve the right to assess late fees and place a financial hold on your account for outstanding prior term charges. This could restrict your ability to enroll in future academic terms if payment is not received.

What is a Form1098-T?

Susquehanna University is required to report qualified tuition and related expenses, such as tuition, fees, and course materials necessary for enrollment.

The dollar amounts reported on your Form 1098-T may assist you in completing Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Form 8863 — the form used for calculating the education tax credits you may claim as part of your tax return. Depending on income, enrollment status and the amount of qualified educational expenses, you may be eligible for a federal education tax credit. Check out our 1098-T website for more information.

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Selinsgrove, Pa. 17870

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