Financial Aid

Applying for Aid

FAFSA image with Alma College's school code.

Prepare
File
Verification
Follow-up

 

To be considered for any need-based aid from the federal government, state government or Alma College, you must file the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

PREPARE (October - February)

Incoming Freshmen 2019-2020

  • FSA ID - Create! 
    • Student Needs a FSA ID
    • Parent 1 Needs a FSA ID 
    • Parent 2 Needs a FSA ID (optional) 

    • *The FSA ID is SPECIFIC to each person, so make sure the email attached to the FSA ID belong directly to that person.  
  • Gather Information!

Returning Students 2019-2020

  • FSA ID - Do you remember?
    • Go to fsaid.ed.gov if you forgot your FSA ID. This goes for your parents as well. 
    • Make sure you have your FSA ID, and your Parents FSA ID. 
  • Gather Information!

FILE (October 1 - March 1)

Alma College’s School Code is 002236

Important Dates:

  • Students can begin completing the FAFSA: October 1
  • Priority deadline for Michigan students: March 1
    • If you file later than March 1st, you will not be eligible for a state award.

Common errors made when completing the FAFSA: 

  • Name and Social Security Number 
    Enter your name and Social Security Number exactly as they appear on your Social Security Card. 

  • Degree or certificate
    Unless you will be a graduate student, a professional student, or working towards a second bachelor’s degree when you enter Alma, indicate 1 (1st bachelor’s degree). 

  • First bachelor’s degree before July 1, of your incoming year?
    If you will not have a four-year college degree when you enter Alma, indicate No. 

  • Legal Guardian
    The definition of legal guardianship does not include your parents, even if they were appointed by a court to be your guardians. You are also not considered a legal guardian of yourself. By answering “Yes” it means you can provide a copy of the court’s decision giving you this legal status.

  • Read, and sign with your FSA ID
    Make sure FAFSA is signed with student FSA ID. If parent information is required on your FAFSA, a parent FSA ID is also required.

READY, SET, FILE!

  • Complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.gov.
  • FAFSA Help Desk: 1-800-433-32

 VERIFICATION (February - March)

  • In some cases you may need to go through a verification process, in which you send us a tax return transcript, W-2 forms and other required documents.
  • If additional information is needed, our office will start notifying students in February/March.
  • Visit our Verification page for more details on completing the process.

AWARD LETTER TIMELINE 

Incoming Freshmen for 2019 - 2020:

  • Financial aid award letters will be issued starting in early December.
  • If you would like an earlier estimate, please use our Net Price Calculator.

Returning Students for 2019 - 2020:

  • Final grades for the current year are needed before eligibility for financial aid can be determined. (April 23, 2019 is when Registrars will begin inputting grades). 
  • Financial aid letters will be issued during the normal time frame of May - June.
  • Award letters will be available on the student portal after receiving the email notification.

FOLLOW-UP (May - July)

Review the Financial Aid Letter:

  • When your financial aid letter arrives, you will see all your scholarships and awards listed, along with any additional need-based aid for which you qualify.

Complete all requirements to receive the aid that is being offered:

  • Finish verification if you have not already done so.
    • Aid is estimated until all requirements have been completed.
  • Complete loan requirements.
    • Instructions will be given with the award letter notice.

Report any outside scholarships you have received:

  • Turn in scholarship checks that are made out to both the student and the college.
  • Report scholarships that are made out to the student only.
    • May also endorse them to the college and turn them in to have them applied directly to the student account.

Make plans to pay:

Review the billing statement:

  • Billing statements are available on the student portal after receiving the email notification.
  • Fall billing statements are issued at the end of July with payment due at the end of August.
  • Winter billing statements are issued at the end of November with payment due in January.