Frequently Asked Questions
What is the deadline for applying for aid at Assumption University? What if I miss the deadline? Am I still eligible for aid?
The priority deadline for applying for financial aid at Assumption is March 15 for new students. The deadline is March 31 for transfer and returning students. The FAFSA needs to be received in our office by these dates, so make sure to allow adequate time for processing (generally 2-3 weeks if filing online). If you miss the deadline, you will still be eligible for aid; however, filing early ensures maximum financial aid eligibility.
I don’t think I’ll qualify for aid. Should I still apply?
Yes. The federal government has a formula that considers a number of factors including income, assets, number of dependents in the household and number of dependents in college to determine your expected family contribution. This figure assists us in determining your eligibility for grants and loans. Without the completion of the FAFSA we cannot fully determine your eligibility. Please note the FAFSA is not required in order to be considered for Assumption University merit scholarships.
If a student’s parents plan to borrow the Federal PLUS loan, the FAFSA must be filed.
My parents are divorced. How should I complete the parent section of the FAFSA?
If your biological or adopted parents are divorced, separated, or never married, you are instructed to answer FAFSA questions in terms of the parent who provided the most financial support during the last 12 months or during the most recent calendar year that you were actually supported by a parent. Additionally, if the parent you counted above is married or remarried as of the date they completed the FAFSA, you must include the financial information about the step-parent (even if they were not married in the previous calendar year).
I do not reside with either of my parents and neither claims me as a dependent on their taxes. Can I be considered an independent student?
The Federal Government determines the dependency status of the student according to the questions answered on the FAFSA. Filing your own taxes separate from their parents, does not make you independent for federal financial aid purposes. The criteria for meeting independent status can be found here. If you do not meet any of these criteria, and you can document special circumstances about independence, please complete the Assumption University Request for Dependency Override and submit to the Office of Financial Aid.
Is my financial aid guaranteed for all four years? Do I need to meet certain requirements to maintain my eligibility for financial aid each year?
It is the intent of Assumption University to provide a consistent financial aid package each year. This commitment is based upon the student maintaining satisfactory academic progress, no change to the number of students in your family attending college, no significant change to family income and assets (e.g. EFC) and adhering to published priority FAFSA filing deadlines. Merit scholarships also require the student to maintain a specified GPA annually.
Most merit scholarships offered to students are renewable for four years of enrollment as a full-time undergraduate student at Assumption University as long as you maintain the expected GPA (grade point average) outlined in your award letter from the Admissions Office.
Need based scholarship funding is not guaranteed in future academic years. Students needs to file the FAFSA form on an annual basis to determine if they qualify for need based scholarship funding in subsequent academic years.
Athletic scholarship funding is renewable in future academic years as long as the student remains a member of the athletic team and is enrolled as a full time (12 credits per semester) undergraduate student.
My parents have had a significant change to their income since filing the FAFSA. Is it possible for Assumption to take this into consideration when determining my financial aid for the upcoming year?
Yes, the Office of Financial Aid may be able to consider these changes when reviewing the student’s financial aid. Student must complete the Special Circumstance Appeal Form and submit to our office along with requested supporting documentation.
How will an outside scholarship affect my financial aid package?
Outside scholarships are treated as need-based aid and will count against remaining unmet need first. If the scholarship amount(s) exceed unmet need, then the financial aid awards will be reduced in the following order to keep the student within the cost of attendance: work-study, loans, grants and scholarships.
I am interested in studying abroad. Can I use my financial aid to pay for my program?
Yes, generally most financial aid awards are portable and can be used towards the payment of your program. Types of aid not portable include federal work-study and tuition exchange scholarships. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid for more information. Click here for additional information on Assumption’s study abroad programs.
How do we pay our bill?
Information on how to pay your bill is communicated to students and parents by the Assumption University Student Accounts Office. Students can set up their parents or guardians as authorized users to receive and review billing information online which can be found at the Student Account Center.
How do we figure out what we will owe for the year?
As a prospective student, your financial aid offer letter will provide an estimated amount due for the academic year based on estimated costs and financial aid funding. Actual bills for new students will be emailed to students in late June of each year.
Returning undergraduate students will receive their financial aid offer letters in early June and their student bills in mid to late June.
Once enrolled at Assumption University, students can also view their actual bills in the Student Account Center portal.
My family cannot afford Assumption based on what we were offered in financial aid funding. Is there any way for us to get more assistance from Assumption University?
Financial Aid offers are based off the information provided on the FAFSA as well as your academic record. If your financial situation has changed since filing your FAFSA or does not reflect your current financial situation, please contact the Office of Financial aid and/or complete the Special Circumstances Appeal Form.
There are also options to finance your college education through payment plan and alternative loans.
My family will have more/fewer children in college next year, how will this impact the financial aid offer?
Financial need can change from year to year which is why you need to file the FAFSA form on an annual basis. If you financial need decreases or increases in future academic years, your need-based funding may be adjusted.
My family does not want me to graduate with student loan debt, can I request an increase in financial aid?
Federal student loans are considered financial aid funding and are typically part of a student’s financial aid offer when applying for need based aid. Families may choose to decline the federal student loan(s) in their financial aid offer in order to avoid taking on student loan debt. However, in choosing not to accept the student loan(s) in the financial aid offer, families cannot request an increase in grants or scholarship funding.
One of my parents might be laid off in a few months, how can we apply for additional aid due to this change in circumstance?
If there are changes to your family’s financial circumstances, you can request the Office of Financial Aid re-evaluate your student’s financial aid file by completing the Special Circumstance Appeal Form. Please note that we cannot re-evaluate a change in your families’ financial situation until that changes has actually taken place.
Our neighbor’s son or daughter received more money from Assumption and we know they make more money than we do… why is this the case?
Families who apply for financial aid funding are required to provide financial information to the Office of Financial Aid. This information is used to determine a family’s ability to pay based on their current financial situation. While it may “appear” your neighbors may make more money than your family, please keep in mind that most people do not have a full understanding of their neighbor’s financial situation.
Our FAFSA EFC indicates we only have to pay $xxx, but the amount of money we have to pay based on what I received in financial aid funding is different. Why is this?
When your FAFSA is processed, it will generate an EFC (expected family contribution). The EFC figure is an estimate of what the federal government believes your family can afford to pay in the upcoming academic year. The EFC is used by colleges and universities to determine your family’s financial need. Unfortunately, not all colleges and universities can offer a financial aid package that meets the full financial need of each student. Because of this, some families will have to pay more than their FAFSA EFC.
Cost of Attendance (COA) – Expected Family Contribution (EFC) = Financial Need (FN)
How do I maintain my aid in future years?
Students who receive merit-based scholarships/grants from Assumption need to refer to the renewal criteria provided to them in their merit award letter from the Undergraduate Admissions Office. Most merit scholarships require a certain GPA that needs to be achieved at the end of each academic year (Spring semester) in order to renew this funding in future academic year.
Need based aid is not guaranteed in future academic year. Students are required to file the FAFSA form on an annual basis so the Office of Financial Aid can determine your eligibility for need based funding from year to year.
Is this package guaranteed for all four years?
Students who are offered merit scholarship funding from Assumption are eligible to receive this funding for four years of full-time undergraduate enrollment as long as they maintain the required GPA (grade point average) outlined on their merit letter from the Undergraduate Admissions Office.
Need based funding is not guaranteed from year to year. Please refer to the question above for additional information.
My parents are remarried and one of my parents refuses to pay for my education. Why are you using his/her information to determine financial aid?
Students applying for need based financial aid are required to complete the FAFSA form on an annual basis. At the time the FAFSA is submitted, students are required to report the marital status of their custodial parent(s). If the student’s custodial parents include a stepparent, then the stepparent’s income and asset information is used to determine the student’s FAFSA EFC. This EFC is then used to calculate a student’s financial need and financial aid offer.
Assumption does not require a stepparent to pay for his/her stepchild’s college education, but we do require their information to determine the student’s financial need.
Information from a stepparent is required on the FAFSA as their financial support helps maintain the family’s financial household (paying the mortgage, rent, food, utilities, etc.). While a stepparent may not provide direct financial support to help pay for a student’s college education, their financial support in maintaining the household in which a student lives is still considered financial support.
Will I get more financial aid if I do well in college?
The Office of Financial Aid does not award additional funding to students who do well academically in college. There are a few endowed scholarship funds awarded by individual academic departments that may award additional scholarship funding to students based on their academic performance. Please refer to your academic department to inquire about additional scholarship funding.
Please keep in mind that any scholarship funding awarded to students by Assumption University will need to be reported to the Office of Financial Aid and could result in an adjustment to the student’s current financial aid offer.
I am in the custody of a single parent and my other parent refuses to help pay for college. Is there anything more you can do to help us with additional assistance?
In order to apply for need based financial aid, students are required to complete the FAFSA. The FAFSA form determines a student’s EFC (expected family contribution) based on the custodial parent(s) income and assets information. If your parents are divorced, separated, or have never been married, then only the parent with whom the student lives or receives more than 50% support should be providing their information on the FAFSA. Financial aid offers to students are based on the financial strength of the parent(s) and student’s information provide on the FAFSA. If your financial aid offer was based on one parent’s financial information, then we cannot consider increasing your financial aid funding if your non-custodial parent cannot pay as your non-custodial parent’s information was not used in the calculation in determining your financial aid offer.
Please keep in mind there are options to help close the gap between Assumption’s cost of attendance and your financial aid offer. Please refer to the following webpages for information on the following topics:
I have other siblings that will soon start college. Is there anything more you can do to provide my family with additional assistance?
In order to apply for need based financial aid, students need to complete the FAFSA. The FAFSA collects information about a family’s financial strength based on income, assets, household size, the number of students in college. If there are more than one student attending college in the same academic year, the FAFSA will take this into consideration when determining the student’s EFC (expected family contribution). Younger siblings who are reported on the FAFSA as part of the household size are part of the calculation to determine your EFC. Assumption cannot award you additional funds beyond what has been awarded to you based on your FAFSA results due to having younger siblings not yet attending college. However, if your family’s financial situation has changed since filing the FAFSA or is different than what was reported as income on the FAFSA, please look into filing a Special Circumstance Appeal Form located on the Office of Financial Aid website.
Our EFC says we can pay $15,000 towards my college education. I don’t have these funds available. How is this possible?
Your EFC is an index number that college financial aid staff use to determine how much financial aid you would receive if you were to attend their school. The information you report on your FAFSA is used to calculate your EFC.
The EFC is calculated according to a formula established by law. Your family’s taxed and untaxed income, assets, and benefits (such as unemployment or Social Security) all could be considered in the formula. Also considered are your family size and the number of family members who will attend college or career school during the year. The EFC Formula guide shows exactly how an EFC is calculated.
Your EFC is an estimate of your family’s financial strength to pay for college. It is not an estimate of how much money colleges or the Federal Department of Education believe you have “lying around”. Rather, the EFC is a combination of financial resources (savings, current income, and future income) your family can use to help offset the cost of college over time. Your EFC can be met by using savings (past income), payment plans (current income), or loans (future income).
Families can use the following resources to assist them in paying their educational bill:
How do outside scholarships impact my financial aid? Should I even bother to look for outside scholarships?
If you receive outside scholarships, they will be used to first close any gaps between your financial need and the total aid that has been offered to you by Assumption. Once your full financial need has been met with financial aid funding, the receipt of outside scholarship funding may require the Office of Financial Aid to adjust your financial aid offer to ensure you are not over awarded by federal guidelines.