2 Steps to Apply for Financial Aid These three easy steps will help keep a student on track for applying for admission and financial aid. To apply online, visit or visit the admissions office of the campus Complete a University of Hawaii System Application for admission Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) To complete the FAFSA, visit fafsa.gov MyUH Portal: https://myuh.hawaii.edu There may be additional documents the student must submit to the financial aid office, it is important for the student to check MyUH Portal Keep in contact with the offices on-campus, and visit the MyUH Portal for updates Documents needed to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Student s Social Security number The student s parents Social Security numbers (if the student is considered a dependent student) Student s driver s license number (if the student has one) Alien Registration Number (if the student is not a U.S. citizen) Federal tax information or tax returns including IRS W-2 information, for the student (and their spouse, if married), and for the parents if the student is a dependent student: o IRS 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ o o Foreign tax return and/or Tax return for Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Marshall Islands, the Federal States of Micronesia, or Palau Records of the student s untaxed income, such as child support received, interest income, and veterans noneducation benefits, for the student and for the student s parents if they are considered a dependent student Information on cash; savings and checking account balances; investments, including stocks and bonds and real estate but not including the home in which the student lives; and business and farm assets for the student, and for their parents if they are considered a dependent student
3 Types of Aid Financial aid can come from many resources such as the U.S. federal government, the state, the institution or a nonprofit or private organization. The financial aid that a student receives is to help pay for any college expenses such as tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and transportation. Federal Government Aid Federal aid is money that comes from the federal government. This consists of: Grants: financial aid that does not have to be repaid (unless a student withdraws from school and owes a refund) Work-Study: a work program through which a student earns money to help pay for school Loans: borrowed money for college expenses; this must be repaid with interest (unless a student withdraws from or stops attending school and owes a refund) To apply for federal student aid, file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). State Government Aid Some states offer aid for collegebound students. Contact the state grant agency for more information, or contact your home campus Financial Aid Office. Institutional Aid This type of aid is from the campus s own funds and consists of grants, scholarships, and loans. Scholarship: money awarded to students based on academic or other achievements to help pay for education expenses. Scholarships generally do not have to be repaid. For more information about institutional aid, visit the financial aid webpage, or ask the financial aid office. Nonprofit or Private Organization Aid Financial aid from nonprofit or private organizations is usually grants or scholarships.
4 Calculating Need Here is an illustration of how financial need is calculated. Cost-of-Attendance The total amount it will cost for a student to attend college. This includes tuition and fees; room and board/housing and food allowance; book and supplies; transportation; loan fees; and personal expenses. Expected Family Contribution (EFC) This is the number that is used to determine a student s eligibility for federal financial aid. The EFC is a result from the financial information a student provides on the FAFSA. After completing the FAFSA, the EFC is found on the Student Aid Report (SAR). Financial Need The difference between the cost of attendance (COA) at a campus and the student s expected family contribution (EFC). The COA varies by campus. Need-based aid calculations Cost of Attendance (COA) Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Financial Need
5 To receive federal student aid, students will need to have all of these requirements satisfied. Although income is taken into consideration, it does not prevent students from getting federal aid as most students are eligible to receive federal aid regardless of age, race, or field of study. U.S. Citizen or eligible Noncitizen File a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) * Valid Social Security Number Not be in default on a FFELP Loan, Federal Direct Loan or owe a refund of a Federal Grant Federal Aid Have a high school diploma, GED certificate, or completed a high school education in a homeschool setting approved under state law Not be receiving financial aid at two schools during the same semester In an eligible program of study/major Maintain good Satisfactory Academic Progress If male years of age, be registered with Selective Service * Remember that it is FREE to file a FAFSA. Go to fafsa.gov to file.
6 UHCC Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy Federal financial aid recipients must be making academic progress towards their degree in order to maintain financial aid eligibility. Students are able to view their financial aid status on the MyUH Portal by following these steps: 1. Log into the MyUH Portal at https://myuh.hawaii.edu 2. Click Financial Aid on the left hand menu 3. Click Academic Progress 4. Select the student s home campus and the appropriate school year (i.e. Leeward CC 20xx-xx) and click Submit 5. The student s current academic status will be at the top of the page THE MINIMUM STANDARDS GPA: A student must maintain a cumulative 2.00 GPA at the home campus. Completion Rate: A student must complete at least 67% of the cumulative attempted coursework. * Hours Earned Hours Attempted = Completion Rate Maximum Time-Frame: A student must graduate within a set number of credits, or time-frame, and only take credits required for the degree. ** * The completion rate counts all F, W, I, NC, and repeated courses as hours attempted. ** Students who have graduated or exceeded the maximum time-frame for their degree may no longer be eligible for financial aid. If students have already completed an Associates degree and wish to pursue another degree at the same campus, they need to contact the Financial Aid Office of their home campus for procedures. FAILURE TO MEET THE MINIMUM STANDARDS (GPA AND/OR COMPLETION RATE) Students who fail to earn a cumulative 2.00 GPA and/or complete at least 67% of their cumulative coursework will be ineligible for financial aid. Once they have brought their academic standing to the minimum standards, they may re-apply for financial aid. A suspension status may be appealed in certain situations: If there were unusual/extraordinary circumstances that caused the student to fall below academic standards; and If measures have been taken to improve the situation, or if grades have improved. Contact the Financial Aid Office for instructions. Please note: Under federal guidelines, there are certain situations in which the Financial Aid Office may not be able to consider a student s appeal. Each case is individual and will depend on a review of the student s academic history at the campus.
7 Scholarships are funds received for educational purposes that do not have to be repaid and come from anywhere: schools, private and public companies, nonprofits, religious groups and others. Where to Find Scholarships? The financial aid office at a college A high school or TRIO counselor State agencies A library s reference area Foundations, religious or community organizations, local businesses, or civic groups Organizations (including professional associations) related to a student s field of interest Ethnicity-based organizations A student s employer or their parents employers It is always a good idea to have a student start early with scholarship searches and have some basic requirements done. Personal statement Community service/volunteer service outline or essay An idea of who they would like to have as recommenders (notify those people before using them as a recommender) Knowing the deadlines of the scholarships to create a timeline to have everything completed Transcripts: most scholarships require that an official transcript be included with the scholarship application (high school, previous and current college transcripts) Scholarships will affect a student s financial aid package because a student cannot be awarded more than the cost of attendance at the home campus. If you have questions, ask a counselor, academic advisor, or a scholarship specialist.
8 A student loan is money a student borrows and it MUST be paid back with interest. There are two types of student loans: federal and private. Federal student loans are loans that are funded by the federal government. Private student loans are loans that are nonfederal loans that are made by a lender such as a bank, credit union, state agency, or a school. Most campuses will automatically award a Federal student loan. If a campus does not automatically award a Federal student loan, the student will need to contact the Financial Aid Office for the loan process, and will need to complete an Entrance Counseling and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at If a student wants to get a private loan, the student will need to apply directly with the lender. There are different types of federal student loans. Direct Subsidized Loan A loan that is available to undergraduate students with financial need. The school determines the amount a student can borrow; the amount cannot exceed a student s financial need. The U.S. Department of Education pays the interest while the student is in school at least half-time, for the first six months after the student leaves school and during a period of deferment. Direct Unsubsidized Loan A loan that is available to undergraduate and graduate students with no requirement to demonstrate financial need. The school determines the amount a student can borrow by considering the cost of attendance and other financial aid a student receives. The student is responsible to pay for the interest while attending school. If the student chooses not to pay the interest while attending school or during any period of time, the interest will accrue and be added to the principal of the loan. Direct PLUS Loan A loan that is available to a graduate or professional degree students and parents of dependent undergraduate students. The maximum loan amount is the student s cost of attendance minus any other financial aid received. This loan looks at a borrower s credit history and has an interest rate of 7.9%. Federal Perkins Loan A loan that is available to undergraduate, graduate, and professional students that have exceptional financial need. The school is the lender and payments will be made to the school or the school s loan servicer. The school determines the amount a student can borrow based on the availability of funds that the school has. The interest rate for this loan is 5%. Not all schools participate in the Federal Perkins Loan Program.
9 The federal government sets the maximum limits a student can borrow in subsidized and unsubsidized loans each academic year. The maximum limits are based on the student s grade level and whether the student is a dependent or an independent student. The school determines the actual loan amount a student is eligible to receive each academic year. Year Dependent Students Independent Students (Dependent undergraduate students whose parents are not First-Year Undergraduate $5,500 No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. Second-Year Undergraduate* $6,500 No More than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. Third-Year and Beyond $7,500 per year No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. Graduate or Professional Degree Maximum Total Debt from Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans Not Applicable $20,500 $31,000 No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. eligible for a PLUS loan) $9,500 No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $10,500 No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $12,500 No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans $57,500 for undergraduates No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $138,500 for graduate or professional students No more than $65,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. The graduate debt limit includes all federal loans received for undergraduate study. * For students attending a community college, the maximum eligibility is for a second-year undergraduate regardless of the amount of credits earned. A student s loan history can be found on the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS),
10 1. WHEN IS THE FAFSA AVAILABLE? The FAFSA is available the first working day of the New Year in January for the upcoming academic year. Current year applications are available on an on-going basis. 2. DOES A STUDENT NEED TO REAPPLY FOR FINANCIAL AID EVERY YEAR? Yes, a FAFSA must be filed each academic year for which the student wants to receive financial aid. Remember that filing the FAFSA is FREE. You DO NOT need to pay to file the FAFSA. 3. DOES A STUDENT NEED TO BE REGISTERED FOR CLASSES BEFORE APPLYING FOR FINANCIAL AID? Students can apply for financial aid any time after January 1 for the following Fall and Spring semester, but they must be admitted and enrolled in classes in order to receive funds. 4. DOES A STUDENT HAVE TO APPLY FOR THE FAFSA ONLINE? No. However, it is highly encouraged that students apply online since it is fast, simple and safe. Please check with the Financial Aid Office if there are specific concerns about applying online. 5. WHAT IS THE PRIORITY DATE TO FILE THE FAFSA? UH Community College April 1 UH Manoa & UH Hilo March 1 UH West Oahu April 1 Completed applications are considered on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are depleted. Applications that are not accurate and complete prior to the student s last day of enrollment or thirty days prior to the close of the spring semester, whichever occurs first, may not be processed. 6. HOW DOES A STUDENT FILL OUT THE FAFSA IF THEIR PARENTS ARE DIVORCED? Provide the information of the parent with whom the student lived with the majority of the time. If the student lived with both parents equally, provide the information of the parent who provides for more than half of the support for the student. 7. CAN STUDENTS RECEIVE FINANCIAL AID IF THEY ARE NOT FULL-TIME? Most financial aid requires a student to be enrolled at least half-time. If the student is eligible, the Pell Grant can be awarded at less than half-time. 8. CAN A STUDENT RECEIVE FINANCIAL AID FROM MORE THAN ONE INSTITUTION AT THE SAME TIME? No. Financial aid cannot be received from two different institutions at the same time because the student is expected to receive a degree only from one school. Aid is administered only by that one school.
11 9. IF A STUDENT HAS AN UNUSUAL CIRCUMSTANCE, WHO IS THERE TO EXPLAIN IT TO? The student must try to complete the FAFSA with the information requested. Contact the Financial Aid Office for procedures for special circumstances. 10. WHAT IS VERIFICATION? Verification is a process which confirms that information reported on the FAFSA matches the federal tax returns and other documents. If selected, a student is required to submit certain documents. If any discrepancies are found, corrections are sent to the federal processor to recalculate aid eligibility. It may result in a decrease in total aid, or an increase in total aid. 11. WHAT IS FINANCIAL NEED? Financial need means a student s family s financial resources, measured by a formula established by the federal government, are not sufficient to cover a student s educational costs. 12. HOW CAN A STUDENT ACCEPT AN AWARD OFFER? Awards are posted online through the MyUH Portal. The initial award notification is ed to the student, and it explains in detail how to log onto the MyUH Portal to view the awards. 1) Log onto the MyUH Portal (https://myuh.hawaii.edu) 2) Under Academic Services click on Financial Aid link 3) Click on Award by Aid Year 4) Select the Aid Year (i.e. Honolulu CC Aid Year 20xx-xx) and then click Submit 5) Click on Accept Award Offer tab 6) Read the instructions and accept/decline all awards. If a student leaves any award as undecided those awards will not be disbursed. NOTE: Awards are based on a full-time enrollment. Awards will be adjusted for lower enrollment levels. If a student does not begin attendance or complete the courses for which aid was received, the student may be required to repay all or part of the funds received. 13. WHEN WILL A STUDENT RECEIVE THEIR FINANCIAL AID? Funds are disbursed 10 days before the first day of instruction. The funds pay for tuition and fees first with any credit balance refunded to the student. Please allow the Central Bursar s Office at least 14 days to process the refund. Students who sign-up for e-refund will receive their refund faster than students who want to receive a paper check. 14. WHAT CHANGES COULD AFFECT A STUDENT S FINANCIAL AID AWARD? A student s initial award is based on full-time enrollment. These are some examples that may cause a student s award to be revised: Change in enrollment; Receipt of additional awards, including scholarships and grants; Change in reported financial information since original award; or Not attending classes
12 15. WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE FINANCIAL AID FREEZE DATE (LAST DAY TO WITHDRAW WITHOUT A W ) A student s financial aid award will be based upon enrollment at the end of the freeze date. If a student has already received an award and has since changed enrollment, the student may be responsible for repaying the award. It is highly recommended that a student meet with an Academic Advisor and a Financial Aid Officer to discuss options. 16. DOES FINANCIAL AID PAY FOR CLASSES AT OTHER UH CAMPUSES? Financial aid will pay for courses that apply to the degree a student is pursuing at the home campus. Students who are receiving financial aid and will be taking courses from other UH campuses must complete a Distance Education form. NOTE: Most financial aid may not pay for other campuses tuition; the student must pay for the distance education course with that campus, please check with the campus for payment deadlines. If a student will be receiving financial aid for the distance education courses they may use the refund to pay for the courses with the campus. If a student decides to add or drop any courses after submitting a Distance Education form, the student must notify the Financial Aid Office of the student s home campus. 17. DOES A STUDENT HAVE TO REPORT PRIVATE SCHOLARSHIPS TO THE FINANCIAL AID OFFICE? Yes. If a student receives grants or scholarships from any organization for educational purposes, they must be reported to the Financial Aid Office. The Financial Aid Office may need to adjust the student s financial aid package to prevent an over award. 18. WHAT IS STUDENT EMPLOYMENT? Student employment is on-campus part-time employment opportunities for students who want to attend school at least half-time. Different types of student employment: Federal Work Study (FWS) a need-based, federally funded college administered program that allows a student to earn a specified amount of money to help with college expenses. A student will need to indicate interest in Federal Work Study on the FAFSA or contact the Financial Aid Office or Student Employment Office. General Employment (UH) a program that offers on-campus, part-time jobs if a student does not apply or does not qualify for Federal Work Study (FWS). Bridge-to-Hope (BTH) an employment option for welfare (TANF/TAONF) recipients and Firstto-Work (FTW) participants who want to work and attend college full-time. Not all campuses participate in this program. 19. IF A STUDENT IS ON FINANCIAL AID SUSPENSION, IS HE/SHE ABLE TO RECEIVE FINANCIAL AID? No. A student needs to be meeting the Satisfactory Academic Policy to receive federal aid. If the student was unable to be academically successful because of the unusual circumstance, the student has the option to file an appeal letter with the Financial Aid Office.
13 UHCC s Contact Information and Federal School Codes Hawaii Community College 200 West Kawili Street Hilo, HI (808) Federal School Code: Honolulu Community College 874 Dillingham Boulevard Honolulu, HI (808) Federal School Code: Kapiolani Community College 4303 Diamond Head Road Honolulu, HI (808) Federal School Code: Kauai Community College Kaumuali'i Highway Lihue, HI (808) Federal School Code: Leeward Community College Ala Ike Street Pearl City, HI (808) Federal School Code: University of Hawaii Maui College 310 West Kaahumanu Ave Kahului, HI (808) Federal School Code: Windward Community College Keaahala Road Kaneohe, HI (808) Federal School Code: University of Hawaii System For general information about financial aid: or (808) UH Four-Year Campus Contact Information and Federal School Code University of Hawaii at Hilo University of Hawaii at Manoa University of Hawaii West Oahu 200 West Kawili Street Hilo, HI (808) Campus Road, OLCSS 112 Honolulu, HI (808) Farrington Highway Kapolei, HI (808) Federal School Code: Federal School Code: Federal School Code: