how to evaluate your financial aid package
- Find your cost of attendance (COA)
- Find your EFC (if any)
- Find your financial need (COA – EFC)
- See if the proposed financial aid package meets all your financial need
- From the package, how much is gift aid vs self-help aid?
What is your net cost?
• Self-help aid
• Any unmet need that you will be asked to fill through other sources
additional things to take in mind
- Compare Net Costs for the schools your are considering
- Be mindful of the amount of debt you are being asked to accept
- Loans can be declined or reduced
- Do not borrow more than you need
final tips for students
- Make sure you look beyond the “sticker price”!
- Research financial aid programs and resources offered at the colleges you are interested in applying
- Tools for estimating your net costs: Net Price Calculator on your school’s website
Financial Aid Packaging, Appeals for Additional Aid
- Working with your financial aid office
- All schools have a financial aid office staffed with financial aid professionals
- Do not hesitate to contact your prospective schools’ Financial Aid Offices for information on how to appeal for more aid
- The more documentation you can provide, the stronger your appeal will be
- Some schools are generous in their appeal process, others are more strict
- Unexpected circumstances are appropriate reasons to appeal
- Unemployment, loss of benefits, death or illness of primary wage earner, estrangement from parents, housing insecurity and PLUS loan denial are examples of appealable circumstances.