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Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I apply for financial aid?

The cost of a college education is very expensive and becoming more so every year. It is worth your time and effort to find out if you qualify for aid.

What is the FAFSA?

The FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It asks for the student-athlete's family's financial information so financial need may be determined. Financial need is defined as the difference between college expenses and the student-athlete's family's expected contribution. To determine the student-athlete's family's contribution, the federal government uses a formula called the Federal Methodology which takes into account the student-athlete's family's income, assets, debts, size of family, number of family members currently enrolled in college, years until parental retirement, and other expenses.

You must fill out the FAFSA in order to start the financial aid process. Colleges use the federal government's determination of financial need to determine the award package from the school.

What is the Expected Family Contribution (EFC)?

The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the amount the student-athlete's family is expected to contribute towards their college expenses. The EFC is determined by the federal government and based on the information the student-athlete provides on the FAFSA. Once the student-athlete has received their EFC, the EFC amount should be subtracted from their total expected college expenses to determine financial need.

Cost of Attendance or Budget
Less (-) Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
= Financial Aid Eligibility or Need

The EFC remains the same regardless of college costs, though the financial aid necessary may vary depending on college costs.

What is an SAR?

Within four to five weeks after mailing your FAFSA, a Student Aid Report (SAR) will be sent to you with Federal Pell Grant eligibility information and the results of your financial aid need analysis. It will also state your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). When you receive the SAR, check it for accuracy and make sure that the financial aid office of each school you are applying to has received a copy.

Each school will subtract the Pell Grant and EFC from the cost of attending their school to determine the amount of financial need you have for their school. Once they determine your need, they will create a financial aid award based on grants, loans, and work study to meet that need.

What is a Pell Grant?

A Federal Pell Grant is a monetary gift to qualified undergraduate students, primarily those with the most financial need. Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA. The Pell Grant is a fixed amount determined each year by federal budget appropriations and is awarded to eligible students. The schools may either apply the Pell Grant funds to the student-athlete's education expenses, pay the student-athlete directly (usually by check), or combine these two methods. The school must notify the student-athlete in writing how and when they will be paid and how much their award will be. Schools must pay the student-athlete at least once per term, and institutions that do not use traditional term schedules must pay the student-athlete at least twice per academic year.

What is the difference between the Perkins and the Stafford loans?

The Federal Perkins Loan is a fixed-interest-rate loan administered by the college financial aid office. Repayment begins nine months after the student graduates, leaves school or drops to less than half-time status. The Stafford Loans are federal government loans, with low, annually adjusted, variable rate interest, offered by private lenders such as banks, financial institutions and the student-athlete's chosen school.

Repayment of principal on the Stafford Loans begins six months after graduation or when enrollment drops below half time. The government pays interest for the subsidized loan until repayment begins. The borrower pays all interest charges for the unsubsidized loans, which may be deferred and capitalized (at extra cost to the borrower). The amount the student-athlete may borrow is fixed, and is determined by your academic standing.

Visit FinAid.org or FAFSA.com for more information on financial aid for student-athletes and their families.

NOTE: We are proud to announce that for the entire month of December, S.C. Fitch Enterprises, and all of its affiliates including Amateur Sports News Network, ASNN365.com, and Amateur Sports Gallery will be assisting Connection for Abused Women and their Children (CAWC) on our web site.

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