Understanding Your Financial Aid Awards

"Scholarship" and "grant" aid are considered gifts and do not need to be repaid. "Loans" do need to be repaid and should be considered as serious commitments. "Work-study" is a way for students to earn money through a part-time job in order to contribute to their college costs.

All students are considered for all types of aid, and financial aid packages are made according to a student's eligibility in each program. Students must maintain satisfactory academic progress to keep financial aid eligibility as outlined on the Academic Grades and Financial Aid page. The offer of financial aid is conditional based upon continuation of legislative authority and availability of appropriated funds. Financial aid awards are based on data provided by the student on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Adjustments resulting from income, verification, changes in enrollment or housing status, or receipt of additional college or outside funding and scholarships may result in revisions to an original offer of financial aid.

Descriptions of the primary sources of federal, state, and college aid follow:

Federal Aid

Federal Pell Grant - Federal Pell grants are available to students who are U.S. citizens and have demonstrated the highest financial need according to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Annual awards can range between $602 to $5,730 for full-time study and are determined by the student's Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as calculated from the FAFSA. Pell grant funds are sent directly to the school and applied to the student bill. As of July 1, 2012, new federal regulations limit your lifetime eligibility for Federal Pell Grant to twelve full-time semesters.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) - This campus-based federal grant is awarded to Federal Pell Grant eligible students who have demonstrated the highest calculated need from the FAFSA. Awards can range between $100 to $500 and are applied directly to the student bill. Federal SEOG is subject to campus availability.

Federal College Work-Study - This award provides paid employment opportunities in various campus departments and offices. Federal Work-Study awards are offered to students with demonstrated financial need. Students are paid at an hourly rate and receive pay every two weeks for the hours worked. The average Federal College Work-Study award is $2,000 annually and will not be credited to the student's bill. Students are advised of their award with their financial aid package and need to accept the award on BannerWeb. Once a student has accepted the award they will need to print the College Work Study referral form and may apply for a job on our Career Development Web page under Job Link. A student will make arrangements to meet with the supervisor for an interview for the job they have chosen. Federal College Work-Study is subject to campus availability.

Federal Perkins Loan - Federal Perkins Loan is a low-interest (five percent) federal education loan for students demonstrating financial need. The Federal Perkins Loan is interest-free while attending school at least six credit hours per semester and during the nine- month grace period after enrollment ceases. Repayment begins after the nine-month grace period ends. A Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required. Average awards range between $500 to $2,000 and are applied directly to the student bill. Federal Perkins Loan is subject to campus availability.

Federal Nursing Loan - Federal Nursing Loan is a low-interest (five percent) federal education loan for students with demonstrated financial need enrolled in a nursing program. The Federal Nursing Loan is interest-free while attending school at least six credit hours per semester and during the nine-month grace period after enrollment ceases. Repayment begins after the nine-month grace period ends. A Master Promissory Note (MPN) and loan disclosures are required. Average awards range between $500 to $2,500 and are applied directly to the student bill. Federal Nursing Loan is subject to campus availability.

Federal Direct Stafford Loan - A Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan is awarded on the basis of financial need as determined by the FAFSA and the college's cost of attendance. The federal government pays the interest on the loan during enrollment of at least six credit hours per semester and during the six-month grace period after enrollment ceases. A Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is not based on financial need and interest accrues from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. Annual loan limits under the Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan program are: $3,500 freshman, $4,500 sophomore, and $5,500 junior and senior. Students are also eligible for an additional annual loan limit of $2,000 under the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Additional federal unsubsidized loan funds (above the $2,000) are available for students whose parents are not credit-worthy or for students determined independent of parent by Department of Education standards. An origination fee is withheld from the loan by the U.S. Department of Education prior to disbursement. An up-front rebate percentage is given to borrowers after the origination fee has been deducted from each loan disbursed. Students must make all of the first 12 required monthly payments on time or the rebate amount will be added back to the principal of the loan. Students must be enrolled at least half time (six credit hours), a Federal Direct Loan Entrance Counseling and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required. Federal Direct Stafford Loan funds are released directly to the school in two or more disbursements via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). Funds are applied to the student bill.

Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) - Federal Direct PLUS Loans are for creditworthy parents who want to borrow for their undergraduate children's education. Students must be enrolled at least half time and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required. The loan amount can be up to the cost of attendance minus other financial aid received. An origination fee is withheld from the loan by the U.S. Department of Education prior to disbursement. An up-front rebate percentage is given to borrowers after the origination fee has been deducted from the loan disbursement. Parents must make all of the first 12 required monthly payments on time or the rebate amount will be added back to the principal of the loan. PLUS Loan funds are released directly to the school in two or more disbursements via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). Repayment begins 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed for the academic year. Deferment is available for the Federal Direct PLUS Loan by contacting the servicer of the loan. Funds are sent directly to the school and applied to the student bill.

State Aid

Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) - TAP is the NYS grant program for New York State residents enrolled full-time (minimum 12 credit hours) in a matriculated degree program. TAP has been estimated in the award notices of students who appear to be eligible. Annual awards currently range between $500 and $5000 and are determined by the state after a student files the electronic Express TAP Application (ETA). Once approved students are notified of their award directly from the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation (NYSHESC). Funds are sent directly to the school for each semester of eligibility and applied to the student bill.

Aid for Part-Time Study (APTS) - APTS is a grant for NYS residents who are continually enrolled on a part-time basis. Applications are available in the Student Records and Financial Services Office or on line under Student Records and Financial Services Office Forms. Funds are subject to availability. Funds are sent directly to the school for each semester of eligibility and applied to the student bill.

Part-Time TAP - Eligibility is limited to undergraduate students attending a SUNY, CUNY or not-for-profit independent degree granting college who were first-time freshmen in the 2006-2007 academic year or after. Students must complete 12 credit hours or more in each of two consecutive semesters. In addition, students must be enrolled in at least six credit hours but less than 12 per semester. A cumulative grade point average of 2.0 is also required. To apply students must complete both the FAFSA and Express TAP Application.

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) - EOP is an extended program with course work paced to enhance student success. Students must be NYS residents and meet established academic and economic guidelines. Priority is given to applicants from historically disadvantaged backgrounds. EOP students receive a grant (amount determined based on state funding) for each semester of eligibility. Funds are applied directly to the student bill.

Campus Scholarships and Awards

Campus Scholarships are primarily given out by the Admissions Office and are credited to the student's bill for each semester of eligibility. Learn more about scholarship opportunities at Alfred State.

Alternative Loan Financing

Another financing option for tools, computers and tuition is a private alternative loan. Students must be 18 years old to apply and usually require a creditworthy cosigner. Find out more about Alternative Loans.