FEDERAL FINANCIAL AID (FAFSA)
Financial aid is any grant, loan or scholarship to assist a student in meeting their educational expenses. Federal and state agencies and/or the School itself usually provide funding. Most financial aid is based on the student’s financial need as determined by the federal government’s system of need analysis. Financial need is based on federal regulations and information provided by the student and/or student’s family on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The amounts and types of financial aid that a student can receive are determined by federal, state and institutional guidelines. Students who wish to be considered for financial assistance offered by/through the College must complete and submit the FAFSA.
Federal Pell Grant
A Federal Pell Grant, is a federal grant awarded based on financial need and unlike a loan, does not have to be repaid. Federal Pell Grants usually are awarded only to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or a professional degree. (In some cases, however, a student enrolled in a postbaccalaureate teacher certification program might receive a Federal Pell Grant.) You are not eligible to receive a Federal Pell Grant if you are incarcerated in a federal or state penal institution or are subject to an involuntary civil commitment upon completion of a period of incarceration for a forcible or nonforcible sexual offense. The FAFSA is available online at www.FAFSA.ed.gov
Subsidized and unsubsidized loans are federal student loans for eligible students to help cover the cost of higher education at a four-year college or university, community college, or trade, career, or technical school. The U.S. Department of Education offers eligible students at participating schools Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct Unsubsidized Loans. AMA participates in the Federal Direct Loan Program (FDLP) allowing students and their parents to borrow money to help with the student educational costs.
Difference between Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct Unsubsidized Loans
Direct Subsidized Loans have slightly better terms to help out students with financial need.
Direct Subsidized Loans:
- Direct Subsidized Loans are available to undergraduate students with financial need.
- Your school determines the amount you can borrow, and the amount may not exceed your financial need.
- The U.S. Department of Education pays the interest on a Direct Subsidized Loan
- while you’re in school at least half-time,
- for the first six months after you leave school (referred to as a grace period*), and
- during a period of deferment (a postponement of loan payments).
Direct Unsubsidized Loans:
- Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available to undergraduate and graduate students; there is no requirement to demonstrate financial need.
- Your school determines the amount you can borrow based on your cost of attendance and other financial aid you receive.
- You are responsible for paying the interest on a Direct Unsubsidized Loan during all periods.
- If you choose not to pay the interest while you are in school and during grace periods and deferment or forbearance periods, your interest will accrue (accumulate) and be capitalized (that is, your interest will be added to the principal amount of your loan).
Am I eligible for a Direct Subsidized Loan or a Direct Unsubsidized Loan?
To receive either type of loan, you must be enrolled at least half-time at a school that participates in the Direct Loan Program. Generally, you must also be enrolled in a program that leads to a degree or certificate awarded by the school. Direct Subsidized Loans are available only to undergraduate students who have financial need. Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available to both undergraduates and graduate or professional degree students. You are not required to show financial need to receive a Direct Unsubsidized Loan.
For more information, please contact AMA’s Financial Aid Department.
ON OUR SITE
- Learn the Basics – Start here to learn what you need to know about available programs, costs, and rights and responsibilities.
- Apply for Aid – Know the basics? Then you are ready to get started on your applications. Here, you’ll learn about the process of applying for financial aid, including but not limited to grants, work programs, and loans – while meeting deadlines.
- Receive Funds – When your aid is ready, how will you receive it? In this section, you’ll learn how to get the money you need to pay for your education.
- News and Tools – Want to know what a repayment loan will look like or what college life will cost? Special calculators can help you crunch the numbers. Also, get news updates and see student guides that can help you get a handle on the future.
- Verification Forms – Verification is a review process in which the Financial Aid Department determines the accuracy of various data elements reported by the student/parent on the student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The following link provides these forms for verification.