Financial Aid Eligibility

A student’s eligibility for aid is based upon his or her cost of attendance (COA), expected family contribution (EFC), unmet need, enrollment status, eligibility requirements of each specific aid program, academic progress, and fund availability.

A student’s COA, EFC, unmet need, and enrollment status can be viewed on the ConnectOW Portal

In order to meet your need, we first award any scholarships, federal Pell grant, and the Tuition Assistant Program Grant for which you are eligible. Federal subsidized loans are then offered to eligible applicants with need remaining. Eligible students are then offered a Federal SEOG grant, and Federal Work-Study as long as funds remain. Federal unsubsidized loans are offered to students whose total aid remains below their COA.

Students who require additional assistance to cover their bill or educations expenses may wish to consider a Payment Plan, Parent PLUS Loan, or alternative educational loan.

Cost of Attendance (COA)

Cost of attendance (COA) is the sum of the educational expenses that we expect you to incur during your enrollment period.  These expenses include billed costs such as tuition, mandatory fees, optional fees, room rent and meals.  Also included are non-billed expenses such as books, off-campus rent, food, transportation costs and personal expenses like clothing and entertainment.  We use the enrollment status and housing plans that you reported on your FAFSA to determine your cost of attendance.

Enrollment Status

Your enrollment status includes your level (undergraduate, graduate, etc), class (freshmen, sophomore, etc), credit load (full-time, half-time, etc), residency (NYS, out-of-state etc), and housing plans (on-campus, off-campus, at home), among others. The financial aid award letter summarizes the enrollment status and housing plans that you reported on your FAFSA. Please inform us of any changes or errors in your enrollment status since these may affect your aid eligibility and change your financial aid.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the amount that your family is expected to pay toward your cost of attendance. EFC is calculated using the information that you reported on your FAFSA and a federal formula that is uniformly applied to all aid applicants. It is a measure or tool that the federal government uses to rate the financial status of you and your parents, and also compare your financial status to others. For example, a student with an EFC of $1,000 is generally considered to have more financial need than a student with an EFC of $10,000. Your EFC does not reflect the amount you and your parents will have to pay out of pocket. .

Unmet Need

Unmet need is the difference between the students COA and EFC (COA Less EFC Less Other Resources = Unmet Need). We use this formula to determine eligibility in various federal, state, institutional, and private aid programs.  Your award letter reflects the aid programs that you are eligible for based on this formula.

Standards for Continued Aid Eligibility

To remain eligible for Title IV federal aid, students must meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress guidelines outlined on the Satisfactory Academic Requirements tab under the Financial Aid section. 

To remain eligible for state aid, students must fulfill conditions of pursuit and progress outlined in the college catalog under the heading Academic Standards for Continued Financial Aid Eligibility. Students who fail to meet these criteria may request a one time state waiver. Students must document specific reasons for not meeting the conditions of pursuit and progress.

A conviction for any offense, during a period of enrollment for which the student was receiving Title IV, HEA program funds, under any federal or state law involving the possession or sale of illegal drugs will result in the loss of eligibility for any Title IV, HEA grant, loan, or work-study assistance (HEA Sec. 484(r)(1)); (20 U.S.C. 1091(r)(1)).