Many MSU parents are actively involved in their student's lives, especially when it involves college finances. To help parents be informed about financial aid, we offer this information page that you may find useful.
Applying for Financial Aid
The first step to apply is to complete the FAFSA. There are several benefits of completing this form. It is required to determine if your student is eligible for any federal grants, loans, and work-study funds. It's free and easy to complete. Check out these myths and facts about applying for financial aid.
View this video for helpful FAFSA tips.
There are grants that are awarded based on the FAFSA form. Most grants are awards students do not need to pay back unless students do not complete the specifications of the grant program. The grants that students can be eligible for upon completion of the FAFSA are:
- Pell Grant
- SEOG Grant
- TEACH Grant
- NJ Tuition Aid Grant (TAG)*
*Because many questions were eliminated from the FAFSA, the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA), require students to fill out additional information in order to determine eligibility for state aid. Please go to www.njgrants.org to fill out the additional information.
The loans from the Federal Direct Loan program are only awarded based upon this form. Students can be eligible for the following federal loans by completing their FAFSA:
There are times when the grants and loans offered from the Federal and State governments are not enough. That is when a parent can apply for a Parent PLUS loan or apply for a Private Educational Loans. These loans allow a parent to borrow up to an institution’s Estimated Cost of Attendance.
Still unsure of what type of financial aid your student could be eligible for? Check out our Net Price Calculator to get an estimated financial aid package.
Discussing A Student’s Financial Package
We would be happy to speak to you, however your student must come to our office and sign a FERPA information release form. The reason for this is that the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prohibits educational institutions from disclosing information regarding the student to any entity other than that student without his or her written consent. The majority of financial aid correspondance is sent directly to the student's email address.
Students are able to access information regarding their financial aid and billing through NEST. This account will tell the students if they are missing any financial aid documents, financial aid awards, the ability to decline or change an award and satisfactory academic progress standing. Please talk with your student and make sure he or she is familiar with his or her NEST account.
Why Is There A Difference Between The Estimated Cost of Attendance And The Actual Tuition, Fees, Room And Board?
The Federal Government mandates that colleges and universities must tell students the total cost for a student to attend their school. That total cost is what is known as the Estimated Cost of Attendance. That total includes: tuition, school fees, room, board, travel expenses, estimated book expenses and miscellaneous expenses. If students indicate that they will not be living on campus, there is a lower cost since they will not be living or eating on campus. The reason the Estimated Cost of Attendance is higher than just the tuition, fees, room and board is so students (and parents) aren’t surprised by the “hidden” cost of attending college. Please know that some students' cost of attendance may be higher or lower than the amount given by an institution.
What Is Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) And Why Does It Affect My Student’s Aid?
Satisfactory Academic Progress is how institutions ensure that students are completing their classes and working successfully towards completion of a degree program. Federal and State agencies offering financial aid programs, require students to be making Satisfactory Academic Progress to receive funding. The University will review grades annually and determine if SAP has been achieved.