Frequently Asked Questions

Financial Assistance Office


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Questions

    General Information  

  1. Who should I talk to about any problems or other questions I have regarding my financial aid?
  2. How much does it cost to go to Fort Hays State University?
  3. How will the Financial Assistance Office contact me?
  4. Will the Office of Student Financial Assistance keep my records for me?  


  5. Applying for Financial Aid

  6. Who should apply?
  7. How do I apply and when?
  8. What happens after I apply?
  9. How long does the financial aid process take?
  10. Do I have to apply for financial aid and scholarships every year?
  11. Do I have to be enrolled in a certain number of hours to receive financial aid at Fort Hays State University?
  12. What should I do if my or my family's financial circumstances change after I apply for financial aid?
  13. What is verification?
  14. How do I order a tax transcript from the IRS?
  15. Can I transfer my Financial Aid from one school to another?
  16. How do I apply for summer financial aid?  


  17. FAFSA  

  18. What is the Federal School Code for Fort Hays State University?
  19. What does EFC mean?
  20. What does Cost of Attendance mean?
  21. I am genuinely independent. Why do I have to apply for financial aid using my parent's income and asset information?  


  22. Loans

  23. What types of loans are available?
  24. Are loans available for parents?
  25. Is there a time limit on how long I can receive loans?


  26. Scholarships & Grants

  27. How do I apply for FHSU scholarships?
  28. How do I find non-FHSU scholarship opportunities?
  29. What kinds of grants are available for students?
  30. How do I apply for grants?  


  31. Financial Aid Award Notifications

  32. How does the university decide how much money I will receive?
  33. If I am eligible for aid, when do I receive funds and where?
  34. What information regarding my financial aid account is available on TigerTracks and how do I access it?
  35. How can I access my award letter online?  


  36. Financial Aid Policies

  37. What happens if I drop any courses during the semester?
  38. What happens if I don't pass all of my courses?
  39. What is Financial Aid Warning or Suspension?  


  40. Verification

  41. Follow this link for questions regarding Verification.

If you have additional questions not answered on this page, please contact our officeor visit our Frequently Used Contacts page for helpful phone numbers.  

Answers

General Information


1. Who should I talk to about any problems or other questions I have regarding my financial aid?
The student workers in the front office of the Financial Assistance Office are highly trained and well qualified to answer the majority of your financial aid questions. If a situation arises where you want or need to speak with a full-time member of our staff, you may do so. A list of staff members is available on our "Contact Us" page.

2. How much does it cost to go to Fort Hays State University?
Specific costs to attend FHSU will vary between students depending on course load, living arrangements and several other factors. Visit our College and Tuition Costs page for tools and other website links that can help you estimate your college expenses. The Net Price Calculator is another helpful tool.

3. How will the Financial Assistance Office contact me?
Depending on what information you supplied on the FAFSA, our office may try to contact you in a number of ways. If you listed an e-mail address on your FAFSA, that will be our primary source of contact unless you notify our office otherwise. If an e-mail address is not listed on the FAFSA, we will mail the information to your permanent address. If other methods have not been successful and your file is still incomplete, our office may call your permanent phone number (if one is on file). Although the Financial Assistance Office will try to keep in touch with you, it is your responsibility and very important that you make sure all documents are submitted in a timely manner and that your file is both accurate and complete.

4. Will the Office of Student Financial Assistance office keep my records for me?
Official records are kept for each student receiving aid. However, many documents are not kept by the university. Keeping copies of loan promissory notes and a variety of other documents are the student's responsibility. Always keep good records and copies of materials you receive or submit.
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Applying for Financial Aid


5. Who should apply?
Students who feel they need financial assistance to attend college should apply for aid. To be eligible for federal aid, a student must 1) be a U.S. citizen or qualified non-citizen, 2) meet Satisfactory Academic Progressstandards, 3) be a degree-seeking student in an eligible program, 4) not be enrolled in elementary or secondary school, 5) be registered with selective service(males only), 6) not owe a refund on Title IV assistance, and 7) have an ability to benefit (typically this means having a high school diploma or GED). Additional eligibility requirements are listed here. The Financial Assistance Office will confirm all applicants’ eligibility requirements as aid is being processed.

6. How do I apply and when?
To complete an electronic Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), simply visit FAFSA on the Web. You should complete your FAFSA as soon after January 1 as possible but before the March 1 priority deadline. Applications are accepted after the priority deadline but limited types of aid are awarded to the eligible applicants who apply first.

  • January 1 - first day a student can submit a FAFSA application for the following academic year.
  • March 1 - priority deadline which FHSU has established. This date does not guarantee any awards. However, a student is more likely to receive his or her full award eligibility if a FAFSA is submitted before March 1.
  • April 1 - deadline for applicants to be eligible for the Kansas Comprehensive Grant.

7. What happens after I apply?
After you submit your FAFSA, the federal processor performs an initial eligibility check and calculates need levels based on the information provided. You will receive confirmation in the form of a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the federal processor and your information will be forwarded to the FHSU Financial Assistance Office electronically for additional eligibility checks. The FHSU Financial Assistance Office will contact you if further information is needed. Check your email or mailbox regularly for notifications.

8. How long does the financial aid process take?

Early Applicants (e.g. students who apply BEFORE March 1): Early applications are held in application date order until the eligibility and awarding process is implemented after March 1. Remember, applications will be processed and awarded in the order they are received, so applying early is your best bet.

Late Applicants (e.g. students who apply AFTER March 1): If you apply after the March 1 priority deadline, it generally takes 6-8 weeks from the time you submit your FAFSA until an award letter is ready.

Because every student's situation is different, processing time will vary. A few of the factors that can affect processing time are: if a student is selected for verification, how quickly all requested documents are submitted to our office and when the FAFSA was originally submitted. In order to ensure your aid is finalized and available to release by the first disbursement date, check your TigerTracks frequently. Although the Financial Assistance Office will try to keep in touch with you, it is your responsibility and very important that you make sure all documents are submitted in a timely manner and that your file is both accurate and complete.

9. Do I have to apply for financial aid and scholarships every year?
In order to be considered for financial aid and FHSU scholarships, you must reapply each year. Apply for financial aid as soon after January 1 as possible and before March 1. Submit your online application for FHSU scholarships by the November 15 priority deadline. The final deadline for scholarship applications is February 15.

10 . Do I have to be enrolled in a certain number of hours to receive financial aid at Fort Hays State University?
Different types of financial aid require that you be enrolled in a specific number of hours before being eligible to receive that award. Students must be enrolled in at least a half-time status to receive loans; however, the number of hours required for grants vary depending on which grant you are receiving. For more specifics on the enrollment level requirements for different awards, please contact our office. When awarded aid at FHSU, the awards and amounts are based upon your enrollment level. The FHSU enrollment levels are as follows:

  Full-Time 3/4 Time Half-Time Less than Half-Time
Undergraduate
(Fall and Spring)
12 or more hours 11 - 9 hours 8 - 6 hours 5 hours or less
Undergraduate
(Summer)
6 or more hours N/A 3 hours 2 hours or less
Graduate
(Fall and Spring)
9 or more hours N/A 5 hours not eligible for aid
Graduate
(Summer)
6 or more hours N/A 3 hours not eligible for aid


The above enrollment levels are based on all undergraduate hours or all graduate hours. If you plan to enroll in mixture of undergraduate and graduate hours, we recommend you contact our office about how this will affect your financial aid.

11. What should I do if my or my family's financial circumstances change after I apply for financial aid?
Unfortunately, family or personal circumstances sometimes take a turn for the worst during an award year. The federal government allows each school to develop a policy of Professional Judgment Review to review unforeseen circumstances that limit a student or family's ability to pay for college expenses. You can access the Professional Judgment Review Request form on our Forms page.

12. What is verification?
The Federal Government randomly selects FAFSAs for verification in order to verify information. It is then the school's responsibility to request copies of tax documents and other information to verify that the data reported on the FAFSA is accurate. Errors must be corrected and sent to the Federal Processor. Eligibility for financial aid can change due to verification. For more information, visit our Verification page.

13. How do I order a tax transcript from the IRS?
You may order a tax transcript from the IRS by calling 1-800-908-9946 or visiting www.irs.gov.

14. Can I transfer my Financial Aid from one school to another?
No; only the FAFSA information used to determine eligibility transfers to another school. This information must be sent from the Federal Processor using the "Add or Delete a School" feature. Adding FHSU as a school to your FAFSA will allow the Financial Assistance Office to download your information so your eligibility can be determined.

15. How do I apply for summer financial aid?
In order to be considered for financial aid for the summer semester, you must complete a separate summer financial aid application (found on our Forms page). Award eligibility will depend upon aid already received for the previous academic year. Summer 2014 Financial Aid Applications will be available March 11, 2014.
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FAFSA


16. What is the Federal School Code for Fort Hays State University?
In order to supply a student's FAFSA information to an institution, the Federal Processor uses a six digit number called a Title IV Federal Code. FHSU's school code is 001915.

17. What does EFC mean?
EFC is the Expected Family Contribution level determined by the U.S. Department of Education. In short, EFC reflects the family's ability to pay for college during the award year. It is based on the information provided by the student on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or confirmed through the verification process. EFC is the sum of the parental contribution (dependent students only) and student contribution. EFC does not reflect what the student or parents may have in "cash on hand," but the amount the family is expected to pay throughout the award year. If you would like to calculate an estimate of your EFC, use the EFC calculator or the FAFSA4caster.

18. What does Cost of Attendance mean?
Cost of Attendance (COA) includes the allowable expenses a student will incur by attending college. COA can vary widely between certain categories of students within an institution and even between institutions. Based on the initial information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), a student is placed in a particular COA bracket. For example, a dependent, undergraduate student, paying Kansas residency fees, is assigned a different COA than an independent, graduate student, paying non-resident fees. The following list outlines the standard COA items allowed for all students:

  • Tuition and Fees
  • Books and Supplies
  • Room and Board
  • Loan Origination Fees
  • Travel Expenses
  • Parking Fees
  • Personal/Misc. Expenses


Students with dependents (e.g. children) are allowed additional expenses for child care while the student attends classes. Expenses associated with attending college cannot be tailored to individual needs, but must reflect allowable expenses associated with a defined category of students. To figure an estimate of your COA at FHSU, go to our Forms page, and select the Cost of Attendance Worksheet and use the Net Price Calculator.

19. I am genuinely independent, why do I have to apply for financial aid using my parent's income and asset information?
The Higher Education Act clearly states which students will be considered independent of parental support for educational costs. Independent students must be able to document at least one of the following criteria:

  • 24 years old by Dec. 31 of the award year
  • Orphan or ward of the court
  • Veteran of the Armed Forces of the U.S.A.
  • Active US Armed Forces for purposes other than training
  • Enrolled in a graduate or professional program (beyond a bachelor's degree)
  • Married
  • Student has legal dependents other than spouse
  • Student is in legal guardianship as determined by a court in their state of legal residence
  • At any time on or after July 1, 2010, student's high school or school district homeless liaison determined that they were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless
  • At any time on or after July 1, 2010, the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determined that the student was an unaccompanied youth who was homeless
  • At any time on or after July 1, 2010, the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determined that the student was an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or was self-supporting and at risk of being homeless


The unwillingness of a parent to provide support or the choice of a student not to accept support are unacceptable reasons to be considered independent. If you do not qualify under these rules, the financial aid administrator or Financial Assistance Committee may consider exceptional circumstances that would allow you to be independent. To be considered, you must submit an Independent Status Appeal Form, found on our Forms page.
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Loans


20. What types of loans are available?
The most common types of loans available to students and/or parents of dependent students are Federal Direct Loans, Perkins Loans and Federal PLUS Loans. Visit our Loans page for more information.

21. Are loans available for parents?
Parent PLUS Loans are available to parents of dependent students who are enrolled at least half-time as degree-seeking undergraduate students at FHSU. More information is available on our Federal PLUS Loans page.

22. Is there a time limit on how long I can receive loans?
Beginning July 1, 2013, subsidized loan eligibility is limited to 150 percent of the length of the student's academic program. More information is available at Federal Student Aid.
[Back to Questions]

Scholarships & Grants


22. How do I apply for FHSU scholarships?
Apply online for FHSU Scholarships. The priority deadline is November 15. The final deadline is February 15.

23. How do I find non-FHSU scholarship opportunities?
Visit our Scholarship Search page for non-FHSU scholarship opportunities.

24. What kinds of grants are available for students?
The Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), Kansas Comprehensive Grant (KCG), and Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant are available for students. For more information, visit our Grants page.

25. How do I apply for grants?
In order to be considered for grants, you must complete the FAFSA. There may be additional requirements for specific grants. For more information, visit our Grants page.
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Financial Aid Award Notifications


26. How does the university decide how much money I will receive?
According to federal regulations, Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is subtracted from the allowable Cost of Attendance (COA) to determine need. If the EFC is low enough, a student may be eligible for a Pell Grant (undergraduates only) and/or other limited campus-based aid. It is the policy of the FHSU Student Financial Assistance Office to award students their maximum eligibility in all available funds categories.

27. If I am eligible for aid, when do I receive funds and where?
Aid cannot be disbursed until students submit all required documents and officially enroll in the number of hours for which their aid was processed. Generally, this takes place during Enrollment Finalization on TigerEnroll. The Student Fiscal Services office will apply all available funds to any outstanding university charges. Excess financial assistance will automatically be forwarded to the student based on the method selected on TigerEnroll during the Enrollment Finalization stage. The scheduled disbursement dates for financial aid can be viewed on the FHSU Academic Calendar.

28. What information regarding my financial aid account is available on TigerTracks and how do I access it?
Your financial aid information at FHSU (this includes your award letter, financial aid documents, your loan history and any personal messages we may have for you) can be viewed on your TigerTracks account. After successfully logging in to your Tiger Tracks account, you can access your personal financial aid information by following these simple steps:

  1. Select the "Online Services" tab.
  2. Select "Finances."
  3. Select "Financial Aid Eligibility."
  4. Click the "Launch" button at the prompt.
  5. Check the drop menu in the upper right corner of the screen to view the correct award year.


The financial aid home page provides an overview of your FHSU financial aid account. To access your other financial information, use the tabs located at the top of the page. Your official award letter is located in the "Your Awards" tab.

29. How can I access my award letter online?
After successfully logging on to your TigerTracks account, you can access your award letter by completing the following steps:

  1. Select the "Online Services" tab.
  2. Select "Finances."
  3. Select "Financial Aid Eligibility."
  4. Click the "Launch" button at the prompt.
  5. Select the “Your Awards” tab. (Check the drop menu in the upper right corner of the screen to view the correct award year.)

You may simply view the letter or you may print and submit it to the Financial Assistance Office.

If you need to complete Direct Loan Direct Loan Entrance Counseling or a Master Promissory Note, visit https://studentloans.gov/.
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Financial Aid Policies


30. What happens if I drop any courses during the semester?
If you drop any courses during the semester, you may fail to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards, and therefore, run the risk of being placed on Financial Aid Warning or Suspension for the following semester. More information is available on our Satisfactory Academic Progress page.

31. What happens if I don't pass all of my courses?
If you don’t pass all of your courses, you may fail to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards, and therefore, run the risk of being placed on Financial Aid Warning or Suspension for the following semester. More information is available on our Satisfactory Academic Progress page.

32. What is Financial Aid Warning or Suspension?
Students who fail to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards may be placed on Financial Aid Warning or Suspension. More information is available on our Satisfactory Academic Progress page.
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