2014-15 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Dear USF Student and Families:

We understand the importance of financial planning as part of your attendance at USF. This letter is to reinforce the need for all students and their families to file the 2014-15 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on a timely basis. It is more important than ever for all college students to file early with the higher number of FAFSA applicants and state funding issues in Illinois.

Last year the deadline for the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) was March 1st, the earliest applicant cutoff ever imposed. It is expected that for 2014-15 MAP awards, the applicant deadline will be the same or even earlier given the state budget issues for Illinois. Below are important tips for our USF students and their families in filing the 2014-15 FAFSA early.

Families should use the following tips:

  • Gather 2013 tax and income documents (e.g. year to date pay stubs, W2s, 1099s, etc.) to determine the best tax and income estimates for the 2014-15 FAFSA.
  • File or calculate estimated totals for the 2013 Federal IRS tax information. DO NOT wait to file the 2014-15 FAFSA if the 2013 Federal IRS Taxes are not filed yet, but the best tax information will provide the most accurate college award information for the student.
  • File the 2014-15 FAFSA no later than February 15th to ensure a student’s consideration for the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP).
  • Many USF students complete the 2014-15 FAFSA with required parent information. Both the student and parent need to request their Federal PIN to complete the FAFSA with electronic signatures. FAFSA applications filed without signatures are not considered complete by ISAC for the priority filing date.
  • Once the 2013 Federal IRS Tax returns are filed, update the FAFSA to reflect accurate tax data filed, using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool or corrections to specific data items.

 

These steps are very important for any student that has ever received the Illinois MAP or any federal grant assistance. Eligible Illinois students may lose up to $4,720 in state gift assistance by missing the priority deadline of February 15th. Every dollar counts in helping students finance their educational expenses while attending USF.

Filing the 2014-15 FAFSA by February 15th will assist students and families to earlier award information and allows students to be considered for all available funding. Please contact Financial Aid Services at (815)740-3403, toll-free at (866) 890-8331, or by email at finaid@stfrancis.edu with any FAFSA application or financial aid questions.

Our office has available services for walk-ins and in person and phone appointments to help our students and families with the financial aid process. We look forward to servicing our USF students and their families to prepare for the next academic year.

With kind regards,

Mary V. Shaw
Director of Financial Aid Services
University of St. Francis