Common Misconceptions

FALLACY No.1: I can attend a public university much cheaper than I can attend a private university.

FACT: While this can be true in some cases, financial assistance programs help equalize the financial burden on the family. The purpose of financial assistance programs is to provide ACCESS AND CHOICE to students from all economic backgrounds. In many cases, the financial assistance you will receive from USF will make the cost of attending our university very similar to attending a public four-year university. In many cases, all you will be offered at a public four-year university will be student loans.

FALLACY No.2: Our neighbors said they didn’t qualify for financial assistance, so we probably won’t qualify either. Both our families own a $140,000 home and make over $50,000 per year.

FACT: Family situations are much different than what meets the eye. Financial need is determined on a case-by-case basis. If you do not apply and submit a FAFSA, you cannot be evaluated for need-based financial assistance. At USF, 95 percent of all entering freshman and transfer students receive some type of need-based gift assistance to help them meet their cost of attendance.

FALLACY No.3: Even after financial assistance is taken into consideration, we can’t come up with the money to attend USF.

FACT: In addition to the financial assistance a student can receive, there is always the option of a Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). This loan is currently available through the Federal Direct Loan Program at an interest rate of 8.26 percent. If you’re not interested in a loan, USF has a “10 Pay-Plan” available at a cost of $90 per semester through the Business Office to help spread out the cost for the entire academic year.

FALLACY No.4: I’ve been told that if I bring in outside scholarships, the university will reduce the other grants and scholarships that I’m receiving.

FACT: At USF, we encourage students to search for outside scholarships to help offset their costs. USF policy does not subtract outside gift assistance from aid the student has already received from the university. There are cases where your loans or work-study may have to be adjusted, but that is a matter of federal law

FALLACY No.5: I’ve been told that if I’m part-time I won’t qualify for any financial assistance at USF.

FACT: Many students qualify for financial assistance while attending on a part-time basis. Specifically, students are often eligible for Pell Grant and Illinois Monetary Award Program funds, and students are always eligible to receive a loan under one of the William D. Ford Direct Loan programs

FALLACY No.6: I didn’t receive financial assistance while I attended a community college or state university. Therefore, I won’t qualify for financial aid at the University of St. Francis.

FACT: At the University of St. Francis, many of our transfer students receive financial assistance and we work with each of them to make a private school education more affordable. We offer many special financial aid and scholarship opportunities designed to meet the needs of students transferring to USF.