Pell Grant FAQs

Pell Grant Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is a Pell grant?

    The Federal Pell Grant program is a federal aid program that provides financial assistance to students otherwise unable to afford an undergraduate education. The government awards grants according to each student's financial need as determined by federal methodology, a congressionally established need analysis formula. Need for other aid is based upon and determined around the student's eligibility for a Federal Pell Grant.
  2.  If I know I will not qualify for assistance, should I still fill out my FAFSA?

    Many scholarships are not based on need, but rather on academic or other achievement. Some loans are also independent of financial need. All students should review the following loans for eligibility and terms: Subsidized Stafford Student Loan and Unsubsidized Stafford Student Loan.

  3. How long does it take for FAFSA to send my information to the school?

    After you submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the Federal Department of Education will send you a Student Aid Report (SAR).

    • If the Dept. of Ed. has a valid e-mail address on file for you, they will send you an e-mail, within 3 to 5 days, with instructions on how to access an online copy of your SAR.

    If the e-mailed link for your SAR does not work, try this:

    • Copy the full URL link from the e-mail they sent you,
    • Paste it into the address or location line of your Web browser,
    • Hit Enter.

    TIP: Make sure you copy and paste the entire link; this may display as multiple lines in your e-mail.

    • If the Dept. of Ed. does not have a valid e-mail address on file, your SAR will be mailed to you via postal mail within 7 to 10 days.
    • The colleges that you listed on your FAFSA will have access to your information electronically one day after it is processed. However, depending on their own process and workload, they might not retrieve your information immediately.
    • If your application is complete, an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) will display on your SAR. If your application is incomplete, your SAR will not include an EFC, but it will display text that specifies any issues that need to be resolved.
    • If your FAFSA is incomplete:
      • Make corrections to your FAFSA by clicking Login on the home page to log in to FAFSA on the Web. Click Make FAFSA Corrections, enter your FSA ID, and add or correct the information that caused your FAFSA to be incomplete. Submit your corrections.
      • Add or correct information on your paper SAR, sign it, and mail it to the address provided.
    • If your FAFSA is complete:
      • The EFC that displays on your SAR is a calculation based on the information that you reported on your FAFSA.
      • Your college uses the EFC to determine the amount of federal grants, loans, and work-study for which you may be eligible.
      • Your college will send you a financial aid award letter that details the financial aid you are eligible to receive.

    Your EFC is not the amount of money your family will have to pay for college nor is it the amount of federal student aid you will receive. It is a number used by your school to calculate the amount of federal student aid you are eligible to receive.

    ** Your school, your state, or Federal Student Aid may ask you to verify the accuracy of the information you provide on the FAFSA .

  4. If I am currently using tuition assistance or have scholarships, am I still eligible for Pell grants?

    Service members should always complete and submit a FAFSA application in addition to any military aid program applications to ensure that they are offered the maximum amount of student aid for which they may be eligible.

  5. What are the penalties if a fail a class, or withdraw from a class?

    NWF State College's Financial Aid Standards of Academic Progress

  6. Where can I go to check if the school has all of my paperwork, or if I need to submit anymore paperwork?

    Check your RaiderNet to follow up on the status of your FAFSA application.

    Once your FAFSA application has been received, continue to check RaiderNet for "Red Flag Alerts".  The FAFSA tells you if you are eligible financially, however, you must also meet the Standards of Academic Progress requirements.

  7. Why is the amount of my Pell Grant different from the amount listed on my award letter?

    The federal government makes final Pell Grant awards based on your actual enrollment status and is contingent upon verification of any discrepancies in data you provide on your financial aid application. In addition, the amount on your award letter is made assuming that you will enroll full-time. In general, if you enroll half- time, you receive half of the award; if you enroll three-quarter-time, you receive three quarters of the award; if you enroll full-time, you receive the full award.

    8. I am going to be married during the college year for which I am applying for aid. Can I fill out my FAFSA as "married"?

    No. You must indicate your marital status as of the date you are completing the FAFSA. 

    9. When and how will I get my aid check?

    NWF State College Florida State College disburses financial aid money (scholarships, grants, and loans) to students after the funds have been received by the college and the college has ascertained that the student is registered for the required number of credits to receive aid. NWF State College Florida State College uses a system that applies students' aid awards towards their college financial obligations (e.g., fees, and tuition) and then issues the balance to the student. In general, NWF State College Florida State College Financial Aid refunds are delivered to students in the form of a check.