Pell Grants - Application Process

How do I apply for financial aid?

Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or a Renewal FAFSA on the Web at as soon as possible AFTER January 1.  For Northwest Florida State College to receive your results, please use 001510 as the school code.

What if I'm a transfer student?

If you previously attended any other postsecondary institution during the 2008/09 academic year, notify the Financial Aid Office. Northwest Florida State College will request award information from the USDOE, and this must be received by Northwest Florida State College before the college can determine your eligibility for aid. If you are eligible to receive aid at another institution for the academic year in question, please be aware that the only transferable program is the Federal Pell Grant. You must apply for a Federal Stafford Loan at Northwest Florida State College.

  • To apply for financial aid at Northwest Florida State College, complete the application procedures with one exception. If a need analysis for the year in question has already been filed, the student need only request that the processor forward the information to Northwest Florida State College Code 001510 by utilizing Part II of your SAR. This will also send your Federal Pell Grant to Northwest Florida State College.

When should I apply?

Early. Late applicants are considered for whatever aid remains when their application file is complete.

Why should I apply by the Deadline?

Students who have a complete file by the deadline are more likely to receive funds by the time college starts in the fall. Students who apply are also more likely to receive funds from all programs for which they are eligible. After the funding in many programs, especially campus-based programs such as Federal Work-Study, and SEOG may be exhausted. Applying early is always to the student's advantage.

Do I need to reapply each year?

Yes. Each year you must file either the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the Renewal FAFSA if you receive one from the federal processor, for the appropriate academic year and submit the documents that are requested. You must also maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to qualify for aid each year.

If my parents are divorced or separated, whose financial data should be used when I am completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)?

If your natural parents are separated or divorced, use the natural parent with whom you lived the most in the past 12 months. If you lived with neither parent, or lived with each parent an equal number of days, use the parent that provided the most financial support to you over the past 12 months. If that parent has remarried, you must also include the stepparent's financial information on the application, and parent and stepparent should report themselves as married on the FAFSA.

Example: You have been living with your mother and stepfather for the past 12 months. You would use your mother's income and stepfather's income, and you would report on the FAFSA as the number in family: yourself, your mother, your stepfather, and any other children that they support. You also would report your mother's marital status as married.

My parents do not claim me on their tax return and do not give me any money. Can I file as "Independent"?

The Higher Education Act of 1992 established requirements for establishing independence. If you answer "YES" to any of the following questions, you are considered "Self - Supporting" for financial aid purposes.

Requirements for the 2009-2010 academic year:

  • Were you born before January 1, 1986?
  • Will you be working on a master's or doctorate program (such as MA, MBA, MD, JD, OR Ph.D., etc.) during the college year 2009-2010?
  • Are you married?
  • Do you have children who receive more than half of their support from you?
  • Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) that live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2010?
  • Are you an orphan or ward of the court, or were you a ward of the court until age 18?
  • Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
  • Are you serving on active duty for the U.S. Armed Forces?

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.

I originally reported $2,000 in savings on my FAFSA. I have since purchased a car with the savings. Can I correct this?

No. You must report asset information as of the date you sign the original FAFSA.

I deposit my financial aid in my savings account and withdraw it as I need it. Do I need to include the financial aid when I report my "Cash, Savings, Checking" on my FAFSA?

No. Do not include any funds from financial aid grant, loan, work or scholarship programs that you may have in your savings and/or checking accounts.