The Financial Aid Process Step by Step

The information below provides easy-to-follow steps to apply for financial aid. If you have any questions or concerns along the way, feel free to reach out to us anytime.

To qualify for federal financial aid, a student must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Be formally admitted by the Undergraduate Admissions Office or the School of Graduate Studies by our priority date for maximum consideration of gift aid.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by our priority date.
  • Be enrolled each semester at a minimum of half-time status (6 credits for undergraduates and 4.5 credits for graduate students).
  • Be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
  • Some aid sources are limited, so priority is given to incoming students who apply by March 15th and returning students who apply by February 15th.
  • Set up your FSA ID. This will be your signature for the FAFSA.

    • If you are a dependent your parent will also need to set up a FSA ID. 
  • Complete each year’s FAFSA by the SCSU's priority date.
    • The priority date for new students is February 15th.
    • The priority date for returning students is March 15th.
  • When filing the FAFSA:
    • "Link to IRS" to transfer your (and your parents’, if applicable) federal tax return information to the FAFSA. 
    • Enter the SCSU federal code = 001406.
    • Sign with your FSA ID.
      • If you are a dependent student, your parent must also sign the FAFSA using his/her own FSA ID.
  • Monitor your email for the Student Aid Report (SAR) that will be sent to you from Federal Student Aid.  The SAR will indicate errors or discrepancies that you must correct.  It will also let you know if your FAFSA has been selected for a process called verification.  One in three FAFSAs are randomly selected.  Students selected for verification must complete the process in order for the financial aid to be finalized and eligible for disbursement.
  • View your financial aid application status and award by logging into your SCSU student portal

To secure your spot as an undergraduate at SCSU be sure to accept your offer of admission by completing the steps outlined in your Applicant Status Page: http://apply.southernct.edu/apply/.  For questions about your application status, contact the Admissions office at 203-392-5644 or admissions@southernct.edu.

  • Log into https://login.southernct.edu

    • Your Banner Web username is automatically generated and is shown on your acceptance letter and financial aid award letter.

    • Your Banner Web initial password will be SCSU! followed by the two-digit month, day and year of your birthday (SCSU!mmddyy).

  • Go to Banner Web > Financial Aid > Award
  • Select Award for Aid Year
  • Select Aid Year and click Submit
  • Select Accept Award Offer to view and accept/decline your awards
  • Once you accept your aid, scroll down to view the requirements that must be completed in order for your financial aid to credit to your university account.

After the aid is accepted or declined, you cannot make adjustments online. The easiest way to make a change is to complete the Change of Award form.

All first-time student loan borrowers must complete Direct Loan Entrance Counseling (EC), a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and the Mandatory Financial Aid Authorization questions.

Step 1: Complete Direct Loan Entrance Counseling (EC)

  • Go to http://studentaid.gov
  • Log in using your FSA ID
  • Click “Complete Entrance Counseling” under the “Complete a Process” tab
    • Select whether you are completing it as an undergraduate or graduate student
    • Answer all the questions and submit

Step 2: Complete the Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN)

  • Go to http://studentaid.gov
  • Log in using your FSA ID
  • Select “Complete MPN” under the “Complete a Process” tab
    • Click the start button next to the MPN for your loan type
    • Complete all sections of the form, sign and submit

Step 3: Answer the Mandatory Financial Aid Authorization Questions

The University requires all individuals who receive Title IV financial aid (Federal Direct Loan, Federal Pell Grant, etc.) to answer two questions as to the authorized use of financial aid funds before the financial aid can be disbursed to the university.

  • Go to https://login.southernct.edu
  • Enter your Username and Password
  • Click Sign In
  • Select Banner Web
  • Select Financial Aid
  • Select Award
  • Select Award for Aid Year
  • Select Aid Year and click Submit
  • Select Resources/Additional Information
  • Answer the questions
  • Click Submit the Information (You will see the answers revert back to “None.”)
  • Go to the General Information tab to verify your answers

The only requirement for grants is to complete the Mandatory Financial Aid Authorization Questions.

Answer the Mandatory Financial Aid Authorization Questions:

  • Go to https://login.southernct.edu
  • Enter your Username and Password
  • Click Sign In
  • Select Banner Web
  • Select Financial Aid
  • Select Award
  • Select Award for Aid Year
  • Select Aid Year and click Submit
  • Select Resources/Additional Information
  • Answer the questions
  • Click Submit the Information (You will see the answers revert back to “None.”)
  • Go to the General Information tab to verify your answers
  1. Log into https://login.southernct.edu.
  2. Go to Banner Web > Financial Aid > Award > Eligibility > Student Requirements.
  3. Select Aid Year and Submit
  4. If you have outstanding requirements for financial aid, they will be listed. Be sure to complete/submit all requirements.

If you have a balance due after your financial aid has been processed, there are a number of options available to help you pay for college.

PLUS Loans

The Direct Parent PLUS Loan for Undergraduate Students is a loan available to the parents of dependent students.  

  • The borrower must be a parent (biological, adoptive, or in some cases, a stepparent).
  • The U.S. Department of Education is the lender.
  • Credit approval is necessary to receive the loan.  Please refer to How to Apply for a Direct Plus Loan for instructions.
  • If the parent is denied the PLUS loan for any reason, they have the option of re-applying with an endorser (also known as cosigner) or appealing the decision.  If the PLUS loan remains denied, the student will automatically qualify for an additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan of up to $5,000 per year (depending on grade level) in the student’s name.

 

The Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is available to graduate or professional students enrolled in a degree seeking program.

Payment Plans

The Student Accounts Office offers several payment plan options.  You can learn more about these plans by visiting Payment Plans or by contacting Student Accounts at StudentAccounts@southernct.edu or 203-392-6140.

Alternative Loans

These private bank loans can provide education financing beyond Federal Direct Loans. Carefully research these loans by comparing interest rates, repayment options and other benefits.  You can check with any credit union or bank that offers educational loans or compare a number of options by going to https://www.elmselect.com/link/query?schoolId=759.

Please note that if you plan to take out an alternative loan for winter or summer, you must file a separate loan application for each of those sessions.