Financial Aid

Financial aid is available to eligible graduate students enrolled in day, evening, accelerated, or online programs. Students must be accepted for admission and be attending at least half-time for most forms of financial aid. For timely financial aid information, please visit the Office of Financial Assistance homepage at www.nichols.edu. (This may require a Nichols login.)

The Financial Aid Application Process The first step in determining eligibility for financial aid is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, better known as the FAFSA. Students may apply online at www.fafsa.gov. Before completing the FAFSA online, students must obtain a federal pin number. Begin by visiting the federal pin website at www.pin.ed.gov. Parents of dependent students must also obtain a pin number. After a student sends the FAFSA, the college will receive an electronic aid file called an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR). It takes approximately one to three weeks after FAFSA submission for the college to receive the ISIR. The college will use the ISIR to prepare students’ financial aid awards.

The Financial Aid Award Before an award can be made, the Office of Financial Assistance must receive the student’s FAFSA data. The Office of Financial Assistance staff will verify the student’s enrollment and matriculation status. Awards are based upon the number of credits a student registers for during each semester. Once the student’s enrollment status is determined, the staff will generate an award letter, which lists the types and amounts of financial aid the student can expect to receive for the year. Students should register for all classes prior to the semester start. Students must reapply for financial aid annually.

Application Deadlines The Office of Financial Assistance will accept applications until such time it is deemed too late to process and disburse the aid to the student for the period of enrollment. Late applicants are responsible for any and all tuition and fees, including late payment fees, if student financial aid is incomplete at the time of registration. Late applicants may receive substantially fewer funds than on-time applicants.

Other Requirements Students receiving outside assistance must notify the college. At no time may total assistance, including loans and scholarships made from outside agencies, exceed the student’s cost of attendance. The college cannot guarantee funding to any student, regardless of eligibility. Financial aid at Nichols College is awarded on the assumption that a student will successfully complete all credits attempted. In the event of withdrawal, dismissal, or failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress, aid may be withdrawn or adjusted according to applicable federal, state, and college policies. The college does not discriminate in the awarding of financial aid on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, handicap, veteran status, nationality, or ethnic origin.

State Funded Programs

State Scholarship Programs Many states provide scholarships to eligible residents and some states provide scholarships to students attending out-of-state schools. Requests for specific information should be directed to the state scholarship organization in the student’s home state. For Massachusetts residents, please visit www.osfa.mass.edu for more information on Massachusetts state scholarship and grant programs. Massachusetts offers state grants to eligible full- and parttime students. Application for a state scholarship is made by completing the FAFSA by established deadlines. State priority deadlines are listed on the FAFSA. Students who meet the college’s March 1 deadline will have also met all state deadlines.

Federally Funded Programs

For an up-to-date review of all federal aid programs, please visit www.studentaid.gov. Students must complete the FAFSA form in order to qualify for any federal aid.

Federal Pell Grants The Federal Pell Grant Program is available to students who demonstrate significant financial need. The amount of the grant varies from year to year. Application to the Pell Grant Program is made by completing the FAFSA form.

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant Program (FSEOG) The FSEOG Program is a federal grant program awarded to students who demonstrate significant financial need and who are enrolled at least half-time. Priority consideration is given to Pell Grant recipients. Application for the FSEOG is made by completing the FAFSA.

Federal Stafford Loan Program A federally sponsored loan program, the Stafford Loan Program is administered through the college and the Department of Education. Subsidized Federal Stafford Loans are awarded based on demonstrated financial need. Applicants are required to submit a FAFSA in order to determine eligibility. Loan amounts vary depending on eligibility and the year in school. Those who do not demonstrate financial need may still qualify for an unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan, for which the student is responsible for interest. Repayment of either subsidized or unsubsidized loans begins six months after leaving school, whether due to graduation or withdrawal. The government limits Stafford Loan borrowing in the first two years of enrollment, but then increases that limit during the third and fourth years. The loan limits are as follows:

Year in School, Unsubsidized Stafford Subsidized or unsubsidized Stafford Additional
*See Below

Graduate Students

$0

$20,500

There are two types of Federal Stafford Loans: subsidized and unsubsidized. The government pays the interest on subsidized loans while the eligible student remains in school at least halftime. The student is responsible for paying the interest on an unsubsidized loan while in school, from the first disbursement date to the end of repayment. The unsubsidized interest may be deferred by the student while in school.

Eligible students will sign a promissory note prior to loan disbursement.

Federal Parent or Graduate PLUS Loan PLUS Loans are federally sponsored loans for creditworthy parents of dependent undergraduate students or graduate students. The loan is disbursed in two equal disbursements, usually in the fall and spring. Repayment begins immediately after the scheduled second disbursement of the loan. The student must complete a FAFSA for consideration. Parents or graduate students may borrow up to the cost of attendance, less other aid.

This publication provides information concerning the programs at Nichols College and does not constitute a contract with the student.

The policies and procedures contained in the 2015-2016 Nichols College Catalog will remain in effect until June 30, 2016. Nichols College reserves the right to change at any time the rules governing admission, tuition, fees, courses, the granting of degrees, or any other regulations affecting the campus community. Such changes are to take effect whenever college officials deem necessary.