How to Apply
How To Apply for Financial Assistance at Lamar University
Financial aid is not disbursed until you have been admitted into a degree-seeking program and all required documents have been received by the Lamar University Financial Aid Office. Would you like to know where you are in the Financial Aid process?
Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by applying online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. You will have to complete the FAFSA every year using the most recent income tax information. You need to complete a new FAFSA the first year and a renewal FAFSA in subsequent years.
You and one of your parents should create a FSA User ID, which consist of a username and password. The FSA User ID is used to authenticate the identity of students, parents, and borrowers, to access their federal student aid information.
Make sure that Lamar University receives the information by listing Lamar University when you complete the FAFSA. Our school code is 003581. You will receive an acknowledgement from the U.S. Dept of Education upon receipt.
Once your electronic FAFSA information has been received by Lamar University and you have been fully admitted, the Financial Aid Office will request additional documentation before you are awarded. You can log into your online student account and view what documents the Financial Aid Office is requesting. Directions for logging into your online account can be found here. Students and/or parents if applicable, who file an extension with the IRS will need to wait until they can either use the IRS DRT tool or submit a tax transcript before awarding can occur.
Many times we will request IRS transcripts of your and your parents’ tax returns from the tax year requested on the FAFSA, a verification worksheet (available on LU’s Financial Aid website), and documentation of additional untaxed items such as child support paid, IRA/Keogh deductions, workers compensation, and interest on tax-free bonds.
Once we have received all of the requested paperwork, reviewed it, and verified it, you will be awarded the grants and loans for which you are eligible.
Verification is intended to improve the accuracy of the information submitted on the FAFSA. Please be aware that our office cannot process financial aid, requests for professional judgment, or disburse federal student aid until the verification process is complete.
FOR 2015-16 -- We must receive your documents and, if corrections required, have received your corrected Student Aid Report no later than 120 days after the last day of enrollment or September 29, 2016, whichever is earlier.
FOR 2016-17 -- We must receive your documents and, if corrections required, have received your corrected Student Aid Report no later than 120 days after the last day of enrollment or September 29, 2017, whichever is earlier.
Financial aid administrators have the right to ask for any documentation they feel is necessary to complete verification. If the family refuses to supply this documentation, the college is prohibited from disbursing federal student aid to the student. DOWNLOAD OUR VERIFICATION POLICY
During this process we will also re-evaluate your academic progress. If you are not meeting Lamar University’s Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards, then your aid will be put on hold. You will have an opportunity to appeal, if you are not meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards, by submitting an appeal letter to the Financial Aid Office. Make sure that all necessary documentation is submitted and you fully explain why academic standards were not met.
Once financial aid has been awarded you will have the option to accept loans online and follow the additional instructions for student loans to ensure the funds arrive as soon as possible. All grant funds are automatically accepted for students. Students must completely follow all instructions to receive all of their financial aid. Once students accept their loans, students will need to complete an additional step by completing entrance counseling and a master promissory note at studentloans.gov.
Parents wishing to request a PLUS loan need to complete the PLUS application at studentloans.gov by logging in with parent information. Once we receive a request for the PLUS loan and all required documentation is complete, the parent will have to complete a Plus Loan Worksheet telling us whether the refund, if any as a result of the PLUS loan, should be given to the parent or the student. View instructions for completing the Parent PLUS Loan here.
Graduate students requesting a Graduate PLUS loan must apply at studentloans.gov .
Provided you have registered during the priority registration time frame, registered for the number of hours stated on your FASFA, and all your processing is complete, money will be disbursed to your account up to three days before classes begin. Any residual money (refund) will be disbursed to you through the Cardinal One Card. Note: Prior to Lamar University releasing your funds, we will check the number of class hours in which you are enrolled, satisfactory academic progress, default status, and if you have completed the entrance counseling requirement.
Financial Aid Adjusted Hours
Lamar University Office of Student Financial Assistance is responsible for reviewing hours of enrollment for students receiving financial aid. On the census date for a standard fall and spring semester (this date varies if you are enrolled in various Parts of Term), your financial assistance for the semester will be based on credit hours enrolled as of that day.
If you drop credit hours prior to the census date, you may be required to repay some or all of the aid disbursed to you.
If you add credit hours prior to the census date, your financial aid package may be adjusted to reflect your increased level of enrollment.
If you drop credit hours after the census date, your financial aid package will not be adjusted unless you withdraw from all classes. If you drop classes, you may not have sufficient hours to meet renewal requirements for some aid programs. However, adding classes after the census date may allow for further loan eligibility. It is the student’s responsibility to contact the Office of Student Financial Assistance to request further aid.
Cost of Attendance (COA) budgets will also be reviewed and adjusted based on the student’s enrollment on the census day each fall and spring semester.
For the summer semester, the 4th class day for each part of term is when hours and budgets will be adjusted . This does not pertain to students who are enrolled in the Academic Partnership Program.
You must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and any dropped courses will affect a student’s SAP. If you withdraw on or before completing 60% of the semester will have Return to Title IV (R2T4).
Note: If you are in the On-line Academic Partnership program and concerned about dropping a class, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with specific questions regarding enrollment.
Lamar University is committed to helping students attain their educational goals and expand their opportunities. Financial aid is monetary assistance to help with costs associated with attendance at Lamar University. The three main types of financial aid are Grants/Scholarships, Work-Study, and Educational Loans.
THINGS TO REMEMBER
- The priority date for submitting all documents required for financial aid awards is March 31.
- Satisfactory Academic Progress must be maintained in order to continue to receive financial aid.
- Lamar University will not automatically award or process any loans for individuals who have defaulted on their student loans. Students submitting documentation that the defaulted loan has been repaid or satisfactory repayment arrangements have been made, may be considered for grant and work study. The letter (from the respective guaranty agency) must also state that the student is now eligible for further financial aid.
Beginning July 1, 2011, students may only receive federal financial aid funding for one repetition of a previously passed course.
Examples of repeated coursework that may, or may not, count for financial aid eligibility:
- Allowable: Repeated coursework may be included if the student received an unsatisfactory or failing grade. There is no limit on the number of attempts allowable if the student does not receive a passing grade. NOTE: If the student passed the course and then subsequently failed it, they cannot receive aid for the course the third time.
- Allowable: Student is enrolled in 15 credit hours which includes 3 credits repeating a previously passed course. Because the student is enrolled in a minimum of 12 credits which are not repeats, the student's financial aid eligibility is not impacted by the repeat.
- Not permissible: Student receives a D in a course and decides to repeat the course to improve his/her GPA. The student may repeat this passed course one time, but if the student wants to repeat it a second time, the second repeat would not count for financial aid eligibility.
In this example, the student is enrolled in 12 credits, including the 3 credit second repeat, so only 9 credits will count for financial aid eligibility.
All repeated courses do affect financial aid satisfactory academic progress calculations. A repeated course along with the original attempt must be counted as attempted credits.
- Students who withdraw before 60% of the semester is over will owe Lamar University and/or the U.S. Department of Education a percentage of the financial aid funds that have been applied to their student account. If a student stops attending classes (and does not properly follow Lamar University’s withdrawal procedure) and ends the semester with grades of Qs or Fs, may owe a percentage of the financial aid funds that were applied to the account back to Lamar University and/or the U.S. Department of Education. If the calculation of the withdrawal results in a credit on the student account, the funds to be returned to the Direct Loan lender. If the student has not incurred any Direct Loan debt, any residual credit will be refunded to the student through the standard institutional refund procedures using the Cardinal One Option they selected. An example of the worksheet used in the calculation is in the Financial Aid Handbook.