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The first step in applying for Financial Aid is completing the FAFSA. You may qualify for federal and state grants as well as student loans. The FAFSA must be done even if you plan on only applying for a student loan. 
 
Before beginning the FAFSA, you will need to apply for a pin #. www.pin.ed.gov
 If you are considered dependent your parent will need to apply for one as well.
 
Collect your information:
 
Your Social Security #
Your and your parent's Federal Student Aid PIN if you have one (see directions below)
Your and your parents' Financial Records including your most recently filed Federal Tax forms, W-2 forms, and any records of untaxed income
An e-mail address if you have one
Your driver's license # if you have one
Your Alien Registration #, if you're not a U.S. citizen
 
Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) after January 1.  To be eligible for an additional State of Maine grant, the FAFSA must be received by the Department of Education before May 1.
 
  1. The FAFSA will ask for our school code.  NMCC's is 005760.  If it isn't added, our school will not receive your information. 

  2. After you have completed the FAFSA we will receive your information electronically.  If completed online, we should receive it within a few days.

  3. Complete the NMCC Confidential Financial Aid Application as this is a required document for our office purposes.  This is available in our office or you may get one here: Financial Aid Forms
     
  4. Submit any requested documents as soon as possible so we can complete your financial aid. 

  5. Apply for a program of study if you have not already done so.  You can complete the FAFSA prior to being accepted however, you will need to be accepted into a program to be eligible for aid.


You must be accepted into a program of study

If you are only taking classes as a non-matriculated student, you are not eligible for federal student aid. You need to apply and be accepted into a program of study in order to qualify for federal aid. This does not mean you cannot apply for financial aid prior to applying for school or being accepted into a program.

• You must be a U.S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen

If you are not a U.S. citizen, to find out if you would qualify as an eligible non-citizen :
                                 http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/fotw0708/help/fotw15a.htm
 

• You must not be in default on a federal student loan

A student who has not made their student loan payments and have gone into default status cannot receive any type of federal student aid. 

• You may not be able to receive federal student aid if you have been convicted of possessing or selling illegal drugs, if the drug offense occurred while you were receiving federal student aid

If you have been convicted in the past, this does not mean you are automatically ineligible for federal aid. For more information: 
                                           http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/before013.htm

• You must not owe a repayment on a federal grant

• If you are male, you must have registered for selective service

A male must have registered for selective service and must have done it before the age of 26.  If you have not registered with the selective service you may do so at: 
       http://www.sss.gov/regist.htm

 
For the purpose of financial aid, a student may be considered independent only if certain conditions apply. If you are considered dependent, you will need your parents' information for the FAFSA. To find out if you are considered dependent, answer the following questions:
 
  1. Were you born before January 1, 1987
  2. Do you have a bachelors degree?
  3. As of today are you married?
  4. When you were age 13 or older, were both of your parents deceased, were you in foster care, or were you a dependent/ward of the court?
  5. Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
  6. Do you have children whose primary residence is in your household?
If you answered "No" to all of the above questions, you will be considered dependent for financial aid purposes.
 
What if I don't live with my parents?  Do I still need to use their financial information on the FAFSA? 
 
Yes. The FAFSA has strict regulations on whether or not a student can be considered independent or dependent. There are many students in the world with so many family situations that it is imperative that there be a standard.


What if your parents are separated, divorced or remarried — or you don’t live with them?

Whose financial information do you provide on your FAFSA?

If your parent is widowed or single, answer the questions about that parent.

If your widowed parent has remarried as of the day you complete the FAFSA, answer the questions about that parent and the person your parent married (your stepparent).

Divorced or separated parents? Give answers for the parent you lived with more during the past 12 months. (If you didn’t live with one parent more than the other, then answer for the parent who provided more support during the past 12 months.)

If you don’t know where your parents are or if you left home due to an abusive situation, let your high school counselor or college’s financial aid office know.

For the FAFSA, the following people are not your parents unless they’ve adopted you: grandparents, foster parents, legal guardians or older brothers or sisters.

 
I probably don't qualify for aid. Should I apply for aid anyway? 

Yes. Many families mistakenly think they don't qualify for aid and prevent themselves from receiving financial aid by failing to apply for it. In addition, there are a few sources of aid such as unsubsidized Stafford and PLUS loans that are available regardless of need. In order to qualify for student loans, the FAFSA will need to be completed. The FAFSA form is free. There is no good excuse for not applying.
 
How do I apply for aid?
 
Complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.ed.gov and provide the required pin number as your signature(s). You may apply for a pin number at the pin site, www.pin.ed.gov. Be sure if you are including your parent’s information on the FAFSA, they apply for a pin number as well.
 
 
Is electronic filing really faster?
 
Electronic filing is faster than filing a paper form. The process may be as many as 14 days faster if you electronically sign your application as soon as you complete it. Submitting your Free Application for Federal Student Aid using FAFSA on the Web eliminates delays that can occur from mailing. Also, FAFSA on the Web edits your application before you transmit; ensuring that the data you transmit to the U.S. Department of Education is ready to be processed.
 
Do I have to reapply for financial aid every year?

Yes. If your financial circumstances change, you may get more or less aid. After your first year you will complete a "Renewal Application" which contains preprinted information from the previous year’s FAFSA. Note that your eligibility for financial aid may change significantly, especially if you have a different number of family members in college. Renewal of your financial aid package also depends on your making satisfactory academic progress toward a degree, such as earning a minimum number of credits and achieving a minimum GPA.

 
I sent in my FAFSA over four weeks ago, but haven't heard anything. What should I do? 
 
Contact customer service either on the web, through e-mail, or by calling. You may e-mail fafsaweb(at)pearson(dot)com. The phone number to call the Federal Student Aid Information Center is 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243). For the hearing impaired, you may contact 1-800-730-8913. If preferred, live help is also available online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Under “Contact Us” at the top of the page, choose “Live Help.”
 
 
My parents are separated or divorced. Which parent is responsible for filling out the FAFSA?
 
The parent with whom the child lived the most during the past 12 months. Note however, that any child support and/or alimony received from the non-custodial parent must be included on the FAFSA.
 
 
My parents are divorced, and the parent I'm living with has remarried. Does my stepparent have to report his or her income and assets on the FAFSA?
 
Yes. If your parent is married to your stepparent at the time you fill out the FAFSA, the stepparent must report his/her income and assets even if they weren't married in the previous year.
 
 
Are my parents responsible for my educational loans?
 
No. Parents are not responsible for your student loans. A parent would only be responsible for a loan if it were the Federal Parent PLUS loan. 
 
 
What if I do not live with my parents? Do I still need to use their financial information on the FAFSA?
 
Yes. If you are under 24 years of age, are not married, do not have children living with you, are not a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces, are not an orphan or ward of the court, and do not have a bachelor’s degree, you will need to use your parent’s information.  
 
 
I got an outside scholarship. Should I report it to the financial aid office?
 
You must report the scholarship to the financial aid office. The outside scholarship will have beneficial effects. Scholarships are used to replace loans instead of grants if the student is over awarded.
 


 
►Grants
A grant is "free" money given to you to help pay for educational expenses. The grant amount is determined based on the information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid form (FAFSA). This is money you do not need to pay back.  There are basically two categories of grants: Federal & State.
•Federal Grants include the Pell Grant, Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG), and the Academic Competiveness Grant (ACG).  The FAFSA will determine if you are eligible for any of these grants. 

•State Grants are available to students who are Maine residents.  The FAFSA must be received by the Department of Education by May 1st to be eligible. 

*Remember to apply early as some grants are available on a limited basis*
 
 
►Student Loans
 
The Federal Direct Stafford and Federal Direct Parent Plus Loan are the two types of loans most commonly used.  A Federal Direct Stafford Loan is a student loan that may be subsidized or unsubsidized depending on your financial need. 
•Subsidized Loans are need-based loans.  The government pays the interest while you are enrolled in college. 

•Unsubsidized Loans are not considered need-based loans.  These are for all eligible students regardless of income or assets.  The interest accrues on the loan immediately.  The student is required to make the monthly interest payments or allow the interest to accumulate adding to the loan amount.  If possible, it is always wise to pay the interest while you are in school.  If you choose not to, you will be paying interest on a larger loan amount after you graduate than if you had paid the accumulated interest as it had accrued.

• Parent Plus Loans allow your parents or step-parents to borrow funds to help you with the costs of your schooling.  This type of loan requires a credit check and is for any student who is enrolled at least half time.  


*If you think you would like to apply for a student loan, check with our Financial Aid office*

For more information on loans including loan counseling, a loan repayment chart, and a loan debt/annual salary chart see student loans at the left.


Scholarships

As the Financial Aid Office is notified of outside scholarships available, we will notify the students via e-mail.  If you would like, you may also contact our office to see if we have any scholarships being offered as well.   
The internet is a great tool to apply for scholarships but be sure to watch out for scholarship scams.  Check out our scholarship page to see scholarships we have posted online or a list of websites that offer scholarships or scholarship searches.


Employment

Federal Work-Study is a federally funded program that allows a student to work while enrolled in school.  This money is part of the student's financial aid package but the student will receive it as they work in the form of a paycheck.  There are a limited amount of available jobs so not every student who applies will be guaranteed a work-study position. Please fill out the workstudy application on our Financial Aid Forms Page if interested.