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Accept My Financial Aid
Once financial aid awards are available (typically by July 1 for continuing students), students will receive an email notification directing them to review their respective awards online. Upon reviewing the awards, students should accept or decline the aid that has been offered. To proceed with the processing of aid, students are required to acknowledge that they have read, understand and will comply with the terms and conditions of their respective awards. First time recipients of some awards (Federal Perkins, Federal Direct Stafford loans and federal work study) will be required to complete additional paperwork before the aid can be finalized.
Students must immediately report to Financial Aid any resources not reflected in their award notice. This includes outside funding such as scholarships and/or tuition reimbursement. Outside scholarship checks should be mailed directly to the AU Financial Aid Office. Please direct questions regarding any outside scholarship/resources to the external/sponsoring organization.
Step 1: Your Financial Aid Award Letter
In Late June, current students who have submitted a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the upcoming academic year; met the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements for their degree objectives, and submitted all requested information/ documentation will receive an e-mail notification indicating that Financial Aid Award letters available to view online through the student portal at https://myAU.american.edu/. Upon signing into the student portal, students should click on the heading “Finances” in the right hand column and then click on the option Financial Aid: Accept My Award Package under the column titled “Personalized Links”.
There students will see a statement listing of the the amount and types of aid that has been awarded Student must indicate their acceptance or denial of the aid that has been awarded..
Step 2: Loan Entrance Counseling Session (for new students and first-time borrowers) The U.S. Department of Education requires all first-time borrowers and/or new students to American University to complete an Entrance Counseling Session. This session explains students’ rights and responsibilities as a federal student loan borrower. Students may complete the Entrance Counseling Session online at http://www.studentloans.gov. Within 3 business days, AU will be notified electronically upon completion of the Entrance counseling requirement.
Note: Students’ federal loan funds will not disburse until the Entrance counseling session has been successfully completed.
Students who have previously completed an Entrance Counseling Session while attending AU may skip this step.
Step 3: Sign Your Master Promissory Note (MPN)
First time borrower in the Direct Loan Program (Stafford Loans), MUST sign a Master Promissory Note which lists the terms of the loan, how much money borrowed, and the earliest possible date that the loan can be disbursed. The MPN is also a promise to repay any federal Direct (Stafford) loans that was borrowed. To complete the Master Promissory Note, go online to the Direct Loan website at http://studentloans.gov. Students will need their respective FAFSA PIN to electronically sign the Master Promissory Note. Within 3 business days , AU will be notified electronically once the MPN has been signed. the Note: if you have previously signed a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note, you may skip this step.
You will NOT receive your Direct Loan funds until you sign your Master Promissory Note.
Step 4: Receiving your Credit Balance Refund
Financial aid will be credited to your student account at the beginning of each semester. If you have completed all the necessary steps, you can expect to see the financial aid credits on your student account by the time classes begin.
Who is eligible to receive institutional and federal need-based aid?
Citizens and eligible non-citizens (permanent residents).
How do you determine who receives need-based institutional and federal aid?
American University awards financial aid to students based on a combination of demonstrated financial need, academic achievement in high school or college (transfers) and the availability of funds. The Financial Aid Office determines student's eligibility for need-based aid using financial data received from the College Board's CSS Profile and the Department of Education's Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Based on this financial data reasonable Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is calculated.
What is an Expected Family Contribution (EFC)?
The EFC is the anticipated amount that students can contribute from their respective resources plus an amount that parents can reasonably contribute from their resources. AU uses this information to calculate the family's financial need. Financial need is determined by subtracting the EFC from the cost of attending the university for an academic year.
How is an EFC determined?
The EFC is based on the financial data that has been submitted to the Department of Education on the FAFSA for federal aid consideration. The Department uses a federally-regulated needs analysis formula to determine the EFC. For Institutional need-based aid consideration the EFC is calculated based on the financial data provided on both the FAFSA and the CSS Profile.
Are Washington Mentorship students eligible for financial aid?
Washington Mentorship students are eligible to receive Federal and Institutional financial aid during the Spring semester, after completing their first semester of fall, non-degree coursework