The Ultimate Federal Financial Aid Eligibility Guide

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This is part of the third chapter in Diane Melville’s “All About Financial Aid” series. See the bottom of this post for more links on today’s topic, Financial Aid Eligibility.

There is never a shortage of students who assume that they are not eligible for federal financial aid and don’t apply. It’s a real bummer because you’re potentially leaving thousands of dollars of free money on the table based on a false premise. To clear this up once and for all, here are the basic eligibility requirements for federal financial aid.

  • Must be a United States citizen or permanent resident
  • Must have a valid Social Security number
  • Must be accepted or enrolled in a degree or certificate program
  • Must agree to be registered with Selective Service (males only)
  • Must demonstrate some kind of financial need (for most programs)

Even if you’ve made some mistakes in the past or have been convicted of a crime, you may still be eligible for federal financial aid. It’s important to understand that federal financial aid is based on financial need. Meaning, you don’t need to have any sort of special talent and you can choose any major you’d like. Basically, so long as your grades aren’t so bad that you get placed on academic probation or get kicked out of college altogether, you’re pretty much in good shape.

The moral of this story is that there are a lot of you that qualify for financial aid, but you aren’t applying. Hopefully, this video gave you the information that you needed to encourage you to apply!

For more information on federal student financial aid, check out these helpful posts:

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