Financial Aid Process

Financial Aid Process

1. Apply as a Degree-Seeking Student

New students and Returning Students who have not attended for at least one semester or have withdrawn in the current semester must apply for admission and be accepted to Methodist University (MU) as a degree seeking student.

2. Fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

The Department of Education strongly encourages the completion of the FAFSA online. To be considered for need-based aid, you will need to request the Department of Education send your processed FAFSA to MU. Methodist University’s Title IV code is 002946. THE PRIORITY DEADLINE FOR COMPLETING THE FAFSA (FREE APPLICATION FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID) AT METHODIST UNIVERSITY IS JULY 1. ATTENTION ALL RETURNING STUDENTS  FOR MAXIMUM CONSIDERATION OF ALL MU’S NEED BASED FUNDS (FOUNDERS GRANT, STUDENT EMPLOYMENT, ETC.), THE FAFSA MUST BE RECEIVED BY THE PRIORITY DEADLINE OF JUNE 1.  The student is encouraged to contact the Department of Education at 1-800-474-7268 if he/she has technical difficulties in completing the FAFSA or Methodist University at 1-800-488-7110 for questions regarding any information on the FAFSA. Once the FAFSA is completed online, no additional action is required until the student receives a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Department of Education (Dept of Ed). Methodist University will receive an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) form for each student that lists Methodist University on the FAFSA. Once the student receives the SAR, he/she should review the form the Dept of Ed for accuracy. Should any corrections need to be made, the student or parent may make the corrections on the FAFSA website or contact the Office of Financial Aid for further instructions.

The student can refer to the FAFSA website for the Federal deadline to apply for financial aid. As for an institutional deadline, Methodist University does not have a deadline per se, however, Methodist University awards financial aid on a first come first served basis and funds are limited. If a student drops below full-time status, Methodist University reserves the right to rescind any or all of the financial aid the student was awarded. Financial aid is awarded accordingly:

  • Students enrolled as an undergraduate full-time day (12 semester hours or more in the Day program) degree-seeking students are eligible for institutional scholarships, federal and state grants, student employment, and student loans.
  • Undergraduate students enrolling in the evening program are not eligible for any institutional scholarships; however, they are eligible for the Federal Pell Grant, North Carolina Need-Based Scholarship Program, and student loans.
  • Students that already have a four year bachelor’s degree and enroll in another undergraduate program, are eligible for limited institutional scholarships and student loans only.
  • Graduates students enrolled in one of the graduate programs are primarily eligible for Federal Direct Loans.

Awards are made until all available funds are exhausted. Most students with an established financial aid need can expect to receive an offer of financial aid through an award letter combining gift or grant aid, scholarships, self-help student employment programs, and loans.

Students are required to complete the FAFSA each academic year to continue to be considered for all financial aid.

3. Complete Verification (if selected)

All applicants selected for “Verification” by either the U.S. Department of Education (as indicated on the Student Aid Report (SAR), or by Methodist University must submit additional documentation to Methodist University. This process compares information from your FAFSA, the Verification Worksheet, copy  of Tax Return Transcript from the IRS, W-2/1099 Form(s), and any other requested documentation. The preferred way to complete the verification process is to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool while completing the FAFSA to transfer your tax return information directly on to your FAFSA. Some circumstances may prohibit you from utilizing the IRS Data Retrieval Tool. Therefore, you must obtain a Tax Return Transcript directly from the IRS and submit it to our office. If tax returns are filed, per the US Dept of Education, MU cannot accept a "copy"of IRS tax forms. You may request a transcript at, IRS automated system at 1-800-908-9946, or contacting the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. Your financial aid will be delayed until all verification documents requested have been received.

Students must submit:

  • If Dependent:
    • Copies of the student and their parents' IRS Tax Transcripts and W-2 forms/1099 forms (if applicable) for the tax year prior to the academic year for which funds are requested.
    • If not filing a federal tax return, a Form 4506-T will need to be requested from the IRS for submission to Methodist University to verify non filing.
    • Verification Worksheet-Dependent: documentation of family size, number in college, untaxed income, etc.
    • Any other requested documentation.
  • If Independent:
    • Copies of the student and their spouses' IRS Tax Transcripts and W-2 forms/1099 forms (if applicable) for the tax year prior to the academic year for which funds are requested.
    • If not filing a federal tax return, a Form 4506-T will need to be requested from the IRS for submission to Methodist University to verify non filing.
    • Verification Worksheet-Independent: documentation of family size, number in college, untaxed income, etc.
    • Any other requested documentation.

In completing the federal requirements for verification, MU must follow the procedures established by federal regulation (CFR Title 34, Part 668). In addition, an applicant may correct any FAFSA information that is in error by submitting to the Office of Financial Aid a signed statement (including a parent’s signature, if a dependent student) describing both the error and the correct data.

Verification documents should be submitted as soon as possible, in order for applicants to be considered for maximum gift funds and receive timely award information. A Federal Pell Grant applicant selected for verification must complete the process by a deadline published annually in the Federal Register, which is generally no later than 90 days after the last day of enrollment during the academic year of August 31, whichever is earlier. Campus-based and Federal Direct Loan applicants must complete verification by the last day of enrollment during the academic year. Incomplete applications will be cancelled, and no funds will be awarded. Sometimes, when corrections are submitted to Federal Student Aid Programs for processing, an application not originally selected will be selected for verification. If an award has already been made, and requested verification documents are not provided, then the undisbursed award will be cancelled. No additional federal funds will be disbursed until verification has been completed.

For the Federal Pell Grant Program, the student has completed verification when he or she has corrected the data or has shown, as required, that the application data are correct. In addition to all verifying documentation, Methodist University must also have on file the final and valid federal output document, showing the official expected family contribution (EFC). Under the Federal Pell Grant Program, if a student does not complete verification by the deadline, he or she forfeits the Pell Grant for the award year; any funds already disbursed must be repaid to the U.S. Department of Education.

For campus-based and Federal Direct Loan programs, the student has completed verification when he or she has submitted all requested documentation to the school. The school must also have on file an output document that shows the student’s application data was processed through the central processing system (CPS) at least once. Methodist University can not (a) disburse additional FSEOG or Federal Perkins Loan funds (b) continue the student’s employment in an FWS job (c) certify a Federal Direct Loan application or (d) deliver Federal Direct Loan proceeds to any student who fails to provide the required documentation by the deadline.

If a student’s failure to complete verification, or another error of the student, is responsible for an overpayment of federal aid, the student is responsible for repaying the overpayment. In such a case, Methodist University sends a written notice requesting repayment in full to the student, and reports to the U.S. Department of Education (through the on-line National Student Loan Data System) that the student has received an overpayment. If Methodist University cannot recover a Federal Pell, FSEOG, or Federal Direct Loan overpayment for which a student is liable, Methodist University must then refer the overpayment to the U.S. Department of Education’s Debt Collection Service.

Applicants will know that verification has been completed, when they receive an award letter or a denial letter. Methodist University will make the adjustment, if possible, if an initial disbursement of federal aid must be lowered due to subsequent selection for and completion of verification. If it is beyond the time frame for making the adjustment, Methodist University will notify both the student and the U.S. Department of Education of the overpayment as described above.

4. Receiving an Award Letter

Once all financial aid has been applied for and awarded to a student, the student will receive an Award Letter. The Office of Financial Aid mails two copies of an Award Letter to each student that receives any financial aid (federal, state, or institutional). The Award Letter lists whether the student is residential (on campus), commuter (off campus) or evening. The student must sign and mail one copy to the Office of Financial Aid. Upon receipt of the Award Letter, the Office of Financial Aid will delete any aid the student has declined and make official the aid the student has accepted. Once the aid is accepted on the computer, the Office of Student Accounts receives this information the next business day and credits the student's account accordingly with the exception of aid for which funds have not yet been received (i.e. outside scholarships), loans (once all documents have been completed) and/or student employment. Parent/Graduate PLUS (once all documents have been completed) and Alternative Loans (once all documents have been completed) would have to be applied for and approved by the lender.


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