Understanding Financial Aid
Below you will find a list of important information you should be aware of when applying for and receiving financial aid.
Determining Financial Need
Financial need is determined by subtracting the family’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) from Southwestern University’s Cost of Attendance and subtracting any additional resources/scholarships. So, financial need is determined to be:
- Cost of Attendance
- Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
- Resources / Scholarships
- Eligibility for Need-based Financial Aid (Need)
While Southwestern would like to fund all students demonstrating need, this is not always possible. The demand for grants and scholarships based on need often exceeds available resources.
Cost of Attendance
Cost of Attendance is the estimated amount it will cost to attend Southwestern University for one academic year. A detailed breakdown of Southwestern’s current tuition and fees is available.
Expected Family Contribution
The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the amount that you (and your spouse if married) and your parents are expected to contribute toward your education. This amount is determined according to a standardized formula established by Congress known as Federal Methodology (see EFC calculator) and is based on the information reported on the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Note: these links take you to external web sites.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy
Federal regulations require that financial aid recipients meet standards of academic progress. The standards established by the Financial Aid Office consistent with the federal student aid requirements, are detailed in the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.
The Financial Aid Office awards financial aid packages for eligible students, which may consist of a combination of grants, work-study, and loan aid. Packages and award amounts from each program vary depending on the financial need of the applicant, the limitations imposed by the various programs, and the availability of funds. Students who apply by the priority deadline of March 1st are awarded on a “first-processed, first-served” basis. Once a financial aid package has been awarded, the applicant will be sent an award notification letter indicating the types and amounts of aid offered. This letter must be signed and returned to the Financial Aid Office. In addition, if loans are accepted, additional steps & processing time are required.
Disbursing Financial Aid
Most available financial aid (including student loans) is disbursed at the beginning of each term toward your University bill. These funds are used to pay all University charges including tuition / fees, room / board, and miscellaneous expenses. Once these funds have paid your entire student account, any remaining balance is available to the student in the form of bookstore vouchers and/or check.
Reporting Outside Scholarships
You may have other resources available to assist you with your educational costs, such as scholarships awarded by schools, businesses and civic organizations. In order to ensure your financial aid award is accurate, please notify the Financial Aid Office if you will receive other resources.