Financial Aid 101


Monday, October 5, 2020

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Office of Financial Aid

Fall is the time for picking apples, foliage peeping and filing financial aid forms. October 1 is the first day you can submit your Federal Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the upcoming 2021-2022 academic year, and we encourage all students to do so as soon as possible – even before you are accepted to UNH. The FAFSA is required if you would like to be considered for federal financial aid, state aid and institutional aid at many colleges, UNH included.

Here’s how it works. Need-based financial aid helps bridge the gap between the cost of higher education and what families can afford to pay. One of our driving values at UNH is making our world-class education and 360-degree college experience as accessible as possible, which is why 84% of first-year students like you receive financial assistance at UNH. We use the FAFSA to best determine how to award funds to new and returning students – and meet that critical mission.

The first step is to create a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID with at least one of your parents at https://studentaid.gov. You will use your FSA ID to submit and sign your FAFSA, all at this same site.

Then, organize the information you’ll need to complete your financial aid application so it’s all right at your fingertips. For the 2021-2022 FAFSA, you will be required to provide student and parent 2019 taxable and untaxed income, as well as a list of current assets. Be sure to ask your parents if your family has already submitted their 2019 Federal Tax Return. If you have, we strongly encourage you to use the Data Retrieving Tool as you are filling out your application. This will import your IRS information directly into the income gathering section of the FAFSA.

Another important tool you’ll likely come across in your financial aid process is the College Scholarship Service Profile, or CSS Profile. While UNH does not require the CSS Profile, certain colleges (mostly private institutions) use it to award non-federal financial aid. You can find more information on the College Board website here: https://cssprofile.collegeboard.org

The bottom line: Starting your financial aid application early means you’ll have access to the greatest number of aid options. It also helps you get a clearer picture of your path to UNH if you are applying Early Action. In the past, UNH has begun to send emails alerting students of their award starting in December.

It’s also easier than you think to apply. Check in with your school counselor to see if a financial aid representative will be giving a presentation on completing the FAFSA at your high school. The UNH financial aid office is also here to help every step of the way. You can sign up for a virtual financial aid information session or reach out to us at (603) 862-3600.

We hope you all have a safe and lovely fall season!