Who is Eligible for Financial Aid?

Most college students who qualify for financial aid receive funding from multiple sources, usually a combination of federal grants and work study, state grants and scholarships, and Emory grants, scholarships, and work study. Each need-based aid program has different but often overlapping eligibility requirements. Your eligibility is determined based on the information you provide in your financial aid application materials. Keep reading to learn more about eligibility considerations for need-based financial aid. 

Determining your eligibility for Federal Need-based programs

Your eligibility for receiving financial aid from federal programs is determined from the information you report on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

In addition to determining the amount of financial assistance for which you are eligible, you must also meet some additional criteria to qualify for federal assistance:

  • You must be enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a regular student working toward a degree in an eligible program.
  • You must meet satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards set by the postsecondary school you are or will be attending.

  • You are a US citizen or eligible noncitizen (see additional details below)
  • You have a valid Social Security Number (SSN)
    This requirement does not apply to students from the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, or the Republic of Palau. If you need a SSN, you can learn more about applying for one on the Social Security Administration’s website or by calling 800.772.1213 (TTY users 800.325.0778)
  • You certify that you will use federal student aid funds only for educational purposes, that you are not in default on a federal student loan, and do not owe money on a federal student grant.

The student must fall into one of the following categories to qualify for federal student aid:

  • US citizen
  • US national (includes natives of American Samoa or Swain’s Island)
  • US permanent resident with an I-151, I-551, or I-551C (Alien Registration Receipt Card)
  • Recipient of an Arrival Departure Record (I-94) from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) with one of the following designations:
    • Refugee
    • Asylum Granted
    • Indefinite Parole and/or Humanitarian Parole
    • Cuban-Haitian Entrant, Status Pending
    • Conditional Entrant (if issued before April 1, 1980)

Permanent residents of the Freely Associated States (Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and Republic of Palau) may be eligible for Pell Grants, the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), or work-study only.

When you apply for federal aid, some of your information will be verified with relevant federal agencies, such as the Social Security Administration which verifies your SSN and US citizenship status. If the information you provided does not match their records, you will be asked to address and resolve the issue before your eligibility for financial aid can be confirmed and an aid offer can be made.

Your financial aid application information will also be checked against the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) to verify the certifications you make related to federal student loans and grants are true and accurate.

Determining your eligibility for Emory Need-based programs

Emory’s need-based financial assistance programs are grounded in the belief that the primary responsibility for financing educational costs lies with the family, to the extent they are able. We also understand that no two families’ finances are alike. The information you provide on the CSS Profile and your family’s tax returns provides a well-rounded portrait of your family’s finances, which will help us determine your eligibility for institutional need-based aid.

Except for the additional requirements to complete the CSS Profile and submit tax records, eligibility for Emory institutional aid is determined using the same criteria for federal eligibility.

Eligibility considerations for non-citizen and undocumented students

Individuals with a nonimmigrant visa are not eligible for federal student aid or need-based aid from Emory unless they have also received a Form I-94 with one of the endorsements listed above. This includes:

  • F-1, F-2, or M-1 student visa
  • B-1 or B-2 visitor visa
  • J-1 or J-2 exchange visitors visa
  • H series or L series visa (which allow temporary employment in the US)
  • G series visa (pertaining to international organizations)

Individuals with only a Notice of Approval to Apply for Permanent Residence (I-797 or I-485) cannot receive federal aid or need-based assistance from Emory.