Financial Aid Award Letter

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Financial Award Letter

Every college and career school that you apply to, and which you’ve listed on your FAFSA, will send you their own unique Financial Aid Award letter.

Remember from earlier lessons that each school’s Cost of Attendance (COA) will differ, and each school will make it’s own determination as to how much aid to offer you based on your Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) and other information that you included on your FAFSA.

These Financial Aid Award letters may likely help you to decide which school you’ll end up attending based on it’s affordability so you should review them carefully.  Even though one school may be offering you more financial aid, the quality of the aid (types of loans, grants vs. loans) can make a big difference regarding which school you should choose.

Sample Letter

financial aid award letter sample
  • Expenses

    The COA (Cost of Attendance) will be listed on the letter and will have a breakdown of what’s included in the COA. This COA may, or may not, include expenses that aren’t directly related to what the school will be charging you (ex. transportation, personal expenses…)

  • Financial Aid Offerings

    There will be a list of each item that the school is offering you for Financial Aid, as well as the amount of the award. You can choose to accept, or deny, any of these awards.  For example:a

    • …You may choose to accept only Grants &/or Scholarships – NO loans.
    • …You may choose some of the loans that you’re offered but not all of them (see “Types of Financial Aid” lesson)
    • …You may choose to accept one or more loans but only a portion of them.
  • Estimated Cost to Attend

    This is the amount you’d have to pay out-of-pocket during the school year if you choose to accept all of the financial aid awards you’re offered. You might need to supplement what’s offered in your award letter with outside scholarships (recommended) or private loans (not recommended).

Comparing Financial Aid Awards

Get organized and compare your Financial Aid Awards with this spreadsheet.

Think you might want or need some help getting organized and comparing the Financial Aid awards you’ve been offered by each school?

If that’s a yes, get the Google sheet “Financial Aid Organizational Spreadsheet” at the button below. There’s a worksheet within it called “Award Letter Comparisons” that might help you out.  It’s View Only so be sure to make a copy and save it to your own computer, Google folder, or other cloud based storage.