A Southwestern College financial aid application consists of a FAFSA and any verification or eligibility documents required to satisfy federal regulations. Paperwork requirements vary by individual. You can find a list of the documents tailored to your individual situation by visiting your Self Service account and clicking on the Finances Tab.
Don’t delay! The entire process of applying for financial aid from submission of the FAFSA to the release of financial aid to your account takes a minimum of 30 days to complete. Throughout the process, the team at the Office of Financial Aid is here to assist you.
Below is a high level summary of the steps required to complete your financial aid file and receive your disbursement.
1. Complete Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA is required to obtain state and federal grants and federal student loans. If you apply online and sign your FAFSA electronically, we will receive the results in 5 to 6 business days.
2. Submit Verification Paperwork (if selected). Occasionally, students completing the FAFSA are selected for a process called verification. When this happens, the Office of Financial Aid is required to check your FAFSA for accuracy. You will know if you are selected when you receive the results of your FAFSA or if you see verification paperwork listed in the financial aid page of your Self Service Account.
3. Packaging and Award Letter. Once your financial aid file contains all the necessary paperwork, the Office of Financial Aid can create your financial aid package. When it is complete, you will receive an award letter via email.
4. Accepting the Award. When you receive your award letter, you must email, mail or fax a response to let us know which parts of the offer you would like to accept. All processing of your financial aid stops until we receive this response from you.
5. Setting Up Loans. If this is your first year at Southwestern College, this step includes completing entrance counseling at StudentLoans.gov. If you have never borrowed student loans or if it has been over 10 years since you borrowed your first student loan, you will also need to complete a Master Promissory Note on the same website.
6. Pass Disbursement Eligibility Test. When your financial aid file is complete, you must pass three very important tests to be eligible for disbursement: 1) You must be officially accepted to the college with all official transcripts present in the registrar's office. 2) You must be progressing toward a degree in a manner that is timely and successful (known as satisfactory academic progress). 3) You must be currently attending classes.
7. Money Is Released To Your Account. After confirming that you have passed all three tests, the Office of Financial Aid approves the release of the money by sending an electronic notification to the Student Account Office. The approved money is then uploaded into your account. You can watch this transaction happening online by logging into Self Service.
8. Checks Written for Credit Balances, If the application of your financial aid creates a credit (or negative) balance on your student account, a check for the credit amount will be auto-deposited into your bank account or written and mailed to you within 14 days of its appearance on Self Service. You can sign up to receive your credit check electronically through the ePayment option on Self Service.
Please feel free to contact us if you have questions or need assistance.
Office of Financial Aid
100 College St.
Winfield, KS 67156
Toll Free Phone 800-846-1543