By Rory Gilchrist
It’s perhaps not the most glamorous part of applying to colleges, but for a lot of students, it’s an important one. The process can be confusing, but with a little effort (and a mindfulness towards deadlines!) hopefully things will work out in your favor.
Some points to remember:
- Admissions at SJC is need-blind, meaning that the people who look at your application and the people who review your financial aid application are different people. Your ability to pay for college does not affect whether you get accepted to St. John’s.
- Over 70% of Johnnies now receive financial aid.
- St. John’s meets full demonstrated need!
- Starting with the Fall Freshman Class of ’17, students showing great academic promise may be offered merit-based aid, disbursed by a committee separate from the Financial Aid department. If you qualify for this type of aid, you will be notified separately from your need-based package.
- St. John’s staff are more than willing to discuss with you and your family specifics about financial aid.
What are the types of financial aid available?
There are a couple of different ways to help pay for college. A financial aid package may contain any of these, all of these, or some combination.
- Direct Grants from the school itself. They’re grants to you, so you don’t have to repay them.
- Loans that, unlike grants, do have to be repaid. The US Dept. of Education has various loan programs at favorable interest rates, including some which don’t accrue interest until graduation. A freshman might borrow anywhere between $3500 and $5500.
- Work-study jobs, either on- or off-campus, such as working in the bookstore or the library, and various administration assistance jobs. This is real employment, done in addition to all the work students need to do for their tutorials.
How do I apply?
Everyone needs to (re-)apply for financial assistance each year. There are a couple of forms each student needs to fill out before February 15th.
- The CSS/PROFILE is available here. Important is the correct CEEB code, ours is 4737.
- The FAFSA is available after January 1, 2013 and is available here. The federal code for Santa Fe campus is 002093.
- In cases of divorce or separation, the non-custodial guardian needs to fill out the Non-Custodial Parent’s Statement.
Fill out these forms as soon as possible! It’s really in your best interest to be proactive about these forms. Deadlines are important, so keep them in your calendar. Make sure to keep printouts of everything you submit. If you’re unsure about how to fill in these forms, we can help, so let us know.
P.S. If you do miss a deadline, it’s not the end of the world. Call the admissions office at (800)-311-5232 and let them know.