Financial Aid Information for Parents
We are pleased to have your student as part of the UCF community. One of our goals is to assist parents in helping their students with the financial aid process, so that it is simple and clear. With this goal in mind, we have created this Web page just for parents to share some general financial aid information with you that may be helpful.
FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, protects the privacy of student educational records. Any information provided is kept in strict confidence. Please rest assured that we are very aware of concerns for safekeeping of your information. We want you to know that we strictly adhere to FERPA. Although it does limit what we can share with you about your student, it protects your student. Students can authorize the release of their records via the Registrar’s Office or their myUCF portal. For more information regarding FERPA, please see the Registrar’s Office Web site at www.registrar.ucf.edu/ferpa/.
Look out for all of those marketing pieces that will be flooding your mailbox pertaining to funding your student’s education. UCF has a “school initiated” application process, which means you must apply directly with our office to receive a federal student loan, rather than through outside organizations.
Beware of scams. You should not pay to process financial aid applications, and we recommend that you do not pay for scholarship searches. You should not pay an agency or business that “guarantees” you will be eligible for financial aid and you should not pay to have your FAFSA completed for you. The first F in FAFSA is FREE.
Approximately 70% of UCF students receive some type of financial assistance, including grants, loans, scholarships and work study. The process of applying and receiving aid can be intimidating for some, but it does not have to be. As a guide to assist you, we are providing some basic steps and a time line below.
- The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available October 1 each and every year, and students may complete it online from our Web site at www.finaid.ucf.edu. We recommend all students file the FAFSA regardless of family income. Although some students do not qualify for federal need based aid, they may qualify for other non-need based aid, which includes some loans and some scholarships.
- The FAFSA should be filed by mid-February at the latest to meet our application priority date of December 1st each year. Students who meet the priority application date are given the greatest consideration for aid. The FAFSA can be completed using estimated tax information, if needed, and then can be corrected at a later date to finalize the process.
- Students can begin looking for their UCF Award Notification in late March. The award letter provides an estimate of financial aid based on information from the FAFSA and other sources. In addition, your student’s “To Do List,” found on my.ucf.edu, should be reviewed to determine what else is needed “to do” or submit to complete the financial aid file. Students should review their “To Do List” on a regular basis throughout the year.
- Your student should make sure their “To Do List” is complete as soon as possible and at least one month prior to the beginning of the semester! If not, it could cause you and your student frustrating delays.
We have created an Application Checklist, which we recommend you review and share with your student.
In addition to monitoring the “To Do List,” it is important for students to read the Financial Aid Bulletins, found on myUCF Student Center, for current and updated information throughout the year.
You may want to remind your student to review the scholarship listing on our Web site. The list is updated monthly and there are a number of scholarship opportunities listed.
Financial aid disbursements begin after “Add/Drop” (the period of time when a student may adjust their class schedule) has ended, usually two to three weeks into the semester. For more information about deferment of tuition & fees and disbursements, please review the Web page.
The Florida Prepaid program is administered by the UCF Student Accounts Office. The phone number for the Florida Prepaid Program is 1-800-552-4723 (GRAD). For more information, please go to: studentaccounts.ucf.edu/florida-prepaid/