To be eligible for financial aid consideration you must:
- be a U.S. citizen or provide documentation of permanent resident or refugee status. International, non-degree seeking and visiting students are not eligible for financial aid.
- be enrolled at least half-time in a degree or certificate program at the University.
- full-time enrollment is a minimum of 12 credits per term for undergraduates
- half-time enrollment is a minimum of 6 credits per term for undergraduates
- be registered with the Selective Service, if eligible.
- not owe a refund on a federal grant or be in default on any federal educational loan.
- be making satisfactory academic progress toward your degree and be in good academic standing, if you are a continuing student.
Are you thinking of returning to school and you already have a bachelor's degree? The bad news is that you are no longer eligible for federal or state grant money. The good news is that you may be eligible for money through the Stafford Loan program.
In order to receive financial aid in pursuit of a second degree, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the school year that you wish to attend. Because you have already earned a degree, you will be eligible for loans only. Your advisor will have to evaluate the number of credits from your first degree that will count toward your second degree. If you have not yet reached your maximum aggregate undergraduate loan amount of $31,000, you may borrow through the Stafford Loan program.
The table below defines the annual loan amounts you may be eligible to receive.
Credits Applied Toward Second Degree
54 or more
If you need additional money, alternative loans are an available resource. You may seek alternative loans until you complete your degree.
If you are coming back to school to pursue teacher certification, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the school year that you wish to attend. For financial aid purposes, you will be considered a grade level 5 student.
Since you have already earned a degree, you will be eligible only for loans. Being enrolled in a teacher certification program, you may receive up to $5,500 through the Stafford Loan Program. If you are an independent student, as defined by federal guidelines, you may borrow an additional $7,000 in unsubsidized Stafford Loan funds.
If you need additional money to help cover the cost of your education, alternative loans are an available resource. Many banks and outside lending agencies offer alternative loan programs. You may borrow alternative loans until your certification program is complete, as long as you continue to meet your lender’s requirements.
Graduate School Prerequisites
You may apply for a Stafford Loan for coursework that you need to complete before being admitted to a graduate program. Some stipulations exist.
- You must provide documentation from the school to which you are applying that shows the prerequisite requirements needed for admittance into the graduate program.
- The coursework in which you enroll must be part of an eligible program that is offered by Pitt-Johnstown.
- You may not take classes to raise your QPA in order to be admitted into a graduate program. You are eligible to receive financial aid for only those classes that are required prerequisites for admission into a graduate program.
- You must be enrolled at least half-time (6 credits) in required prerequisites.
If you meet these criteria and you have completed the FAFSA, you are eligible to receive Stafford Loan funding up to $5,500 for the year if you are a dependent student; the funding increases to $12,500 if you are an independent student as long as you have not reached the $31,000 undergraduate aggregate.
No summer aid application is required. Students who have a current year FAFSA on file will be reviewed for Summer aid eligibility after they register for Summer classes. For example, for the summer 2018 semester we will use the 2017-2018 FAFSA application.
NOTE: Summer semester is billed at a per-credit basis and treated as a separate billing and loan period.
To Apply for Summer 2018 Financial Aid, you must:
1. Have a valid 2017-18 FAFSA on file with the University of Pittsburgh
2. Be registered for summer classes
Visiting or non-degree-seeking students are not eligible for financial aid.
Students may receive a PHEAA State Grant for enrollment during the summer; however, a separate summer application is required. The summer semester counts toward the maximum eight semesters of eligibility.
The 2018 Summer Pheaa State Grant Application must be completed online. Please remember that the Summer State Grant filing deadline is August 15, 2018.
Delayed Aid Distribution
Anticipated financial aid funds are not disbursed by the Office of Financial Aid until 10 days prior to the start of classes. Make sure that you have enough funding to cover the cost of your tuition. If you need information on requesting additional funding, visit Available Aid.
Delays in posting financial aid may be due to:
- The Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling are required by the Department of Education prior to borrowed funds being released to your account.
- Direct Loan Funds: Students visit Federal Student Aid site and log in using your FSA ID and Password. Complete both the MPN and the Entrance Counseling
- Perkins Loan: Complete your Master Promissory Note.
- Parent PLUS Loan: Parents visit Federal Student Aid site and log in using their FSA ID and password to complete the Master Promissory Note
- The Federal Verification process is a way for the U.S. Department of Education to ensure accurate reporting of information on the FAFSA. Each year, a portion of the student population is randomly selected by the Department of Education for verification. It is very important that you return the requested documentation to us quickly and accurately. Please refer to your “To Do List” in the Student Center of my.pitt.edu. If you are selected, we are required by the Department of Education to collect the following:
- Tax Return Transcript for both student and parent (if student is dependent) or spouse (if independent). This information can be requested on the IRS site. We do not require the Tax Return Transcript if you utilized the Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA and have not made any changes.
- Verification Worksheet