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Financial Aid

FAQs for Financial Aid

Am I eligible to receive financial aid?

Your eligibility depends on whether you meet requirements for receiving student financial assistance from a particular financial aid program.

To find out if you qualify, you must first fill out and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Include the Cincinnati State school ID code 010345 on your application.

The Office of Financial Aid will receive your student aid information and communicate with you about your financial aid eligibility, using your Cincinnati State email and personal email. These communications may also tell you about documents required to complete your financial aid processing, and next steps to complete the financial aid process.

Students who receive financial aid are also responsible for knowing and maintaining eligibility requirements to continue receiving aid. Students who receive federal student aid must submit a new FASFA form each year after October 1.

Does Cincinnati State offer scholarships?

Yes, Cincinnati State offers institutional scholarships. Scholarship applications are evaluated on the basis of academic merit, financial need, volunteer or community service activities, and career goals. The application process starts at the beginning of November and eligibility requirements must be met by February 15.

I received an outside scholarship. Should I report it to the Office of Financial Aid?

Yes. If you are receiving a scholarship or tuition assistance from an outside source (not Cincinnati State), you must report the scholarship to the Office of Financial Aid. Cincinnati State may be required to adjust your financial aid package.

What is Cincinnati State's calendar for applying financial aid awards?

The Cincinnati State academic and financial aid award year begins in August, with the start of Fall semester, and runs through August of the following year (end of Summer semester). All financial aid awarded is divided evenly among the three semesters Fall, Spring, and Summer.

How will I know how much financial aid I have been awarded?

The Office of Financial Aid sends email to students who have applied for financial aid at your Cincinnati State email and personal email address. You will be able to view your financial aid award letter online. Login into your MyServices account, and select "My Award" under “Financial Aid” to see your award.

How will I be notified if I need to do something else to receive my financial aid?

The Office of Financial Aid will communicate using Cincinnati State email and personal email accounts. Please be sure to check your Cincinnati State email often for important information.

What if my financial aid award is not enough to cover all of my expenses?

If your federal financial aid package is not enough to cover the complete cost of tuition and fees, you have three options:

When is my financial aid applied to my student account?

Financial aid is applied to your student account after No-Show processing (your instructors verify that you are attending the classes on your schedule) is complete. Typically this disbursement takes place around the 8th week of the semester. 

Do I need to be admitted to Cincinnati State before I can apply for financial aid?

No. You can apply for financial aid any time after October 1. However, to receive financial aid funds, you must be admitted into an eligible degree or certificate program, and registered for at least half-time enrollment (six credit hours) before the start of the semester.

Are my parents responsible for my educational loans?

In general, no. However, parents are responsible for the Federal PLUS loan, if they choose to apply. Parents are responsible for your alternative or private educational loans only if they co-sign your loan. In most cases, you alone are responsible for repaying your educational loans.

My parents take care of everything. Can you speak to them instead?

Unfortunately, no. The Family Education Right Privacy Act (FERPA) does not allow us to speak to anyone other than the student regarding financial aid issues.

For more information, see FERPA FAQs, or contact the Office of Registrar at (513) 569-1522.

What happens if I withdraw from school before the semester is over?

If you withdraw from school, you may be expected to repay a portion of your financial aid. Federal regulations require the Office of Financial Aid to recalculate aid eligibility based on your withdrawal date and the last date you attended classes (as reported by your instructors).

Any refundable amount of financial aid used to pay tuition and fees may be required to be returned to the appropriate financial aid sources. You may need to provide proof of participation in or completion of your courses. Also, you have an obligation to complete Exit Counseling.

Review the No-Show Policy and the Policy for Return of Title IV Funds for more information about regulations for federal student aid if you withdraw from school.

What happens if I do not pass all of my classes?

As a recipient of financial aid, you must meet the standards of Cincinnati State’s policy for Satisfactory Academic Progress. You must complete at least 67 percent (two-thirds) of your classes, and maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0, in order to continue receiving federal financial aid.

If you receive all “F” grades for a semester, your financial aid may be adjusted, and require a portion of the financial aid award to be returned to the U.S. Department of Education.  Recalculation of your financial aid will use the last date of attendance of your classes, as reported by your instructors.

Non-federal student aid, such as scholarships and private loans, may also have academic standards and/or attendance requirements. Failure to meet these standards could result in loss of the scholarship or loan assistance and may even require repayment.

What happens to my financial aid if I drop a class?

If you drop a class, it may affect your financial aid eligibility and the amount of your award. You also may be responsible for paying for the portion of the semester or term before you dropped the class, even if you did not attend the class.

Review the No-Show Policy  and the Policy for Return of Title IV Funds for more information about regulations for federal student aid if you drop your classes.

If I take a leave of absence from school, do I have to start repaying my loans?

Not immediately. Stafford Loans have a grace period of six months before the student must begin repaying the loan.

  • When you take a leave of absence, you will not have to repay your loans until the six-month grace period ends.
  • If you used up the grace period once before during your time in school, you will have to begin repaying your loan immediately upon graduation.
  • It is possible to request an extension to the grace period, but this must be done before the grace period has been used. Please contact your loan servicer to request an extension.

Private student loans may have grace period regulations that are different from the information above.

What could affect my eligibility to receive financial aid and the amount that I receive?

Students must meet and maintain all aspects of Cincinnati State’s General Eligibility Requirements for receiving financial aid.

  • In particular, you must meet the academic standards of Cincinnati State’s policy for Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
  • The policy requires that you complete 67 percent (two-thirds) of your classes and maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0 to continue receiving federal financial aid.
  • The Office of Financial Aid reviews the academic progress of students receiving financial aid at the end of every semester.

The number of credit hours you are enrolled in could also affect your eligibility for federal financial aid. Before you drop a class, review the enrollment eligibility requirements.

My financial situation has changed since I filed the FAFSA. What are my options?

The financial information reported on the FAFSA cannot be updated. If you have unique circumstances-- such as the loss of a job, a substantial reduction in income, or extraordinary medical expenses-- please contact the Office of Financial Aid.

We can review individual circumstances on a case-by-case basis, but typically you must provide documentation and complete additional steps to change FAFSA information.

What is FAFSA Verification?

About 30 percent of all students who submit a FAFSA form are selected for verification, which requires schools to collect documentation to check the accuracy of the FAFSA information.

If you are selected for verification, the process must be completed before financial aid can be awarded. You will be notified by Cincinnati State email if you are selected for verification.

What is the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) and how do I use it?

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) allows students and parents to access IRS tax return information and transfer it directly into the FAFSA form.

You are not eligible to use the DRT if you (or your parents) are married but filed separately, or if your marital status has changed as of January 1.

What type of tax information for me (and/or my parent or spouse) do you need?

The Office of Financial Aid is allowed to accept the IRS Tax Transcript form only. We cannot accept a tax form 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ.

Please contact the IRS to request a copy of federal Tax Transcripts (and any other supplementary forms that show income earned) for yourself, your parents and your spouse (if applicable).

You may choose to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) to import your tax information directly from the IRS to your FAFSA form instead of submitting tax forms.

  • Request Tax Transcript Online: Visit Transcripts will be sent by email.
  • Request Tax Transcript by phone: Call (800) 908-9946 or (800) 829-1040. Transcripts will be mailed.
  • Request Tax Transcript by mobile app: Download the IRS2Go Mobile App. Transcripts will be mailed.

I have more questions about financial aid and scholarships. Who should I contact?

Visit the Financial Aid Office: Room 105 of the Advanced Technology Learning Center (ATLC), near the Overlook Café, Clifton campus.

Office Hours: Monday through Thursday, 8 am – 6:30 pm and Friday, 8 am - 5 pm

Phone: (513) 569-1530
Fax: (513) 569-1469

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