FAQ (Financial Aid)

How do I apply for Financial Aid?
Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or a Renewal FAFSA using FAFSA on the Web. We strongly encourage this method of applying since it is faster and generally more accurate because the online version has built-in edits. Apply for financial aid at the same time, or even before, you apply for admission.

When should I apply?
Dowling College has an “On-Time” financial aid filing deadline of March 1st. This means that the Office of Student Financial Services must receive the results of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or your Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or your Renewal FAFSA from the Federal Processor by February 15th for your application to be considered “on-time”. Meeting the deadline gives you priority for all funds. Late applicants are considered for whatever aid remains when their application file is complete. The Dowling College Federal School Code must be included: 002667

Why should I apply by the “Priority” Deadline?
Students who have a complete file by the “Priority” deadline are more likely to receive funds by the time school starts in the fall. Students who apply by the priority date are also more likely to receive funds from all programs for which they are eligible. After the priority dates, funding in many programs, especially campus-based programs such as Federal Work Study and SEOG may be exhausted. Applying early is always to the student’s advantage.

Do I need to reapply each year?
Yes. Each year you must file either the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or a Renewal FAFSA. You must also maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to qualify for aid each year.

What happens after I apply?
Once you complete your FAFSA, it will be processed and you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR). The results of your FAFSA will be electronically sent to the Financial Aid Department. The FAFSA will be reviewed and a Financial Aid Award Letter will be prepared and mailed to the student describing all of the eligible financial aid sources.

Whom do I call if I do not receive my SAR?
If you need answers right away to questions about Federal Student Aid you may call the Department of Education at (800) 4-FED AID.

When completing my Financial Aid Application, can I estimate my income?
Yes, you may estimate by using the previous year’s income. We recommend that you try to estimate your income as close as possible to your actual income so that your financial aid eligibility is not greatly affected by any income changes.

What is verification?
Verification is a review process where the Department of Education has requested that the Financial Aid Department review all of the information that the student has completed on their financial aid application.

Is it required that I submit my/my parent’s Federal Tax Return Transcript?
No, unless you have been selected for Federal/Institutional Verification.

If my parents are divorced or separated, whose financial aid data should be used when I am completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)?
If your parents are separated or divorced use the parent with whom you lived the most with in the past 12 months. If you lived with neither parent or lived with each parent an equal number of days use the parent that provided the most financial support to you over the past 12 months. If that parent has remarried you must also include the stepparent’s financial information on the application and parent and stepparent should report themselves as married on the FAFSA.

What if I have a Special Circumstance?

If your financial situation has changed drastically, you may ask the Financial Aid Department to review your eligibility. Some examples of special circumstances are involuntary loss of employment and recent separation or divorce. A letter of explanation and additional documentation will be requested. Contact the Financial Aid Department directly for more information.

How do I apply for a Federal Direct Student Loan?
The first step in applying for a Federal Direct Student Loan is to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). For new or first-time borrowers once you file your FAFSA form, you will receive a Financial Aid Award Letter indicating the amount of your student loan eligibility along with instructions on when and how to apply for your loans.

Will our savings and other assets be considered when our financial need is being determined?
Family assets such as stocks and bonds, net business worth and savings are taken into account in determining the Expected Family Contribution toward a student’s education. Eligibility for Federal Financial Aid funds is determined by rules set by the government that provide, among other things, allowances for retirement needs in computing this contribution.

How will my financial aid be applied to my bill?
Dowling College will provide a temporary credit on your student bill for the funds for which you have satisfied all program eligibility requirements and requested paperwork.  The awards will be applied as follows:

Federal Grants and Institutional Aid:  Dowling College Academic grant and scholarship funds will be credited directly to your account each semester.
Institutional and federal need based grants will be credited directly to your student account each semester once you have met all institutional and federal fund eligibility requirements.

Loan Funds:  If you receive a Federal Student/Private Loan, most lenders will send the funds directly through electronic funds transfer to Dowling College for the amount borrowed minus fees in accordance with your loan disclosure.  Funds will be credited directly to your student account each semester once we confirm that you have met all loan eligibility requirements.  In some cases the lender of a Private loan will forward funds in the form of a check made payable to the student and Dowling College. Students whose lenders send checks will be notified to visit the Financial Aid Department to endorse their loan check.

State Funds: State grants/scholarships will be credited directly to your student account each semester, once you have met all fund eligibility and application requirements.

If my account indicates that I have a credit balance, when will I receive a refund?
Refunds will not be issued until after classes begin each term.  If the student is due a refund, a direct credit will be applied to the student’s Golden Lion One account. The Title IV Authorization Form can be downloaded from our website.

What if I decide to change my housing status?
Sometimes a student’s decision to live on campus, off campus or at home has changed.  A new student should contact the Office of Admissions to request a housing change. A continuing student should contact the Office of Residence Life to request the same. Our office will then review and may adjust the student’s financial aid awards.  The student will be notified of any changes in aid eligibility by means of a revised financial aid package.

What if I withdraw or drop below full-time study, will it affect my financial aid?
Your aid may be affected if you make a change in enrollment status.  Your awards may have to be reduced or cancelled entirely. Students are encouraged to visit the Financial Aid Department if they have any questions about how the change in enrollment status will impact their financial aid.

How will an outside scholarship affect my financial aid award?
All outside awards are considered as a resource and must be included and factored into the student’s financial aid package. We will allow the student to retain the scholarship if the student’s need has not been met and the scholarship in combination with other awards does not exceed expenses for tuition, fees, room and board. If need is met, then the College will make every effort to first reduce student loan debt or work study before reducing grant or scholarship assistance.

How will the Financial Aid Department communicate with me?
The Financial Aid Department will communicate with you as follows:

  • E-mail: Your Dowling College e-mail address
  • Mail – All mail will be sent to the student’s permanent home address.
  • Telephone – If necessary, we will call you at the telephone number on record with the College.  We strongly encourage students to keep their telephone and mailing address current.

What will we communicate?

  • Requests and/or receipt of documents
  • Award Letter revisions
  • Financial Aid program deadlines
  • Tuition payment due dates
  • Notification of outstanding balances
  • Important messages from our office

What is the best way for me to communicate with the Financial Aid Department?

  • Mail – Please mail all documents to our Processing Center:
    •    Dowling College, 150 Idle Hour Blvd., Oakdale, NY 11769

    • Students submitting documents to the Financial Aid Department should not send originals.
    • Your Dowling College ID number should be included on each page of documentation.
  • E-mail us at finaid@dowling.edu (Please include student’s ID number – for privacy reasons do not include social security number)
  • Telephone –  You can reach one of our Customer Service specialists by calling (631) 244-1818
  • Visit our Office:
    • Rudolph Campus – location Fortunoff Hall Room 105, 150 Idle Hour Blvd., Oakdale, NY 11769

When will I receive my tuition bill?
Bills for fall tuition, fees, room and board will be mailed to all students when they register.  Students can view their bill and financial aid award online by clicking here. All payment arrangements made after the bill due date will be considered late and a late fee will charged to the student’s account.

When do Fall 2015 classes begin?
Fall 2015 classes begin August 31, 2015.