Applying for Financial Aid

Students must apply for financial aid each year by completing the online Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online. The Department of Education (DOE) makes the new FAFSA available after October 1. There is no fee to complete the FAFSA on the Department of Education (DOE) website. The Spanish language FAFSA is also available.

Student Eligibility Requirements

  • Enroll as a regular student and be degree or certificate seeking in an eligible program of study.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) as defined by the college.
  • Provide the PHSC Admission's Office with an official copy of the student's high school transcript or GED.
  • Transfer student information is available through the PHSC catalog and student handbook.
  • May only be funded for courses required for the current degree or certificate program. In addition, Federal Student Loan eligibility requires that students be enrolled at least half-time each semester in courses required by their program or certificate of study.
  • Not be in default on a prior student loan. (Unless participating in the Fresh Start for Borrowers default loan program).See your Financial Aid Office for more information about the Fresh Start loan program.
  • Are not eligible to receive federal student aid from two different schools when attending two different schools at the same time. 

Completing the FAFSA

  • Complete the FAFSA each year.
  • All contributors, anyone who is required to provide information on a student’s FAFSA form, including the student, the student’s spouse, a biological or adoptive parent, or the parent’s spouse must create a FSA ID to complete and sign the FAFSA.
  • If a student, or required contributor, doesn’t provide consent and approval to use the Financial Aid Direct Data Exchange (FA-DDX), the student will not be eligible for federal aid.
  • Be certain to enter correct Social Security number(s) on the application.
  • Add the PHSC school code 010652.
  • Prior, Prior Year (PPY). Beginning with the 2017-2018 award year, student and their families will provide income and tax information from the tax year one year earlier than has been used in the past. Therefore, the 2024-2025 FAFSA will collect information from the 2022 tax year. 

After Your FAFSA is Submitted

  • Upon completing the application, students and parents may sign with their FSA ID. If not, students must print the FAFSA signature page, affix the appropriate signatures, and mail the document to the FAFSA Processing System (FPS).
  • FAFSA Processing System (FPS) will perform the calculation to determine the student's financial aid eligibility.
  • Within one to three days after the FAFSA is submitted the student should receive a FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS). The FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) is the official determination by the DOE about whether or not the student qualifies for different types of federal assistance. If a student receives a FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) that indicates they do not qualify for federal assistance, they should contact the Financial Aid Office to determine if alternative sources are available.
  • Review the FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) carefully and make corrections to any errors on the processed FAFSA.
  • Occasionally, the Department of Education will determine a student to be ineligible for financial aid. If a student receives a FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) that indicates they did not qualify for federal assistance, they should contact the Financial Aid Office for more information about their eligibility and alternative financial aid sources.
  • Students should monitor their online student self-service account closely after they receive their FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) and are welcome to contact their Financial Aid Office.

Federal Eligibility Matches

The Federal FAFSA Processing System (FPS) matches a student's name, date of birth, and social security number with a variety of federal agencies including the Social Security Administration, Department of Homeland Security, Veteran's Administration and National Student Loan Data System. If there are discrepancies in student FAFSA and federal agency information during the match process, the student will be asked to provide additional documentation, or actions, to confirm federal assistance eligibility. The student will be notified of federal match results on the FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) and the school will notify the student of requested documentation. Please monitor the student online WISE portal for possible missing documents and file status.

FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) Corrections

PHSC's financial aid office processes and submits corrections electronically for the FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) to the Department of Education (DOE). The DOE transmits the correction to their services, FAFSA Processing System (FPS), who is contracted to process the financial aid applications. The procedures for corrections and updates apply to all federal student aid applicants.

The Financial Aid Office will download the FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) into the PHSC student records system and process the corrected application. Within three to five business days, the student will receive an acknowledgment notice from the FAFSA Processing System (FPS) once the submitted correction is processed. The Financial Aid Office then receives the corrected FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) electronically. Upon electronic receipt of the corrected FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS), the Financial Aid Office will complete the student's financial aid file. 

All corrected FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS) must be submitted or received electronically by June 30, 2025 for the 2024-2025 academic year. Failure to provide the documentation necessary to complete the verification process by the established deadline may result in loss or repayment of financial aid awarded.

All information and documentation submitted by the student and/or parent must be accurate and authentic. Students who purposely give false or misleading information may be fined, sentenced to prison, or both.

Awarding Process

After the student's financial aid file is completed, the student will receive an award letter via the student's PHSC mail account indicating their eligibility for assistance, or an ineligibility notification stating they do not qualify for grant programs. 

We recommend students monitor their PHSC mail and student self-service account frequently during the awarding process in order to provide necessary requested and missing documentation and to review the status of their financial aid file.

Purchasing Books with Financial Aid

Students who have been awarded financial aid for the semester may be able to charge the cost of their books against their financial aid award if they meet the following guidelines.

Other Financial Aid Considerations

  • Your financial aid award letter amount is based on full-time enrollment. The amount of your aid will be adjusted each semester to reflect the percentage of full-time enrollment at which a student is enrolled, rounded to the nearest whole percent intensity.
  • If you receive private outside scholarships and/or other types of financial aid, your other aid may need to be adjusted to prevent you from being over-funded with federal and state aid.
  • Over payment status can occur as a result of non-attendance, enrollment in ineligible courses, not meeting enrollment requirements, or institutional error. Students in an over payment status have reduced eligibility after financial aid funds were used to pay charges or were refunded. 
  • Students in over payment status will have a hold placed on their record and will be unable to register for any additional courses until the amount owed is repaid in full.
  • A calculation will be run to determine the unearned portion of federal financial aid for students who withdraw, stop attending, or change all courses from credit to audit, before completing 60% or more of their semester.  Any amount of federal financial aid that must be returned to the federal programs is the responsibility of the student.

Financial Aid Refund Process

The Financial Aid Office applies financial aid funds to pay tuition and fees. If additional funds remain after the payment of tuition, fees and book charges, the student will receive a balance refund check within 14 days of awarding, or within 14 days of the last day of drop/add, whichever occurs last. Students will receive their refund through their selected refund preference with BankMobile. 

Official and Unofficial Withdrawals

Students who receive Title IV Federal financial aid may have their financial aid adjusted if they have a complete withdrawal or fail to earn a passing grade during the semester/term.  In addition, students who have a complete withdrawal status prior to the disbursement of aid for the semester/term may also result in an adjustment.  This adjustment would be made based on aid earned up to the point of withdrawal.  The school must offer any post-withdrawal disbursement of loan funds within 30 days of the date the school determined the student withdrew and must provide the student or parent the minimum 14-day response period for the post-withdrawal disbursement of Direct Loan funds.  The school must disburse any Title IV grant funds a student is due as part of a post-withdrawal disbursement within 45 days of the date the school determined the student withdrew and disburse any loan funds a student accepts within 180 days of the date the school determined the student withdrew.

A student’s official withdrawal date is defined as the mid-point of the semester/term unless otherwise noted by the instructor. 

A student is considered to have unofficially withdrawn for financial aid purposes when (1) the student does not complete the official withdrawal process and (2) the student fails to earn passing grades in courses for which he/she is registered for at the end of that semester/term.  The student’s unofficial withdrawal date will be defined as the student’s last date of academic related activity/engagement as reported by the instructor or mid-point of the semester/term.

Students receiving Title IV Federal financial aid who are considered to be officially OR unofficially withdrawn may owe some or all of their federal aid back to the institution and/or to the U.S. Department of Education based on the Return of Title IV Calculation.

Federal Financial Aid Repayment Rules

Federal student aid recipients who withdraw (officially or unofficially) from, stop attending or change from credit to audit status, causing a reduction in course load, may have to repay all or part of their federal student aid. Federal regulations require we calculate the amount of financial aid earned when a student is no longer attending or has withdrawn from all courses. This regulation includes courses that are changed from credit to audit status and courses where the student receives a grade of "F" due to non-attendance.

If the federal student aid the student has received is greater than the institutional charges (tuition and fees), a portion of the federal financial aid may have to be returned to the Department of Education. Students who return the unearned funds will regain eligibility to apply for aid in future semesters. Students must make repayment to PHSC within 45 days or make payment arrangements to the Department of Education. Students are ineligible for future federal funding until their entire balance is repaid. Federal funds administered by PHSC are returned in the following order:

  1. Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
  2. Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
  3. Federal Direct PLUS Loan
  4. Federal Pell Grant
  5. Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant