The Loma Linda University Office of Financial Aid strives to ensure that financial aid is distributed equitably based on calculated financial need.  “Need” is the difference between your estimated Cost of Attendance (COA) and your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) which is calculated by the U.S. Department of Education and reflected on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  Your EFC is determined by many factors, including the family’s income, assets, family size and number in college.  If you are independent, “family” refers to yourself and your spouse/children (if applicable).

If you are eligible for financial aid, your need may be funded by various sources.  Institutional funds are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis due to limited availability. Students who apply early are given first consideration during the awarding process.  Funds are awarded in the following sequence:

Undergraduate Students

  1. Outside scholarships or awards which our office is aware
  2. Federal PELL and FSEOG Grants
  3. Cal Grant awards (posted after confirmation and verification of eligibility)
  4. Federal Direct Loans (Subsidized, Unsubsidized, and PLUS*)
  5. Institutional Loan
  6. Federal Work Study (FWS) is added to a student’s award based on eligibility and student request

Graduate Students

  1. Outside scholarships or awards which our office is aware
  2. Federal Direct Loans (Unsubsidized and Graduate PLUS*)
  3. Institutional Loan
  4. Federal Work Study (FWS) is added to a student’s award based on eligibility and student request

* New student and parent borrowers must apply and complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling before a PLUS loan can be added to the financial aid award.

Notice:  Students may supplement their awards with private educational loans up to the amount of the student’s cost of attendance minus any financial aid they have received.  Students must apply for these loans separately through a bank or lender.  Remember that a loan is a legal obligation, so it is important to borrow only what you need and to research the terms and conditions of the loan thoroughly.

Award Adjustments

Throughout the academic year it may become necessary for the Office of Financial Aid to adjust your award if the total aid received exceeds your estimated cost of attendance.  Additionally, need based funding may not exceed the student’s financial need which is the cost of attendance minus EFC.  For example, a student may receive a scholarship from an outside organization after they have been awarded.  If that scholarship creates an overaward, it may become necessary to adjust a future scheduled award or to return aid that has already disbursed.  Overawards will be returned to loans before scholarships and grants when possible.

It is important to remember that all financial assistance you receive for being a student must be coordinated with your financial aid award.  Make sure you notify the Office of Financial Aid immediately if you receive financial assistance not reflected on your award by submitting a Request to Change Form – Report Outside Assistance.  If you notice any omission or discrepancies on your award letter, notify the Office of Financial Aid immediately.

 Effect of Parent Information

The federal student aid programs are based on the concept that it is primarily your and your family’s responsibility to pay for your education.  Based on your responses to questions on the FAFSA, you will be considered a dependent or independent student.  Note that you may be considered a dependent student even if you don’t live with your parents or receive financial assistance from them.  Dependent students must submit parent information on their FAFSA and for verification (if applicable) to receive a financial aid award.

If you are an independent student, you are not required to submit parent information to receive federal student aid such as the PELL Grant, FSEOG, and Direct Loans.  However, certain funds require parental information regardless of a student’s age, marital status, or tax status.

When completing the FAFSA, you will be given the option to submit parent information. The decision to submit parental information will be left to you; however, it is recommended that you complete the parent section of the FAFSA if you wish to be considered for the all of the resources for which you might be eligible.