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Federal and Penn State Financial Aid Eligibility Requirements

To receive and retain student financial aid, including all types of federal loans, undergraduate, graduate, and professional students must meet certain eligibility requirements.

Application requirements:

  • Have a high school diploma
  • Be a citizen or eligible non-citizen with a valid Social Security Number
  • Be registered for the Selective Service if you are male and 18-25 years of age
  • Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) yearly
  • Comply with any and all requests for information
  • Remain in good standing on educational loans and grants per the National Student Loan Database System (NSLDS)

Enrollment requirements:

  • Be enrolled in an eligible degree or certificate program
  • In general, remain enrolled for at least six credits if you are an undergraduate student* with the exception of the Federal Pell Grant, which is awarded based on the number of credits (1 credit minimum) and the Expected Family Contribution (EFC).
  • In general, remain enrolled for five credits; at the 400 level or higher if you are a graduate student
  • Comply with Penn State's Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Federal aid requirements:

We will monitor your Award Summary throughout each semester to ensure your student aid does not exceed your financial need or your costs. If this occurs, a hold will temporarily appear on the homepage of your LionPATH account indicating that you have an “Overaward of Financial Aid”.  Our office will review and adjust your aid as appropriate to remain within federal guidelines.

*Some grant programs require full-time enrollment, which is indicated in each grant's eligibility section.










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