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Financial Aid Process

The Financial Aid Process and How to Apply

Saint Leo University’s Student Financial Services encourages all students to electronically file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine their eligibility for student aid assistance from federal, state, and private sources.

When you file your FAFSA, be sure to enter Saint Leo University’s federal school code - 001526.

FAFSA Process

1. The student and parent each apply for a Federal Student Aid ID

he FSA ID is used to electronically apply for federal student aid and to access federal student aid records online. If the student is independent, then his/her FAFSA will not include parent information and a parent FSA ID is unnecessary.  Click on How to Create an FSA ID for more information.

2. File the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

  • You must file the FAFSA every year. (Federal and state aid is not automatically renewed.) The new FAFSA is available every year on October 1.
  • It is strongly recommended that you file an electronic FAFSA online. However, paper application forms are available upon request. Please allow 4-6 weeks for processing paper application forms.
  • List Saint Leo University on your FAFSA using the university’s federal school code - 001526.
  • After completing the application, “sign” the document electronically using your Federal Student Aid ID. If you are a dependent student, your parent must also sign the FAFSA using their ID.
  • It usually takes about an hour to complete the FAFSA. When the FAFSA is submitted electronically it takes about a week for Saint Leo University to receive it. Allow up to two weeks to review and process the award, and more time if you are federally selected for verification. Look for a response from Student Financial Services in your Saint Leo student email account.

3. Student receives a Student Aid Report (SAR)

Within 3-5 days of filing the FAFSA online, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the office of Federal Student Aid at the U.S. Department of Education. Your SAR will be emailed to you if you listed an email address on the FAFSA. If you did not include an e-mail address, your SAR will be mailed to your permanent address in about 7-10 days. Read the SAR comments to determine whether corrections are required, if Student Financial Services is required to collect additional documents from you for verification, or to determine your aid eligibility. Student Financial Services will notify you of the next steps.

4. Saint Leo University receives an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR)

Student Financial Services will receive your processed FAFSA from the U.S. Department of Education’s Central Processing System (CPS). This is called an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR). Your ISIR is usually received in about a week from the time you submit your completed FAFSA.

5. Saint Leo University sends the student an award notification or requests additional information

The student will receive one of the following notifications from Saint Leo University:

  • An official award notification with instructions for accepting the award(s)
  • An official letter of notification that you are not eligible for financial aid
  • An official notification that your application was federally selected for verification and/or additional information is needed to determine your financial aid eligibility. The notification will include instructions on the documents that are requested. A complete and signed set of requested documents should be submitted as quickly as possible to avoid delay in the review of your application.

6. If the student is borrowing Direct Loans, s/he will complete the Direct Loan application process

If the award notification includes a Direct Loan(s) the student must accept or reject the loan(s) via eLion. Directions on how to do this will be included in the award notification. Also, if the student is a new borrower at Saint Leo University, s/he must complete the Entrance Loan Counseling and Master Promissory Note (MPN) at https://studentloans.gov.

Priority Filing Date

A new university campus undergraduate student enrolling in the fall semester should file a FAFSA no later than January 1 to meet state programs’ and institutional priority filing dates. New university campus undergraduate students and transfer university campus students enrolling in the spring semester should file a FAFSA no later than November 1. Students should allow sufficient time to receive their award notification and make payment arrangements.

Transferring to Saint Leo University

A transfer student should add Saint Leo University’s federal school code (001526) to her/his college choice on the FAFSA. Go to www.FAFSA.ed.gov and click on "Add or Delete School Code." You may also notify the U.S. Department of Education by phoning 1-800-433-3243. Ask the customer service representative to add Saint Leo University (federal school code 001526) to your FAFSA. You will have to provide your name, social security number, birth date, and the Data Release Number (DRN) from your Student Aid Report (SAR) to perform this operation over the phone.

Helpful Hints for You & Your Family

  • Do your taxes early—prior to receiving your W2 forms—in order to have the information necessary to complete the financial aid process. We strongly recommend that you estimate your tax information in order to file early. If necessary, you can correct the figures later in the filing process.
  • Keep a calendar with dates and deadlines on which you note deadlines for submitting scholarship, grant and financial aid applications for the schools you are considering.
  • Keep a file on each school to which you have applied, and keep in that file the information and correspondence you receive from the school, as well as copies of all correspondence and forms you send to the school, noting the dates the correspondence was sent.
  • Be consistent with information you provide and use the same information when filling out different documents—discrepancies will raise questions and slow the process.
  • Always call to follow-up and make sure applications and supporting documents are received.
  • Don’t wait until the last minute—apply early! Many scholarships and grants have a February 1st priority deadline. Estimate your taxes and file your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1. (Saint Leo University’s institutional number for the FAFSA is 001526).
  • Apply online if possible. Click Here for more information.

FAFSA Tutorials

Federal Student Aid has developed tutorials that provide detailed, easy to understand information about:

  • Federal Student Aid
  • Filing the FAFSA
  • What happens after the FAFSA
  • And much more…

Click here to access the Federal Student Aid Channel to view these exceptional tutorials.

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