Myths about Financial Aid

Application Process

Longwood's Federal Title IV School Code: 003719

To determine your eligibility for all types of financial assistance (grants, loans, scholarships, and work) at Longwood, you must apply each year using the following process:

1. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

The amount of time it takes the U.S. Department of Education to process an application depends on whether the application is submitted by regular mail or through FAFSA on the Web at and whether it is signed by paper or using a FSA ID as the electronic signature. Providing the processor with a current and valid e-mail on the FAFSA will also speed up the process in receiving your Student Aid Report (SAR), which includes the processed results.

The fastest way to receive results is to fill out a FAFSA on the Web application, providing a valid and current e-mail, and signing the application electronically using a U.S. Department of Education FSA ID. You should file the FAFSA by March 1, each year, prior to the academic year for which you will be enrolling. This date is not a deadline; it is a priority date and meeting it will help ensure that you are considered for the most aid available.

Note: If you/your family will not complete federal tax returns before the priority filing date, complete the FAFSA using your best estimates and make corrections after taxes are completed.

2. Longwood receives your FAFSA

Longwood receives your FAFSA results from the processor electronically through the EDE process (Electronic Data Exchange). This program allows us to retrieve your information and make corrections electronically. You will receive a Student Aid Report after the processor receives and processes your application. You should review it and make any necessary corrections to the processor.

3. Longwood may request additional information

After we review your application results, we will request additional information as needed. You should respond to any request for additional information/clarification as quickly as possible. Failure to respond will jeopardize your being offered the best aid package for which you are eligible.

A certain number of applications are selected each year to undergo a process called "verification." If your application is selected for this review process, we will notify you of the documents you are required to submit to us. They will include a verification worksheet, tax return transcripts, and possibly other supporting information. Please do not send these documents unless we request them.

4. Receive award notification and accept or decline assistance

Once the application and review process is completed, an award notification will be sent to your LU email address. This notification will direct you to a web address to view the types and amounts of assistance you have been offered. Awards are made on a rolling basis as funding permits. You are responsible for accepting/rejecting the assistance offered.

Since new students have deposit deadlines to meet and may be making a college selection with financial aid as a criterion, we generally send award notifications before we perform the verification process for these students.

5. Make any necessary corrections or requests based on special circumstances

If the figures used to complete the FAFSA are not accurate upon review, we will have to make corrections which could affect the amount and type of aid you have been offered. If this happens, you will receive a revised award notification.

The FAFSA is a need-assessment document which is computed using prior year's income figures. There may be extenuating family circumstances which prohibit the information on the FAFSA from giving a true picture of the family's financial situation. If you have special circumstances you wish to be considered in the review of your FAFSA, send a letter to the Office of Financial Aid. DO NOT send a letter with your FAFSA to the processor. Once we have received your original FAFSA results, any allowance for special circumstances will be made by a financial aid officer. Please make sure you give us expected income for the current calendar year if you are documenting a situation that affects the base-year income; i.e., loss of employment, retirement, separation/divorce, etc.

Things to Remember

  • Answer all questions.
  • Read the instructions carefully for each section. Do not assume the meaning of a question. Sometimes the information for which you are being asked is not what it seems.
  • If you are under 24 years of age, you will more than likely be required to file the FAFSA as a dependent of your parents. If parental information is required and is not completed, your application will be returned from the processor causing a delay. If you are uncertain whether or not to include your parents' information, call the Office of Financial Aid.
  • To be considered a Veteran for financial aid purposes, you must have served on active duty (other than "boot camp" or training for the Reserves or National Guard) and you must have been discharged from active duty under other than dishonorable reasons.
  • If your parents are divorced, but your custodial parent has remarried, the stepparent's information must be included on the FAFSA.
  • Do not file on legal guardian unless adopted.
  • If your parents are separated, divorced, or one parent is deceased, but a joint federal tax return was filed, complete the FAFSA using only your custodial parent's information and send copies of that parent's W-2 wage statement to the Office of Financial Aid.
  • Report all types of untaxed income--refer to the FAFSA worksheet. Many filers fail to report the following as untaxed income: payments to IRA accounts, untaxed portion of pensions and annuities (from your tax return); payments to tax deferred pensions, i.e., 401K, KEOGH (from your W-2 forms).
  • When reporting child support received, make sure you include all children for whom support was received, not just the student.