Your Financial Aid Package: An Overview

You are eligible for need-based financial aid based on your costs and your financial resources for the academic year.

The school calculates your eligibility for need-based financial aid using the following formula:

[Budget] – [Expected Resources] = Need-based financial aid eligibility

Once we determine your eligibility, we create an Offer of Financial Assistance. SPU attempts to meet as much of your financial need as possible.

Your budget

Your budget represents the costs for the academic year: Tuition, room and board (meal plan), books and supplies, personal expenses, and transportation are included in these allowable costs. Your budget is your cost of attendance.

We calculate your college costs cover full-time enrollment (12 undergraduate credits or 6 graduate credits) in a three-quarter academic year. Details in your financial aid budget (allowable costs) are available in the Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogs and on our Costs page.

For summer financial aid, you must complete the Summer Aid Application, which will be available in SFS on April 1 prior to each summer.

Your resources

Your resources include your expected family contribution and other outside assistance.

The FAFSA calculates how much you and/or your family can pay using a federal formula. It includes income, assets, and other information. This federal calculation views a family as being the main source for paying your college education, and it attempts to evaluate a family’s resources in a consistent and fair manner.

Other resources include outside grants and scholarships. We will use outside resources to replace unmet need first, loans and work study next, and grants last. 

Your offer of financial assistance

Your offer of financial assistance has the aid you are being offered for one academic year. We award the maximum you are eligible to receive in federal, state, and institutional funds.

After one initial paper offer, all future notifications are sent to your SPU email account.

Your financial aid is based on:

  • Your FAFSA
  • Your eligibility for each aid program
  • Funding availability
  • Additional outside resources
  • Institutional policies 

Master Conditions of Financial Assistance (PDF): This form is required prior to any disbursement of most aid. Read, sign, and keep a copy for your records. All policies, regulations, conditions, and statements detailed on the form apply to you unless other arrangements are made.

Understanding Your Aid Offer

Questions? Student Financial Services is here to help! This video explains your financial aid package and next steps.