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Financial Aid Process for current Midshipmen and Appointees

Step One: Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Students planning to apply for financial for the 2012-2013 academic year,  must complete a 2012-2013 FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).  Students planning to apply for financial aid for the 2013-2014 academic year, must complete a 2013-2014 FAFSA.

Be sure to complete the FAFSA that corresponds to the academic year for which you are applying for federal financial aid.   FAFSA’s must be completed online at

The school will use information from FAFSA to determine if you qualify to receive federal student aid from the grant program and/or loans.

Financial Aid is calculated by the Cost of Attendance Minus Expected Family Contribution = Financial Need.

The Cost of Attendance includes midshipmen fees and out-of-pocket expenses such as transportation, personal and general supplies. For example if a family is expected to be able to contribute $2,000 to a college with a cost of attendance of $6,000, then the student's need would be $4,000. This need helps determine how much and what type of aid a student may be eligible to receive during a given academic year.

The Expected Family Contribution is calculated after you submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Financial aid applicants must submit a FAFSA in order to be considered for aid.

Financial Need is defined by Congress as the difference between the Cost of Attendance and what the family can be reasonably expected to contribute towards that Cost of Attendance

You will need your, and one of your parent's PIN ( number to sign the FAFSA form electronically.

The Academy's School Code 002892 must be included on your FAFSA form.

Step Two: Financial Aid Award Letter

The Financial Aid Office will review your FAFSA and will determine your eligibility for Federal financial aid and will issue you an award letter that will be mailed to your home address or your campus post office box if it is issued during a term when you are here on campus.

You must sign your award letter and return it to the Financial Aid Office within ten days.  If you accept a direct student loan, you will be required to complete Direct Loan Entrance Counseling and a Direct Loan Electronic Master Promissory Note if you have not previously done so (see step 4).  The award letter will allow you the opportunity to decline all or a portion of any aid offered.

Step Three: Federal Verification Process

The U.S. Department of Education randomly selects a certain number of FAFSA applications for which it requires schools to complete a process called “verification”.  This process requires schools to collect additional documentation to verify information provided on the FAFSA.  The Financial Aid Office will notify you in writing if you are required to complete the verification process.  The verification notice will outline the additional information and/or documents that you and/or your parents (if dependent) are required to submit.  The awarding and/or disbursement of financial aid funds can be delayed until the verification process is completed.

Step Four: Applying for a Federal Direct Student Loan (Subsidized/Unsubsidized)

New and enrolled students who have not previously borrowed a Direct Loan while enrolled at the USMMA, must complete Entrance Counseling and an Electronic Master Promissory Note.  A Master Promissory Note is a binding legal contract between a loan holder and a borrower. The promissory note contains the loan terms and conditions, including how and when the loan must be repaid. By signing this note, the borrower agrees to repay the loan.

If you previously borrowed a Direct Loan while enrolled at the USMMA, you are NOT required to complete entrance counseling or a new Electronic Master Promissory Note.

Entrance Counseling 

Go online to  Log in using your FAFSA pin number ( Once you log-in, select the link “Complete Entrance Counseling” and follow the instructions.

Electronic Master Promissory Note

Log-in to select the link Complete Master Promissory Note and select Subsidized/Unsubsidized and follow the instructions. Note: MPNs are valid for ten years. Once you have an MPN on file, you will not need to complete one for later years.

Step Five: Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

Parents of dependent students may be eligible to apply for a Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS).

If you and your parent accepted a Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) on your award letter, your parent (borrower) will need to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at The parent (borrower) should log-in using their personal information and Personal Identification Number (PIN) from FAFSA. Once logged-in, click on “Complete Master Promissory Note”, proceed by clicking Parent PLUS and follow the instructions. Note: MPNs are valid for ten years. Once an MPN is on file, it is not necessary to complete one for later years.

Once the MPN is complete, parents will need to apply for the PLUS loan and go through a credit check. Log-in to, click on “Start PLUS Application Process”, proceed by clicking “Parent PLUS”, and follow the instructions.

Once you and your parent have accepted a Direct PLUS loan on your award letter and there is a valid Master Promissory Note, the Financial Aid Office will certify the PLUS loan. The PLUS loan will be disbursed as scheduled on your award letter.

Step Six: Financial Aid Disbursements

Financial aid is disbursed after students have met all disbursement requirements that include returning a signed financial aid award, completing verification (if required), and completing Direct Loan requirements if applicable.   Financial aid is disbursed in equal disbursements over the number of terms in which the student is enrolled.  Initial disbursements for each term are scheduled approximately 10 days after the first day of each term.  Subsequent disbursements resulting from new awards or adjustments to financial aid awards are made on an ongoing basis throughout each term.

Updated: Thursday, June 13, 2013