Financial Aid FAQ

Q:  What is financial aid?

A:  Financial aid refers to any funds available to students and/or their parents to help offset the cost of higher education.  Funds come from private, federal, state, and institutional resources.

Q:  What do I need to do to apply for financial aid?

A:  Complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).  This form can be completed online at or on paper by mail.  Paper FAFSA forms are only available online. Also, if you complete the FAFSA by paper, we will need a copy of your W2 and federal tax forms (parents’ federal tax forms will also be needed if student is of dependent status). All applying students (online or by mail) need a pin number (dependent parent must have a pin as well).  For independent students, only one pin is needed.  To register a pin, go to:

Q:  What is the cost for submitting a FAFSA?

A:  The FAFSA is a completely free application.  You do not need to pay anyone to assist you in filling out the FAFSA.  The best resources for help are speaking with a Financial Aid Counselor at Mid-Continent University, calling the Department of Education at 1-800-433-3243, or online at:

Q:  How do I sign my FAFSA electronically?

A:  The FAFSA is signed electronically with a PIN number, issued by the Department of Education.  If you are a dependent student, your parent’s pin will also be needed.  You may apply for your PIN at

Q:  What grants are available at Mid-Continent University? 

A:  The Federal Pell Grant is based on a student's financial need determined by filling out the FAFSA using your tax records and W2 forms from previous year.  The state of Kentucky awards two grants to eligible Kentucky residents: the CAP (College Access Program) and KTG (Kentucky Tuition Grant).  All of these grants are based on financial need and are time sensitive. Money does run out on the state grants, so your FAFSA needs to be filled out by March 15th of each year to be assured of eligibility.  

The KTG grant is designed specifically for Kentucky residents that choose to attend a private college or university in Kentucky. An applying student must be registered full-time to receive KTG. 

Q:  Does Mid-Continent University accept KEES (Kentucky Education Excellent Scholarship) funds?  

A:  Yes.   Mid-Continent University applies KEES to a student's account automatically if they are awarded funds. 

Q:  Does Mid-Continent University participate in the Federal Student Loan Program? 

A:  Yes.  Please contact your individual Financial Aid Counselor for the necessary application for the Federal Stafford Loan after filling out a FAFSA. 

Q:  What are some tips for completing a FAFSA?

 A:  The information supplied on the FAFSA is taken from you and/or your parents' prior-year federal income tax forms.  Please make an effort to prepare the income tax forms early enough to complete the FAFSA accurately and completely.  If you or your parents are unable to prepare your taxes this early, use estimated income figures to complete the FAFSA. When doing so, you will need to have copies of all tax and W2 forms submitted to the financial aid office as soon as possible after your taxes are completed for verification.  Warning: A student submitting estimated numbers may not receive a correct EFC number. 

When filling out the paper form, remember to complete the entire form, use black ink, and do not leave any questions blank unless instructed to do so.  Be cautious when entering numbers like your social security number—an error in reporting your social security number can delay the application process (this applies to the online form as well).

Get someone to proofread and check the FAFSA application before submitting it to the processing center online.  Keep a copy for your records to expedite solutions to questions or concerns asked by the Financial Aid Office or the processing center for clarification.  Print out a confirmation form when doing a FAFSA on-line.

Remember to sign the FAFSA either in black ink (paper form) or electronically (online).  If you are a dependent student, your parents’ pin will also be needed.  You may apply for your PIN at

If you need assistance, contact the Financial Aid Counselors at MCU or call 1-800-4-FED-AID.

Q:  Can a student apply for financial aid from two schools simultaneously?  

A:  Yes, they can.  A student may apply up to 10 different schools by inserting each schools code on the FAFSA, but can only receive financial aid from one school in an academic award year.   If a student plans to take classes at two different colleges in the same term, the Financial Aid Office should be contacted immediately.

Q:  Can a student receive financial aid after completing his/her first Baccalaureate Degree? 

A:  Students are no longer eligible for grants after completing a Baccalaureate Degree, but they may continue to apply for loans within the loan limit.

Q:  How many college credit hours do students need to take to be eligible for financial aid? 

A:  A student must be full-time (a minimum of twelve credit hours) to receive full grant funds. Financial Aid disbursement for PELL and CAP may be prorated for students enrolled in less than a full-time status. Only students enrolled for full-time may receive KTG. Students may apply for loans if they are enrolled in at least a half-time status (6 credit hours). 

Q:  How is my financial aid disbursed to me?

A:  All federal and state grant and loans are applied directly to a student's account each term.  After current charges have been paid, any excess financial aid may be disbursed to the student in the form of a residual check. 

Q:  If I withdraw from school, do I have to pay back my financial aid?

A:  Students who withdraw from school are expected to repay a portion of their financial aid.  According to the formula prescribed by state and federal regulations, any refundable amount used to pay tuition and fees is returned to the appropriate financial aid sources. If a student drops from school, any loans that the student has received will come due, and payments are expected to be made immediately on the balance.

Q:  If I continue in school and graduate, do I have to pay back my grants and student loans?

A:  Grants do not have to be paid back. Student loans must be repaid.

Q:  If I am married but planning a divorce, do I answer married when filling out the FAFSA? 

A. Yes you do, unless you are legally separated.  The FAFSA provides a space to answer this question. 

Q:  Are Graduate students eligible for Pell grants?  

A:  No.  Only undergraduate students are eligible for Pell grants.

Q:  When am I independent from my parents?  How do I answer this question when filling out the FAFSA? 

A:  According to the government rules, a student is dependent until: you are 24 years old (you are considered independent from your parents if you were born before January, 1986), you are a graduate or professional student, you are married on or before the date you apply for aid, or you have dependents (children) other than a spouse.   If you are 24 years old and parents still pay a portion of your support, this must be reported on worksheet B on the FAFSA.

Q:  Is a foster parent a legal guardian? Are they considered a parent?  

A:  No.  A foster parent is not treated as a parent for FAFSA purposes, but a student must report untaxed income on worksheet B if money is received from a foster parent.  A dependent student must report information about his/her parental income, unless the parents are deceased.

Q:  Are students who are living with grandparents or other living relatives dependent?  

A:  No, unless the relatives or grandparents have adopted the student.  Any cash support must be reported as untaxed income on worksheet B.  Parents' income must still be reported.

Q:  If a student is paying for their own education but they are of dependent age, must he/she still use a parents' income to fill out their FAFSA?  

A:  Yes.  If a student is dependent and not 24 years of age, he/she still needs to use a parent’s income and his/her own when filling out a FAFSA, even if their parents did not claim them on their income tax. If a student is still supported by their parents and is over age 24, he/she needs to report money received on worksheet B.

Q:  What does not contribute to a dependency override? 

A: None of following contribute to dependency override:  (1) Parents refusing to contribute to the student's education.  (2) Parents that are unwilling to provide information for the FAFSA Application or for verification.  (3) Parents that do not claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes.  (4) Students that demonstrate total self-sufficiency. Note: A student must use parent's information unless the parent or parents are deceased.

FAFSA Code: 025762