The financial aid application process for the academic year begins Jan. 1. All students are encouraged to complete and submit the FAFSA as soon as possible after Jan. 1, designating VCU (school code 003735) to receive the results. In order to reduce problems, errors and omissions on the FAFSA, students are encouraged to apply electronically using FAFSA on the Web (available online at fafsa.ed.gov). Once the FAFSA is filed, the federal processor will send the student a Student Aid Report or electronic SAR acknowledgement and also will electronically send the information to the VCU Office of Financial Aid, if VCU was listed as a school to receive the data. If additional information is needed to complete processing of the application, the VCU Office of Financial Aid will send the student a request for additional information. Responding promptly to such requests will ensure timely processing of the application. Once the review of FAFSA data has been completed, the Office of Financial Aid will send the student a financial aid notification.
Please note that health professions students (dentistry, medicine, nursing or pharmacy) must provide both student and parental information on the FAFSA to apply and receive consideration for Title VII grants and loans from the Department of Health and Human Services.
Priority filing dates
The VCU Office of Financial Aid recommends electronically filing the FAFSA by March 1*. Students should complete the FAFSA using data from their completed tax returns. If necessary, they may use estimated tax return data in order to meet the VCU priority filing date but should be prepared to submit a copy of their completed tax returns and W2 forms to VCU as soon as possible. Students will receive their financial aid notification after their FAFSA application data has been verified. If students have not applied for financial aid in a timely manner, they may want to participate in the VCU Installment Payment Plan, which budgets each semester’s bill over four payments. Information about this plan can be found on the Student Accounting Department’s website (enrollment.vcu.edu/accounting/installment-payment-plan).
Students who do not have access to the Web may apply using the paper FAFSA, available through VCU, high schools, colleges and most public libraries. Those students completing a paper application should mail it to the federal processor by Feb. 1.