All students who file the FAFSA are automatically considered for any grants that are administered by UM's Financial Aid Office, except the federal TEACH Grant. The TEACH Grant requires a separate application.
Most grants have limited funding so are given first to the students who apply by the priority deadline (February 15th prior to the upcoming autumn term).
Because grants are need based, eligibility for grants are determined by a students EFC (Expected Family Contribution) from the FAFSA.
Federal Pell Grant
Eligibility for the Federal Pell Grant is based on a student's EFC and enrollment status.
In 2019-20 a student attending full-time with an EFC of 0 is eligible for a grant of $6,195 for the academic year. A student attending full-time with an EFC of 5576 would be eligible for the minimum annual grant amount of $657. A student attending full-time with an EFC of 5577 or higher is not eligible for the Federal Pell Grant.
Students attending part-time, even if it's just one course, may also be eligible. The amount of the grant is prorated by the enrollment status, e.g. a student attending half-time (6-8 credits) could receive half of the annual amount. However, the EFC cut-offs are lower for part-time students.
A student ceases to be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant once they have completed the requirements for a bachelor's degree or have received the equivalent of six years of full-time grants, which ever comes first.
If a student reduces their credit load after their Federal Pell Grant has paid, but before the 16th class day in the semester, the grant amount may be adjusted down and the student would be required to repay the returned portion of the grant. If a student drops or adds a class after the 15th class day, the Federal Pell Grant will not be adjusted down or up.
Students receiving a Federal Pell Grant must begin attendance in all their classes. If at the end of the semester a student's recorded grades show they received one or more 'F', 'NF', 'W', 'WF', 'WP', 'I', or 'MG' grades they may have to repay some or all of their Federal Pell Grant.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
To be eligible for the FSEOG a student must also be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant. Usually, a student must also have an EFC of 0.
For the 2019-20 academic year the maximum grant at UM is $600, half of which is disbursed in the autumn and half in the spring.
Students who are enrolled at least half-time (6 credits) are eligible to receive the grant. It is not prorated if a student is attending less than full-time.
The federal TEACH grant is actually a forgivable loan provided to students who are planning to teach high need subjects in low income schools. The grant is worth up to $4000 per academic year and is NOT need-based.
Graduate and undergraduate students who are in specific majors in UM's Department of Curriculum and Instruction are the only students eligible. Post-baccaulareate students are not eligible.
Students must submit UM's TEACH Grant Application and complete an Agreement to Serve (ATS). If a student does not complete the teaching requirement detailed in the ATS, the grant will revert to an unsubsidzed loan with retroactive interest back to the date of first disbursement.
Montana State Grants
In 2015, funding for the Montana Higher Education Grant and the Baker Grant (Montana Tuition Assistance Program) were discontinued by the Montana legislature.
Funds that the state does provide are in the form of scholarships administered by the Montana University System and through funding provided directly to schools. Montana seeks to make higher education affordable for its residents by keeping tuition rates low.
Other State Grants
Most states only allow students to receive their grants if attending schools in their state. However, some states (e.g. Vermont, the District of Columbia) allow students to receive their grants even if they are attending out of state.
Application for grants from other states is made through the other state's education agency.