FAFSA


The Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Filing your FAFSA

You never have to pay to file your FAFSA, it's a FREE application!  Filing your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) with your FSA ID is the first step in receiving financial aid.  

You can get your FSA ID herefile your FAFSA here and once you have clicked "Submit" on your FAFSA the Financial Aid Office will begin to build your financial aid package.  When filing, include the UM school code #002536 so your application can be sent to the University of Montana.  Missoula College and Bitterroot College students can use the same code.  For more information on filing your FAFSA, go to the UM Financial Aid Office website

You are able to file your FAFSA at any time beginning in the October before the academic year for which you are requesting aid.  However, in order to get the most aid possible for your situation, you should apply by December 1st prior to the start of the academic year so your application can be included in the Priority Group.   

For students looking for aid in the 2021-2022 Academic Year, you should submit your 2021-2022 FAFSA between October 1, 2020 and December 1, 2020 in order to be in the Priority Group for the University of Montana, Missoula College and Bitterroot College.

We suggest that you fill out your FAFSA as soon as possible using an excellent feature called the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.  This allows you to link to the IRS and automatically fill in your tax information instead of having to find a copy of your tax return and fill in each field by hand.  Remember you are always able to make corrections to your FAFSA after you submit, but try to have it submitted by December 1st.

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Host a FAFSA Night

FAFSA Night Workshop Request Form

Want to host a FAFSA night for your school or organization? We can help!

Hosting an event is a great way to help prospective students and families navigate the hurdles of filing the FAFSA application. We are available after October 1, 2020 on most Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday nights (excluding holidays) to come to your school or organization.

Here’s how it works:

1) Fill out a FAFSA Night Request Form. Click here to fill out a FAFSA Night Request Form for your school or organization. Please indicate 2-3 dates that will work for you. Note: We are available most Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday nights (excluding holidays)

2) Choose Location and time. Determine a location or meeting room for the event; be sure that the space is equipped with computers.

3) Advertise the Event. Start advertising your event as early as possible, and advertise it in a variety of ways to reach the largest number of people. Share the details on your school or organizations website and social media platforms, or put up posters around the community. We have some templates for flyers and social media posts to assist you if needed.

FAFSA Workshop Dates

Workshops will all be held at 6 pm. Decide which date works for you. At 6 pm, simply copy the Zoom link below into your browser to join the online workshop. https://umontana.zoom.us/j/2482306737

Monday, October 5th 

Monday, October 12th

Wendesday, October 21st

Friday, November 6th

Monday, November 9th

Tuesday, November 17th 

Tuesday, November 24th

Types of Aid You Could Receive

Once you file your FAFSA and receive your Financial Aid Packet you will see different types of Aid offered:

  • Scholarships 
  • Grants
  • Work-Study
  • Tuition Waivers
  • Federal Student Loans

Scholarships are free money given to students that meet certain criteria.  Go here to apply for other UM scholarships that may not be included in your Financial Aid Packet. You can go here to search the Montana University System for scholarships as well.

Grants are also free money.  Your FAFSA application is what determines your eligibility and the amount of your grant.  Go here for more information on the grants available at UM

Work-Study allows you to earn federal aid (that you don't have to pay it back) while working part-time.  This money is not credited towards your bill, you receive this aid as a semi-monthly paycheck.  The Financial Aid Office has more information on Work-study opportunities and qualifications.  

Tuition Waivers eliminate or reduce the tuition cost of attendance (note that they do not eliminate the fees for your courses) and this money does not have to be repaid.  The Financial Aid Office has more information on the tuition waivers available at UM

Federal Student Loans are not free money.  Any loan you accept must be repaid, along with the interest and fees associated with the loan.  More information on student loan process can be found here

The Financial Aid Office also has a detailed glossary of Financial Aid terms if you are seeking clarity on other terminology.  

How To Keep Your Financial Aid

Financial Aid is similar to being "paid" at the beginning of the semester for work you are going to do all semester long.  

If you stop attending classes part way through the semester, that can mean you haven't earned the entire amount of aid you were "paid" at the beginning of the semester.  You could owe a portion of that aid back to the University because you didn't fully earn it because you didn't fully compete the semester.

Even if you are considering a private student loan, be aware that some lenders do require you to maintain a certain GPA, be passing a certain portion of your classes or not be above the maximum number of credits allowed for your degree.  

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Before you consider dropping out during the semester, please consider the consequences of Withdrawal or contact a Withdrawal Coordinator for more information.