Most financial aid funds are credited directly to your student account and are applied first to institutional charges (e.g., tuition, dorm charges) for the current term.
Funds are credited no earlier than the first day of the current term.
All applicable aid can be credited directly to your account after the following requirements are met:
- complete and return your award letter
- provide all required documents for your awarded aid programs
- make satisfactory academic progress
- enroll in the minimum number of required units for the various financial aid programs
- complete MPN and loan counseling requirements for Federal Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized or PLUS loans (or both)
If the disbursement of your aid results in a credit balance, any aid awarded in excess of institutional charges will be paid to you after the start of the term. Checks are mailed approximately one week from the time the credit balance appears on your student account. They will automatically be sent to your billing address on file at the Student Accounts Office.
Students have the right to cancel a loan(s) anytime before disbursement and up to 120 days thereafter. Federal Direct Loans and alternative loan funds are disbursed in the order below to enrolled students whose financial aid files are complete:
- week 1 (courses): fourth-year and graduate students
- week 2: third- and second-year students
- week 3: first-year students
Budget carefully. You will most likely receive all financial aid at the beginning of the semester. It is your responsibility to manage your finances so that your financial aid will meet your expenses throughout the term.
If you withdraw or enroll less than half time after the start of the semester, you may be required to repay all or a portion of the aid that has already been credited to your account.
You must inform the Financial Aid Office if you take a leave of absence or change your enrollment subsequent to receiving your financial aid. Cal Grant recipients are advised to contact the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) and submit a Leave of Absence form to retain eligibility for the program.
Financial Aid Award Guide
Download our Guide for answers to questions about your financial aid award letter.
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