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Applying for Financial Aid - SMSU CODE #002375

When Should I Apply for Financial Aid?

The FAFSA for the 2024-2025 academic year (fall 2024, spring and summer 2025) is now available to complete online at

The FAFSA for the 2023-2024 academic year (fall 2023, spring and summer 2024) is also available.

Who can apply?

U.S. citizens and eligible noncitizens are eligible to apply. Refer to the FAFSA application for clarification regarding eligible noncitizens. The application process is the same for traditional, non-traditional, dependent and independent applicants.

You must be an admitted SMSU degree-seeking student to receive a financial aid offer from the Student Financial Aid Office. If you were enrolled in the PSEO program, you must still be admitted (through the Admission Office) to a new major, certification or licensure program in order to be eligible to receive aid.

What am I applying for when I complete the FAFSA application?

When you complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid you are applying for the Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG (Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant), Minnesota State Grant, Minnesota North Star Promise Scholarship,  Work Study, and Federal Direct loan funds.

Each institution has limited funding in the SEOG, and Work Study programs. Apply as early as possible to be considered for these awards.

Helpful Hints for Completing the FAFSA

  • Be sure to report your name on the FAFSA exactly as it appears on your social security card. The federal processor will be comparing your FAFSA information to the Social Security Administration database and discrepancies could cause a problem.
  • The income information you enter on the FAFSA should be taken directly from completed federal income tax returns. Use actual data, not estimates, if possible.  For the 2024-2025 application year, use federal income tax returns from 2022.
  • In the school section of the FAFSA, list "Southwest Minnesota State University", Title IV school code "002375".
  • If you are planning to apply for aid as a married, independent student, do not complete the FAFSA until after you are married.
  • If you or your parents filed a joint federal income tax return, but are now separated, divorced or widowed, you may want to contact the Student Financial Aid Office for help with completing the FAFSA.

What happens after I have applied?

Within one week after submitting your FAFSA, you will receive an e-mail from the federal processor with a website link to your Fafsa Submission summary. Review the summary to make sure that everything is correct as printed. If there are any errors, corrections should be submitted to the federal processor.

In the event that your Social Security number is incorrect, we recommend that you contact the Student Financial Aid Office for assistance.

If your summary indicates that it has been rejected or that more information is needed before further processing can occur, please follow the instructions listed, or contact the SMSU Financial Aid Office for assistance.

The SMSU Financial Aid Office will receive an Institutional Student Information Report (ISIR) as a result of your FAFSA application.

If additional documents are required, the Financial Aid Office will send you a letter detailing the information needed.

To learn more about each type of funding, click here. We wish to assure you that all of the information you provide will be held in strict confidence and will only be used to determine your eligibility for financial aid.

Last Modified: 4/1/24 2:47 PM | Website Feedback