Covid-19 Financial Aid

I am an admitted student for Fall 2020. We received our financial aid offer (the College Financing Plan or CFP), but we have questions about what is listed.

If you have a quick question, feel free to give us a call at 610-330-5055. If you leave a voicemail, please let us know whom to call back and your student’s name and ID.

If your question is more involved and needs more in-depth conversation, please reach out to us at financialaid@lafayette.edu. We will respond to you to schedule a time to talk via phone, or virtually on Zoom or Google Meet/Hangouts.

In your email, please provide the following information so that we can get back with you:

  • Student’s full name
  • Student’s Lafayette or Reference ID (provided by the Office of Admission)
  • Best way to reach you (phone number and email), including dates and times
  • A summary of your question or concern

I am an admitted student for Fall 2020, and I have a question about merit scholarships. With whom should we communicate?

Your admission counselor is probably the best person to address your merit scholarship questions. If you do not know who your admission counselor is, please check the Admissions website. You may also email them at admissions@lafayette.edu or call them at 610-330-5100

Is there guidance for the financial effects on our family due to the current economic and COVID-19 pressures we are experiencing?

All schools are trying to determine how to address families’ concerns. We do not know how long the economic effects will last, and we have to be careful about making significant alterations to the FAFSA and CSS Profile data.

In the meantime, we know many are nervous and just want to talk through this. Feel free to reach out to us at financialaid@lafayette.edu. Even if we have no immediate answers, we will continue to be available to talk via phone, or face-to-face via Zoom or Google Meet/Hangouts. When emailing, please include:

  • Student’s full name
  • Student’s Lafayette or Reference ID (provided by the Office of Admission)
  • Best way to reach you (phone number and email), including dates and times
  • A summary of your question or concern

Since the financial aid staff are working remotely, how should we connect with one of the directors?

Though our financial aid professionals are all working from home, we have implemented ways to work as if we were in the office. All emails and phone calls are being handled as if we were physically in the office, and one of us is retrieving mail and faxes from the College and forwarding those documents to the correct people for review.

Even with these practices in place, some of us have children at home who need our help with school assignments and have older family members with whom we need to connect. So, please be patient as we balance all of these converging responsibilities.

I am a currently enrolled (returning) student. When can I expect to receive my 2020-21 financial aid offer?

We anticipate releasing returning students’ financial aid offers by the end of June.

General Information

How do I apply for financial aid from Lafayette?

You must file the College Scholarship Service (CSS) PROFILE and the FAFSA by January 15 of your senior year in high school. You may file the PROFILE as early as Oct. 1. For detailed information, see Apply For Financial Aid. Remember, you must meet our filing deadlines in order to be considered for College-funded aid.

How do I accept, decline or check the status of my award?

After June 1, you can accept, decline, or check the status of your award online using My Lafayette, the College portal.

How do I appeal my financial aid award?

If your family has experienced a reduction in income since 2018 (the base year used on the FAFSA and CSS Profile) due to extenuating circumstances, you have the option to appeal. Please complete the Request for Review of Financial Aid Decision Form and return it to the Office of Financial Aid along with all of the required supporting documentation. Appeals cannot be considered without supporting documentation, as described in the Request for Review of Financial Aid Decision.

Where do I get the forms?

You may access the forms online for the PROFILE and for the FAFSA.

Should I send my tax returns to Lafayette?

You must send all required tax documents through the College Board’s IDOC service. Instructions and requirements will be provided once you file the PROFILE.

What if I decide to apply Early Decision?

Lafayette College guarantees to meet the demonstrated financial need of students admitted under the Early Decision Plan who adhere to the financial aid deadlines and requirements. Early Decision I applicants must submit the PROFILE and FAFSA by Nov. 15. Early Decision II by Jan. 15

How do I complete the forms if my parents are divorced or separated?

Each of your parents will complete their own CSS Profile.  You and your custodial parent will complete the Profile using your College Board log-in credentials.*  The FAFSA must be completed with information from your custodial parent or the parent with whom you live most of the year. If your family unit includes a stepparent, then that information should also be included on both the CSS Profile and the FAFSA.   Rest assured that a contribution is not expected from more than two parents.

*If both of your parents have access to your College Board account, you should change your password so your parent’s financial information will remain private.  Your noncustodial parent will need a separate College Board account.

When will I be notified about my financial aid?

Award letters for all on-time applicants are mailed along with the admissions letter. The letter will reference your financial aid award including any eligibility for federal and/or state loan and grant programs. Information about our program, the continuing process as well as common questions will be included in the packet that you receive with the award letter.

What is Lafayette’s outside scholarship policy?

Lafayette encourages and rewards students for seeking outside funding to help meet their college expenses. Students who are receiving aid from the College must notify the Office of Financial Aid immediately of outside funding they receive.  Outside scholarships may be used to reduce or eliminate the job and/or loan components of a student’s aid award. Grants and/or scholarships from the College will be reduced only when total resources exceed our total costs of attendance. Student-athletes are subject to NCAA and Patriot League guidelines. Resident Advisor benefits are also considered in the same manner as outside scholarships.

Tuition benefits, Tuition Exchange, and federal and state grants are not considered outside scholarships.  If you receive Tuition Benefits or Tuition Exchange after our initial aid determination, the College-funded grant portion of your financial aid award will be adjusted accordingly.

Do you offer scholarships based on academic merit?

The Marquis Fellowship is awarded to the most highly qualified candidates in the applicant pool. Valued at $40,000 per year, it is renewable for all four years of full-time undergraduate study at Lafayette. The Marquis Scholarship, valued at $24,000 per year recognizes those among the best in the applicant pool. Scholars and Fellows also receive a scholarship of up to $4,000 for one faculty-led, off-campus course during an interim session (cannot be applied to Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges study-abroad programs). Renewal is contingent upon the maintenance of a 3.00 GPA or higher. Selection is made by the admissions office in mid March. Recipients of these academic merit awards may also receive additional financial aid up to demonstrated need beyond the scholarship levels as long as all filing deadlines are met.

Will I qualify for financial aid if my parents’ income is high?

There is no automatic cutoff for financial aid eligibility since the analysis goes beyond income and asset information. Other factors that are considered include number of family members, college students, medical/dental expenses, home mortgages, and any other special circumstances that are individual to your family. Typically, the higher your parents’ income, the lower the need level. You might want to try our on line calculator to estimate what you might qualify for.

Use the Net Price Calculator.

Do I have to reapply for financial aid each year?

Yes, you must reapply each year for need-based aid. Your file will be reviewed by an aid director who will consider all information included in your application, as well as our costs for the year. As a returning student, you will need to complete a renewal FAFSA and the PROFILE and submit tax documents through IDOC. Forms are due by March 1.

How will aid be determined after the first year?

Lafayette is committed to assisting you with your educational costs for the full four years. You must continue to make satisfactory academic progress, apply by the established deadlines, and continue to demonstrate need. Need is derived on the same basis as your original award. Each year’s award will reflect any increases in Lafayette costs, and any significant changes in family circumstances, including the number of siblings in college may result in a change (better or worse) in your financial aid award.

What happens if I don’t qualify for financial aid my first year?

Once the financial aid office has honored aid commitments to prior recipients, all new applicants will be reviewed in order to determine financial need. Aid consideration is limited to U.S. citizens and permanent residents and is based on applicants meeting our filing deadlines, demonstrating need, availability of funds, and each student’s grade point average, so it is important to maintain strong academic standing.

Can I meet with a financial aid director?

The Office of Financial Aid offers both personal and phone appointments. Call 610.330.5055 to request an appointment. If you choose a phone appointment, the time will be reserved for you just as if you were coming in personally. This method allows the director to have your information available and ensures no interruptions. You may also contact us via email at financialaid@lafayette.edu.