Applying for Financial Aid

File a FAFSA as soon as possible

Sussex County Community College encourages all students to apply for all forms of financial aid that may be available. Financial Aid is an umbrella term that covers, grants, scholarships, loans and work study. Financial aid provides economic resources to students who have demonstrated financial need and who would otherwise be unable to pursue a post-secondary education. You can view your financial aid awards as well as documents required to complete your file at My.Sussex.Portal.

Steps to Applying for Financial Aid

Steps to Apply for Financial Aid:

  • Student and at least one parent (if student is unmarried and under 24 years of age) must apply for a PIN (Personal Identification Number) in order to electronically sign the FAFSA.
    Electronically signing the FAFSA using a PIN reduces the amount of time it will take for the FAFSA results to reach Sussex County Community College.
  • After you receive your PIN, complete and submit your FAFSA online.
  • You will need to provide the Sussex Federal School Code: 025688 in order for us to receive your application and determine your eligibility.
  • Complete an Application for Admissions.*
    *In order for Sussex to receive your FAFSA, your Social Security Number must be on your admissions application.

Get help completing your FAFSA by attending one of our Free FAFSA Workshops at Sussex.

  • Within 3-5 business days of filing your FAFSA, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) via email (if you supplied an email address on your application) or in the mail which summarizes all the information you provided on the application. Your SAR will usually contain your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), the number used to determine your eligibility for financial aid. An estimated award may be contained in the SAR.
  • If you reported Additional Information for State Aid, you will be mailed a New Jersey Student Eligibility Notice (SEN) within several weeks of filing your FAFSA notifying you of your eligibility for the Tuition Aid Grant (TAG).
  • Upon receipt of your FAFSA and completion of Federal Verification (if applicable) & resolution of any eligibility requirements, the Ocean County College Financial Aid office will post your award information on your My Sussex Student Portal

There are different filing deadlines for the Federal Government, State of New Jersey and Sussex County Community College. Please see below:

For more information regarding deadlines, visit FAFSA – Student Aid Deadlines.

Award Notices

The Financial Aid Office will determine your eligibility status. If you do not qualify for grant assistance you may apply for a William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan. If you are found eligible for grant assistance, you will receive an award letter that details the aid source(s) and total funds available to be applied to your student account. Should awards exceed your direct billed charges, the additional funds may be used to purchase books and educational supplies at the on-campus Barnes and Noble Bookstore. To do this, please sign the required form at the College’s Bursar’s Office.

The Federal Government selects a student for verification for different reasons. Verification is a process in which the Sussex Financial Aid office will collect several documents from you & your parent’s (dependent students) and submit any necessary FAFSA changes/corrections to the Federal Government. The verification process usually takes approximately 6-8 weeks from the date of receipt of all required documents.* In order to guarantee your schedule, all verification documents must be submitted to the Sussex Financial Aid office.

*Verification completion time can vary during peak processing times and due to volume.

How will I know if I'm selected for verification?
Within 24 hours of receipt of a FAFSA selected for Federal Verification, the Sussex Financial Aid office will begin processing. This will include;

  • A Missing Information Notification & required documents will be mailed to the address in the College Database.
    If you have changed addresses, make sure you complete a Change of Information form with the Sussex Registrar.
  • An email version of the Missing Information Notification will be sent to your Student Email address.

What documents will be required to complete verification?
The documents required to complete Federal Verification varies per student and you should pay special attention to your Missing Information Notifications for documents relevant to you.

Can I avoid being selected for verification?
Selection for verification is random, however, there are some steps you can take when completing your FAFSA that will minimize the chances of being selected;

  • Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool when prompted when completing your application.
  • Answer all questions – if a question does not relate to you, enter ‘0’.
  • Answer every question accurately– do not guess your answers.
  • The application should be signed by you and your parent (if applicable) using your PIN number(s).
  • If you can’t answer ‘yes’ to any of the dependency status questions, make sure you answer all parental information questions.
  • Return to your FAFSA online and add the School Code of the college you are transferring to/from under the relevant section.*
    *DO NOT change the order of your School Codes, add the new code underneath the others you already have listed – changing the order could result in your selection for verification and the cancellation of your financial aid awards.

Sussex Federal School Code: 025688.

Are Loans for you?

If you are not eligible for a grant, or require additional funding, consider applying for a William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan. Unlike grants, loans must be paid back.

To apply for a student loan go to Studentloans.gov and follow these instructions.  

  1. Sign up using your FAFSA FSA ID and Password.
  2. Click on the link to complete the Entrance Counseling. Required the first time a student takes out a loan at Sussex County Community College.
  3. Click on the link to complete and sign the Master Promissory Note (MPN).  Make sure you choose subsidized/unsubsidized.
  4. * Complete the Direct Student Loan Request Form available online or in the Financial Aid Office. This tells the Financial Aid Office how much you need to borrow. Please note that we cannot disburse loans until you have completed this information.

*A student must complete the Direct Student Loan Request Form each time she or he applies for a loan.

Loan Information

Please visit this site Direct Loan Information for more information such as interest rates and calculators, repayment of loans, deferment and forbearance, cancellation and consolidation.

The FSA Ombudsman works with federal student loan borrowers to resolve loan disputes or problems from an impartial, independent viewpoint. If you have a problem with a federal student loan that you have not been able to resolve through the normal process, contact the FSA Ombudsman at 877-557-2575.

When you Leave Sussex
Students who borrow loans and leave Sussex because of graduation, transfer or withdrawal must complete Student Loan Exit Counseling.

What is Exit Counseling
Exit Counseling provides important information to prepare you to repay your federal student loan(s).

If you have received a subsidized, unsubsidized or PLUS loan under the Direct Loan Program or the FFEL Program, you must complete exit counseling each time you:

  • Drop below half-time enrollment
  • Graduate
  • Leave school

For more information, visit Repaying your Loan, scroll to Exit Counseling.