Financial Aid and Scholarships

Financial Aid and Scholarships

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The Student Financial Aid Office is responsible for administering and coordinating aid funds from federal, state, private and University sources. The primary goal of the Student Financial Aid Office is to provide adequate financial assistance to applicants who, without such aid, would be unable to attend East-West University. Through grants, part-time employment and scholarships, students are provided monetary assistance to meet the basic cost of their educational program.

A variety of financial aid is available to qualified students attending East-West University. Programs, policies and application procedures are defined in the East-West University Financial Aid Narrative, which may be obtained from the Student Financial Aid Office. Questions concerning financial aid should be directed to this office.

Federal and State Grants

Illinois Student Assistance Commission Monetary Award Program (MAP)

This program is administered by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) and assists Illinois residents who attend an approved Illinois college. Awards are based on information reported on the Free Application of Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). ISAC rules limit eligibility to dependent students whose parents are Illinois residents and to self-supporting or independent students who have resided in Illinois for 12 continuous months prior to September 1 of the award year for which the grant is made. The maximum amount of an award for 2023-2024 academic year is $7,200.00.

Federal Pell Grant (FPELL)

The Federal Pell grant is a federally funded program. Eligibility requires that an applicant has not received a bachelor’s or professional degree and is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and demonstrates financial need. The amount of the award is based on the student’s prior-prior calendar year income and asset information provided on the FAFSA. The maximum amount of an award for the 2023-2024 academic year is $7,395.

Federal Direct Loan Program

There are two types of Federal Direct Loans – Subsidized and Unsubsidized. Subsidized federal direct loans are based on financial need and University policies. Repayment is deferred until the student graduates or ceases to enroll at least half-time, and the government pays the interest while he/she is enrolled in school. Unsubsidized federal direct loans are not based on need. A student may borrow the cost of education minus all other financial aid received, including any subsidized federal direct loan, according to University policies. However, the student must pay the interest while he/she is enrolled, or it may be accrued and capitalized. Repayment of the principal is deferred until after the student graduates or ceases to enroll at least half-time.

Federal PLUS Loan

PLUS loans enable parents with a good credit history to borrow money to help pay education and housing expenses for their dependent undergraduate students.

The interest rate is set on July 1 and varies annually. Housing loan funds are only available for the Flats at the Student Life Center (SLC), 829 S. Wabash Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605.

Federal Direct Loan maximums vary according to academic level. Students apply for all direct loans by filling out the FAFSA. For specific information students should contact the Student Financial Aid Office.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

The FSEOG is a federally funded program. The purpose of this grant is to provide additional aid to students who exhibit exceptional financial need. To become eligible, the student must file the FAFSA and have a valid Student Aid Report (SAR) on file indicating eligibility for a Federal Pell grant. The amount awarded to a recipient depends on financial need, the amount of other aid received, and the availability of funds at East-West University.

Federal Work Study Program (FWSP)

The FWSP provides salaries for jobs for students with demonstrated financial need and who maintain satisfactory academic progress. Students awarded FWSP funds can earn money to help pay education expenses. Students can work either on- or off-campus. Off-campus jobs will be with private, non-profit organizations or public agencies that encourage community service work. Students awarded Federal Work Study grants are paid at least the current federal minimum wage or higher, depending on the type of work performed. Students are paid by the hour and receive a paycheck biweekly. Federal Work Study students are not permitted to work more than 20 hours per week during the academic year and cannot work during their scheduled class times. Students apply for Federal Work Study by filing the FAFSA.

Military Students

East-West University has a long history of serving veterans. The Veterans Assistance Program is proud to serve prospective and current students of all levels who are serving or have served in the US Military or reserve branches.

Beginning August 1, 2019, East-West University will not take any of the following four actions toward any student using U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Post 9/11 G.I. Bill® (Ch. 33) or Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (Ch. 31) benefits, while their payment from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs is pending.

  • Prevent their enrollment;
  • Assess a late penalty fee;
  • Require they secure alternative or additional funding;
  • Deny their access to any resources (access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities) available to other students who have satisfied their tuition and fee bills to the institution.

However, to qualify for the above provision, students may be required to:

  • Produce the VA’s Certificate of Eligibility by the first day of class;
  • Provide written request to be certified;
  • Provide additional information needed to properly certify the enrollment as described in other institutional policies (see our VA School Certifying Official for all requirements).

We are able to assist veterans as well as their dependents with questions as they relate to:

  • Applying for admission or readmission to East-West University
  • Understanding your veteran educational benefits and financial aid
  • Connecting veterans with a variety of on and off campus resources
  • College readiness and academic opportunities.

*GI Bill* is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at

East-West University Funded Scholarship Programs

All scholarship awards are subject to availability of funds. Only full-time students (taking a minimum of 12 credit hours per quarter) are eligible for non-need-based scholarships except the Merit Scholarship which can be combined with one additional scholarship.

Need Based Awards for freshmen and transfers using a combination of high school or transfer GPA and Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Recipients of Need Based Awards must maintain a cumulative GPA equivalent to, or exceeding, the transfer GPA of acceptance at EWU. The cumulative GPA will be evaluated quarterly.

How to Apply

Students are required to submit financial aid applications on an annual basis. Priority consideration for receipt of financial aid and scholarship funds administered by the Student Financial Aid Office shall be given to students who submit all required documentation by the assigned deadline. The following forms, depending on the individual’s status, are required to process the financial aid:

  • Free Application of Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Federal income tax returns with all schedules and W-2 forms for the prior year. Dependent students must submit their tax returns and the returns of their parents or guardians. Independent students, as defined by the US Department of Education, must submit their tax returns and their spouses if applicable. Tax returns must be signed or have the preparer’s sections completed.
  • Income Certification Statements – Students or parents on public aid or social security are required to submit the income statements from corresponding offices.
  • Non-tax Filer Verification Statements – Students and/or parents who did not file the tax return are required to sign a statement and have it attested by the local IRS office.
  • Verification Worksheet – Students selected for verification identified by the star on the Effective Family Contribution are required to submit this worksheet with proper signature.
  • Citizenship/Residency Verification – A copy of the Resident Alien Card or citizenship documents must be submitted to the Student Financial Aid Office.
  • Student Certifications – Students must fill out information concerning statement of educational purpose, the statement of registration status and the certification of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act.
  • Immunization records.
  • Copy of Social Security Card.
  • A picture ID.

Who Can Apply

To be eligible to receive federal assistance, a student must:

  • Be enrolled for 8-16 credit hours in a degree-seeking program.
  • Have a high school diploma or G.E.D. certificate.
  • Be registered with the Selective Service if required to do so
  • Be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national (including natives of American Samoa or Swain’s island),U.S. permanent resident who has an I-151 or I-551 or I-551-C, refugee, indefinite parolee and/or humanitarian parolee, Cuban- Haitian entrant, conditional entrant, or non-citizen with a temporary resident card (I-688). Supporting documentation may be required to verify residency or citizenship status.
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • Not be in default of any loan or owe a repayment on a Federal Pell Grant, FSEOG, or state grant.

Determining Financial Aid

The number and amount of financial awards and payments are subject to availability of institutional, federal, and state aid funds. The Student Financial Aid Office will help the student determine the type of aid available and applicable. Several types of aid may be combined or packaged to meet the student’s computed financial need. Need is determined by subtracting the expected family contribution from the student’s total educational expenses. The parents’ contribution is calculated on the basis of their income and assets as well as a consideration of family size, number of family members currently in college, retirement allowances, tax paid, and other allowable factors. The student is also expected to make a calculated contribution toward college expenses from income, savings and other assets. A federal need analysis, called Federal Methodology approved by the U.S. Congress, is used to evaluate a family’s financial circumstances. A student who meets the independent student definition is evaluated on the basis of his or her (and spouse’s, if applicable) financial circumstances.

When to Apply

Financial aid applications must be submitted each academic year. Students are encouraged to apply early (after October 1st). The Student Financial Aid Office attempts to provide currently enrolled East-West University students with information about applying for financial aid, but ultimately it is the student’s responsibility to contact the Student Financial Aid Office regarding application procedures. For specific application deadlines, contact the Student Financial Aid Office.

Refunds and the Return of Title IV Funds Policy

If a student withdraws from the University, then the school or the student may be required to return some of the federal funds awarded to the student. The student may also be eligible for a refund of a portion of the tuition and fees paid to East-West University for the quarter. If the student received financial assistance from outside of the family, then a portion of the refund will be returned to the grant, scholarship or loan source from which the assistance was received. East-West University’s refund policy exists for calculating the refund of institutional charges.

The federal "Return of Title IV Funds" formula dictates the amount of Federal Title IV aid that must be returned to the federal government by the school and the student. The federal formula is applicable to a student receiving federal aid, other than Federal Work-Study, if that student withdraws on or before the 60% point in time in the quarter. The federal formula requires a return of Title IV aid if the student received federal financial assistance in the form of a FPELL grant, FSEOG, Federal Direct Student Loan (unsubsidized and subsidized) and Direct Plus (Parent) loan and withdrew on or before completing 60% of the quarter. The official withdrawal date is recorded by the Registrar on the administrative management system. Last day of student academic activity is considered as an unofficial withdrawal date in case student did not officially withdraw. If the student officially withdraws from all classes, Title IV Refund calculation will be done using ED express within 30 days of withdrawal. The percentage of Title IV aid to be returned is equal to the number of calendar days remaining in the quarter divided by the number of calendar days in the quarter. Scheduled breaks of more than four consecutive days are excluded. The order of return will be Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan, Federal Direct Subsidized loan, Federal Direct Plus loan, FPELL, and FSEOG.

If the student did not receive all of the funds that were earned prior to withdrawing, a post-withdrawal disbursement may be due. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, the student must give permission before the funds can be disbursed. East-West University may automatically use all or a portion of the post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition, fees, and room and board charges. Permission is required to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other school charges if any. Students will be notified of post-withdrawal disbursement eligibility within 30 days of the date of withdrawal determination. The school must return the Title IV funds within 45 days of the date the school determines the student withdrew.

NOTE: If funds are released to a student because of a credit balance on the student’s account, then the student may be required to repay some of the federal grants if the student withdraws.