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Undergraduate Aid Programs - Newly Admitted

The Financial Aid Office at CSULB is your main resource for questions related to paying for your education.  We oversee the awarding and distribution of loans, grants, work-study funds, and coordination with other aid – such as scholarships. 

There are many tools available to help you pay for your education - from student loans with lower interest rates that get paid back, to grants (federal and state) and scholarships that don't, to work study and student employment to help you earn funds.  Learn more about the options available at CSULB below.

 

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to FAFSA and DREAM Applicants.

Scholarships are considered gift-aid:  They don't need to be repaid!  There are thousands of them, offered by schools, employers, individuals, private companies, nonprofits, communities, religious groups, and professional and social organizations.

A scholarship might cover the entire cost of your tuition, or it might be a one-time award of a few hundred dollars. Either way, scholarships are worth applying for as they can help you cover your educational costs, and reduce your dependence on loans.

The CSULB Center for Scholarship Information is your resource for information on a variety of CSULB and outside scholarship opportunities (including links to applications). 

Federal Grants

Federal Grants are available only to FAFSA Applicants.

Federal Grants are a form of financial aid based on financial need as determined by the FAFSA, and do not have to be repaid unless you withdraw from school or receive a grant you are not eligible for. Grants are disbursed according to the number of units you are enrolled in each semester. At university census, four weeks after the beginning of each term, financial aid awards are adjusted for enrollment that is less than full time.

All grants are awarded according to financial need, as determined by the federal formula that calculates your expected family contribution (EFC) from the information you submitted on the FAFSA. Complete information on each grant is available on the linked pages.

Federal Pell Grants:   The largest federal grant program, the Federal Pell Grant is designed to assist students from low-income families. These grants are awarded to degree-seeking undergraduate students who have not yet earned a bachelor's or graduate degree. The Pell grant varies based on financial need, as determined by your FAFSA application; for 2017 – 2018 the Pell Grant can have a maximum amount offered of $5,920. 

You may receive Pell Grant funds from only one school at a time.

Impact of Enrollment on Pell Grant Awards:

The Amount offered for the Pell Grant is based on full-time enrollment (12 units).  The number of units in which you are actually enrolled may impact the amount of the grant you receive.  Review the chart below for details:

Impact of Enrollment on Pell Grant Awards

Enrollment Status

Number of Units

Impact on Pell Grant

Full-Time

12 or more units

Full award eligibility

Three-Quarter Time

9.0 – 11.9 units

Pell Grant prorated to 75%

Half-Time

6.0 – 8.9 units

Pell Grant prorated to 50%

Less Than Half-Time

1.0 – 5.9 units

Pell Grant prorated to 25%

In some instances a student enrolled in less than 12 units may lose eligibility for his/her Pell Grant, as EFC’s in the higher end of the Pell range do not allow for less than full-time awards.

Final enrollment for a semester is measured at University Census (the last day of the add/drop period for a semester – typically the Friday of the fourth week of the semester). Prior to Census, Financial Aid Awards and disbursements are revised for students enrolled less than full-time to match eligibility based on the actual number of units in which students are officially enrolled. The student's enrollment and award is then locked at Census.

Effective Fall 2012, the federal government has mandated that eligible students can receive Pell Grant funding for up to 12 full-time semesters (600%) or the equivalent. This total includes Pell Grant received at all institutions attended – and is retroactive. You cannot appeal this federal regulation or request an extension. Visit the NSLDS web site to determine the percentage of Pell grant you have received.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG)  Pell-eligible students who demonstrate the highest need may be considered for this grant, which supplements their Federal Pell Grant.  For 2017 – 2018, these grants will not exceed $280 a year at CSULB. 

Unlike the Pell Grant, FSEOG Grants are not pro-rated based on enrollment.  However, you must be enrolled at least Half-Time in order to be eligible to receive funds from the grant.  If your enrollment is Less Than Half-Time at Census, your SEOG award will be cancelled.

 

State Grants

California State Grants are available to FAFSA and DREAM Applicants.

There are grant programs available for California residents only; eligibility for these grants is determined by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC).   Your residency status is determined by the Office of Admissions at the time of your application. By filing the FAFSA by the priority deadline of March 2, eligible students may be considered for a state grant. 

CSAC contacts students via email regarding their eligibility and awards; WebGrants 4 Students (WGS) is your portal for California State Grants.  It is critical that you keep your email information current on your WGS account.

Grants are disbursed according to the number of units you are enrolled in each semester. At university census, four weeks after the beginning of each term, financial aid awards are adjusted for enrollment that is less than full time.

Cal Grant A and B – Tuition paying grants.

The California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) awards Cal Grants to qualified California residents who meet minimum GPA requirements and demonstrate financial eligibility as determined by the appropriate financial aid application (FAFSA or CA DREAM Application).

There are two types of Cal Grants awarded at CSU Long Beach – Cal Grant A (Entitlement Awards) and Cal Grant B (Competitive Awards). The eligibility criteria for the Cal Grants are established by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC). Both grants provide assistance with the State Tuition Fee and are available for up to eight semesters for students pursuing a bachelor's degree. The Cal Grant B also provides a living allowance of up to $1, 648 for books and living expenses.

A Cal Grant award may be reduced, or cancelled, in the event you are receiving another award or waiver that is specifically designated to pay the tuition fee.  Students who are awarded a State University Grant, and are later deemed eligible for the Cal Grant will be awarded the Cal Grant – and have their State University Grant cancelled (both grants pay the State Tuition Fee – therefore a student is typically only eligible to receive one or the other).

Impact of Enrollment on Cal Grant Awards:

The Amount offered for the Cal Grant is based on full-time enrollment (12 units).  The number of units in which you are actually enrolled may impact the amount of the grant you receive.  Review the chart below for details:

Impact of Enrollment on Cal Grant Awards

Enrollment Status

Number of Units

Impact on Cal Grant

Full-Time

12 or more units

Full award eligibility

Three-Quarter Time

9.0 – 11.9 units

Cal Grant prorated to 75%

Half-Time

6.0 – 8.9 units

Cal Grant prorated to 50%

Less Than Half-Time

1.0 – 5.9 units

Cal Grant cancelled

Final enrollment for a semester is measured at University Census (the last day of the add/drop period for a semester – typically the Friday of the fourth week of the semester). Prior to Census, Financial Aid Awards and disbursements are revised for students enrolled less than full-time to match eligibility based on the actual number of units in which students are officially enrolled. The student's enrollment and award is then locked at Census.

California Chafee Grant – The California Chafee Grant Program is sponsored by the California Student Aid Commission and the state Department of Social Services for eligible foster youth and former foster youth. Students who qualify may be eligible to receive up to $5,000 per year if enrolled in an eligible program. In general, students must:

  • Be eligible, or have been eligible, for foster care between ages 16 and 18.
  • Not have reached age 22 as of July 1 of the award year.
     

Funding from the Chafee Grant is intended to supplement any grant funds that a student may otherwise be eligible to receive; however, the total grant funding may not exceed the student’s cost of attendance. Chafee Grant benefits must be coordinated with a student’s other financial aid. In some instances, remaining loan disbursements or work-study awards may need to be cancelled to allow maximum Chafee Grant awards to be received.

Impact of Enrollment on Chafee Grant Awards:

Unlike the Cal Grant, Chafee Grants are not pro-rated based on enrollment.  However, you must be enrolled at least Half-Time in order to be eligible to receive funds from the grant.  If your enrollment is Less Than Half-Time at Census, your Chafee Grant will be cancelled.

For more information on applying for the Chafee Grant, visit the California Chafee Grant for Foster Youth website.

California Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) – for students with family incomes and assets up to $150,000 who are not receiving other tuition paying awards.

The Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) program provides partial tuition scholarships to undergraduate students with family incomes of up to $150,000 and who attend a CSU or UC campus.

Middle Class Scholarships are based on a sliding scale according to family income; award amounts may vary by student and institution. Beginning in 2017-2018, the maximum award will be up to 40% of the mandatory system-wide tuition and fees.   Actual award amounts will be based on the availability of funds and the number of qualified applicants.

To be considered for a Middle Class Scholarship, students must complete the appropriate financial aid application (FAFSA or California Dream Act Application ) by the March 2 priority deadline.

Impact of Enrollment on MCS Awards:

The MCS award is based on enrollment in 7 or more units.  If at the time the award is released (or at Census – whichever is later):

  • If you are enrolled in 7 or more units, you will receive the full amount of your award.
  • If you are enrolled in 6 units, your award will be adjusted. 
  • If you are enrolled in less than 6 units, your award will be cancelled.
     

Additional information on the MCS is available on the California Student Aid Commission’s website

CSAC determines the eligible recipients and award amounts, and will notify CSU Long Beach in mid-July. This typically occurs AFTER students have already received an official award offer from CSU Long Beach, and will result in adjustments being made to the award offer. The receipt of any other need-based grants, or tuition paying scholarships or fee waivers may reduce your eligibility for the MCS.

CSULB Grants

CSULB Grants are available to FAFSA or DREAM Applicants.

CSULB Grants are available only to California residents.  Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA or DREAM Application – including meeting the Priority Filing deadline. Grants currently available from CSULB include:

State University Grant (SUG): 
The State University Grant (SUG) is a state grant awarded by CSU Long Beach to California Residents who have an eligible EFC (Expected Family Contribution). Since funds are limited, it is important to apply by the March 2 priority deadline.

In the awarding process, Cal Grants supersede the State University Grant (SUG), therefore recipients of the Cal Grant cannot be awarded the SUG – as both grants assist with the State Tuition Fee.

Impact of Enrollment on SUG Awards:

SUG awards are based on enrollment in 7 or more units. 

  • If you are enrolled in 7 or more units, you will receive the full amount offered for the semester.
  • If you are enrolled in 6 units, your SUG award will be adjusted to reflect the lower  Tuition Fee
  • If you are enrolled in less than 6 units, your award will be cancelled for the semester. 
     

SUG awards are not available to students who are not charged the State Tuition Fee (most CCPE programs and Open University) or to students pursuing a second bachelor’s degree.  Students who are already receiving a financial aid award designated to pay the tuition fee (Cal Grant or Scholarship, tuition/fee waivers, vocational rehabilitation, etc.) are not eligible to receive a SUG.

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP): 
The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) serves students who come from disadvantaged economic or educational backgrounds. Only students who are admitted to the university by the EOP program and enroll at least half time are eligible for EOP grant consideration. Students are considered for EOP based on their estimated family contribution and the availability of funds. Funding for this program is extremely limited.  For 2017 – 2018, the maximum EOP Grant is $600.

Impact of Enrollment on EOP Grant Awards:

Unlike the Cal Grant, Chafee Grants are not pro-rated based on enrollment.  However, you must be enrolled at least Half-Time in order to be eligible to receive funds from the grant.  If your enrollment is Less Than Half-Time at Census, your Chafee Grant will be cancelled.

Additional Information about EOP is available from the Educational Opportunity Program

California Dream Loan

The California (CA) Dream Loan is borrowed money you must repay with interest. The CA Dream Loan is a subsidized loan program for undergraduate students with a valid CA Dream Act application and a valid AB540 affidavit or “U” Visa on file with CSULB. You must attend at least half-time (6 or more units per semester) in order to receive the CA Dream Loan.

Interest Rate, Deferment, and Grace Period
The interest rate for 2017-18 is 4.45%. The interest rate for the CA Dream Loan corresponds with the interest rate on Federal Direct Subsidized loans and is subject to change for new loans annually. The CA Dream Loan does not accrue interest while you are enrolled at least half-time, during periods of approved deferment, and during the 6-month grace period before you enter repayment. You will be responsible for the interest charged at all other times.

Repayment of Loans
The California Dream Loan is setup to be repaid in monthly installments over a 10-year period and have a minimum payment of $50 a month. You can pay off your loan earlier without penalty. You begin repaying your loan at the end of a 6-month grace period. The grace period begins once you graduate, leave school, or enroll less than half-time.

Loan Limits
The CA Dream Loan is subject to annual, semester, and aggregate limits set by the state legislature, the CSU Chancellor’s Office, and SSU. The annual loan limit is $4,000 and the semester limit is generally $2,000. The aggregate limit of $20,000 is the maximum that you can borrow from the CA Dream Loan program at CSULB.

Eligibility for the CA Dream Loan
Because funds are limited, you will be notified by the Financial Aid Office if you meet the eligibility criteria for the CA Dream Loan. The application process will be explained in emails sent to your email account, and in the To Do List items in MyCSULB.

You may decline the loan offer or accept less than what is offered to you, but you may not be able to increase your loan at a later time. Students who accept the CA Dream Loan must complete a promissory note and entrance counseling. If you fail to complete all the required steps to receive your loan disbursement by the assigned deadline, we may cancel the loan offer. Funds are limited and you may not be awarded the funds again at a later date.

You must attend at least half-time (6 or more units per semester) in order to receive from the CA Dream Loan.

Receipt of funds in one year does not guarantee availability or receipt of funds in subsequent year

Federal Student Loans

Federal Student Loans are available only to FAFSA Applicants.

All staff members of the Office of Financial Aid at California State University, Long Beach adhere to The California State University Student Lending – Code of Conduct, (pdf) which restricts activity that may lead to conflicts of interest in the area of student lending

Low interest Federal Student Loans are offered as part of financial aid awards. CSULB is committed to reducing student debt, however, and student loan totals for our graduates are among the lowest in the country.

Loans offered through the Direct Loan program are for undergraduate students enrolled at least half-time. The loans you receive will be either subsidized, unsubsidized, or a combination of both.  The amount offered to you will not be more than the amount allowed for your established grade level or the cost of education.  Your FAFSA application will determine if you are eligible for subsidized or unsubsidized federal loans.

 A subsidized loan is awarded on the basis of financial need. Interest on subsidized loans is paid by the federal government while you are enrolled at least half-time.

An unsubsidized loan is not awarded on the basis of need. You will be charged interest from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. You may opt to allow the interest to accumulate while you are in school or during other allowable periods of nonpayment. This interest will be added to the principal amount of your loan, and additional interest will be based on that higher amount.

Note: If your interest is capitalized, it will increase the amount you have to repay. You can choose to pay the interest as it accrues; if so, you will repay less in the long run. For current interest rate and origination fee information please visit the Federal Student Aid Website

Direct Loan Limits

Loan amounts for new first-year students are initially estimated at the first-year amount.  Loan amounts for new Transfer Students are initially estimated at the third-year amount.  The amount offered may later be adjusted based on information from Records & Registration regarding your grade level, or on information from NSLDS regarding loan funds already received during the year.

Loan amounts for continuing students will be estimated at the current grade level at the time of awarding. Undergraduate students may progress a grade level after grades are posted at the end of a semester.

The following chart shows the annual and aggregate limits for subsidized and unsubsidized loans:

Annual Direct Stafford Loan Limits by Class Level

Borrower's Academic Level

Dependent Student

Independent Student

Freshman
(0-29.9 units)

 

$5,500
If qualified, up to $3,500
   may be in subsidized loans

$9,500
If qualified, up to $3,500 may be in subsidized loans

Sophomore
(30-59.9 units)
 

$6,500
If qualified, up to $4,500
   may be in subsidized loans

$10,500
If qualified, up to $4,500
   may be in subsidized loans

Junior or Senior (60+units)

 

$7,500
If qualified, up to $5,500
   may be in subsidized loans

$12,500
If qualified, up to $5,500
   may be in subsidized loans

Aggregate (or Lifetime) Borrowing Limit for Undergraduates
 

$31,000
 If qualified, $23,000 may be in subsidized loans

$57,500
  If qualified, $23,000 of this may be in subsidized loans

First-time Direct Stafford Subsidized Loan borrowers (on or after July 1, 2013) will have a time limitation for subsidized loan eligibility.  In general, the maximum period of time (measured in academic years) that you can receive a Direct Subsidized Loans is 150% of the published length of your program.  Once you reach the Subsidized Loan time limitation, you may be eligible for Unsubsidized Stafford Loans only.  More information on the Subsidized Loan time limitations is available from Federal Student Aid.

Impact of Enrollment on Direct Loans:

In general, Direct Loans are not pro-rated based on enrollment.  However, you must be enrolled at least Half-Time in order to be eligible to receive funds from the loans.  If you do not begin enrollment at least half-time, or if at that time funds are released you are enrolled less than half-time, you will not be eligible for your loan funds.

Loan amounts for graduating seniors enrolled for one semester only:

If you will be graduating, and are enrolled for one semester only during the award year, your Direct Loans will be prorated as follows:

- enrolled in fewer than 12 units, loans are prorated down, based on units

- enrolled in more than 12 units, loans are prorated up based on units

Federal Work Study

Students are encouraged to find jobs whose wages can cover indirect expenses that occur each term such as textbooks and laundry.

Federal Work-Study (Available to FAFSA Applicants only)

Federal Work-Study (FWS) is a federally funded program that provides employment opportunities to students with the highest financial need. The amount a student may earn will be listed on the student's award summary. The maximum FWS award is currently $2,700 per academic year.   A FWS award does not guarantee placement in an actual position.

Work experience is not required to secure a FWS position. The money earned is yours to use for out-of-pocket expenses, such as travel, books, and personal care items. CSULB students typically work 10-12 hours per week. Work-study funds do not reduce your bill with the college.

Impact of Enrollment on FWS:

FWS Awards are not pro-rated based on enrollment.  However, you must be enrolled in at least 6 units per semester in order to be eligible to receive funds from FWS.  If at any time during the semester your enrollment drops below 6 units, you immediately lose eligibility to continue receiving FWS funds for the semester.

Student Employment & Other Options

CSULB has student employment jobs that are not part of the Federal Work-Study program. A part time job provides students with the opportunity to gain work experience, even if you are not eligible for a Federal Work-Study position.

Visit the Career Development Center or 49er Shop for more information.

Federal Loans for Parents

Federal Loans for Parents are available only to FAFSA Applicants.

All staff members of the Office of Financial Aid at California State University, Long Beach adhere to The California State University Student Lending – Code of Conduct, (pdf) which restricts activity that may lead to conflicts of interest in the area of student lending

Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

The Direct PLUS Loan is available to parents (including adoptive or stepparents) of dependent undergraduate students. .Your parent may borrow an amount up to the cost of attendance minus any other aid you are receiving.  Any amount borrowed in excess of university charges through the Parent PLUS Loan will be issued as a refund to the parent.

To qualify for the Direct PLUS loan, your parent must meet some of the general eligibility requirements for federal student aid and will need to pass a modest credit check. In the event of a credit-denial, Federal Student Aid’s PLUS Loan Information page details the options available for obtaining a PLUS Loan.

To Apply: 
Parent PLUS Loans are not included in the initial Financial Aid Award package; a parent must initiate the process by submitting the CSULB Parent PLUS Loan Request Form.  The loan is not added to the award package until the request has been processed and CSULB receives notification that your parent has been credit approved.

For current interest rate and origination fee information please visit the Federal Student Aid Website.

Complete details on the PLUS Loan are available for Federal Student Aid.

Additional Resources:

Private Loans

All staff members of the Office of Financial Aid at California State University, Long Beach adhere to The California State University Student Lending – Code of Conduct, (pdf) which restricts activity that may lead to conflicts of interest in the area of student lending

For students who are eligible for federal student aid, think FAFSA first!

Private loans are nonfederal education loans, made by a lender such as a bank or a credit union. These loans are typically borrowed by students who are not eligible or do not qualify for federal loans or who have exhausted their federal loan, or Dream Loan, eligibility.

Approval of a private loan is typically based on your credit rating and debt-to-income ratio and may require a co-signer.   Private loans often carry higher interest rates and fees than federal loans, and may have less attractive repayment terms. The interest rates are variable, meaning they can change on a monthly basis, and are determined by the information in your credit report.

If you have exhausted all sources of federal funding and decide to borrow a private loan, compare lenders to ensure you are making the best choice for you.

If you are considering a Private Loan, review the following information from FinAid.org:


Truth in Lending requirements:
The Truth in Lending Act requires lenders who provide private loans to comply with the following requirements:

- Lenders must provide three separate loan disclosures to borrowers--one at the point of application, one when the loan is approved, and one before the loan is disbursed.
- A waiting period of three business days is required between the time the borrower receives the final loan disclosure and the time that the loan is disbursed.
- Students must also sign a self-certification form and submit it to the lender before the loan can be disbursed.

Your lender should provide you with all of the information you need to know about these requirements, but if you have questions, feel free to contact our office

Private Education Loan Self-Certification:

1. Your lender should provide you with a copy of the required Private Education Loan Self-Certification Form (pdf). If you do not receive one from directly from your lender, you can download one directly from the U.S. Department of Education (pdf).

2. To complete your Private Education Loan Self-Certification Form (pdf), you will need to know your cost of attendance and estimated financial assistance. If you receive financial aid, this information can be found on your Financial Aid Summary in MyCSULB.  Otherwise, refer to the Average Expense to Attend pages on our website.

3. Send your completed self-certification form to your lender.  Your loan cannot be disbursed until your lender receives it.