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Financial Aid

Financial Aid

Dedicated to Providing Affordable Tuition

CityU offers students access to several financial aid programs including: grants, loans, work study, and scholarships. Finances should never be the issue that prevents a student from earning his or her education. We’re committed to helping students achieve their academic goals no matter what their economic situations are.

students sitting in a classroom

The following information is provided to help answer questions about financial aid offered at CityU. Please feel free to connect with our Financial Aid Counselors by calling 800.426.5596 or 206.239.4540 or by emailing finaid@cityu.edu.

Scholarships are forms of aid that help students pay for educational expenses. They are typically reserved for students with special qualifications such as academic merit, pursuing a particular field of study, or demonstrated financial need. Scholarships do not need to be repaid.

CityU Scholarships
CityU offers several different scholarships. To explore the scholarships we offer, please visit our scholarships webpage. Our scholarships can only be applied toward CityU tuition.

Non-CityU Scholarships 
If you need a little more help to close the gap, use one of the many reputable search engines to assist you in finding a non-CityU scholarship. You may find information about applying for scholarships at finaid.org/scholarships, or by searching FastWeb, which includes more than 500,000 scholarships worth more than $1 billion. Washington State Residents can use the Wash Board site.

Grants are often called gift aid because they are free financial aid that does not need to be repaid. Grants are often need-based and can come from different sources.

At CityU, we offer the Federal Pell Grant and the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG). These are both need-based grants offered through federal aid programs, and are awarded to undergraduate students who demonstrate exceptional financial need. The university also participates in the TEACH Grant program for undergraduate or graduate students pursuing a degree that leads to teacher certification in the State of Washington.

Federal Direct Stafford Loans are federal student loans provided to eligible students that help cover educational costs and must be repaid when out of school. To be eligible you must be enrolled at least half time in an eligible program of study.

At CityU, typically one class per quarter is enough to be considered for a Stafford Loan. All of our degree programs are eligible, and we have several certificate programs that are also eligible programs.

We can also certify private educational loans for students who wish to borrow from a private lending institution.

All of CityU’s associate, baccalaureate, masters and doctoral programs are financial aid eligible programs.

Only the following certificate programs are financial aid eligible:

All other certificate programs are not eligible for financial aid.

Non degree, audited courses and continuing education classes are not eligible for financial aid.

U.S. Federal Financial Aid Options

The first step in the financial aid process is to submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You can complete the online application at www.fafsa.gov. You will need to reapply every year. These are the programs for which you’ll be considered based on the information you provide in your FAFSA:

Grants

Students must be pursuing their first undergraduate degree to be considered for these grants.

  • Federal Pell Grant – must be a high need undergraduate student
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) – a limited aid program, must be a high need and Pell eligible undergraduate student

TEACH Grant

The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant is available to graduate or undergraduate students who are enrolled in an eligible program leading to teacher certification in the State of Washington. This grant may revert to an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan if certain criteria are not met after graduation. Annual awards to eligible students are up to $4,000.

Eligible Programs at CityU:

Eligible students must meet academic achievement requirements, such as maintaining a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25, and must sign the TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve and complete the TEACH Grant Application.

Federal Work Study

Federal Work Study is a student employment program designed to help contribute toward your educational expenses while decreasing your student loan debt and gain valuable work experience.

Federal Stafford Loans

The William D. Ford Federal Direct Student Loan Program includes the following programs.

Subsidized Stafford Loans

  • Available to undergraduate students only
  • Interest is paid by the government while you’re enrolled at least half-time
  • An origination fee (approximately 1%) is assessed and is deducted from the total amount of your loan
  • Repayment begins six months after you’ve left school or dropped below half-time status
  • There is a maximum period of time you can receive this loan, in general not more than 150% of the published length of your program

Unsubsidized Loans

  • Available to both undergraduate and graduate students
  • Interest is accruing while you are enrolled. You will receive quarterly interest statements that may be paid or deferred. Deferred interest will be capitalized (added to the loan) if no payments are made while you’re in school
  • An origination fee (approximately 1%) is assessed and is deducted from the total amount of your loan
  • Repayment begins six months after you’ve left school or dropped below half-time status

Federal PLUS Loan

  • For parents of dependent undergraduate students
  • Loans are taken out by parents who do not have an adverse credit history, to cover the difference between the cost of attendance and the amount of financial aid you received
  • Parents are responsible for all interest, which can be capitalized (added to the loan) if no payments are made when you’re in school
  • If your parents choose to apply, they need to complete the loan application at studentloans.gov
  • Parents with adverse credit may avail themselves of an endorser option

Federal Graduate PLUS Loan

  • Available to graduate students only
  • Loans are taken out by graduate students who do not have an adverse credit history, to cover the difference between the cost of attendance and the amount of financial aid received
  • Repayment begins 60 days after disbursement, unless you’re approved for an in-school deferment by the lender
  • Interest begins accruing immediately
  • Students must complete the Grad PLUS MPN at studentloans.gov
  • Students with averse credit may avail themselves of an endorser option

Before you borrow think carefully about how much you’re borrowing, how much your monthly repayment will be and for how long, and what you expect to make in your intended career. Remember that the idea of going to school is to get ahead, not behind.

For more information about federal student aid, please go to studentaid.ed.gov.

Other Programs

You are not necessarily required to submit a FAFSA in order to be considered for these funds.

Veteran Benefits
Thank you for your service! Our Veterans Affairs Officer is happy to assist you with any questions you may have. Call 206.239.4539 or email veterans@cityu.edu any time for personalized assistance. You can learn more information on our military students admissions page.

CityU Scholarships
CityU offers several need- and merit-based scholarships that are awarded four times per year (each quarter). If you’ve applied and have been accepted to CityU, you can complete the scholarship application available on our scholarships webpage.

Outside Scholarships
If you need a little more help to close the gap, use any of these reputable search engines to assist you in finding a scholarship that’s right for you.

Washington Award For Vocational Education (WAVE)
The Washington Student Achievement Council oversees the selection of the WAVE scholars from each Washington legislative district each year. Recipients receive a monetary grant for up to two years. If you’re a WAVE scholar (congratulations!), please contact our Financial Aid Office after you’ve been notified.

Private Educational Loans
Students have the option of supplementing their Federal Student Financial Aid funding with a private educational loan. Private educational loans may also be helpful to students in those programs of study that are not eligible for Federal Student Aid. To apply for most private educational loans, you may complete the application online directly on the lender’s website. The lender will ask you to certify your cost of attendance and enrollment status. If you are approved for the loan by the lender of your choice, they will request us to certify your application. City University of Seattle must also certify the loan prior to the funds being disbursed to the school.

Applying for Financial Aid

We know applying for financial aid takes a lot of research and can be a time-consuming process, and that’s why CityU’s Financial Aid Counselors are here to answer any questions you may have along the way. Contact us anytime for assistance.

Application Steps

The general application process is outlined below. While this won’t match everyone’s situation perfectly, it’s a great place to start if you have never applied for financial aid. Please note that most of the forms listed below can be found on CityU’s forms page.

Step 1: Complete an admission application to City University of Seattle. Continuing CityU students must meet all of the satisfactory progress requirements.

Step 2: Fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the upcoming academic year at fafsa.gov. Summer Quarter is the first term of our academic year. The CityU Federal School Code Number to list on the FAFSA is 013022. You will need to register for a FSA ID. Keep track of your FSA ID, as it is your electronic signature and is used to reapply each year. Be sure to follow all the prompts on the site, including utilizing the Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) if it is made available to you.

Step 3: Your FAFSA data will be processed within 24-48 hours and then you’ll receive an Electronic Student Aid Report (SAR). If all was filled out correctly, CityU will receive your FAFSA data electronically approximately one week later. If you did not include CityU’s Federal School Code Number (013022) on your FAFSA you can add it to your FAFSA by revisiting fafsa.gov or by calling 1.800.4.FED.AID. If your Electronic Student Aid Report information shows you were selected for a process called verification, you will be contacted for additional documentation.

Step 4: Respond to any emails you receive from CityU’s Financial Aid Office; it will keep your application moving forward. Summer and fall quarters can be a busy time in our office, so processing can take up to six weeks. If we do not need any additional documents or information from you, we will contact you when your award is available.

Step 5: Upon receiving and reviewing all of your documents, we will calculate your eligibility for Federal Student Aid and notify you of your award package through your CityU email.

Step 6: Note that first-time borrowers at CityU will need to go to studentloans.gov with their FSA ID to complete the Entrance Counseling and Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) for student loan funds to disburse, as described in the award notification process.

Step 7: The FAFSA application process must be repeated each academic year.

Qualifications

To apply for U.S. Federal Financial Aid, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be formally admitted to CityU.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen.
  • Have a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Be seeking a degree in an eligible program.
  • Not be in default on any federal education loan.
  • Not owe a refund because of over-payment of a federal grant or loan at any college or university, and
  • Have a valid Social Security number.

Calculating Your Award

What to Expect
Once you submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), here is what you can expect to happen next:

  • You’ll receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the federal government. You’ll need to review it for accuracy, and make any necessary changes online.
  • CityU will receive your financial aid application information electronically. If we need more information to determine your eligibility, we’ll contact you through your CityU email.
  • About one-third of all applications will be selected by the Department of Education for a process called verification. If you’re chosen, CityU’s Financial Aid Office will need to verify the information you provided on your FAFSA. We’ll ask you to send additional documentation, which may include a copy of your tax return transcript(s). Be sure to respond to all requests right away, so we can keep your application moving along.
  • We’ll review your application and notify you by email of your electronic Financial Aid Award. At this point, you’ll be given the option to decide how much of the financial aid offer you want to accept.
  • If you wish to accept student loans, first-time CityU borrowers will need to visit studentloans.gov to complete the Entrance Counseling and Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN). In order to sign this, you will need your FSA ID (used to file your FAFSA), your Social Security number, as well as two personal references.

How Your Financial Aid is Determined
The type of federal financial aid you are offered depends on your financial need, which is based off of your income and other factors you reported on your FAFSA. Your need for financial aid is based on the difference between the Cost of Attending school (COA) and your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). We try to meet that need in different aid programs such as grants, work study and student loans. Typically, your award will include the maximum amounts for which you are eligible.

Cost of Attendance (COA)
Your COA, also referred to as Student Budget, is based on several factors including the program you enroll in at CityU and the amount of credits you take each quarter. The following expenses comprise a student’s COA:

  • Tuition and normal registration fees (not including late fees)
  • Books and supplies
  • Room and board
  • Personal expenses
  • Transportation
2017-18 Cost of Attendance (per quarter)
Living with Parent Not Living with Parent *High-cost Regions
Tuition & Fees See Tuition Chart* See Tuition Chart* See Tuition Chart*
Books & Supplies $280 $280 $280
Room & Board $2,570 $3,230 $3,420
Transportation $500 $380 $380
Misc./ Personal $630 $690 $770
Total $3,980 $4,580 $4,850

*Tuition rates
Student Budget values are established using student surveys, CPI index, and actual institutional expenses.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
Your EFC is calculated according to a formula prescribed by law. It measures your family’s financial strength based on the information you provide on the FAFSA. CityU understands each family’s situation is unique. Though the processor uses a standard formula to determine a family’s expected contribution, CityU can consider unusual or special circumstances when evaluating your eligibility for aid. If you feel you have an unusual circumstance such as extraordinary medical expenses, recent unemployment or a direct educational expense not reflected in your COA, please contact your Financial Aid Counselor. We will require documentation to consider your special situation.

After your need has been calculated, need-based financial aid may be awarded for up to the difference between the cost of attendance and the expected family contribution. Funding to meet your need may include grants or loans. The composition of your financial aid award will depend upon your need level, eligibility requirements of the various aid programs, the date you applied and the availability of funds.

Continuing students can learn more about financial aid announcements and eligibility on the Student Portal at my.cityu.edu.

“This is the rigorous academic experience that only an accredited nonprofit university can offer, and the flexibility I need.”

Jody Bockheim, Student

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