Application Process and Timeline
Most funding is awarded on the basis of financial need. In fact, federal regulations require that any assistance provided from federal funds be contingent upon a careful determination of the student's financial need. (Examples of funding with this requirement at UTMB include such sources as the Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Direct Loans, Federal PELL Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and the Federal Work-Study Grant Program. Completing the FAFSA need analysis establishes a reasonable estimate of the ability of the applicant and of the applicant's family to contribute to their educational expenses. Students are expected to defray part of their expenses by contributing their savings or summer earnings, or both. Parents are expected to contribute toward the cost of education, unless it can be established clearly that the applicant is totally independent of the family or unless the need analysis determines that the applicant's family is unable to provide financial support. The actual amount of contribution expected from parents is determined by such circumstances as the family's income, total assets and number of dependents. Financial Need may be defined as the difference between the cost of attending UTMB and the amount of the contribution by the student and the student's family.
Completion of a new FAFSA is required annually. The FAFSA for the upcoming aid year is available on October 1st of each year. The FAFSA requires that you use data from your completed IRS tax return from 2 years prior to the application period. For instance, if you are completing the FAFSA for the 2020/21 academic year, you will report data from your 2018 tax return. Applications for aid are processed on a first come, first served basis and some funds are awarded until they are exhausted, so it is important for you to complete your FAFSA as soon as possible. You do not need to be accepted to a program in order to complete your FAFSA. However, your aid will not be awarded until you have been accepted.
UTMB begins awarding financial aid for the upcoming academic year in March of each year and we continuously award aid throughout the year. If you need aid to be ready at the beginning of a semester, we must have your completed FAFSA and any additional required documents no later than one month prior to the beginning of the semester. Additional required documents could include, but are not limited to, the verification documents, tax transcripts, citizenship verification, documentation of selective service registration, and verification of high school completion. If any of these documents are required for the processing of your aid, you will have an item in mySTAR listed on your “TO DO” list.
Once your Financial Aid Application materials have been processed, and your funding sources have been determined, you will be notified, via email, to logon into mySTAR to review your financial aid awards.
Aid must be accepted before any funds can be disbursed. The disbursement date on your financial aid award letter is the date Enrollment Services begins the disbursement process. After your tuition and fees are paid, funds are issued to you for the amount of financial aid that exceeds your charges. If you wish to accept less from the loan funds you have been offered, you can indicate the amount you would like to accept as part of the acceptance process in mySTAR. When you accept less than you are offered from the Federal Direct Loans, you can opt to increase your loan at a later date by contacting the Financial Aid Office.
If you reject all or part of the aid offered to you, your award letter will be revised. You will once again be notified, via email, to review and either accept or reject the aid offered to you. When you reject the loan you are offered from the Federal Direct Loans, you can opt to add the loan at a later date by contacting the Financial Aid Office.
If you receive additional funding or otherwise have a change made to your financial aid award, you will receive email notification to review and accept the changes. You will have to accept or reject your revised financial aid before any additional funding will be able to be disbursed.
Institutional Grant awards are issued to students who have submitted a complete FAFSA using the IRS data retrieval tool for both student and parent information. These funds are awarded on a "first come, first served basis" until the funds have been exhausted.
Undergraduate and Graduate students are funded for three terms during the school year: Fall, Spring, and Summer. Medical Students are funded for two terms Fall and Spring. Fall disbursements are initiated 10 days before classes begin. Spring disbursements are initiated in January when the University reopens after winter break. Summer disbursements are initiated 10 days before classes begin. After eligibility is determined, students are funded in the following order:
- Federal Pell Grant (UNDERGRAD) - This is an entitlement program, and eligibility is determined by a combination of a student's enrollment status and expected contribution. Amounts range from $329 to $6,195 per year, based on full-time enrollment. Students enrolled less-than-half-time may also be eligible for funding. Only students who have not already completed a Bachelor's Degree are eligible to be considered for these funds.
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (UNDERGRAD) - Priority is given to those students with exceptional financial need. Recipients are typically those with the lowest Expected Family Contributions (EFC’s), who will also receive Federal Pell Grants as part of their financial aid.
- Federal Work-Study (FWS) - The FWS Program allows students to earn, rather than borrow, part of their financial need. Positions are available both on campus and in the local community. To be eligible for Work-Study you must demonstrate financial need by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In addition, FWS earnings are not considered when calculating your Expected Family Contribution in subsequent years. Eligible students will be notified when to apply.
- Federal Direct Subsidized Loan (UNDERGRAD) - The FDSL is awarded up to the program maximum or student’s financial need, whichever is lower. The maximum amount a student may borrow is $5,500 per year, up to a cumulative total of $23,000. Students who have previously borrowed through the Federal Stafford Loan Program will have those amounts added to the amount of FDSL borrowed at UTMB to arrive at the cumulative amount borrowed.
- Institutional Need-Based Grants (TPEG and Designated Tuition Grant) - Need-based grants are awarded to students who have provided parent information on the FAFSA and are considered to come from a “less advantaged” background. This is determined by adding the calculated parent and student EFC (estimated family contribution) from the FAFSA; students with a total EFC of less than $15,000 will be eligible for these grant funds. These grants are awarded on a first come, first served basis and once they are exhausted, no more funding will be available until the next academic year. Parent information is required regardless of dependency status. Providing parental information will not affect any other type of eligibility for independent students.
- Texas Grant - Texas Grant Program funding is available to prior recipients who are maintaining the program’s satisfactory academic progress standards. Eligibility is confirmed with the State before an award is made. If you received the Texas Grant prior to attending UTMB, please email email@example.com to let the office know so your award can be determined.
- Institutional Loans (Loans for Disadvantaged Students and Federal Nursing Loans) - Awarded in accordance with the terms of each program, up to the student’s calculated financial need. Institutional Loans require electronic signatures for promissory note and truth-in-lending statements. Once the loan is awarded, you will receive an email from our loan servicer, University Accounting Services (UAS), with instructions for completing these documents.
- Texas Medical Association (TMA) Loan Program (Med 3 and Med 4) - Up to $5,000 in funding is offered to third and fourth year students who are Texas residents and demonstrate financial need, as long as funds allow. The interest rate is 4.4% and is due annually.
- Minnie Stevens Piper Foundation Student Loan Fund - This loan program is available to students who have first applied for Federal Student Aid. Students may receive up to $2,000 per term, for all three terms each year. A maximum of $10,000 may be loaned to any one student. Applicants must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident and a full-time student. A separate application must be completed and submitted to the foundation. It can be found at Minnie Stevens Piper Foundation.
- Non-Need Based Student Loans - These loans are used to fill any remaining financial need and/or to replace the student’s expected family contribution. The maximum eligibility is the student’s budget less any financial aid and other resources, up to the program’s maximum allowable amount.
- Federal Direct Unsubsidized Student Loan (FDUSL) - This is a federal loan not based on need. Students can receive up to the annual loan limit, up to their total cost of attendance in combination with their other aid. Medical students can receive up to $47,164 based on their year in school, graduate students can receive up to $20,500, independent undergraduates can receive up to $7,500, and dependent undergraduates can receive up to $2,000. Please note for undergraduate students the amount can be more depending on whether the student qualifies for subsidized loans as well.
- Graduate PLUS Loan - The Graduate PLUS loan program allows you to borrow up to the difference between your educational costs and your financial aid award package. If you wish to borrow from this program please notify us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Federal Direct Parent Loan (DEPENDENT) - Students who are dependent for financial aid purposes may borrow their cost of attendance minus other aid. If you wish to borrow from this program please notify us at email@example.com.
- Alternative Loans - These lenders offer loan programs through which students may borrow up to the amount of their budgets less financial aid and other resources, up to the programs’ maximums. If a student cannot meet the total cost of attendance with the financial assistance offered through Enrollment Services, alternative loans are available through the private sector (banks). Please go to https://choice.fastproducts.org/FastChoice/home/495200/1 to apply for these loans. Please bear in mind that alternative lenders will usually complete a credit check to determine your eligibility for funding. You may be asked to provide a co-signer, or be denied funding based on your credit history, or lack thereof. If you are not approved for an external loan, Enrollment Services cannot change the lender's decision and your award may be revised.