The State Grant deadline has been extended from May1 to August 1 for first-time and non-renewal Pennsylvania State Grant applicants planning to attend a community.
Applicants must be attending a community college and satisfy all eligibility requirements, including being enrolled on at least a part-time basis to qualify. The State Grant deadline for renewal applicants remains May 1.
It is anticipated the deadline extension will increase community college State Grant recipients by 35 percent to approximately 33,000 students. The maximum State Grant award in 2011-12 for community college recipients will be $2,313, or a 23 percent increase from 2010-11 levels.
In addition to the deadline extension, PHEAA approved the allocation of $50 million from PHEAA's business earnings to supplement the 2011-12 State Grant Program. The supplement, combined with the $380 million appropriated by the General Assembly, will increase the maximum award from $3,541 to $4,348, an $807 increase over 2010-11.
First-time and non-renewal community college State Grant applicants who had received a reject notification because they filed after the original May 1 deadline will be contacted with updated eligibility information. PHEAA is encouraging students to review their State Grant application by logging into PHEAA.org to ensure that their application is complete, especially those who thought that they missed the deadline and did not follow through with completing their applications.
"There is still time for first-time and non-renewal community college students to file the FAFSA to be considered as on-time in the application process," said Senator Wayne Fontana, PHEAA Board vice chairman.
To determine eligibility for a State Grant, applicants must complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and a State Grant Form (SGF) which collects additional data elements not requested on the federal application. The SGF is only required for first-time State Grant applicants. Applicants can access the FAFSA at either PHEAA.org/FAFSA or fafsa.gov. First-time applicants can access the SGF directly from the FAFSA on the Web, allowing them to complete the entire process from one site.
Students who have already submitted their FAFSA but not their SGF will need to visit Account Access through the Secure Sign-In at PHEAA.org to complete their State Grant Form.
For information on the higher education financial aid process, schedules for upcoming financial aid nights and FAFSA Completion Sessions, reminders of financial aid deadlines, and video clips offering tips and information pertaining to planning for higher education, students can join PHEAA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pheaa.aid.