How is need determined?
The basic premise of financial aid is that the primary responsibility
for meeting college costs rests with the student and his or
her parents, to the extent they are able to pay. The difference
between the cost of attendance at the institution and the calculated
ability of a family to meet this cost is defined as a student's
"demonstrated need." A family's ability to meet the
cost of attendance is determined from an in-depth assessment
of the information reported on the CSS PROFILE and FAFSA. Need
is determined according to a set of standards and principles
developed by the College Board.
Wake Forest offers to meet the full demonstrated need of
all regularly admitted applicants. What does this mean?
For those regular decision applicants who meet the financial aid deadlines, Wake Forest will meet 100% of demonstrated need through a
combination of scholarships (grants based on merit), gift aid
(financial aid that does not have to be repaid), loans (borrowed
money that must be repaid with interest), and work-study (money
students earn from jobs to help pay for educational expenses). Beginning with freshmen entering in Fall 2008, students from families with annual income of less than $40,000, who do not have large assets, will have their loans capped at $4,000 per year.
What is the income cut-off for financial aid eligibility?
Since income is only one factor that is taken into consideration
in determining eligibility for financial aid, there is no income
cutoff. In addition to income, we take into consideration many
factors, including parent and student assets, family size, tax
liability, the number of students in college, home equity, medical
and educational expenses, business investments, rental property,
and summer student earnings. The only way to determine eligibility
for financial aid is to submit an application. Approximately
40% of full-time undergraduates demonstrate financial
Can I estimate the contribution my family will be expected
to make towards my education?
The Net Price Calculator provides an estimate of financial aid and the expected family contribution to
educational costs. These estimates may not be accurate
for families with complicated financial situations or extenuating
My parents do not declare me as a dependent on their income
taxes. Can I be classified as an independent student for financial
Except in the most extraordinary circumstances, Wake Forest
considers all undergraduate students to be dependent on parents
for institutional financial aid purposes, even though some students
may meet the federal definition of "independence."
A student may not declare independence during his or her undergraduate
years due to attainment of legal age, internal family arrangements,
marriage, parenthood, or family disagreements.
Will I know about financial aid at the time I am admitted
to the University?
If your financial aid application is complete by the March
1st priority deadline, you should receive a financial aid decision
shortly after you receive your offer of admission.
What if my family's financial circumstances change after
receive my financial aid award?
Any substantive changes in a family's financial situation
should be reported immediately in writing to the Office of Student
Financial Aid. Examples of such changes are a significant decrease
in income, unusual medical expenses, or a change in parents'
marital status. The Financial Aid Committee will review the
request for reconsideration to determine if an adjustment is
What impact will a reduction in the number of children in college have on my financial aid in subsequent years?
If your need is based on two or more children in college at the same time, and the sibling later graduates or is no longer enrolled in undergraduate college, then your award may be significantly reduced. The more financial resources your parents have, the greater the impact will be. Siblings enrolled in graduate or professional school, while possibly considered in determining your eligibility for federal aid, are not included in making decisions about the amount of institutional aid you are awarded.
Are international students eligible for need-based aid?
Students classified as international students by the Office
of Undergraduate Admissions are not eligible to receive need-based
aid. However, international students with exceptional academic
and leadership credentials should consider applying for merit
International students interested in campus or community employment
opportunities should review the student employment section of
the web site. If there are questions about working on campus,
international students may contact the Student Employment Supervisor
in the Office of Student Financial Aid.
Students interested in borrowing to help pay for college,
who can enlist a U.S. citizen or permanent resident to co-sign
a loan promissory note, should refer to the information on the
eduPASS web site: http://www.edupass.org/finaid/loans.phtml.