Our general eligibility requirements include that you have financial need, are a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen, and are enrolled in an eligible degree or certificate program at your college or career school. There are more eligibility requirements you must meet to qualify for federal student aid.
For a quick glance at the basic eligibility criteria for federal student aid, check out this graphic.
Eligibility for Federal Student Aid Graphic
Did You Know?
There is no income cut-off to qualify for federal student aid. Many factors—such as the size of your family and your year in school—are taken into account.
Students With a Parent Who Was Killed in Iraq or Afghanistan
If your parent died as a result of military service in Iraq or Afghanistan after the events of 9/11, you might be eligible for additional Federal Pell Grant funding or for an Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant.
Generally, if you have a “green card” (in other words, if you are a permanent resident alien), you will be considered an “eligible noncitizen” and will be able to get federal student aid if you meet the other basic eligibility criteria. Learn about which immigration statuses make you an eligible noncitizen.
Students With Criminal Convictions
Your eligibility for federal student aid can be affected by incarceration, having a conviction for a drug offense, or being subject to an involuntary civil commitment after completing a period of incarceration for a sexual offense.
Students With Intellectual Disabilities
Students with intellectual disabilities may receive funding from the Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and Federal Work-Study programs in certain circumstances.
We don’t offer a financial aid program specifically for students who are homeless. However, homeless students can receive money for college if they meet the eligibility requirements for federal student aid.
Here are some resources for students who are homeless:
- Federal Student Aid and Homeless Youth
- FAFSA® dependency status information (certain homeless students may not have to report parent information on the FAFSA form)
- I Want to Go to College: Now What?
- Identifying and Supporting Students Experiencing Homelessness from Pre-School to Post-Secondary Ages—this page is aimed at professionals assisting homeless students, but students may be interested in a few of the links that provide information about services or offices that can help
Students Who Are (or Have Been) in Foster Care
We don’t offer a financial aid program specifically for students who are (or have been) in foster care. However, such students can receive money for college if they meet the eligibility requirements for federal student aid.
Here are some resources for students who are (or have been) in foster care:
- Educational and Training Vouchers for Current and Former Foster Care Youth
- FAFSA® dependency status information (certain students who are or have been in foster care may not have to report parent information on the FAFSA form)
- Foster Care Transition Toolkit
Find out how to stay eligible for federal student aid.