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Undergraduate Financial Aid

Undergraduate Financial Aid

Information for Parents

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The Office of Financial Aid is here to assist you and your student through the financial aid process. DU awards $104 million in need- and merit-based aid annually, and 84 percent of students receive some form of financial assistance. We award financial aid through a variety of programs, including scholarships, grants, work awards and loans. Some awards are based primarily on academic achievement, while others are based on financial need. Much of the aid is made available through federal and state programs and may have limited funding, so it is important to apply early every year.

If you cannot find the answer to your questions below, please feel free to contact our office at 303-871-4020 or finaid@du.edu. We welcome the opportunity to help you and your student, but we also encourage you to be proactive and talk to your student about budgeting and planning, as they are ultimately responsible for managing their financial aid.

Privacy of Educational Records and Access to Information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prohibits the University of Denver from releasing a student’s financial aid records to anyone without the student’s written consent, regardless of the student’s age or who is paying the student’s bills. While we enjoy the opportunity to assist you, we cannot discuss your student’s financial aid without the written consent of your student. Current students who wish to release their information must complete a Release of Confidential Student Record Information. Learn more about FERPA through the Office of the Registrar.

Applying for Financial Aid

To maximize available financial aid resources and to be considered for all types of funding, your family should apply for financial aid as soon as possible after January 1st of every year. Each year, the priority deadline for new students to complete the CSS PROFILE and FAFSA is February 15th (March 15th for continuing students) for the following academic year. If you have not yet filed your taxes when you apply for aid, you may use estimates. However, if your child is a new DU student, be sure to complete your tax returns as quickly as possible, as the priority deadline to submit all verification documents is March 1st (April 1st for continuing students).

Before applying for aid, review our tips for completing the FAFSA and CSS PROFILE to help make the process easier!

DU’s philosophy is that it is the responsibility of both biological/adoptive parents to support their student’s higher education expenses. Therefore, parent information is required on both the FAFSA and CSS PROFILE, regardless of the parent’s ability or willingness to contribute to their student’s educational costs, or whether or not the student is listed as a dependent on tax returns. If the parents are divorced or separated, only the custodial parent needs to complete the FAFSA. However, the noncustodial parent must complete the Noncustodial Parent CSS PROFILE.

Federal Direct Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students

The PLUS loan is a federal loan available to credit-worthy parents of undergraduate students. The terms of the loan include:

  • Borrower must be a U.S. citizen, national or permanent resident, and must pass a credit check* or have a credit-worthy endorser
  • Not based on financial need, but a FAFSA must be submitted
  • Can borrow up to the student’s total annual cost of attendance, minus all other financial aid received (including Direct subsidized/unsubsidized loans)
  • Fixed 6.41% interest rate
  • A 4.288% origination fee is charged at each disbursement of the loan
  • Repayment begins 60 days after disbursement (10-year repayment period), however borrowers may request forbearance until the student graduates
  • Multiple repayment options available
  • To apply, Request a PLUS Loan and complete a Master Promissory Note online at www.StudentLoans.gov using your own PIN (used to sign the FAFSA)

*To be approved for a Parent PLUS loan, you will need to have no adverse credit. Adverse credit is defined as 90 days or more delinquent on any debt, or having a credit report that shows default, discharge, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment or write-off of Title IV (federal student loan) debt, or an open account in collections in the past five years. Your debt-to-income ratio, credit score, employment status or lack of credit is not taken into account during a credit check. If you are denied a PLUS loan because of adverse credit, you may appeal the denial, reapply with an endorser (cosigner), or the student may request an additional unsubsidized Federal Direct loan.

Special Circumstances

After your student has received his/her financial aid package, and your family has experienced an unexpected change to your financial situation, you may appeal for a re-evaluation of your financial aid eligibility. Appeals will be processed only when an initial award letter has been issued and all additional documents have been received. The processing of appeals begins in mid-March for new students and in June for continuing students. All Special Circumstances requests must be approved by the Financial Aid Advisory Committee. Learn more about how our office handles special circumstances.

Disbursement of Aid and Refund Information

As long as all requirements are satisfied (which your student can verify through webCentral on the “Student” tab), financial aid funds will typically disburse to your student’s DU tuition account 10 days prior to the start of each quarter. If the amount of financial aid that has disbursed is larger than the amount due to DU, the Bursar’s office will generate a refund, typically 2-3 days after disbursement.

If you have borrowed a Parent PLUS loan, any refund owed will be sent directly to you (the parent) via mailed check. However, if your student’s financial aid (without the PLUS loan) is greater than the bill, those excess funds will first be refunded directly to your student. Then, the additional PLUS loan amount will be refunded to you (the parent). Learn more about bills and receiving aid.

For further questions about billing and refunds, contact the Bursar’s office at 303-871-4944 or bursar@du.edu.

Resources and Contacts

There are many tools and resources available for parents and families of DU students. Some of the most frequently used contacts are listed below; however there are many more resources listed on the Parents and Families page.