The financial aid award letter appeal can be a formal or informal process depending on the college.  It is recommended that you call the school’s financial aid office to verify which process the school uses.  Since award letters are not standardized, evaluating each school awards can be difficult.  Comparing them can be even more challenging.

A big mistake within the college admission and financial aid process is that people gets too emotional.  Parents and students need to realize that this is a business and the process of appealing the financial aid award letter needs to be approached as a business decision.  Even though the calculation of the federal financial aid is very structured, a college’s financial aid policy can be subjective.

It is our opinion that  keeping the appeal letter short and to the point is more beneficial.  You need to put yourself on the other side of the table.  Think of the reader of these appeals letters.  Over the past few years there has been an increased amount of press and myths that you can negotiate with the colleges.  To a certain extent that is true but having hard facts to justifying your appeal will normally get you a better result.

The other advice we give to our clients is to include numbers if possible.  There are many factors that go into getting accepted and the amount of financial aid you receive.  Helping the appeal reader with the amount of the adjustment you need is helpful.

This financial aid letter appeal video includes:

  • Reasons to appeal financial aid
  • Using competitive offers
  • Impact of Admission strength

Your financial aid letter appeal can save you thousands of dollars if done correctly.  Professional college financial aid help is available.  Please visit our College Affordability Services for more information.  We can help you avoid mistakes and maximize your tuition dollars.