Financial Aid Services Center
Western Washington University makes every effort to provide financial assistance to eligible applicants through grants, scholarships, work study, loans, or some combination of these student aid programs. Aid is available to help meet educational costs including tuition and fees, books and educational supplies, room and board, transportation and personal expenses. Eligibility for financial aid is determined by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on an annual basis. For summer financial aid, students must also complete a WWU Financial Aid Summer Application.
Types of Financial Aid
Grants are free money that are awarded to undergraduate students who have high financial need as determined by the FAFSA. Western Washington University participates in all state and federal grant programs including the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Washington State Need Grant, Washington State Tuition Waivers, and Institutional Grants.
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic merit, talent, extra-curricular activities and, in some cases, financial need. Scholarship information is available in the Scholarship Center, Old Main 285 or students can visit the Scholarship Center website
Work Study is a form of financial aid which provides employment opportunities on campus and in the local community. Your work study job will provide you with a paycheck like any other part-time employment situation. While work study earnings are subject to federal income tax like other jobs, they have the benefit of counting as an income exclusion on the FAFSA for the upcoming aid year!
Work study is awarded to students with high financial need. Those students who are not awarded work study are encouraged to access the Student Employment web page where a variety of non-work study jobs are posted. Additional information is available in the Student Employment Center, Old Main 275 or on the Student Employment Center website.
Loans at Western Washington University are funded through the federal government. We offer the Federal Direct (subsidized and unsubsidized), and Parent PLUS Loan programs. Loan eligibility and amounts are determined based on the FAFSA, class status, and dependency information. Loans must be repaid.
How to Apply for Financial Aid
- Submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, commonly called the FAFSA, by Western's priority filing deadline of January 31st for the upcoming academic year. See our Financial Aid Checklist for additional important steps applying for financial aid. Include WWU’s Federal School Code which is 003802 on the FAFSA.
- Complete an application for admission to WWU. Contact the Admissions Office at (360) 650-3440 for additional information.
- Review the Student Aid Report (SAR) which will be sent or emailed to you. If there is incorrect information, make your corrections and submit them to the federal processor. You can contact the federal processor at 1-800-433-3243 for additional information.
- Respond promptly to any requests for information from the Financial Aid Department and include the student’s name and student number on all documents submitted.
- Review the Notice of Financial Aid which will be sent to you by the Financial Aid Department. Sign and return a copy to our office.
- Maintain a personal financial aid file for your records and keep copies of all documents.
- Keep your address current with the Registrar’s Office. You can be updated on Web4U or by contacting (360) 650-3430.
- Always be prepared to begin classes with some of your own funds even if you expect to receive financial aid.
General Eligibility Requirements
To be considered for most federal, state, and institutional types of financial aid, students must meet the following criteria:
- Be qualified to study at the postsecondary level as demonstrated by any of the following items:
- a high school diploma (this can be from a foreign school if it is equivalent to a U.S. high school diploma);
- completed homeschooling at the secondary level as defined by state law; or
- a recognized equivalent of a high school diploma, including,
- a general educational development or GED certificate;
- an academic transcript of a student who has successfully completed at least a two-year program that is acceptable for full credit toward a
bachelor’s degree (Transfer students, see our FAQ for details); or
- a determination made by the Admissions Office that a student without a diploma excelled in high school.
- Have a High School diploma or GED certificate. Effective July 1, 2012; new students without a high school diploma, GED or did not complete secondary school in a homeschool setting will not be eligible for Title IV funds.
- Be admitted into a degree or certificate-granting program at WWU
- Not owe a refund on a previous grant and not be in default on a previous educational loan
- Be a U.S. citizen or national, a permanent resident, or other eligible noncitizen.
- Have registered with the Selective Service if required to do so
- Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress
Note: students without a high school diploma or an equivalent and who were enrolled in an eligible educational program of study before July 1, 2012, may continue to be considered eligible for financial aid under either an approved Ability To Benefit test or has satisfactorily completed six credits of college work that are applicable to a WWU degree or certificate.
Other less frequently encountered eligibility requirements may apply in certain circumstances. Please contact us for additional information if you have unique or unusual circumstances that you wish to discuss.
The Financial Aid Department offers short-term loans ranging from $50 - $600. The eligibility criteria varies and there is a minimal processing fee on each one. Contact our office for additional information.