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General Eligibility Requirements

Federal and state student aid programs have certain basic eligibility requirements that are applicable to students seeking aid under the programs.

To be eligible for most financial aid programs at SUNY Cortland, a student must:

  • be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident alien or other eligible noncitizen
  • have a valid Social Security number
  • have a valid high school diploma, a General Education Development (GED) Certificate or have completed a high school education in a home-school setting as provided under state law
  • be accepted for enrollment as a regular student working toward a degree (or C.A.S.)
  • continue to make satisfactory academic progress toward completion of a degree
  • sign a statement certifying that federal student aid will be used only for educational purposes (included as part of the FAFSA application)
  • not be in default on a federal student loan, owe a repayment of a federal grant or otherwise be in default on any obligation to the United States
  • not have borrowed in excess of the lifetime limits under the federal student loan programs
  • be registered with the Selective Service (if male over the age of 18)
  • not have been convicted of certain drug offenses.

The citizenship and Social Security number criteria (above) are also applicable to parents seeking to borrow under the Federal PLUS loan program.

Additionally, most New York state aid programs require a student to establish residency in New York state according to NYS Education Department regulations.