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Financial Aid - Columbus State University

Office of Financial Aid

Financial Aid

2022-2023 FAFSA Workshops

Have questions about the FAFSA process or want to learn more? Sign up for one of our FAFSA assistance workshops!

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Financial Aid Questions? Get Video Answers

For helpful tips and instructions on how to complete the financial aid process, please use the

Financial Aid Checklist (PDF)

Paying For College

Each year, more than 1,200 undergraduate and graduate students benefit from university scholarships totaling more than $3 million. Typical scholarship awards range in value from $100 to $5,000 in academic year support and include both merit- and need-based opportunities. Each award is made possible by our generous donors who understand the value a scholarship represents in making college affordable and equipping students to achieve their goals. Learn more about scholarships available at Columbus State by visiting our scholarship information page.

Applying for State Scholarships

To apply for the Georgia HOPE and Zell Miller Scholarships, you can complete an online HOPE application or the FAFSA.

Applying for Federal Student Aid

Complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon as possible - our federal school code is 001561.

The FAFSA becomes available October 1st for the upcoming aid year! The earlier you complete it, the better.

If this is your first time signing in to complete the FAFSA, please create a Federal Student Aid (FSA) User ID. In addition to FAFSA, your FSA User ID login (username/password) is also used to login to the Federal Student Aid website.

Check out the myStudentAid app in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store!

Applying for Tuition Assistance for Active Duty Service Members

Active Duty Service Members may utilize their Tuition Assistance benefits to help with tuition. For more information on how to apply to use Tuition Assistance benefits or to find out your Service's Educational Portal, visit our Military Tuition Assistance page.

Selected for Verification?

There's a new process to submit documents! Required documents submission instructions.

Columbus State University Financial Aid Deadlines

Spring 2023 Semester
November 1, 2022 (2022–2023 FAFSA used)
Summer 2023 Semester
April 1, 2022 (2022–2023 FAFSA used)

Other Need-To-Know Information

Tips to ponder when considering studying abroad:

  • Timing is critical! Contact the Financial Aid Office to help with planning and budgeting.
  • There will be deposits and other payment deadlines prior to the term of the Study Abroad program. Financial aid such as Pell, HOPE, and other federal grants pay based on the hours enrolled for each term. Federal Stafford and PLUS loans may provide excess funds to meet these early expenses.
  • If you will or have received a refund for the term prior to your study abroad term, remember that is an available resource. In addition, consider resources from employment and family. Plan ahead and budget money for your study abroad term. Please keep in mind, besides the program costs paid to the Center for Global Engagement, there will be other expenses such as food and personal purchases during your study abroad trip.
  • Refunds for CSU students are available during the second week of the semester. Make sure you have activated your CougarOne account and consider selecting 'Easy Refund' for funds to be transferred quickly to your CougarOne card during the term of your study abroad program.
  • An internet search for alternative educational loans may be an option you want to explore. Please note that credit checks are required for alternative educational loans. Also, lenders issue a paper check for these loans during the term you are attending a study abroad program.
  • You may want to confirm with your bank about granting a 'general power of attorney' to a parent or close family member that can sign and/or deposit the check and see that your school expenses are paid.
  • Keeping in mind your resources, search for study abroad programs that fit within your price range and all expenses are covered with emergency funds available if necessary

Timing: This is an approximate time-line. Please be aware that certain study abroad programs may have payment deadlines that require these steps to be accomplished earlier than the suggested times.

  • Complete your FAFSA online for the corresponding aid year by the priority deadlines:
    • Fall Semester – March 15th
    • Spring Semester – November 15th
    • Summer Semester – March 15th
  • Six months prior to the study abroad term, search for study abroad programs, meet with a Center for Global Engagement staff person and complete an application for a study abroad program. Obtain an estimate of study abroad costs in writing for your program from the Center for Global Engagement. For study abroad advising, email studyabroad@columbusstate.edu to make an appointment or stop by the Center for Global Engagement, Schuster 117 Monday – Friday between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM.
  • One semester prior to the study abroad term, search for study abroad scholarships; be aware of scholarship deadline dates set by the Center for Global Engagement and complete applications.
  • Approximately 2-3 months prior, contact Financial Aid ensure your financial aid has been processed and that you will have enough funding to cover your expenses. This should be done prior to paying any non-refundable program fees. For Financial Aid assistance, emailfinancial_aid@columbusstate.edu, call (706) 507-8800, or visit our Enrollment Service Center located in University Hall Monday – Friday between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM.

Some financial aid programs require a minimum level of enrollment for payment. The amount paid on other programs is based on the number of semester hours of enrollment.

Enrollment status is classified as follows:

Undergraduate Students

  • Full-time - 12 or more semester hours
  • Three-quarter-time - 9-11 semester hours
  • Half-time - 6-8 semester hours
  • Less than half-time - 1-5 semester hours

Graduate Students

  • Full-time - 9 or more semester hours
  • Half-time - 5 semester hours
  • Less than half-time - 1-3 semester hours

Loan recipients of Federal Direct Loans must be enrolled at least half-time (6 or more hours for undergraduates/5 or more hours for graduates) to receive loan funds.

Pell Grant recipients will receive the maximum payment for full-time enrollment. Payments are prorated for enrollment levels less than full-time.

Columbus State University participates in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan program providing federal loans to students in which the lender is the U.S. Department of Education.

The term “private education loan”, also known as alternative education loan, refers to a loan made by a lender in the private sector. It is not a loan offered by the federal government. Columbus State University will process a private education loan when requested by the student.

The following Student Loan Code of Conduct has been developed to prohibit a conflict of interest with responsibilities of Columbus State University employees in regards to private education loans and in compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act:

  1. Columbus State University's Financial Aid Office does not use a lender list for students seeking a private education loan nor does it limit the choice of lenders for students.
  2. Columbus State University's Financial Aid Office does not assign a borrower's private education loan to a particular lender and does not delay or refuse to certify loans based upon the borrower's selection of a particular lender.
  3. Columbus State University does not enter into any revenue-sharing arrangement with any private education loan lender. The term “revenue-sharing” means an arrangement with any lender under which (1) a lender provides or issues a private education loan to students attending the institution or the families of such students and (2) the institution recommends the lender or the loan products and in exchange, the lender pays a fee or provides other material benefits, including revenue or profit sharing, to the institution, an officer, an employee or an agent of the institution.
  4. Employees of the Columbus State University Financial Aid Office and those who have responsibilities with respect to private education loans are prohibited from receiving or soliciting gifts from a lender, a guarantor, or a loan servicer of private educational loans. In addition, gifts to family members of an employee or agent, or to any other individual based upon the individual's relationship with the employee/agent is prohibited if the gift is given with the knowledge and acquiescence of the employee/agent and the employee/agent has reason to believe the gift was given because of the official position of that individual. Exception: Professional training, materials, and programs for financial educational purposes are acceptable.
  5. Columbus State University prohibits employees of the Financial Aid Office and those who have responsibilities with respect to private education loans from performing consulting or accepting contracting arrangements for compensation from any lender or affiliate of any lender for any type of services related to educational loans.
  6. Columbus State University does not request or accept from any lender any offer of funds to be used for private education loans in exchange for the institution providing concessions or promises.
  7. Columbus State University does not request or accept from any lender assistance with call center staffing or financial aid office staffing.
  8. Any Columbus State University Financial Aid employee who serves on an advisory board, commission, or group established by a lender is prohibited from receiving advisory board compensation except for reasonable expenses in performing these duties.

Contact Information

Phone: (706) 507-8800

Email: financial_aid@columbusstate.edu

Fax: (706) 568-2230

Office Hours:
Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Tuesday, 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Virtual Advisor