How to Apply for Financial Aid
For Entering Jan. 2016 Students & Beyond
Our office stands ready to help students develop a financial plan that meets their educational goals.
We understand the process of starting law school is very exciting, but here are a few things to keep in mind with regard to your financial needs.
While living within a student budget is essential, by simply borrowing wisely, you can incur less student loan debt when compared to other law school graduates. Here are some suggestions.
Before starting classes you should attempt to reduce the amount of outstanding debt you have. Start tracking your expenses to see where you may be able to cut back. Make an effort to reduce credit cards, private loans, and monthly bills. Also, remember try not to add additional financial obligations such as buying a new car.
Our estimated academic expenses will provide a better understanding of budgeting yourself while in school. You may also want to start looking into alternative options to loan funding such as:
- Federal Work Study pays hours worked in a paycheck, instead of borrowing loans
- Flexible scheduling options allow you the time necessary either for full-time or part-time employment to supplement your costs of student living
An Advisor can meet with any student who wants help reviewing your monthly budget to see how the costs of living may be reduced. While the reduction of loan debt is an important priority for all law school students, part of Cooley's mission aims to provide all students with both an affordable and a quality education.
FINANCIAL AID PROCESS
The Office of Financial Aid begins processing loans three months prior to the start of your enrollment term. You will receive updates and information from the Financial Aid Office prior to your enrollment about the next steps to your application process.
The first step in financial aid is determining eligibility. A student seeking financial aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for every year you plan to enroll. A simple way to remember to complete the FAFSA is to file it once a year at tax time.
We are a borrower based school, which means that if you remain eligible, you may borrow federal aid for every term you are enrolled. We process loans two terms/eight months at a time. You will then receive a new set of loans, and it will continue to cycle every two terms/eight months. The maximum Federal Unsubsidized Loan amount in a two-term loan period is $20,500 as long as your budget allows for the eligibility. You may borrow under the Graduate PLUS loan program up to the remaining cost of attendance based on your federal eligibility.
Ultimately, it is your responsibility to make sure your financial aid is in order, however, if you should need assistance feel free to contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.