The Financial Aid Applications
Administered by the College Board, the CSS Profile is an online application for INSTITUTIONAL need-based aid from Franklin & Marshall College. The first application is $25 and reports to additional schools are $16 each. The CSS Profile Overview below will provide helpful tips and resources to assist you with the form. F&M's CSS Profile Code is 2261.Complete the PROFILE
The FAFSA is an online application for FEDERAL student aid and there is NO FEE to apply. To help you successfully fill out the application, "7 Easy Steps to the FAFSA," created by the talented staff and student employees at the University of California, Santa Barbara, has been provided below. Franklin & Marshall's FAFSA School Code is 003265.Complete the FAFSA
The College Board's Institutional Documentation Service (IDOC) is a secured website and our required method for you to submit all of your tax documents and other supplemental financial aid forms. We encourage you to view the "Your Guide To IDOC" below. It will show you how to navigate and successfully submit your documents via IDOC.Why We Use IDOC
Difference Between the FAFSA and CSS Profile
It is the policy of Franklin & Marshall College to expect information and financial support from both biological/adoptive parents of students applying to F&M for financial aid. Parents who live in the same household, regardless of legal status, or who reside separately for employment purposes only, are not considered separated, and information for both parents must be reported on the CSS Profile and the FAFSA.
FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
Determines your eligibility for need-based federal and state grants, low interest federal student loans, and federal work-study. This includes the Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG, Federal Direct Student Loan (subsidized and unsubsidized) and Federal Work-Study.
Determines eligibility for F&M’s need-based grants, scholarships and loan. Students who receive F&M’s need-based aid in their first year are normally guaranteed aid renewal for the next three (3) years, not to exceed a total of eight (8) semesters. Students must be enrolled full-time, be in good academic standing, and demonstrate eligibility by filing the CSS Profile every academic year.
Students With Divorced/Separated Parents
Franklin & Marshall College recognizes that parents do not end their relationship with their children when they divorce/separate and that all parents have a responsibility to provide for their children. We do not think it is fair to ask students who have two married parents to pay more for college than students with two parents who are not married to each other.
If the student’s biological/adoptive parents do not share the same household, both the student's biological/adoptive parent(s) will complete their own CSS Profile application. Each parent will access their CSS Profile with different College Board log-in credentials.
- It is highly recommended that the student and the custodial parent start the CSS Profile application first. Although the noncustodial parent can start the application at any time, the noncustodial parent will not be able to complete the application until the student selects a college that requires the CSS Profile from the noncustodial parent.
- The noncustodial parent will need to create a College Board account before providing their information.
- The student’s noncustodial parent pays a $25 fee for the CSS Profile application. A fee waiver may be granted by the College Board based on the information entered on the noncustodial parent’s application for low-income parents.
- To maintain confidentiality, the student and the custodial parent will need to ensure that the noncustodial parent does not know the student’s College Board account password.
The Office of Financial Aid is careful to safeguard the privacy of all families and will not allow one parent to see the information submitted by the other. All education records, including financial aid applications and supporting documentation, are protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Families need to remember that both the federal government and Franklin & Marshall College consider it the family’s primary responsibility to pay for their child’s education and will not determine financial aid eligibility until we have assessed the family’s ability to pay.
The Office of Financial Aid recognizes that extenuating circumstances in individual cases may make it impossible to obtain information and/or support of the noncustodial parent. If the noncustodial parent's whereabouts are unknown, if there is an established history of no contact, or if there are certain other extenuating circumstances, we may exempt the student from providing information for the noncustodial parent. Requests based solely on a noncustodial parent’s unwillingness to contribute or submit application materials will not be considered.
FOR A WAIVER TO BE REVIEWED BY THE FINANCIAL AID COMMITTEE
- You must have a completed CSS Profile on file with Office of Financial Aid
- You must have a completed Common Application/Coalition Application on file with the Office of Admission.
- The CSS Profile Waiver Request for the Noncustodial Profile Parent must be completed and signed. (This form is on the CSS Profile website under "Info for Divorced Parents.") Answer all questions and provide your personal statement. If you do not know the answer to a question write “unknown” in the appropriate space. If you are uncertain on how to answer a question(s), please contact our office.
- Attach a signed statement from an impartial third party on agency’s letterhead where they are employed. See instructions for third party statement below.
- Important for all forms and statements: Pen/Ink Signatures required - computer generated signatures are not acceptable.
HOW TO SUBMIT THE WAIVER
- Download the CSS Profile Waiver Request for the Noncustodial Profile Parent from the CSS Profile website under “Info for Divorced Parents.” Follow the instructions to complete and sign the form. NOTE: Pen/Ink Signatures required - computer generated signatures are not acceptable.
- Court documents may be submitted to support your petition, however, a third party statement is still required.
- Submit via IDOC the CSS Profile Waiver Request for the Noncustodial Profile Parent , third party statement and any other supporting documents, together. Do not send them separately.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE THIRD PARTY STATEMENT
- Include with the waiver, one (1) statement from an impartial third party that can verify the amount of contact the student has had with the noncustodial parent.
- The statement must be from a professional individual - guidance counselor, physician, social worker, licensed therapist, clergy person, police or another impartial source familiar with your situation in a professional capacity.
- The statement must address how the person knows you, how long they have known you, how they have been involved and/or have first-hand personal knowledge of your situation and the amount of contact you have with your noncustodial parent.
- The statement must be on the agency’s letterhead.
- The statement must include the individual’s name, title or position, address, and signature. NOTE: Pen/Ink Signatures required - computer generated signatures are not acceptable.
- The individual submitting statement cannot work or reside at the same address as you or your custodial parent. In addition they cannot be related to you or your family.
Submission of the waiver does not guarantee its approval.
In addition, unwillingness to pay is not sufficient grounds for a waiver approval absent other contributing factors. Need-based aid is a measure of ability, not willingness, to pay for a student’s college education.
Federal Tax Documents
- Includes your Federal Tax Return, all W2s and all schedules.
- F&M uses the College Board's Institutional Documentation Service (IDOC) for the collection of Federal Tax documents. The email from College Board/IDOC will provide you with instructions on how to send your information.
Financial Aid Notifications
- First year and transfer students accepted to Franklin and Marshall College will receive a hard copy financial aid letter with their admittance packet.
- Returning students will be reviewed for financial aid at the end of the Spring semester, after Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) has been determined. Students must be making SAP in order to receive federal and institutional need-based aid funds. Financial aid notifications will be sent electronically to returning students starting in mid-June.
F&M is committed to a diverse student body and provides need-based financial assistance to international students. Additional information and deadline dates are provided under the section heading "Yes, I'm Requesting Financial Aid" on the International Student Admission web page.