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Understanding the Process

Financial Aid Timeline

1. Complete Your FAFSA (Free Application For Student Aid).

  •           Next Year’s FAFSA becomes available to students and their families on October 1 on
            • We will begin loading FAFSA forms for the next aid year in December. 
  •           Use SBU Federal School Code 002838

2. Complete Your ETA (Express TAP Application). – IF YOU ARE NOT A NY STATE RESIDENT SKIP TO STEP 3

  • Your FAFSA application will be sent to HESC (NY State Higher Education Services).  
  • There will be a link directing you to the HESC website at the end of your submitted FAFSA application.
  • If you miss the link, NY State Higher Education Services will send you an e-mail several days after your FAFSA submission, inviting you to complete your ETA.  
  • Be sure to add SBU state school code to your ETA - 0875
  • You can check your status at 

3. Once we receive your FAFSA we will send you an email confirmation.

4. If we need any additional information we will create a To Do List item, which you can view on your SOLAR homepage.

  • Most requested To Do List Items are uploadable directly to us via SOLAR – directions will be provided in the To Do List Item text. To view our video on the upload process, click here.
  • When utilizing the SOLAR Upload process, please note that the document name cannot exceed 60 characters and the file format must be either ".TIF" or ".PDF". 
  • Items uploaded via SOLAR are typically processed 10 business days sooner than those sent to us or delivered to us in person.

5. Financial Aid Awarding and Notification Begins:

  • Undergraduate Freshmen – Mid March
  • Undergraduate Transfers (Non Health Science) – Mid March
  • Health Science Students – July
  • Medical and Dental Students – July
  • Graduate and Professional Students – July
  • Continuing Undergraduate Students – July
  • New Spring Admits – Mid November  

6. A To Do List Item will be assigned and viewable in SOLAR informing you that your awards are ready to view/accept.

7. Accepted financial aid will appear as anticipated aid against your University bill, with the exception of estimated awards and Federal Work Study.

8. Financial aid will disburse directly into your student account.  Financial aid disbursed in excess of University charges will result in a student refund.