Understanding Your Award Letter


1. Estimated Direct Cost

The estimated direct costs are those costs paid directly to the University and billed through your VSU student account in the Bursar’s Office. Your actual direct costs will vary depending on how many courses you’re enrolling in, if you’re living on or off campus, if you have coursework that includes a lab fee, etc. 

2. Estimated Family Contribution

The estimated family contribution (EFC), is not an actual amount that you (or your parents) have to pay, but it is an estimate of how much your family should reasonably be able to contribute towards your educational expenses during the academic year, based on a Federal calculation.

The EFC is based on the information you submitted on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The EFC formula considers income, assets, the number of persons in your household, those attending college for the award year, and more.

3. Grants and Scholarships

Grants and Scholarships are awards that do not have to be repaid or earned through work.

4. Estimated Indirect Cost

Estimated indirect cost of attendance are other expenses you’ll pay to attend VSU for one year, which are not paid directly to the University. These include estimated costs for books and supplies, housing and utilities, personal expenses, groceries, transportation expenses, etc.

5. Federal Work-Study

Federal Work-Study (FWS) is part-time employment funded by the US Department of Education. This type of aid is extremely limited in availability. If you are eligible and have been awarded, you will see an amount listed in this section. For additional information, please visit valdosta.edu/finaid/work-study.

6. Offered Loan Programs

Loans are always optional, and offered to you to assist in paying costs not covered by other forms of aid. If you wish to borrow a loan, you must accept the offer and complete a Master Promissory Note and Loan Entrance Counseling. More information is noted on the Award Letter under “Accepting Full/Partial Loan Amounts or Declining Your Loan,” and in the “About Your Loan Options” handouts included in this packet.

Notes

Valdosta State University reserves the right to modify financial aid awards at any time due to:

  • changes in program terms (i.e., if the federal rules change that are specific to a fund type, i.e., Pell Grant),
  • changes in a student’s program of study,
  • changes required by - and related to - federal and state rules and regulatory compliance,
  • changes in other resources the student may have received, or
  • changes on a student’s financial aid application, which could affect the amount of available funding based on student eligibility regulations.