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How To Apply

Everyone who wants to become a Hunter student should apply for financial aid. The financial aid application process will let you know what federal and state government aid you are eligible for, but you'll also need an active application in order to be considered for the wide variety of Hunter College scholarships available.

There are two necessary applications to complete for financial aid - FAFSA and TAP (for NY state residents). Both of these applications must be completed each year for the next academic year.

You should apply for financial aid even before you've been accepted to Hunter. If you're applying for Fall 2016, the FAFSA became available on January 1st. Hunter's priority deadline for filing your FAFSA application is April 15th.

You must apply for financial aid every year. If your financial circumstances change, you may get more or less aid. Please remember that your eligibility for financial aid may change significantly, especially if you have a different number of family members in college. Your financial aid package also depends on making satisfactory academic progress toward a degree, such as earning a minimum number of credits and achieving a minimum GPA.

What is an FSA ID?

Filling out the FAFSA

Applying for TAP (NY State residents)

How Do I Apply for Federal Work-Study?

What Happens After I Apply?

My SAR indicates that my application has been selected for "Verification". What is that?

To Do List on CUNYfirst

How Do I know what I am eligible for?

How Do I Apply for a Hunter College Scholarship?

How Do I Apply For a Federal Direct Loan?

How Do I Apply for APTS?

What is an FSA ID?

An FSA ID is a username and password that you must use to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education (ED) websites. Your FSA ID identifies you as someone who has the right to access your own personal information on ED websites such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid ( FAFSA®) at Your FSA ID is used to sign legally binding documents electronically. It has the same legal status as a written signature.

Parents of dependent students will also need their own FSA ID to sign their children's FAFSA electronically. Please note: Each FSA ID user must have a unique e-mail address.

The FSA ID process consists of three main steps:

1. Enter your log-in information.

  • Provide your e-mail address, a unique username, and password, and verify that you are at least 13 years old.

2. Enter your personal information.

  • Provide your Social Security number, name, and date of birth.
  • Include your mailing address, e-mail address, telephone number, and language preference.
  • For security purposes, provide answers to five challenge questions.

3. Submit your FSA ID information.

  • Agree to the terms and conditions
  • Verify your e-mail address. (Note: By verifying your e-mail address, you can use your e-mail address as your username when logging into certain ED websites. This verification also allows you to retrieve your username or reset your password without answering challenge questions.) [Back to top]


Filling out the FAFSA

In order to fill out the FAFSA, you'll need the following information:

  • Your Social Security numbers
  • Your parents' Social Security numbers and date of birth (for dependent students)
  • Your and your parents' 2015 federal income tax returns and W-2 forms  for dependent students OR your (and your spouse's)tax returns and W-2 forms for independent students 
  • Other records of money earned by student and parents, if you are a dependent student, such as untaxed income records -i.e.  Social security, welfare, or veteran benefits
  • Current bank statements
  • Current business and investment mortgage information, business and farm records, stock, bond and other investment records
  • Alien registration card, if you're not a U.S. citizen
  • Hunter College's school code: 002689

You can use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to complete your FAFSA - the IRS Data Retrieval Tool will allow you and your parents to transfer required information from IRS tax records directly to your FAFSA.  Using the IRS Data Retrieval tool will expedite the FAFSA application process.

To use this option you must:

  • Have filed a federal tax return filed with the IRS
  • Have a valid social security number
  • Have an FSA ID and password

For help, you can call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) with questions about the FAFSA on the Web or paper application process. Online help for completing the FAFSA is available at A "Help and Hints" function is available for each question on the FAFSA if you apply online using FAFSA on the web at You can also get free live help online at this web site.

You can list up to ten schools on your FAFSA. Those schools will receive you FAFSA results electronically.

If you provided a valid email address on your FAFSA, within 3-5 business days you'll receive an SAR - Student Aid Report. Review it carefully to make sure it's correct and complete. The schools listed on your FAFSA will appear on your SAR; they'll receive your SAR information electronically.

If you need to make corrections to the SAR, you can make them online at You can made a few changes to your SAR information by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).

If you're eligible for aid, each school you are accepted to will send you an award letter, telling you the types of aid it will offer and how much you can receive. [Back to top]


Applying for TAP (NY State residents)

When you have completed the FAFSA on the Web, the confirmation page will give you a link to the TAP on the Web application for New York State financial aid. It can also be found at

Hunter College's TAP code is: 1413

Before completing the TAP application, you will be asked to establish a PIN for TAP. This PIN will allow you to complete your application later, access your application information, or make changes, if necessary.

After establishing your PIN, you will be able to complete your TAP application. The TAP on-line form will be pre-filled with some of the information from the FAFSA you completed on-line. Review this data, supply any missing information, and submit the form. Follow the instructions provided.

You will receive a TAP award notification by email within 3-4 weeks. You can check your TAP status on the web at

The amount of TAP you'll receive depends on your family income, the number of family members attending college full-time, the number of semesters you have received TAP, and the size of the annual appropriation for the program. Maximum TAP awards can be equal to but not greater than the full tuition charge at the college. State budgetary restrictions can further limit TAP awards to a portion of your tuition.

If you have applied for TAP and do not see your award on CUNYfirst, check FACTS to determine your TAP eligibility.

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How Do I Apply for Federal Work-Study?

In order to apply for Federal Work-Study you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and indicate on the FAFSA that you are interested in a federal work-study job. [Back to top]


What Happens After I Apply?

Review your Student Aid Report (SAR) to ensure it is correct and complete.  If you need to make corrections to the SAR, you can make them online at  You can make also make a few changes to your SAR information by calling the Federal Student Aid information center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243)

Once your SAR is correct and complete and received by Hunter College, we will send you an award letter, telling you the types of aid you will be offered and in what amounts. [Back to top]


My SAR indicates that my application has been selected for "Verification". What is that?

The federal government uses a process called verification to help determine the correctness of the financial information on your FAFSA. If your application needs to be verified, there will be an asterisk (*) to the right of the EFC and written comments on the SAR indicating what actions you need to take to complete the verification process. Your electronic record will also indicate that verification must be completed before any federal student aid payments are made.

If your application is selected for verification, or if there are any other questions about your application, the financial aid office will send you an email to your Hunter College email address asking you to provide documentation of your SAR information and complete a Verification Worksheet. You will have to submit Tax Transcript(s) and other requested items before you receive any payments of federal student aid.

You can also view your "To Do List" on CUNYfirst ( which will alert you to any outstanding items with your record that must be finalized to complete your financial aid package. [Back to top]


To Do List on CUNYfirst

Follow the steps below to view your "To Do List"

Step #1: Login to CUNYfirst at

Step # 2: Select HR/Campus Solutions from the left menu

Step #3: Navigate to Self Service followed by Student Center.  In the To Do List section, you will see a list of outstanding items.  Click the "more" link to see more information.

Step #4: Review the current outstanding items with your financial aid applications.  You may find it helpful to sort and filter by institution to ensure you are viewing items related to Hunter College.

NOTE: If you will be attending Hunter College, you are only required to resolve the times listed for Hunter College.  Any unresolved items listed from other CUNY Colleges will not prevent you from finalizing your Financial Aid or conduct other business at Hunter College.

By clicking on each To Do Item, you can view the details concerning the item, including the office contact information, and instructions on how to resolve them.

NOTE: You must resolve each To Do item on your Item List.  Failure to do resolve the items will delay final processing and awarding of your financial aid.

The instructions to the To Do Item Detail may ask you to download and submit a form to the Financial Aid Office.  To access the form, you may need to copy and paste the web address in the browser.  Click on Return to go back to your Item List.

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How do I know what I am eligible for?

Your Student Center provides information about your financial aid awards.  These are listed for the entire academic year and also broken down by term.

Follow the steps below to see your awards on CUNYfirst:

Step# 1: Login to CUNYfirst at

Step# 2: Select HR/Campus Solutions from the left menu.

Step # 3: Navigate to Self Service followed by the Student Center.

Step # 4: In the Finances section, click the View Financial Aid link.

Step # 5: On the Select Aid Year to View page, you may see listings for multiple aid years and multiple colleges.  Click the link for the college and aid year you wish to view.

Step # 6: On the Award Summary page you will be able to view the total aid for the entire academic year by individual terms.  In the Terms section, there are hyperlinks for more detailed information.

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How Do I Apply for a Hunter College Scholarship?

Students who are interested in applying for Hunter College scholarships (internal scholarships) must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA application is the ONLY form you need to file to be considered for Hunter scholarships. You can complete the FAFSA online at (New York State residents should also complete the HESC TAP Application.)

For more information about scholarships at Hunter College, visit the Scholarship page.

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How Do I Apply for a Federal Direct Loan?

If you are:

Note: Advanced Certificate students are not eligible for federal loans.

If you have already submitted a Direct Loan Application for the 2018-2019 Academic Year and would like to increase your loan, you can submit a 2018-2019 William D. Ford Federal Stafford Loan Change Request to the Office of Financial Aid.

If you would like to reduce or cancel your loan you can submit a 2018-2019 William D. Ford Federal Stafford Loan Change Request to the Office of Financial Aid.


The parents of dependent students may borrow funds from the Federal Direct Loan Program to help pay for the cost of their child's education. Loan amounts vary and are determined by the Office of Financial Aid at Hunter College. The maximum loan amount is the difference between the cost of attendance and the total amount of financial aid and scholarships awarded to the student.  The following steps must be completed to apply for a Parent PLUS Loan:

  1. Have a valid FAFSA for 2018-2019 (cannot be pending, verification must be completed if selected)
  2. Complete a Request for a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan application
  3. Parent borrowers must complete a Federal Direct PLUS Loan MPN in order to receive their Direct PLUS Loan funds. This form must only be completed once during the student's time at Hunter College.
  4. Credit check, approval by the Department of Education and the Direct Loan Servicer

    The Office of Financial Aid at Hunter College only originates loans for applicants after the student has registered for classes, since the number of credits registered for determines the amount of the approved loan. The loan record is first sent for a credit check before processing continues. If credit is approved, the loan record is sent from CUNY to the Department of Education for approval to disburse the loan funds and to the Direct Loan Servicer, who checks the promissory note status.

    Federal Direct PLUS Loan funds are disbursed by check, which will be mailed to the parent from the College’s Bursar’s Office. (Unfortunately, Direct Deposit is not currently available to parents who borrow Federal Direct PLUS Loan funds.)

    Please note that if the student has any outstanding charges owed to the College for the current year, the Bursar’s Office will deduct the amount of those charges from the loan funds before the disbursement is made.

The following steps must be completed in order to submit a Graduate PLUS Loan Application:

  1. Have a valid FAFSA for 2018-2019 (cannot be pending, verification must be completed if selected)
  2. Must be registered for at least 6 credits
  3. Must have accepted William D. Ford Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan on CUNYfirst for the 2018-2019 academic year
  4. Completed Master Promissory Note
  5. Complete a Graduate PLUS Loan Application
  6. Complete a "Consent to Obtain Credit Report" form (located with the Graduate PLUS Loan Application)

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How Do I Apply for APTS?

  • Students must also file their NYS TAP application. If the TAP-on-the-Web application was not completed when the FAFSA-on-the-Web was filed, the student will receive an email with a link to the TAP application after the FAFSA has been processed.  The NYS TAP application is necessary in order to consider a student for an APTS award.
  • After the NYS TAP Application has been filed, CUNY will notify students via email to complete a CUNY Financial Aid Supplement which contains several additional questions needed to determine the students APTS eligiblility.  The CUNY Financial Aid Supplement can be completed on CUNYfirst.

Please Note: Applications are only good for the academic year. You must file a new application each academic year that you are seeking APTS funds.  There are no APTS awards for the summer semester.

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