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Federal Pell Grant

Federal Pell Grants are direct grants awarded through participating institutions to students with financial need who have not earned a bachelor's or professional degree. The Federal Pell Grant funds are credited directly to the student's CUNYfirst account. Amounts can change yearly.

In order to qualify for the Federal Pell Grants, you must apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and meet the general financial aid eligibility requirements.

Grant amounts are dependent on:

    Lifetime Pell Grant (LEU)
    Students can only receive a maximum of 12 full-time semesters or 600% of Pell Grants. Students can check their remaining Pell eligibility on the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).
  • Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
  • Cost of Attendance
  • Enrollment status (full-time or part-time)
  • Attending for a full academic year or less
  • Remaining Lifetime Pell Grant (LEU) eligibility


Students can receive Pell Grants for the academic year (fall, spring, and/or summer). For more information regarding the Summer Pell Grant, also known as the Year-Round Pell Grant, please visit the Summer Funding page.

Students may not receive Federal Pell Grant funds concurrently from more than one institution. Once you have earned a baccalaureate degree, your first professional degree, or have used up all of your LEU, you are no longer eligible to receive a Federal Pell Grant.

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