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A student can receive financial aid in addition to military student's benefits. Military students are encouraged to apply for student financial aid to help off-set the cost of education since federal and state veteran's benefits sometimes don't cover the entire cost of a college education.
When completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) military students need to be aware of some special circumstances:
- Federal veteran education benefits do not affect financial aid eligibility and are not considered income for federal student aid purposes.
- State veteran education benefits are treated as a resource, not as an income, for the federal student aid purposes.
- Non-educational veteran benefits must be included on the FAFSA as untaxed income.
- Veteran status for student aid purposes is not necessarily the same as veteran status for VA purposes. National Guard and Reservists may not qualify automatically as independent students. Refer to the FAFSA instructions to determine if you qualify as a veteran for financial aid purposes.
To learn more about the FAFSA in regards to veterans, please contact the NIU Student Financial Aid office.
The first day that the 2015-2016 FAFSA application is available is January 1, 2015. Whenever possible students are encouraged to complete the FAFSA as early as possible to ensure sufficient time to complete the review of their financial aid eligibility.
Undergraduate students, particularly those who do not know if they will be eligible for the Illinois Monetary Assistance Program (MAP) Grant or those who have received MAP in previous years, are strongly encouraged to complete the FAFSA as early as possible to determine their eligibility for MAP in the 2015-2016 academic year.
The FAFSA can be completed online at: fafsa.ed.gov