Graduate Financial Aid Introduction
To apply for federal student aid, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) using Salem State's federal code 002188. The FAFSA is available on October 1 at no cost to students.
Important facts for you to know:
- You must register for at least 6 credits a semester to receive federal financial aid. You may only receive financial aid (including the federal Direct Loan) for courses that count towards your master's degree. If you register for a course that is not required for your master's, then those credits will not be counted towards your 6 credit minimum, nor will your financial aid pay for those credits. The 6 credits must be taken at Salem State. Certificate programs and credits are not eligible for federal aid nor do they count towards the 6 credit minimum.
- You must be fully registered for your semester courses within the first five teaching days of the semester, when credits are “locked in”. Only credits “locked in” will be recognized for financial aid purposes.
- If you are receiving a Federal Direct Loan for the first time at Salem State, then you will need to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling. Please log in to Studentloans.gov and complete your MPN and Counseling. It is important to understand that the MPN and Counseling are required in order for your loan funds to arrive at Salem State.
- The Department of Education will take an origination fee (approximately one percent) from your principal loan amount prior to disbursement.
- Please be sure to review your potential charges. You may visit the Graduate Tuition and Fee page for a full list of charges.
- When you log in to Navigator, you will see your “tasks” tile which is how the university will notify you about important actions you need to take related to your enrollment.
- If you have more semester aid than you need to pay your semester charges, then you will be entitled to a “Book Advance” which will allow you to “charge” your books to your student account. The books must be purchased either in person or on line at the SSU Book Store. Book Advances are not to exceed $600 per semester. Eligible students will receive an email from the SSU Book Store prior to the start of each semester.
- If you have received financial aid in excess of your charges, you may receive a refund to assist with living expenses. (Estimated semester financial aid minus estimated semester charges, equals estimated refund). Refunds are issued by the Student Navigation Center and are generally released by mid-October for the fall and mid-February for the spring. If you would like your refund can be processed electronically please review our page how to set up direct deposit/eRefund.
- If you do not complete at least 60% of the semester, you may have your aid adjusted and/or canceled. You are responsible for understanding the university’s refund policy. Review the refund policy and add/drop policy.
- You are required to be meeting Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress. You must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least a 3.0 and to successfully pass 66 percent of your attempted credits. Also, you may only receive federal financial aid for 150 percent of your required credits (example: if a program is 40 credits, then you may only receive federal financial aid for 60 attempted credits).
- Please be sure to monitor your Salem State email and Navigator account on a regular basis. Your email and Navigator accounts will be the primary way that we will communicate with you.