Applying for Financial Aid

Who is Eligible

Eligibility for most financial aid programs is based on your and/or your family's demonstrated financial need and on your registered credit hours.

To be eligible for federal and state financial aid programs, you must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.

To be eligible for federal financial aid programs (Pell, SEOG, Federal Work-Study, Direct Loan, Direct PLUS Loan), you must also:

  • Be accepted by the college for admission and provide documentation of high school completion or its equivalent (GED). College Credit Plus (CCP) or students still enrolled in high school are not eligible for aid.
  • Be enrolled in a financial aid eligible, approved degree or certificate program.
    • Courses taken as audit are not eligible for federal aid.
    • Visiting (transient) students are not eligible for federal aid.
    • Senior citizens taking courses as audit are not eligible for federal aid.
  • Comply with requirements concerning submission of a Statement of Educational Purpose. This is included on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Not be in default on any federal student loan.
  • Not owe a refund to any federal aid programs, including grant overpayments resulting from withdrawing from class(es).
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress as set forth in Lakeland's Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy (PDF).

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How to Apply
  • You are strongly encouraged to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online.
  • You will need a FSA ID to complete the FAFSA online.
    • The FSA ID is a username and password that you will create. Your FSA ID allows you and a parent (if applicable) to complete the FAFSA, sign important federal student loan documents and access your loan information at
    • If you are required to provide parental information, one parent must also create a FSA ID. You and your parent must use your own emails and cell numbers.
    • Create your FSA ID at
  • You are also encouraged to complete the Lakeland Foundation Scholarship application, which can be found on myLakeland in the "Scholarship Center," located under "myRECORDS."
  • For more information regarding the application process and for a listing of available scholarships, visit
  • The Lake-Geauga Education Assistance Foundation (LEAF) is available for walk-in assistance to complete the FAFSA, or you can contact Lakeland's Financial Aid Office.

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When to Apply

You can complete the FAFSA beginning Oct. 1 of each year.

There are times when two different aid years are available for applying at the same time; refer to the chart below to be sure you are applying for the correct year.

Planned Attendance FAFSA FAFSA Available Tax Data
Summer 2023 - Spring 2024 2023-2024 FAFSA Oct. 1, 2022 2021
Summer 2024 - Spring 2025 2024-2025 FAFSA December 2023 2022

To ensure your financial aid is available at the start of each semester, you need to submit your FAFSA at least two months before the start of the term. If any additional documentation is required, this should be submitted at least four weeks before the start of classes.

FAFSA Priority Dates*
  Summer Session Fall Session Spring Session
FAFSA Filing March 1 June 1 Oct. 1
Required Documentation April 1 July 1 Nov. 1
Loan Request May 1 Aug. 1 Dec. 1

*FAFSA applications received after these dates will still be considered for aid, but students may not have access to funds until after the start of the semester. This means you should be prepared to use your own funds to pay for a portion of your tuition before the semester's payment deadline and all of your textbooks.

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What to Expect Next

After you submit your FAFSA, the U.S. Department of Education will send you a Student Aid Report (SAR), which is a summary of the FAFSA data you submitted.

  1. You will receive your SAR via email a few days after your FAFSA has been processed or by mail within 7-10 days if you did not provide an email address.
  2. Be sure to look over your SAR, make sure you did not make a mistake on your FAFSA, and make corrections to your FAFSA data if necessary. 
  3. If there are no corrections or additional information you must provide, the SAR will contain your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC is a number (not a dollar amount) used by Lakeland's Financial Aid Office to determine your eligibility for federal and nonfederal student aid.

If you listed Lakeland's federal school code on your FAFSA, we will receive your processed application electronically usually within 3-5 business days and will use this information for your financial aid offer.

If you are asked to submit additional documentation, do so as soon as possible. Your financial aid cannot be processed without the requested documentation.

  • If you are a new student at Lakeland, you will receive a letter in the mail notifying you of any additional required documentation.
  • If you are a returning student, you will receive an email in your Lakeland email account notifying you of any additional required documentation.

After all your documentation has been reviewed, you will receive notification that your financial aid offer has been created and is ready for your review through your myLakeland account.

Scholarship applications will be reviewed before the start of the academic year.

  • If you have been offered a scholarship, you will be notified via your Lakeland email account.
  • You can check your myLakeland account to see the amount of your scholarship.
  • Scholarships are offered throughout the entire academic year as funds become available.

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