I'm interested in applying for outside scholarships. Where do I start?
A thorough scholarship search takes time. Students are encouraged to seek out and apply independently for other private scholarships that may be awarded by local organizations such as businesses, churches, and civic groups.
All outside awards from all sources must be reported to the Office of Financial Aid. This includes outside scholarships, Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC), employer tuition remission, parent's employer tuition benefits, etc. You may fax a copy of your award letter(s) to the Office of Financial Aid at 202-885-1129. Our staff will update your financial aid award letter with the amount and terms of the award and let you know the impact of your scholarships on your institutional and federal awards.
Impact of Your Scholarships
All outside scholarships or other resources must be reported to the financial aid office. When our receives a copy of your award letter, we will evaluate your award and your current financial aid award letter using the following criteria to see if any adjustments are needed.
Total tuition-based awards cannot exceed tuition.
The American University (AU) Institutional Grant and AU merit scholarships can only be applied to tuition charges. Outside awards such as ROTC, some scholarships and employer tuition benefits can also be used only for tuition.
If you are receiving more than one type of award that is designated as tuition only, then the combined total of your awards can not exceed your tuition charges for the semester or year in which it is awarded.
If your total does exceed tuition, then you are considered to be overawarded and your institutional awards will be reduced to make room for the outside awards.
Total need based PLUS gift aid cannot exceed need.
Total gift aid includes all grants, scholarships, ROTC or employer tuition benefits from all sources. Need-based aid includes Federal grants, Federal Work Study, Federal Subsidized Direct Loan and the Federal Perkins Loan. The combined total of all of these awards cannot exceed your need as determined by the FAFSA.
If your total does exceed your need, then you are considered to be overawarded and your federal and institutional awards will be reduced to make room for the outside awards. Whenever possible, our office will reduce loan and work study awards before reducing grant and scholarship awards.
Total financial aid cannot exceed total cost of attendance.
Total awards include all gift aid, all need-based aid, as well as all unsubsidized loans, PLUS loans and alternative loans.
If the total of all your aid exceeds your total cost of attendance, then you are considered to be overawarded, and your awards will be reduced to make room for the outside awards. Whenever possible, our office will reduce loan and work study awards before reducing grant and scholarship awards.