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Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Federal regulations require that our office receives a completed FAFSA application with a valid EFC prior to the last day of your classes within the academic year to process any federal financial aid on your behalf. Additional time prior to your last date of attendance is required to process any federal student or parent loan funding. 

After a FAFSA application with a  valid EFC  is received, and the verification process completed, the college can determine Grants( Free money) and Self-Help Aid which includes Student and Parental loans that must be repaid. 

Submit your FAFSA.


Read more detailed information about federal grants.

Federal Pell Grant

Eligibility for this grant is determined by the expected family contribution (EFC)calculated from the FAFSA. The maximum full-time award for 2021-2022 Pell grant funding is $6,495. limited to students working on their first Bachelor’s degree and students can receive no more than 12 full time semesters ( equivalent of 6 years) of Pell grant funding.

Purchase College adjusts Pell grant funding based on a student’s  active, enrolled credits for the semester. Pell Grant funding will be reduced when a student never attends, stops attending  or withdraws from coursework they are registered for. Please speak to our office in person if you plan to stop attendance in any coursework.  

Year-Round Pell:

Due to the recent implementation of the Year-Round Pell Grant by the federal government, students now qualify to use up to 150 percent of their lifetime eligibility for the federal Pell grant within each academic year. To be eligible for the additional Pell Grant funds, the student must be otherwise eligible to receive Pell Grant funds for the payment period and must be enrolled at least half-time, in the payment period for which the student receives the additional Pell Grant funds in excess of 100 percent of the student’s Pell Grant Scheduled Award.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

This award is designed for only those students who demonstrate the highest level of financial need. While the amount is determined by the Office of Financial Aid, it may be awarded to you only if you are eligible for a Federal Pell Grant and if funding is still available. Please note that due to the mandatory spending cuts by the federal government through sequestration, SEOG funds may be reduced and/or canceled. If a revision is made to your award, we will send a new award notice.

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP - EOP Students Only)

This New York State grant is specifically designed for students who have demonstrated both educational and economic disadvantages. Only students admitted to the College through EOP may be awarded this grant. Learn more about EOP.

Self-Help Aid

Federal Work-Study

This program allows students to work on a part-time basis to earn money to pay for indirect costs. Funding is extremely limited. Students must be eligible for need-based financial aid and have their application submitted in a timely manner to be considered for Federal Work-Study. Please note that due to the mandatory spending cuts by the federal government through sequestration, Federal Work-Study funds may be reduced and/or cancelled. If a revision is made to your award, we will send a new award notice.

Earnings are not paid to the student’s bill, but received in a paycheck/direct deposit to your bank account. If you are awarded and accept a Federal Work-Study position, you will work an allotted amount of hours per week at an on-campus job. You will be paid every two weeks.

Federal Loans

For further information on current interest rates on student loans and repayment, please see Student Loan Center.

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan

This is a need-based student loan. Interest does not accrue while the student is attending school at least half-time (6 credits or more). This eligibility for this loan is limited to 150 percent of the program length (12 semesters for a 4-year program).

The interest rate for Direct Stafford Subsidized & Unsubsidized Loans are determined by congress each academic year and is a fixed rate for the life the the loan.

Funds are borrowed directly from the U.S. Department of Education. The Department of Education charges an origination fee for processing the loans. Repayment will begin 6 months after you cease being at least a half-time student. 

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

This is not a need-based loan. Interest accrues while the student is attending school and during repayment.

 Repayment will begin 6 months after you cease being at least a half-time student.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Parents

A Parent PLUS Loan is included in the financial aid award for undergraduate, dependent students, to cover the difference between the cost of attendance and financial aid offered to the student. 

The Direct Parent PLUS Loan requires a credit check and a separate application after May 1.

The interest rate for Parent PLUS loan funding is a fixed rate for the life of the loan, determined by Congress each academic year. 

There is also an origination fee that the federal government keeps from the loan for processing this.

Parents have the option of making the monthly payments immediately or deferring payments while the student is enrolled. 

Federal Perkins Loan (Cancelled Program)

Important: The Federal Perkins Loan Program has been cancelled by the federal government as of July 1, 2018.

(This is a need-based loan awarded by the Office of Financial Aid to eligible students. The interest rate is fixed at 5 %, but interest does not accrue while you are enrolled at least half-time [6 credits or more]. Repayment begins 9 months, after you cease being at least a half-time student.)