Wherever you are in your college journey—just starting on your list, visiting your top choices, or maybe you recently applied (or were admitted!) to Siena—please know this: our financial aid counselors are HERE FOR YOU.
We completely understand how the financial aid piece of the puzzle can be confusing and overwhelming.
So many acronyms.
So many loan options.
So many decisions.
If you or anyone in your family would like to connect with one of Siena’s financial aid counselors, we’ll gladly set up an appointment. Not only are they financial wizards, they’re a compassionate group of people who are happy to help.
(And FYI: your financial situation absolutely does not affect the admission decision you receive from Siena. Ask away!)
Here are just 7 examples of questions you could ask them:
- How do I even start the process of applying for financial aid?
Figuring out what forms to fill out, what tax forms you need, what the FAFSA even is, when to send what and where—it’s a lot. We know. One of our counselors can help you kick off and navigate the process as soon as you’re ready.
- Should I fill out the FAFSA if my parents make a lot of money?
The short answer: yes! Here’s what the Federal Student Aid website says in response to this common question: “The reality is there’s no income cut-off to qualify for federal student aid. It doesn’t matter if you have a low or high income; most people qualify for some type of financial aid, including low-interest federal student loans. Many factors besides income—such as your family size and your year in school—are considered to determine your aid package.”
Here’s a tip they also share: “When you fill out the FAFSA form, you’re automatically applying for funds from your state, and possibly from your school, in addition to federal student aid. In fact, some schools won’t even consider you for any of their scholarships (including academic scholarships) until you’ve submitted a FAFSA form. Don’t make assumptions about what you’ll get—fill out the application and find out!”
- What’s the $57,000 Siena Scholarship Guarantee all about?
We’d love for you to ask us this one! The details are here, but it can almost seem too good to be true—apply, file your FAFSA, get accepted, and you get at least $57,000 toward your degree?! Our financial aid counselors can reassure you of that commitment, explain what prompted us to offer this scholarship to all admitted students, and talk about how it differs from other similar promises out there.
- Is private school more expensive than public?
Not necessarily, especially when you factor in scholarships and financial aid. That’s why it’s crucial to know that the sticker price you see on college websites isn’t what you’ll end up paying in the end; it’s often less. But what’s more important to look at is return on investment and loan default rates. (FYI: Saints make $500,000 more in lifetime earnings than SUNY grads.) A financial aid counselor can answer this question more in-depth in terms you’ll understand and appreciate.
- What do all these acronyms mean?
FSA, FPL, EFC… on the FAFSA and elsewhere, the acronyms you’ll no doubt come across in the financial aid process can get overwhelming and confusing. Let us break them down for you!
- Do you offer need- or merit-based scholarships?
Yes, we offer all kinds of aid, but what you qualify for depends on your own circumstances. So this is one of those questions you should definitely ask a financial aid counselor at Siena. And if you haven’t checked out our net price calculator yet, we can talk about that too.
- Aside from Siena’s scholarships and federal aid, what else can my family do to be able to better afford college?
We’re chock full of saving tips and ideas, and we’re happy to share those with you. Our financial aid counselors can tell you where to look for scholarships that aren’t associated with our school, what your 529 savings account can be used for, and so forth.
By the way, that’s not ALL you can ask our financial counselors. Click below and ask anything you want to—we’re all ears! And in the meantime, here’s a free financial aid guide our team put together for high school students and their families.