All eligibility requirements for each aid type must be met before any federal or non-federal student aid is disbursed. Once the general eligibility and the aid-specific eligibility requirements have been met, aid will disburse as specified below.
General Student Eligibility Requirements are found under Types of Aid. Specific aid type requirements can also be found at this link by clicking on Types of Federal Aid, and links as given with certain aid types as listed.
Winter session 2023 and Spring 2024 aid disbursement will begin January 8, 2024. Account Services will start refunding on January 9, 2024.
Disbursement and Refund Method and Frequency (for all aid except Federal Work Study):
If the student has a credit balance (excess funds over tuition, fees, and other charges) after the specified funds are applied to their MSU student account, Account Services will issue a refund.
There are two options available for refunds (paper check or e-Refunds):
- Paper check refunds are processed on a weekly basis and mailed via US Postal Service to the student’s home address on file with the university.
- E-Refunds is direct deposited to a student’s checking or savings account. E-Refunds is secure, preferred (no waiting in lines), and convenient ( processed each business day and made available in your preferred bank account in less than 48 hours). Account Services sends a confirmation email to student’s email@example.com email address.
To sign up for direct deposit:
- Log on to your student account through the myState portal.
- Click on the myState navigation menu icon in the top left corner and scroll down to choose Banner.
- Under Personal Information, select MSU Direct Deposit Bank Information.
- Enter your Routing and Account Information under Student Account/Travel. Bank account information is required and must be updated IF your preferred bank account changes. Failure to provide or update this information WILL result in a delay of your e-Refund.
- Students can review their Student Account Information at myState to see if their aid disbursement has been applied to their account.
For more info on e-Refund: https://www.controller.msstate.edu/accountservices/refunds/.
Disbursement for Federal Types of Aid
Children of Fallen Hero Scholarship (CFHS)
- CFHS is awarded as a maximum Pell Grant award. Available only to undergraduate students enrolled in a first bachelor’s degree program.
- Need eligibility determined by the U.S. Department of Education using a standard formula to evaluate the financial information reported on the FAFSA, and to determine the family EFC (Estimated Family Contribution). Pell-eligible EFC must be greater than zero, and student must be less than 24 years of age or enrolled at an institution of higher education at the time of student’s parent/guardian’s death.
Federal Pell Grant (Pell)
- Available only to undergraduate students enrolled in a first bachelor’s degree program.
- Need eligibility determined by the U.S. Department of Education using a standard formula to evaluate the financial information reported on the FAFSA, and to determine the family EFC (Estimated Family Contribution).
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
- Requires full-time enrollment (12 hours) and is available only to undergraduate students enrolled in a first bachelor’s degree program who are eligible for a Pell Grant.
Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH Grant)
Federal Work Study (FWS)
- FWS student employees will receive a paycheck from Human Resources through direct deposit to their specified bank account twice per month.
- Requires at least half-time enrollment (6 hours undergraduates and 5 hours graduate students).
- FWS will not be available at registration for the payment of fees. FWS funds are NOT disbursed to the student’s account in Account Services like most other aid programs.
Federal Direct Student Loan Programs
Federal Direct Loan Eligibility Requirements: Entrance counseling for first-time borrowers at MSU https://studentaid.gov/ and at least half-time enrollment for each semester within the loan period (6 hours undergraduates and 5 hours graduate students).
MSU requests and receives loan funds
- Federal Direct Student Loans notifies MSU of approved loans for disbursement
- MSU requests the appropriate loan funds from Direct Loans/U.S. Treasury
- MSU receives the Direct Stafford Loan funds from the U.S. Treasury and then prepares the funds for disbursement based on the prescribed schedule
- The federally mandated disbursement schedule is based on a loan period and assigned disbursement dates.
- If there are two semesters within the loan period, MSU must disburse one-half of the loan for the first semester and the other half for the second semester.
- If the first semester is past, or if there is only one semester within the loan period, MSU may disburse the entire loan in one disbursement.
MSU processes the loan disbursement for delivery to the student
- Once the student meets all the eligibility requirements, the MSU Student Loan Office and Account Services process the loan funds on the prescribed disbursement date.
- MSU will automatically apply the loan funds directly to the student’s MSU student account. Please note that federal regulations prohibit MSU from disbursing Direct Stafford loan funds after 180 days from the end of the loan period.
Parent/Student receives the loan funds
For Parent PLUS loans:
- Federal eligibility requirements for Parent PLUS loans: https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/loans/plus.
- If the student has a credit balance (excess funds over tuition, fees, and other charges) after the loan funds are applied to the student’s MSU student account, Account Services will issue a refund based on the authorization by the parent borrower. If the parent borrower authorizes the refund to be disbursed to the parent, then Account Services will send the excess funds to the parent borrower. If the parent borrower authorizes the refund to be disbursed to the student, the Account Services will make the excess funds available to the student when requested.
- Beginning on the first day of final registration for each semester and continuing each weekday throughout the semester, MSU will process available Federal Direct PLUS Loan disbursements for eligible students and parents.
- Students can review their Student Account Information at myState to see if the Direct Loan disbursement has been applied to their account. For more info on e-Refund refer to http://www.controller.msstate.edu/accountservices/refunds/access
Disbursement for Non-Federal Types of Aid
MSU Promise Program
- Available only to Mississippi resident undergraduate students enrolled in a first bachelor’s degree program. Student must be an entering freshman with a 3.0 high school grade-point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale and an official composite ACT score of 19/higher, or an entering community college transfer student with a 2.50 GPA on a 4.0 scale (after completing a minimum of 48 eligible transfer hours). Student must also meet general eligibility requirements to participate in federal student aid programs and must be Pell Grant eligible. The family income must be $42,000 or less. The award amount $2,500 a year for 4 years. The Promise Scholarship selects 60 students per year.
**Priority Date- December 1st for the Scholarship application.
Alternative Loans (private or non-federal)
- The student applies for a Private/Alternative loan at: https://www.sfa.msstate.edu/types-of-aid/, then click the button: Apply for a Private/Alternative Loan to select a lender and apply.
- The selected lender sends the MSU loan area a Certification Request list with the approved and rejected requests.
- If the student is enrolled at MSU and has an approved certification received by the loan office, a loan counselor will award the Alternative Loan and certify the amount once the student has completed the entire process of Accept/Decline Financial Aid Award through student’s MyState Banner for Students.
- The MSU loan area requests the money from the lender, and within 8-10 business days the lender sends the funds to the MSU loan area for them to send to Student Account Services.
- Students who do not qualify for federal financial aid, who are on SAP, or who need additional funds beyond what federal financial aid can provide, have an option of applying for an alternative educational loan.
- Alternative loans cannot exceed the Cost of Attendance minus all other Estimated Financial Aid.
State Student Financial Aid (MTAG, MESG, HELP, etc. – Mississippi Residents Only)
- State Aid requires a minimum of 15 hours continuous enrollment for each semester that a student is to receive state aid.
- For State Aid Awards and Disbursement Process and Timelines: https://www.msfinancialaid.org/sfa/awards-timeline/
- The State Student Financial Aid office sends award rosters (list of students) for those who have been awarded state aid to schools once a week detailing student awards. Allow at least one week for the school to update student’s account.