University News

FAFSA Filing Date Set for Oct. 1

September 11, 2017

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL -- The U.S. Department of Education FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) filing date is set for Sunday, Oct. 1, and once again Western Illinois University is ready.

Last year, within the first month of the Oct. 1 filing date opening, WIU Financial Aid received nearly 11,000 FASFA records, up more than 1,500 from the previous Jan. 1 deadline date. And like last year, Western's Financial Aid staff will send preliminary financial aid award letters for 2018-2019 shortly after the Oct. 1 FAFSA filing date so that prospective WIU students and their families can plan for the upcoming academic year.

"Students must file a FAFSA to be considered for federal and state financial aid grants and loans," Director of Financial Aid Terri Hare explained. "By filing on or after Oct. 1, prospective students can receive a financial aid award letter with financial aid options and payment obligations nearly one year prior to the next academic year."

The FAFSA is necessary not only for federal and state financial aid consideration, but also for some scholarship opportunities offered by the University, added Director of Undergraduate Admissions Seth Miner.

Beginning Oct. 1, students can complete the FAFSA at The previous year's tax information (2016) is needed to file. Students and parents are encouraged to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to streamline the FAFSA process. WIU's FAFSA code is 001780.

Prospective students who meet Western's admissions requirements, and accept the admissions offer, will lock in rates for tuition, fees, room and meal plan for all four years through Western's Cost Guarantee program upon registration for Fall 2018.

"Western's Cost Guarantee, which remains the only program to lock in tuition, fees, room and meal plan rates, was used as a model for the state of Illinois' 'Truth in Tuition' program, and we continue to be national leader in making college affordable and accessible," Miner added.

In addition to the Cost Guarantee, WIU offers the Western Commitment Scholarship program for incoming freshmen, which provides automatic four-year scholarships based on a student's high school GPA and ACT/SAT score, and the automatic Western Commitment Scholarship for transfer students.

"We understand the financial aid process can be overwhelming for students and their families. That is why it is a priority to get award letters out as soon as possible, so families have ample time to review and ask questions in order to make informed decisions," Hare noted. "Our financial aid advisers are available to discuss financial aid packages and answer questions."

For more information about Western's financial aid and college affordability, contact the Office of Financial Aid at (309) 298-2446 or

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Office of University Relations