You DO qualify!

Just about everyone qualifies for some type of financial aid -- whether that means grants, scholarships, student or parent loans, or work-study. Don't fall prey to the myth that you won't get help.

Apply for aid by completing the FAFSA online today.


If you want financial aid, which may include grants, loans, scholarships and work-study, you must meet certain eligibility requirements. You must be a regular admitted, degree-seeking student enrolled in courses at WMU. Once you have completed your degree requirements, you are no longer eligible for aid. Guest students are not eligible. Certificate programs generally are not eligible, unless you are completing hours for State Permanent Teacher Certification – then you are eligible for undergraduate student loans. Students enrolled in the certificate program SPADA (Speciality Program in Alcohol and Drug Abuse) are eligible for graduate level loans.

Print this handy hand-out about financial aid basics especially for prospective and new students and their families.

High School Diploma

Students may be eligible for federal financial aid if they have a high school diploma or its equivalent. Equivalents at WMU include:

  • GED (General Education Development) certificate
  • College transcript showing completion of an associate's degree or 60 semester hours acceptable toward a baccalaureate degree
  • Home school certification
  • College transcript showing completion of at least six semester hours before July 1, 2012
  • College transcript showing completion of at least six semester hours after July 1, 2012, with registration or enrollment in an eligible program or receipt of federal financial aid occurring prior to July 1, 2012


You must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or an eligible non-citizen. Generally, you are an eligible non-citizen if you are:

  • A U.S. permanent resident and you have an Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-551);
  • A conditional permanent resident (I-551C) or
  • Another eligible non-citizen with an arrival departure record (I-94) from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service showing any one of the following designations:
    • Refugee
    • Asylum Granted
    • Indefinite Parole
    • Humanitarian Parole
    • Cuban-Haitian Entrant

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

If you want to remain eligible for federal and state financial aid programs, including work-study, you must also make satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward your degree. Standards of satisfactory academic progress are applied to all students who wish to establish or maintain financial aid eligibility, regardless of whether they have received financial aid in the past.

The Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress state you must:

  • Pass a minimum of 67 percent of all attempted hours at Western
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average as stated in the University’s Catalog
  • Not exceed a total of 183 undergraduate credit hours, including transferred hours

You can view the complete SAP policy pdf online.

Other conditions

Your financial aid eligibility is also affected by additional factors, such as:

  • Cost of Attendance - your awards may not exceed the estimated cost of attendance or COA. If you receive financial aid, including outside scholarships, beyond your eligibility based on COA, your awards may be adjusted.
  • Student visa status - if you have a F1 or F2 student visa, a J1 or J2 exchange visitor visa or a G services visa, you are neither a citizen nor eligible non-citizen.
  • Social security number – you must have a valid SSN.
  • Selective service registration – men between 18 and 25 must register with the Selective Service.
  • Default – you must not owe an overpayment on a federal Perkins loan or grant program. You must not be in default on a Federal student loan, or over your loan limits.
  • Purpose – you must certify that funds will be used solely for educational purposes.

Withdrawing from classes

If you are a financial aid recipient contemplating a partial or complete withdrawal, it is highly recommended that you discuss your situation with a financial aid counselor before you withdraw. Withdrawing may impact your eligibility for current and future aid. Read more about withdrawing here.

Repeated coursework

According to federal regulations, coursework counts toward your enrollment and federal financial aid eligibility only twice if it is completed with a passing grade. The third attempt at a passed course will not count toward your federal aid eligibility. For example, if a student takes a class and passes it with a D both times, he might choose to take the class a third time in order to get a better grade. This third attempt does not count toward his enrollment for financial aid eligibility. Students must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible for aid.


Visit related WMU sites

There is a lot more to see! Visit some of our friends at WMU to learn about academics, campus life and how you can be successful.

Student Financial Aid
1903 W Michigan Ave
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5337 USA
269 387-6000 finaid-info@wmich.edu