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Typical Financial Aid Process

Successfully receiving financial aid requires a number of steps that must be completed by certain dates. Our priority deadline is March 31. By completing the financial aid process by this date, your application will be processed for the maximum aid you are eligible to receive.  Below, we've demonstrated the typical path for incoming students. If you encounter any problems, please contact the Financial Aid Office.

Estimate Your Financial Aid Eligibility

Curious what your financial aid eligibility will be? FAFSA 4Caster and the Financial Aid Estimator can help you out.

Get Admitted to BSU

You must be admitted as a "regular student" before financial aid applications can be processed. The Application for Admission form can be completed online or through the BSU Admissions Office. Submit your final high school transcript as well as transcripts from all other colleges that you have attended to the BSU Admissions Office.

Complete the BSU Financial Aid Application (not required for 2015-16)

The BSU Financial Aid Form is required to determine eligibility for aid.  It can be downloaded here.  This form will no longer be required effective the 2015-16 academic year (starting fall 2015).

File Tax Forms Early

Complete your Federal tax return prior to submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Do not use estimated tax data when completing your FAFSA. 

Complete your FAFSA

Apply online using FAFSA on the Web. Use code 002336 to indicate BSU as your school of attendance. Use the PIN website to access your personal identification number for you and your parent. This pin number will act as your electronic signature for the FAFSA as well as other forms throughout the financial aid process.

It is critically important that you use the available Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) to download your income tax information directly into your FAFSA. This process will be available approximately two weeks after you have electronically filed your federal income tax return.


Financial Aid Notifications

You will receive the following communications as a result of applying for financial aid at Bemidji State:

SAR: If you provide an email address on your FAFSA, an email link to your Student Aid Report (SAR) will be sent to you by the Federal processor within 5 days.

BSU STUDENT EMAIL POLICY: At Bemidji State, all official communications between the University and students is through your University assigned email address.  Important communications from the Financial Aid Office, Records Office, Business Services, and Residential Life will all be sent to your BSU email address. It is your responsibility to activate and regularly monitor your BSU student email account once admitted to BSU.

FINANCIAL AID STATUS REPORT: You will be sent a Financial Aid Status Report if any additional application materials or forms are required.  If you receive a report, you should complete the needed items as soon as possible so processing of your application may continue. About one third of all student aid applications are selected for further review in a process called “verification”, requiring the student to provide additional information.

FINANCIAL AID AWARD NOTICE: If the entire aid application process is completed by March 31, BSU will provide new entering freshmen a preliminary award notice based upon estimated program funding levels and school costs. Approximately mid-summer, you will receive an email that includes a link to your official award notice. This detailed letter explains the outcome of your financial aid application, including the type of aid and the award amounts for the academic year.

Avoid Delays

Consult our helpful tips to avoid having anything hold up your financial aid application.

Review Financial Aid Award Letter

BSU will send a notice to your BSU email account when your financial aid awards are ready to be viewed. Log into your e-services account, read through it carefully and compare it to your bill online. Please refer to the Financial Aid Award Notice Information for additional information. If you were awarded and would like to receive student loans, complete the loan application electronically by following the directions on the Loan Information Page. Federal student loans require an entrance counseling session and an electronic Master Promissory Note before the funds can be applied to your bill. If you were awarded work study, turn the authorization form into your supervisor. Additional information regarding student employment can be found here.


Ask us for help



Typical Process

  • Admission
  • BSU FA Application
  • File your taxes
  • Award letter
  • Scholarships / grants
  • Loans
  • Employment

  • 2015-2016 Priority Application Date: The 2015-2016 Financial Aid process must be completed by March 31, 2015 to be considered for Federal SEOG Grant, Perkins Loan, and Work Study.
  • Federal Pell Grant recipients must finalize all registration within the first 30 days of the semester. A student  who withdraws from a course within the first 30 days of the semester will have their Pell award reduced to the adjusted level of enrollment.
  • A completed FAFSA must be received by the Federal Aid Processing Center within the first 30 days of the semester to be eligible for a Minnesota State Grant.