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Apply for Aid

Each year, as soon after October 1 as possible, students should apply for financial aid using the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  First-time users will need to create an FSA ID.  A paper FAFSA form, which must be mailed to the federal processors, is available in the Financial Aid Office (FAO) of the college.  However, it is highly recommended the application be completed electronically at the link above in order to expedite the process.

2020-2021 Application Open Date: October 1, 2019

NEW! ISAC MAP Priority Date for Returning Applicants: December 1, 2019

ISAC MAP Suspense Date: July 1, 2020

Institutional Deadline: June 30, 2021

The FAFSA is administered by the Department of Education and used to apply for financial assistance and analyze financial need. Financial need is defined as the difference between the Cost Of Attendance (COA) and the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The funds offered to a student for financing a college education should only be used for educational expenses (or the components included in the COA) which are tuition, fees, books and supplies, room and board, transportation, and personal expenses. The EFC results from the information provided on the FAFSA and is the figure used to determine eligibility for need-based aid programs. While financing a college education is the primary responsibility of the student and his/her family, financial assistance is made possible through gift aid and self-help aid.

By submitting the FAFSA, your eligibility for the following programs will be considered at each Illinois Eastern Community College that has received your FAFSA.

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplement Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Work Study
  • Federal Direct Loan
  • State of Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP)

Certain eligibility requirements apply for each program. See the Student Financial Aid Handbook for more details.

Follow these steps to complete the FAFSA:

Create an FSA ID for the student (and at least one parent for dependent students).

studentaid.gov/fsa-id

This will be the username and password that allows you access to electronically sign and submit the FAFSA, student loan information, and financial aid history. Students (and parents) will need their Social Security Number and an e-mail address that they will always have access to in order to complete the process.

Gather the necessary documents below for the student and, if dependent, for the student's parent(s) to complete the FAFSA.

  • Student Driver’s License (if s/he has one)
  • Federal Tax Information for the appropriate tax year to include Tax Returns and/or W-2 information
  • Records of untaxed income for the appropriate tax year received such as child support, interest income, and veterans non-education benefits
  • Current information on cash, savings and checking account balances, investments (non-retirement), and business or farm assets

Start and submit your application at fafsa.gov OR in the myStudentAid mobile app available on the App Store (iOS) or Google Play (Android).

  • Complete the 2020-2021 FAFSA for Fall 2020, Spring and Summer 2021

Sign and Submit using your FSA ID.

If you are a dependent student, one of your parents must also sign your FAFSA with their FSA ID.


Additional guidance for completing the FAFSA is available from several sources:

Completing the FAFSA Form
The Parent's Guide to Filling Out the FAFSA Form
FAFSA Help 
FAFSA Tips
Financial Aid Office at each college


Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid

For Illinois residents that may not be otherwise eligible for federal student aid and do not file the FAFSA, you may be eligible to apply for the Monetary Award Program (MAP) grant using the Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid. For more information about this program, click here. Access the application here.

Alternative Application for financial aid