Understanding Your Award Guide

This page contains important information for undergraduate students about your financial aid award, such as how we determined your eligibility for financial assistance, what steps you need to take to process the aid you have been offered, and how that aid will be disbursed to you. Answers to many of your financial aid questions can be found here.

Once we have reviewed the data provided on your application and any additional required documentation, we will prepare your financial aid award. You will receive an email from our office when an award notification is available.

Note: In some cases, an estimated award may be produced for an Incoming Student, pending the receipt of required documentation. Estimated awards are subject to change and all pending documentation must be submitted before an award can be finalized.


Table of Contents

  1. Next Steps Checklist
  2. Determining Eligibility
  3. Verification
  4. Revisions
  5. Aid Renewal
  6. Student Account Information
  7. Terms and Conditions of Financial Aid Award
  8. Grant and Scholarship Programs
  9. Work Opportunities
  10. Loan Programs
  11. Glossary
  12. Parent Information

1. Next Steps Checklist

Step Deadline

View your award in your Pioneer Portal.

Incoming Students



Before making your admissions deposit

View your award using your Self-Service account in WebAdvisor. Select Financial Aid and then My Awards.

Returning Students

 


June 1, 2023

Calculate your estimated refund or balance due after financial aid.

Incoming Students

 


Before making your admissions deposit

Pay your admissions deposit.

Incoming Early Decision Students

 

January 15, 2023

Complete your verification (only if required).

Incoming Early Decision Students
Incoming Early Action Students
Incoming Regular Decision Students
Returning Students

 

November 17, 2022
November 30, 2022
February 11, 2023
March 29, 2023

Pay your admissions deposit.

Incoming Early Action Students
Incoming Regular Decision Students

 

May 1, 2023

Accept/decline federal student loans through your Self-Service account and complete required loan processing steps on StudentAid.gov. Note: the same deadlines apply if you borrow a private education loan.

Incoming Students
Returning Students
 

 

 


Before July 1, 2023

Set up a payment plan with Nelnet, apply for a federal Parent PLUS Loan, and/or apply for a private loan to cover remaining costs, if needed.

Incoming Students
Returning Students

 

 

Before July 1, 2023

Report external scholarships.

Incoming Students
Returning Students

 

As you are notified of them

Financial Aid Timeline


2. Determining Eligibility

Financial aid assists families with the cost of a college education. You don’t have to be in a low-income category to qualify for financial aid. Some students receive aid based on special achievements while others receive aid based on their demonstrated need. Need is the difference between what it costs to attend a college and what you and your family can afford to pay. 

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3. Verification

Families may be asked to provide documentation to validate information provided on the aid applications through a process called verification. Students who are selected must complete the verification process to confirm their eligibility for aid. The college may require verification to resolve discrepant information provided in the process of applying for aid or prior to consideration of special circumstances.

Lewis & Clark informs students when they are selected for verification by posting a request for documents on the student’s school portal. Only submit the verification documents if we request them on the Pio Portal for incoming students and the Self-Service Portal for continuing students.

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4. Revisions

Should the information used to determine eligibility for financial aid change, the financial aid award may be revised. A revised award notification supersedes any previous award notification received by the student. Carefully review any revised award notification to determine if additional action is necessary to secure funding. Changes in awards are subject to availability of funding. The following events are examples of situations that should be promptly reported to the Office of Financial Aid, as they may result in a financial aid award revision:

  • change in enrollment status
  • change in availability of funding
  • receipt of additional assistance, including external resources
  • change of residence
  • verification changes
  • family financial changes

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5. Aid Renewal

Financial aid awards are year-specific and students must reapply for assistance on an annual basis (unless only merit-based aid is needed). For financial aid purposes, summer is the first semester of the new academic year at Lewis & Clark. Continuing students who wish to be considered for need-based financial aid and/or federal student loans must file a FAFSA with the U.S. Department of Education at FAFSA.gov.

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6. Student Account Information

Estimating Costs

Use the Financial Worksheet to estimate the amount remaining on the student account after all financial aid funds have been applied. Simply subtract all anticipated financial aid from the estimated direct costs to determine the family’s portion of the educational costs. Federal Work-Study (FWS) and Lewis & Clark Work Study (LCWS) are disbursed directly to the student in the form of a paycheck based on the number of hours worked each month and should not be considered anticipated financial aid when settling the student account.

Billing

Lewis & Clark student account activity is made accessible through the Student Account Center. The Student Account Center enables you to retrieve an electronic statement (E-Bill), view live account information, make a payment, select your refund preference, and enroll in the monthly payment plan option.

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Disbursing Financial Aid

Financial aid will be applied to student accounts and used to address charges incurred, such as tuition and fees as well as room and board if a student resides on campus. Financial aid funds cannot be applied until the appropriate paperwork has been completed and the funds are received.

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Credit Balance Refunds

Credit Balance Refunds Aid applied to a student account which exceeds the amount a student has been charged may be refunded to the student. Refunds will be processed after the start of each term and only when a credit balance actually exists on a student account. Refunds must be used to cover education-related expenses such as off-campus living expenses, transportation and/or books and supplies.

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7. Terms and Conditions of Your Financial Aid Award

Refer to the Financial Aid Policies webpage for details on the following policies:

  • revisions
  • appeals and negotiations
  • renewal
  • release of records and information
  • taxability of scholarships
  • withdrawal policy
  • satisfactory academic progress policy
  • maximum semesters of aid
  • refunds
  • student’s right to know

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8. Grant and Scholarship Programs

We offer a variety of grants and scholarships, all of which are merit-, need-, or performance-based. 

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9. Work Opportunities

Many Lewis & Clark students find working part-time while enrolled to be a beneficial and rewarding aspect of their college experience. Students typically use their earnings to cover personal expenses while enrolled. The Student Employment Office is housed in Human Resources at Lewis & Clark. Student Employment provides resources to help students locate job opportunities and facilitates the student employment process for students employed by the College. To work in most jobs on-campus, students must have a work-study award included on their award notification.

Federal Work-Study (FWS)

The FWS program provides employment opportunities for students who demonstrate financial need.

Lewis & Clark Work-Study (LCWS)

The LCWS program provides employment opportunities for a limited number of international and other students who are not eligible to work under the Federal Work-Study program.

Note: The amount of FWS or LCWS funds a student is eligible to earn in an academic year is noted in a paragraph on the lower portion of the financial aid award notification. A student’s gross earnings may not exceed the awarded amount. It is the student’s and supervisor’s responsibility to track earnings under this program. Please be aware that students who decline a FWS or LCWS award or fail to complete the necessary steps to secure a job within a reasonable time will have their work award cancelled. Earnings under the FWS or LCWS program are taxable as wages and must be reported to the IRS if a student is required to file a tax return.

Important Information About Work-Study Awards (FWS and LCWS)

  • An FWS or LCWS work award is not a guarantee of employment but merely indicates eligibility to work under the particular program.
  • Student earnings from FWS or LCWS are disbursed in the form of a paycheck directly to the student based on the number of hours worked each month.
  • Students should not include FWS or LCWS funds when determining the student’s costs on the Financial Worksheet.

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10. Loan Programs

Many of our students and parents access educational loans in combination with other aid sources and financing strategies to make a Lewis & Clark education possible. These loan programs allow students to borrow against their future earning potential, which research indicates improves with educational attainment.

Important Info on Federal Direct Loans

All first-time borrowers will be required to complete a Federal Direct Loan Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling to receive Federal Direct Loan funding. These steps can be completed at StudentAid.gov.

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11. Glossary

Frequently used financial aid terms and definitions.

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12. Information for Parents

Many parents of L&C students are actively involved in their student’s decision making, especially when it comes to college finances. To help parents stay informed about financial aid, we have built this webpage to help you navigate the financial aid process.

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