How to Apply


2016-2017 Academic Year

Provisions Affecting PELL Grants: Federal PELL Grant Duration of Eligibility Public Law 112- 74 amended HEA section 401(c)(5) Duration of eligibility is reduced from the equivalent of 18 full-time semesters to the equivalent of 12 full-time semesters. The text that grand fathered students who received PELL prior to July 1, 2008, is removed. Thus, this reduction will affect all students beginning with the 2012-13 award year, not just those who received a PELL Grant for the first time on or after July 1, 2008. Simply stated: Student are only eligible up to 12 full time semesters.

Provisions Affecting All Federal Aid: Ability-to-benefit (ATB) Ability-to-benefit (ATB): Options for establishing general student eligibility for Title IV funds are eliminated for students who first enroll in a program of study on or after July 1, 2012. Neither ATB testing nor earning six credits applicable to a degree or certificate will satisfy the academic qualifications for receiving Title IV funds. A student will need to have a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent (GED), to meet the eligibility criterion.

We recommend that all prospective students and their parents take a few moments to review this tutorial on how to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. (FAFSA).

To apply for financial aid you must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid. (FAFSA) It is strongly recommended that you apply at least 10 weeks before the first day of the semester for which the aid is required. Atlantic Cape's School Code is 002596.

The FAFSA application is available on line at Paper applications are no longer available through the Financial Aid and Veterans Services office. You can only request one by calling 1-800-433-3243.  If you have any questions or need assistance you can contact our office in J building on the Mays Landing Campus, at Atlantic Cape's other locations, or calling (609) 343-5082 or (609) 463-4774, ext. 6788, or (609) 625-1111, ext. 5082. We strongly recommend that you complete the FAFSA Online.

Apply Early! 

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can be completed as soon as the appropriate tax forms are completed. Complete your FAFSA Online.  It's easy and processing results usually take only about two weeks, compared to the four to six weeks required for paper applications. Applying Online. is faster and more accurate. FAFSA Online. has built in edits to prevent student from missing required information.  

Before applying Online. make sure you apply for a FSA ID. 

The FSA ID will serve as your electronic signature and avoid the necessity to print and mail a signature page with your Online. FAFSA. Parents of dependent students should also apply for a FSA ID.  Allow three days for a response if providing an e-mail address.  Allow 10 days if the FSA ID number is to be mailed.  Request a FSA ID at:

After the FAFSA is Completed

A Student Aid Report (SAR) will be forwarded to you by e-mail or regular mail and an electronic version will be forwarded to Atlantic Cape.  You should review your SAR for accuracy. If you need assistance in correcting the SAR, call the Financial Aid Office at 609-343-5082.

The SAR contains an Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) which is used to calculate your eligibility for federal financial aid. You will receive a Student Eligibility Notice (SEN) from the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (NJHESAA) that will list the state award and amounts you may be eligible to receive. Please note that Atlantic Cape Financial Aid Office makes the final decision on the amount of state aid you are eligible to receive. The amount of your eligibility is based on the number of credits you are enrolled in.

Missing Information/Verification

Your application may be selected for verification by the U.S. Dept. of Education requiring our office to obtain specific documents from you. All correspondences, requests for additional documentation, and award notifications will be sent to your Atlantic Cape assigned Buccaneer email account.

This email account is assigned to you once you have been admitted to Atlantic Cape and the email address should appear on your acceptance letter. If you have not yet been admitted, all emails will be sent to the email address you listed on your FAFSA until your admissions process has been completed.  Please note that it is your responsibility to check your Buccaneer email account or the account listed on your FAFSA for important information concerning your financial aid.

Your email account can be accessed by going to If you have a problem accessing your Buccaneer email account please contact Enrollment Services at 609-343-5005 or by email at for assistance.

NJHESAA may contact you separately and request that you send them additional information. Please respond immediately directly to HESAA to prevent delays or cancellation. Failure to complete and submit your documentation may result in not receiving a deferment for your tuition and fees and/or book check.

Your FAFSA and documentation should be completed 10 weeks prior to the first day of classes.

Award Notification

Once the Financial Aid Office has received all required documents and your file has been reviewed for accuracy, you will be sent via email, an Award Notification Letter detailing your eligibility for aid. (Award notifications will be sent to students via their Buccaneer e-mail accounts assigned to them at the time of admittance. Buccaneer e-mail information is included in the student's acceptance letter) Your award will be based on your eligibility for aid, your enrollment status, as well as the availability of funds. Please make sure to read all messages associated with your award letter. It is important to note that it is your responsibility to determine if your financial aid awards are enough funding to cover your tuition and fees. If not, you will be expected to pay the difference to the college by the payment deadline. Please also note that Atlantic Cape does not pre-package student loans. If you are interested in borrowing under the federal student loan program you must submit an additional application. Please contact our office at 609-343-5082 for additional information. 

To Check the Status of Your Financial Aid

Access your student account Online. You will need your student college ID or social security number and your password. If you do not have your password, you may request one at that site. If you have a problem accessing this page, please contact 609-343-5005.

Disbursement Procedures

Tuition & Fees:  On or about the 10th day of the semester you are enrolled, your final financial aid, based on your credits and except for Federal Work Study, will be applied towards your account for tuition and fees. If your awards are large enough to cover your costs, you will not be required to make a payment.  Please keep in mind that you are responsible for making any payments necessary by Atlantic Cape's payment date.  Financial Aid also reserves the right to correct or modify your awards at any time.

Books and Supplies: If your award is larger than your tuition and fees you may be eligible for book credits. Please contact the Financial Aid Office at 609-343-5082 for information on book credits. 

Payment of Remaining Aid: If your award is larger than your tuition and fees and books and supplies, you may be eligible for a refund. After tuition and fees, book charges and insurance charges have been posted to your account and financial aid is credited to your account, any credit balance will be disbursed to you directly.

Refund Procedures

Students who completely withdraw from all of their courses or unofficially withdraw from classes by receiving all grades of 'F' and are receiving student aid are subject to having all or part of their financial aid returned to the appropriate financial aid programs. For those students who withdrew prior to 60% of the enrolled period elapsing, a pro-rata schedule is used to determine how much of your funds were earned at the time of withdrawal. Student Financial Aid funds must be returned in the following order:

  • Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
  • Subsidized Stafford Loan
  • Federal PLUS Loans
  • Federal ACG/Smart Grant
  • Federal Pell Grants
  • Federal Supplement Educational Opportunity Grants
  • State Scholarships

If more aid is received that could have been reasonable spent for non-institutional costs (excluding Federal Stafford Loan Programs), the unearned portion must be returned to Student Financial Aid Fund Programs.