Applying for Financial Aid

Eligibility Guidelines


To be eligible for any federal or state financial aid, as well as most institutional aid, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Be registered with the Selective Service (if male, over 18 years of age)
  • Not be in default on any prior educational loans and not owe a refund on an overpayment of any federal grant
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Have received an official, written offer of admission into a degree granting program by the MMA Admissions Office
  • Re-apply for aid each year by filing a FAFSA
  • Returning students must be meeting the standards of the Maritime Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy 
  • Not have any convictions for the sale or possession of illegal drugs while receiving federal financial aid

The Office of Student Financial Services must have the student’s permission to discuss their aid as well as their billing information with anyone other than the student.  If you wish to allow MMA to discuss your financial aid and/or bill with your parent(s), or any other individual, you must complete and submit a FERPA Privacy Information Release Form.  These permissions will remain in place until you are no longer enrolled at MMA.

FERPA Privacy Information Release Form

Students that are recipients of any type of financial aid, are encouraged to complete this form. It is called a Title IV Authorization Form because all Federal Aid is referred to as Title IV aid. Title IV aid includes Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG, and Federal Direct Stafford Loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized). The federal government requires that we collect this form. We have included all state, institutional and outside aid as well to make the process more seamless.

Title IV Form

If your family is experiencing any special circumstances or hardships, you may download and submit an appeal form, listing financial hardships and providing documentation when applicable.  This can be mailed or emailed to the Director at Special circumstances could include, but are not limited to loss of job/income, separation/divorce after filing the FAFSA, unusually high medical expenses, etc.  Appeals that will NOT be considered include high credit card debt/car payment/mortgages, etc.; early withdrawals from retirement/pension accounts; home repairs; private elementary/high school tuitions; family weddings/celebrations, sports and other extracurricular expenses and major purchases.

Appeal Form

Apply For Aid

Financial aid must be applied for each year. Undergraduate students who complete their files after our priority deadline will be offered funds available at the time they complete their file with the Office of Student Financial Services. Federal work study and most grants are often not available after our priority deadline.  The closer a student completes their file to the bill due date, the less likely they will have aid in time to use toward their billed expenses. If presented with the option to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, families are required to use that tool. 

Be sure to include Massachusetts Maritime Academy's federal school code # 002181 so the results will be sent to us.

Complete the FAFSA

Other Application Information

Undergraduate students living in on campus housing are considered for all types of aid (federal, state and institutional funding). Commuters typically receive federal and state aid only, as their costs are lower than those of dorm students.

Consideration for most 'gift aid' (grants and waivers) is given to those students with the lowest Expected Family Contribution, which is calculated using the income and asset information provided on the FAFSA.

Families can file their FAFSA as early as October 1 for the following academic year. This FAFSA will be based on the student and parent prior, prior income (taxes filed the previous spring). Since the majority of tax filers have already filed their tax returns, the FAFSA application process should be quick and easy. You can use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool when completing the FAFSA, which allows you to pull the tax information directly from the IRS into the FAFSA. For privacy purposes, you will not see the actual figures when they are transferred, but can rest assured that they are accurate, based on the tax return that you submitted to the IRS.

Be sure to list MMA’s school code, 002181, to ensure the results will be shared with the Academy. Don't forget to provide your social security number on your Admissions application, otherwise, we won't receive your FAFSA results.

Our policy is to email the student, using their MMA email address, if anything is missing from their application, once the student initiates the process. We will send at least 4 emails to the student. If after the final notice we still do not receive a response, we will assume at that point that the student is no longer interested in applying for financial aid and will stop sending notifications. Students can always check their application status on our Self Service Portal to see what we have received and if anything is still missing.

Once a FAFSA is filed, some students will be selected for a process called ‘verification.’ If selected, you may be required to submit additional information to the Office of Student Financial Services to verify the accuracy of the information you reported on the FAFSA. Requests for additional information will be sent to the student via their MMA email account. These documents must also be received by our office by the priority deadline. For this reason, we highly encourage you not to wait until the last minute to file your FAFSA, just in case we need additional info.

Delays in submitting requested documentation could result in a loss of certain financial aid. Families are encouraged to respond to our requests immediately upon receipt of our first request.

Once the students file is complete we will determine their eligibility for financial aid. The formula used to determine aid eligibility takes the Estimated Cost of Attendance and subtracts the Expected Family Contribution from the FAFSA. The difference is the amount of ‘financial need’ that the student has.  A financial aid ‘package’ is then created for the student, made up of federal, state and institutional funding for which the student qualifies.  The higher the financial need, the greater the financial aid package.  The package may contain gift aid/free money (grants, scholarships, waivers) as well as self-help aid (work study and student loans).  For more details, see the Types of Aid section of our website.

Students will receive an email informing them when their aid offer is ready to be viewed and accepted on the Self Service Portal. An actual paper aid offer letter will be mailed to any incoming undergraduate student and any returning student that has opted in to receive a paper letter via Self Service. Notifications will be sent to incoming undergraduate students beginning in late January/early February and returning undergraduate students and graduate students will be notified in late June/early July.

Financial Aid is offered for specific semesters. If a student does not enroll in a given semester, the financial aid offered for that semester is automatically canceled.