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Need help paying for college? Follow the steps below to apply for financial aid.


FIRST STEPS (October - January)

1. Obtain your FSA ID. Who needs to obtain a FSA ID? Students, so you can retrieve tax information, if applicable, and sign the FAFSA and promissory note for Direct Loans. And parents, so they can retrieve tax information, if applicable, sign the FAFSA, and apply for a Plus Loan if needed. Visit to obtain a Federal Student Aid ID (FSAID). Write them down!

2. Complete your FAFSA — every year.

  • Visit to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to be considered for federal and state aid. Complete the FAFSA after Oct. 1 of your senior year of high school and yearly thereafter. You will need your tax data from 2 years prior to the start of the academic year (e.g. for fall 2022 academic year you will need your 2020 tax data). Your tax data can automatically be transferred to the FAFSA form by designating that the Data Retrieval Tool be used to import the data from your tax return.
  • Guilford College’s priority date for filing the FAFSA is Feb. 15.
  • State of North Carolina Financial Aid (NC Need Based Scholarship or NCNBS) is awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis based on FAFSA information. The earlier you file your FAFSA, the better your chances of obtaining the maximum aid available to you.
  • If you are unable to complete the FAFSA, download this Financial Assessment Worksheet. Complete and return it to your Financial Aid Counselor or email it to

3. Search and apply for outside/private scholarships. Guilford College recommends the following scholarship search engines:,, and

4. Congratulations! You have been admitted. Guilford begins sending out Financial Aid Package Notifications — detailing grants, work-study, loans, and scholarships — as early as Dec. 1.



  • The Department of Education or Guilford College may select any student’s FAFSA for a process called Verification. Approximately one-third of all college students are selected for FAFSA verification. Selected students are required to complete an online worksheet as well as providing selected documentation if needed. If this is required you will receive an email with a link to our FAFSA verification portal. You will set up an account that will allow you to complete the verification worksheet along with any other requirements and instructions on how to complete them. Upon completion, your financial aid counselor will review and let you know if there is any further action required on your part. Other documents such as but not limited to birth certificates, passports, marriage licenses, and selective service registration confirmations may be required. Your financial aid office will let you know.
  • If you do not receive an email notification from us that means you were not selected for verification and should proceed to “You’re Almost Home!” which follows.

YOU’RE ALMOST HOME! (May - September)

6. Accept your student loans, if you are using them.

  • Sign into Banner Web.
  • Click the Financial Aid tab.
  • Go to Award.
  • Go to Award for Aid Year and select 2022-23.
  • Click on Accept Award Offer tab.
  • Click Accept All Offered Amounts or indicate the amount you would like to borrow in the available text box.

7. Complete Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling, if required.

  • Log on to
  • Select Complete Loan Counseling (Entrance, Financial Awareness, Exit).
  • Click the Start button to the right of Entrance Counseling.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions.
  • Next, go back to My Home Page.
  • Select Complete Loan Agreement (Master Promissory Note).
  • Click the Start button next to MPN for Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loans. Follow the on-screen instructions.

8. NCNBS (North Carolina Need Based Scholarship)

For full consideration, you must complete your residency form with the N.C. Residency Determination Service (RDS). Your residency must be validated before NCNBS will pay on your student account. Please note that if you don’t complete the form and your residency is not validated, the NCNBS will be cancelled.

Your log-in credentials for the RDS website are your College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) information. If you don’t remember your CFNC information, you can retrieve it from their website. If you don’t have a CFNC account, you can create an account on the RDS website, which also creates a CFNC account

9. Do you still have a balance? There are several options for covering your remaining balance.  

  • Parent Plus Loan 
    • Also requires completing Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling online
  • CREDIBLE and ELMSelect provide you the opportunity to compare and apply for private educational loans. 
  • Guilford College Payment Plan: Contact the Office of Student Accounts for more information. This is the office that handles all inquiries regarding billing, invoices, payment plans, and the TouchNet system. They can be reached at 336.316.2541 or

10) Federal Work Study: Please note that even if you have Federal Work Study as part of your Financial Aid package, it is not guaranteed. All proceeds from working are paid directly to you, not applied to your student account. For more information, click here.