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Financial Aid Timeline

Financial Aid Timeline and Cycle

We know that the financial process can be complex with multiple dates and processes to keep in mind.  Below is an overview of the financial aid/billing/payment process. Our other pages and the links within them will give you step-by-step instructions.

Learn the cost of attending PennWest Clarion.  Total costs are determined by residency, the class delivery location (Clarion, Venango, or off-campus), tuition, fees, room, meal plan, parking permit, and the total number of credits you will take.


October 1 - Free application for federal student aid (FAFSA) opens

Apply for financial aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by May 1.  Clarion's Federal School Code is 003316.  Please note:  The FSA ID (a username and password) has replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN.  If you have not created your FSA ID yet, you can read additional information and create your ID here.  

Learn when and how to apply for specific types of financial aid (grants, scholarships, loans, and student employment). Prior to applying, Clarion's Net Price Calculator can give you an idea of which types of aid you may be qualified to receive.  

November 1 - PennWest Clarion Scholarship Application Opens

The University Endowed Scholarship application opens in early November and closes in late March.  Clarion's endowed scholarships encompass awards for specific majors, awards for students from various school districts, awards for student involvement and other criteria. We encourage you to log-on to our Endowed Scholarships application to see what you may qualify for and to apply. 


May 1 - Pennsylvania State Grant (PHEAA) Paperwork Due

First-time PA state grant applicants MUST complete the PA State Grant application at

May 1 - Have Your Renewal FAFSA submitted

Re-apply for financial aid each year by filing a renewal FAFSA by May 1.  Keep in mind that you need to make satisfactory academic progress toward your degree to be eligible for aid next year.


july 1 - board of governors set tuition rates for upcoming year

Each year, the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education's Board of Governors sets tuition rates and tuition-related fees for the 14 state system schools. This is typically completed on or around July 1. Students are notified of the new rates as soon as possible.

The PennWest Clarion Council of Trustees sets Clarion and Venango College fees which are used to support student activities and the operation of university facilities. All fees are payable whether or not the student plans to use these services or facilities.

august 1 - enroll in a cupay payment plan

Final costs for tuition and fees are established in late July and are posted to your MyClarion account if you have scheduled for classes.  Estimated financial aid will show on your MyClarion account under the "View Financial Aid" link.  Review your bill online and plan what your actual out-of-pocket costs will be after all sources of financial aid (grantsscholarshipsloans).  If your aid does not cover your charges, consider the payment plana PLUS loan, or a private loan

The student is responsible to ensure that all PennWest Clarion charges are paid or covered by financial aid by the beginning of the semester.  There are many payment options.  Students with delinquent accounts will not be permitted to register for courses, and academic records (transcripts and diplomas) will be withheld until all charges have been paid in full. 

other important considerations

student loans

Apply for loans, if needed.  Incoming students interested in a Federal Direct Stafford Loan should complete BOTH entrance counseling and the Master Promissory Note at the Federal Student Aid's Student Loans website which you can find at  The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) is the U.S. Department of Education's (ED's) central database for student aid. Register at NSLDS Student Access (Retrieve Your Loan Information) for up-to-date information about your loan(s).

verification process

If you are selected for federal verification (an audit), refer to the To Do Checklist on your MyClarion Student Center.  

Please note that adjustments to your financial aid may occur.  Information on adjustments to financial aid.

when does financial aid post to my account?

Financial aid will not post to the student account until after the drop/add period ends.  Refunds will be processed after aid has been posted.  Students participating in direct deposit will receive refunds sooner than those who do not. Information on direct deposit is here.    

Last Updated 1/18/24