State Grant Funding Sources
Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) funds are generally awarded to students who demonstrate financial need as determined by the student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). A grant is a fund awarded to a student that does not have to be repaid. The Illinois Grant Funds are only available to students who are pursuing their first bachelor’s degree and are residents of Illinois (independent students) or whose parent(s) is a resident of Illinois (dependent students). State Grant award amounts are determined by the student’s cost of attendance, enrollment status, and EFC. Students must meet the Standards of Academic Progress in order to remain eligible for state grants.
State of Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) Grant
The Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) provides assistance to eligible students demonstrating financial need. MAP grants are available to undergraduate independent students who are Illinois residents and dependent students whose parent(s) are Illinois residents. By applying for financial aid through the FAFSA and agreeing to share that information with ISAC, students are considered for the State of Illinois MAP Grant. Students who met the eligibility criteria will have “St. of IL MAP Grant Est.” on their Award Letter. If this is not listed on your Award Letter, you are not currently eligible for the grant.
School Issued Award Letter Language for 2015-16
Please refer to your award letter when referencing this section.
Schools are required to include the following information with the award letter:By applying for financial aid and agreeing to share that information with the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) you have been considered for the State of Illinois (IL) Monetary Award Program (MAP) Grant. If you were determined to meet the eligibility criteria for the MAP grant, an award is included on this award letter. This award may be an estimate made by the financial aid office and, if so, is identified as a “State of IL MAP Grant (Est)”. MAP grants are limited based on the number of applicants and funding levels appropriated by the Illinois General Assembly. Please be aware that in light of state funding constraints, reductions to estimated or actual MAP grants are possible.Eligibility for a MAP grant is tracked by the equivalent number of semester credit hours of MAP benefits paid on your behalf. This is called MAP Paid Credit Hours. Payment for each term is being made according to the equivalent number of credit hours eligible for MAP payment, with a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 15 MAP Paid Credit Hours.There is a limit on the number of MAP Paid Credit Hours that can be paid while you are classified by your school as a freshman and sophomore. This limit is the equivalent of 75 MAP Paid Credit Hours. If this maximum is reached, you must attain junior status for your MAP grant eligibility to resume. The maximum number of MAP Paid Credit Hours that can be received is capped at 135.If a State of IL MAP Grant (Est) is not included in your award letter, you are not eligible for the grant at Columbia College Chicago.
MAP Fund Availability
MAP grants are limited based on the number of applicants and funding levels appropriated by the Illinois General Assembly and priority consideration is determined annually. Please be aware that in light of state funding constraints, reductions to estimated or actual MAP grants are possible.
In order to be considered for MAP eligibility for the upcoming award year, Student Financial Services recommends that students complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on or before February 1st of each year. There is no separate application for MAP; your FAFSA application automatically serves as an application for MAP consideration. MAP deadlines are generally stricter than the federal deadlines due to limited state funding. The following table lists actual or anticipated deadlines students must meet in order to be considered for MAP funding:
For the 2015-16 award year, only students whose initial 2015-16 FAFSA was received by the Central Processing System (CPS) on or before February 22, 2015 are eligible for MAP funding consideration. Students who completed an initial 2015-16 FAFSA or renewal FAFSA on or after Febryary 23, 2015 will not be considered for MAP funding.
MAP Award Amounts
The amount of your estimated MAP award is determined by ISAC based on your Illinois residency (for independent students) or parents’ Illinois residency (for dependent students), your financial need and enrollment status. Estimated award amounts may also be increased or decreased depending on the outcome of Verification. Changes to individual award amount estimates will be sent to your LOOP
email and can be viewed on your OASIS
Online Student Portal.
For the 2015-16 award year, the maximum award amount a student may receive for the year in Illinois State MAP funds is $4,720.
As the ISAC School Issued Award Letter language above stated, ligibility for a MAP grant is also determined by the equivalent number of semester credit hours of MAP benefits paid on your behalf. These are called MAP Paid Credit Hours. Payment for each term is made according to the equivalent number of credit hours eligible for MAP payment with a minimum of 3 credit hours and a maximum of 15 credit hours. There is also a limit of 75 MAP Paid Credit Hours that can be paid to students classified as a freshman or sophomore student. If this maximum is reached, students must attain junior status (60 credit hours) for MAP grant eligibility to be reinstated. The maximum number of MAP Paid Credit Hours that can be received is capped at 135.
Disbursement of MAP Funds
In order to receive your estimated MAP funds, your financial aid file must be complete by the stated deadlines and meet ISAC requirements. MAP funds will be disbursed to your account within 10-15 business days after Columbia College Chicago receives the funds from the state of Illinois. MAP funds may cover eligible tuition and fee expenses but are not refundable to students. MAP funds are credited to a student’s account once per semester (Fall and Spring); there are no MAP funds available for summer attendance.
Additional information about the MAP program can be found on the ISAC website at www.collegezone.com
and click on Student Zone.
Other Illinois State Education Benefits
Certain students may qualify for assistance from other state agencies such as the Division of Rehabilitation Services. Information about these benefits and funding availability may be obtained from the appropriate state agency.