Financial Aid

The primary purpose of the financial aid program at USD is to provide financial assistance to students who, without such aid, would be unable to attend the university. Financial assistance consists of scholarships, grants, loans and employment.

Primary responsibility for financing an education rests upon the student and the student’s family. Financial aid from the university is viewed as a supplement to funds which can be provided by the student, the student’s family and other sources. Students requesting financial assistance may be expected to meet a portion of their educational expenses by accepting employment, loan(s), or both. Because financial aid funds are limited, need is the primary factor in awarding most financial aid. For USD scholarships and grants, consideration is given to the applicant’s academic achievement, character and potential. Students requesting financial assistance from USD resources must also apply for scholarships and grants funded by their home states for which they may be eligible.

A financial aid package is designed to meet the financial need of each individual student. Each package may consist of funding from one or more programs and can vary depending on established need and/or merit.

Eligibility Requirements

  1. The student must be accepted officially by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to pursue a degree or certificate, and maintain satisfactory academic progress as defined in the USD Guide to Financial Aid Consumer Information. The guide is available on the Office of Financial Aid website.
  2. The student must complete the appropriate application(s) – see application procedure below.
  3. The student must be a United States citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  4. The student must not be in default on any federal loan or owe a refund on any federal grant.
  5. Financial aid applicants must be aware that certain financial aid programs are designed to assist students who complete their degree work in a normal four-year period. Those who elect or require additional time may have to rely more heavily on self-help assistance in the form of work and loans.
  6. Certain USD funds require full-time enrollment.

Application Procedure

  1. Each student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) available at Students who do not wish to submit their FAFSA on line can print a blank FAFSA from the FAFSA website or can request a blank copy be mailed to them by calling 1 (800) 4-FEDAID. All students are expected to read and follow the instructions and deadlines in the Guide to Applying for Financial Aid at USD available on the OFA website.
  2. When required by federal law, and upon request from the Office of Financial Aid, it will be necessary for the student to provide their/their parents’ most recent tax information and/or respond to other requests for information by the Office of Financial Aid.
  3. All financial aid applications must be submitted or postmarked on or before the priority deadline dates listed in the academic calendar in order to receive priority consideration. Additionally, all follow-up information must be received by the USD Office of Financial Aid by the deadlines specified on the follow-up requests. Non-priority applicants are considered for any remaining funds and are processed after priority applicants.
  4. Students must follow these procedures each year in reapplying for financial aid.