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Freshman Students

Georgian Court University Gate

At GCU, about 99.6% of first-time freshmen receive some type of financial aid. In addition to loans and scholarships, there are two types of financial aid awarded via the federal and state government:

  • The New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA): They provide grants, scholarships, loans, 529 College Savings Plans, and other programs. Their largest program is the Tuition Aid Grant (TAG) program. They also administer NJSTARS, a merit-based scholarship program. The Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF) is also a state-funded program.
  • The U.S. Department of Education: This federal office administers the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) program. When you file a FAFSA, it automatically applies you for aid via HESAA.

Start the Financial Aid Process

Interested in obtaining financial aid? Here are a few details about the process.

  • To file a FAFSA, visit Make sure to carefully review the information on your FAFSA before submitting.
  • The GCU priority filing deadline to submit a FAFSA is April 15, 2023.
  • GCU’s school code is 002608.
  • Complete and file your federal tax returns (and/or use your parent’s). For optimal filing, submit your taxes electronically.
  • Sign your FAFSA with your PIN and your parent’s PIN if you are a dependent student. If you forgot your PIN or do not have one, you will be able to retrieve it or apply for a PIN.
  • We encourage you not to file your FAFSA until two weeks after filing taxes.
  • After approximately 14 days, the data from the FAFSA will be stored within the IRS database, and you will be able to transfer the information to your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool. (If you file by paper, it will take six to eight weeks to use the tool.)
  • Applicants and parents who indicate they will file a federal tax return will receive an e-mail directing them to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to update their income information once they have filed their federal income tax return.
  • All applicants and parents who indicated they have filed a federal tax return will be directed to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
  • Some people are not eligible to use the tool, such as:
    • married couples who file separate tax returns
    • applicants whose marital status has changed
    • applicants who are neither eligible nor required to file a federal tax return
    • anyone who filed an amended tax return
  • If you use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool and change the information, be prepared to explain to GCU why the information you changed is more accurate than the information on file with the IRS. You may be selected for verification and required to submit additional information.

When you get to the confirmation page of the FAFSA, pay attention to the section asking you if you would like to report information to your state agency, which in New Jersey is HESAA. You will be directed to complete additional information for HESAA. The information you provide will be sent to HESAA, and you will NOT have to complete the questions separately on the HESAA Web site.

Your FAFSA could be selected for verification, which means you and/or your parents will have to obtain a free IRS tax transcript, which will be submitted to the GCU Office of Financial Aid in order to verify your information. You can print your transcript.

The College Board Web site and the Net Price Calculator on our Web site can help you estimate your expected family contribution.

When you receive an award, our office will let you know. From there, we ask that you e-mail us at if you would like to decrease, increase (if eligible), or decline any of your loans. Next, you will sign the Direct Loan Master Promissory Note and complete online entrance counseling.

GCU currently accepts payments at the Office of Student Accounts, online through Self-Service, and via NelNet, the only authorized interest-free payment plan offered. All payment plans must be set up before the due date of your bill. If your Nelnet contract is not enough to cover your GCU bill, you must pay the difference directly to the university by the scheduled due date. There is a $52 enrollment fee per semester. For more details or to set up your payment plan, call 1-800-356-8329 or log on to


We're Here to Help! If you have any questions about the process, please reach out to the GCU Office of Financial Aid at or 732-987-2258.