The financial aid team designated $500,000 to make next year’s 12 percent tuition increase bearable for qualifying students. The Application for Additional Financial Assistance gives students with unmet financial need the opportunity to receive assistance from ACU.
Buck James, associate vice president for enrollment management, and his team have worked diligently to provide what is called the Application for Additional Financial Assistance. The team hopes to assist students who are struggling to make ends meet in the wake of increasing costs.
“We want to make sure that we set aside a certain amount of money for families who are struggling,” James said.
Applicants are required to fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid form along with the online university application provided at www.acu.edu/additionalassistance. They then must submit the information to the Financial Aid office by April 30. After reviewing the applications, the office will award students aid according to their need, academic standing and Chapel attendance.
The FAFSA form weighs heavily in this process, which is why all deadlines are crucial in regard to acceptance. It determines whether the student can afford the hard and soft costs of ACU.
The hard costs are things like tuition and room and board, while soft costs refer to personal care, transportation and miscellaneous costs.
Buck said although the cost of tuition will rise, the increase directly correlates to an increase in the integrity of degrees issued by the university.
“We are enhancing the quality of education at ACU,” James said. “Unfortunately, that costs money.”
ACU is using the tuition rise as a way of completing its 21 Century Vision of becoming a premier Christian academic institution by 2020.
Carlee Snyder is a senior public relations major who transferred from West Texas A&M in part because of the quality of academics at ACU.
“ACU is very innovative. The classes consist of excellent quality,” Snyder said.
The application process began last week, and 200 applicants have already begun submitting their forms.
“We would expect 80 to 90 percent who participate to participate right away,” James said.