Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships
This is free money, most grants do not have to be paid back, however, some grants have requirements that have to be met and failure to meet the requirements can result in your grant turning into a loan. Be sure to read the terms and conditions to make sure you understand your awards.
Below, you will find more information about different grant opportunities, including:
- Federal Grants:
- Federal Pell Grant
- Federal SEOG Grant
- Federal TEACH Grant
- State and University Grants:
- Cal Grants
- State University Grant (SUG)
- Middle Class Scholarship (MCS)
- EOP Grant
- Bulldog Retention Grant
- Other Grants
- Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Grant
Federal Grant Opportunities:
Federal Pell Grant
The Pell Grant is a need-based grant that is offered by the U. S. Department of Education. To be eligible for this grant, you have to be eligible to complete the FAFSA and have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) within the Pell Grant range. In addition to having financial need, to be eligible you cannot have completed your first bachelors.
The Pell Grant is based off your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and prorated based on the number of credits you are enrolled in.
- If you are in 12+ credits, you would be eligible for the full-time Pell award
- If you are in 9-11 credits, you would be eligible for ¾ of the full-time Pell award
- If you are in 6-8 credits, you would be eligible for ½ of the full-time Pell award
- If you are in 5 or less credits, you would be eligible for ¼ of the full-time Pell award
The Pell Grant has a lifetime limit, the equivalency of six-full time years (about 12 semesters at Fresno State).
Each academic year (Fall, Spring, and Summer), you can be eligible for up to 150% (three full-time semesters) of a Pell Grant, assuming you are not close to or at the lifetime limit.
Federal SEOG Grant
Just like the Pell Grant, this is a need-based grant that is offered by the U.S. Department of Education. It is awarded to students that have a zero (0) EFC and are working on their undergraduate degree. The award is prorated based on your credit load, but you must be enrolled in at least six (6) credits. Funds are limited with this award so make sure to complete your FAFSA as early as possible!
Federal TEACH Grant
The TEACH Grant is a Federal program that provides grants of up to $3,772 per year for students who are completing the coursework needed to begin a career in teaching (as defined by the U.S. Department of Education) and agree to serve for a minimum of four years as a full-time, qualified teacher in a high-need field, in a school that serves low-income students.
While this is a great opportunity for students that plan to become a teacher and meet the eligibility requirements, it is important to know that if the recipient fails to complete any of the requirements of the TEACH Grant Program, the grant will be converted into a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan that MUST be paid back, with interest accruing from the date the funds were disbursed. Once the TEACH grant converts to a loan, it will remain a loan.
Eligibility Requirements – To be considered for the TEACH Grant, students must meet all of the following:
- Agree to teach at a low-income elementary or secondary school, as defined by the U.S. Department of Education’s Low Income School Directory, AND:
- Agree to teach in a high-need subject area, such as:
- Language Arts
- Special Education
- Core Subjects in Elementary Education
- Agree to teach full-time for at least four years within eight years of completing the teaching program
- Meet the first-year TEACH Grant determination GPA requirements:
- Undergraduate students must have a final high school cumulative GPA of 3.25 or greater
- Graduate/Credential students must have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.25 or greater
- Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher for subsequent years to remain eligible
- Be enrolled in a high-need teaching program (high-need subject areas vary by state and change annually)
All of the following must be done before you will be considered for the TEACH Grant:
- Complete the FAFSA for the academic year for which you are applying
- Complete and submit the TEACH Grant Request Form for the appropriate aid year
- Submit an Education Plan to the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office from your advisor
- Complete the TEACH Grant Entrance Counseling at studentaid.gov
- Complete and Sign the Agreement to Serve at studentaid.gov
NOTE: All of the above needs to be done each year you wish to receive the TEACH Grant.
Upon completing your teaching program, you will need to do the TEACH Grant Exit Counseling.
While the TEACH Grant is a great opportunity, we again want to remind you that you must complete all requirements of the program – Failure to do so will result in the grant money received turning into a Federal unsubsidized loan with the interest accruing from the date the award disbursed.
Failure to complete the requirements of the program can include:
- NOT teaching in a high-need subject area
- NOT teaching at a designated low-income school
- NOT teaching full-time for four years, within eight years of completing your teaching program
TEACH Grant recipients are also required to show that they are meeting the terms of the TEACH Grant Program by obtaining verification from the school site administrator each year during their full-time employment in a high-need subject area at a low-income school. There is NO credit for part-time teaching or partial fulfillment of service.
If you are deemed eligible, the TEACH Grant will be awarded to your my.FresnoState account. Keep in mind that the TEACH Grant, along with other financial aid cannot exceed the cost of attending Fresno State, which is determined based on your enrollment and living situation.
When the TEACH Grant disburses, if you decide that you no longer would like the award, you may cancel all or a portion of the award by providing the Fresno State Student Accounts Department with a cancellation request no later than 14 days from the date the award disbursed.
More information on the TEACH Grant.
Complete the online TEACH Grant Counseling and Agreement to Serve.
As always, if you have any further questions regarding your financial aid or the TEACH Grant, please feel free to contact our office!
State and University Grant Opportunities:
The Cal Grant is an award that you do not have to pay back. It is administered by the California Student Aid Commission as long as you meet the eligibility and financial requirements.
There are a couple of different Cal Grants that are awarded at Fresno State. We have the Cal Grant A and the Cal Grant B. These are usually for incoming high school students, however, there are Cal Grants available to students transferring from California community colleges.
Both the Cal Grant A and B are fee paying awards only. The Cal Grant B does come with an access award that is disbursed directly to the student.
To be eligible, you must meet all of the following, plus the GPA and financial requirements listed below:
- Complete the FAFSA or the California Dream Act Application (but not both!) by the March 2nd deadline
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen or meet AB540 eligibility criteria
- Be a California Resident for one year
- Attend a qualifying California college (Fresno State is a qualifying school!)
- Not have a Bachelor’s or professional degree
- Have financial need at the college of your choice
- Have family income and assets below the minimum levels
- Be enrolled or plan to enroll in a program leading towards an undergraduate degree or certificate
- Be enrolled or plan to be enrolled at least half time
- Have registered for the U.S. Selective Service, if required to do so.
- Not owe a refund on any state or federal grant or be in default on a student loan
- Not be incarcerated
- Maintain the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards as established by your school.
- Cal Grant A: 3.0 GPA Minimum
- Cal Grant B: 2.0 GPA Minimum
Financial Requirements: If your family made more than the amount listed below from the income or if they had assets (example: Savings accounts, homes, businesses, etc.) for the year reported on the FAFSA or California Dream Act Application, you may not be eligible for a Cal Grant. However, if your family’s income has decreased since the tax year reported on your financial aid application, please come in and speak with one of our counselors to see if/how we can help!
2018-2019 Financial Requirements
Dependent Students and Independent Students with dependents other than a spouse
Cal Grant A
Cal Grant B
Six or more
Single, no dependents
Married, no dependents
Dependent Students or Independent students with dependents of their own
Independent Students with no dependents of their own
The Cal Grant A is a fee paying award and is applied directly to your fees at Fresno State -- This award does not get disbursed directly to the student.
Cal Grant A Entitlement Award: Every graduating high school senior that has at least a 3.0 GPA, meets the financial and academic requirements, and applies on time will get this award.
- If you attend a California community college first, your award will be reserved for
up to three years until you transfer to a four-year college/university, if you continue
to qualify. When you transfer, please make sure to let us know that you have a reserve
Cal Grant A Competitive Award: Other eligible students who have at least a 3.0 GPA may apply for the Cal Grant A Competitive award. Selection is based on a composite score that takes into consideration your family’s income, parents’ education level, GPA, time out of high school, and other factors such as whether you come from a single-parent household or are a former foster youth.
The Cal Grant B is a fee paying award and is applied directly to your fees at Fresno State -- This award does not get disbursed directly to the student. This award comes with an Access Award that is disbursed directly to the student. The first year that you receive the Cal Grant B, you are only eligible to receive the access award, but your following years you will receive both the tuition paying award and the access award.
Cal Grant B Entitlement Award: Every graduating high school senior that has at least a 2.0 GPA, meets the financial and academic requirements, and applies on time will get this award.
Cal Grant B Competitive Award: Other eligible students who have at least a 2.0 GPA may apply for the Cal Grant A Competitive award. Selection is based on a composite score that takes into consideration your family’s income, parents’ education level, GPA, time out of high school, and other factors such as whether you come from a single-parent household or are a former foster youth.
The Cal Grant Transfer Entitlement Award is for students that are transferring directly from a California community college to a four-year university that offers a Bachelor’s degree in the academic year that they are applying for the award.
For Future Teachers K-12: This grant affords one year of renewal Cal Grant for students seeking a teaching credential after completion of their bachelors degree. This grant must be requested within 15 months of the last payment of Cal grant received
This grant is requested by submission of a G44 form to:
California Student Aid Commission
Grant Services Unit
P. O. Box 419027
Rancho Cordova, CA 95741-9028
If you think you might be eligible for a Cal Grant, you’ll want to make sure you create a WebGrants 4 Students account. You'll also want to monitor your WebGrants account and make sure to submit any documents they may need in order to maintain your Cal Grant eligibility.
State University Grant (SUG)
The State University Grant (SUG) is a grant program for eligible California residents. Eligibility is determined from the information provided on the FAFSA and the funding available. This is a fee paying award and is not disbursed directly to the student.
California residents making progress towards an undergraduate or post-baccalaureate degree are eligible if they meet the following criteria.
- Complete the FAFSA for that academic year by the priority deadline of March 2nd
- Have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of 4,000 or less
- Must be enrolled in at least six units for undergraduate students or four units for graduate students
Other requirements include:
- Undergraduate Students: Must have less than 150 semester or 225 quarter units earned within their undergraduate career
- Undergraduate Transfer Students: Must have less than 75 semester or 112 quarter earned units while enrolled at a CSU campus
- Credential Students: Are eligible for their program length (for example, if your program requires 32 units, you are eligible for up to 32 units)
- Master’s Students: Eligible for up to 125% of their initial master’s, as defined by the General Catalog
Students working on a second bachelor’s, second credential, second master’s degree, or doctoral degrees are not eligible for SUG.
There is no application for the SUG aside from completing the FAFSA. There is limited funding, so priority is given to those students who complete their FAFSA before the March 2nd deadline.
Middle Class Scholarship (MCS)
The Middle Class Scholarship is a state grant that undergraduate students and students pursuing a teaching credential are considered for once they complete the FAFSA or the California Dream Act Application. Students must complete the respective application by the March 2nd deadline. Upon completing the financial aid application and being accepted in to the university, eligible students are automatically considered for the award.
To be eligible for the Middle Class Scholarship at Fresno State, you must meet the following:
·Be a California resident, be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or have AB 540 student status.
·Be meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements
·Not be in default of a student loan
·Not be incarcerated
·Have income or assets not exceeding $191,000
For more specifics visit the California Student Aid Commission's site on Middle Class Scholarships here: https://www.csac.ca.gov/middle-class-scholarship
Again, you are automatically considered for the award through the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) once you've completed the FAFSA or California Dream Act Application.
If you are selected to receive the Middle Class Scholarship, you will be notified by CSAC. We usually receive lists of students that are eligible for the award and begin awarding in November.
The Middle Class Scholarship is not a set amount and the amount is dependent on what other financial assistance students are receiving. Because it is a fee paying award, some financial aid, including federal Pell Grants, Cal Grants, SUG, and Veteran’s aid can impact the amount and/or eligibility.
The Middle Class Scholarship can be awarded up to four years.
The Educational Opportunity (EOP) Grant is a state grant for students participating in the Educational Opportunity Program only. This program focuses on first-generation, historically low-income students that demonstrate potential for success and are motivated to achieve their goals.
The EOP Program assigns students to a counselor who provide academic and personal support throughout their undergraduate experience at Fresno State. Services provided include academic advising, learning assistance and tutoring, financial aid information, career information, housing information, and personal counseling.
More information on how to apply for the EOP Program.
Once you are an EOP participant, you can be considered for the EOP Grant by completing your FAFSA or your California Dream Act Application.
Bulldog Retention Grant
As part of the Fresno State Graduation initiative, limited funding is available to assist students who have a financial aid shortfall and are subject to being dropped from classes. The maximum award will be $1,500 per student. Priority funding will be provided to students in their last term/semester at the university.
- Have a balance of tuition/fees on your student account at the time the award is granted or after all financial aid, scholarships and waivers have been applied for the current semester
- Undergraduate and CA Resident for tuition purposes
- Must be enrolled in at least 6 units for the current semester
- Must be an undergraduate degree seeking student
- Be in a good academic standing and meet SAP (Satisfactory Academic Progress)
- Have 30 units or less to graduate, including the units you are enrolled in for the current semester.
- Have not received a Bulldog Retention Grant in the past.
NOTE: Please note that meeting the eligibility requirements does not guarantee an award. Students who have applied for graduation for the current term will be given priority
- No application is required. Candidates will be identified based on the eligibility criteria.
- Award amounts are based on the availability of funds with an award being no larger than the tuition/fees balance remaining on your student account and a maximum award of $1,500.
- Students are notified of the award through their Fresno State email with a Financial Aid and Scholarship award letter.
- Bulldog Retention Grants are typically awarded each Fall and Spring semester, just prior to the University Census date.
- Contact our office for exact dates or if you have additional questions.
Please contact our office for more information about this grant.
Other Grant Opportunities:
Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Grant
BIA grants are tribal awards provided to students who are at least one-quarter American Indian, Eskimo or Aleut. You can review additional information at the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Contact your tribal agency for pertinent information. Each Tribal Agency establishes their own award parameters.