About Financial Aid

Affording the Best Education

College is a significant investment of money, time and energy. This investment increases lifetime earnings, broadens career options and enriches a lifetime. The full cost includes tuition and fees, supplies, housing, transportation, and miscellaneous personal expenses.

Undergraduate Florida resident students at ICUF institutions may receive a state tuition assistance grant, the Florida Residents Access Grant (FRAG), to assist with the higher tuition at private institutions.  Nearly 95% of undergraduate students at ICUF institutions receive some additional type of financial aid.

Financial aid packages are carefully designed at each campus by financial aid staff to meet student’s individual needs.  Generally, these packages combine several types of assistance depending on: family resources: calculated need, academic/athletic/artistic merit, government funding, Florida residency, and other factors.

Florida Assistance

Florida state government provides several student financial aid programs that help Floridians afford college education costs.  These programs are merit-based, need-based, special interest-based, and require Florida residency.

The most used programs available for qualifying ICUF students include:

Effective Access to Student Education: Tuition Assistance.

Florida Bright Futures Scholarships: Merit-based.

Florida Student Assistance Grant (FSAG): Need-based.

Mary McLeod Bethune Scholarship Program: Need-based and merit-based.  Available to qualifying students at Historically Black Colleges or Universities, including ICUF institutions; Bethune-Cookman University, Edward Waters College, and Florida Memorial University.   

Federal Assistance

Most federal financial assistance is based on “financial need”.  Financial need is the difference between the costs of attendance at a college less the expected family contribution (EFC) derived from the federal FAFSA.  Family income and other factors are considered in determining the level of financial aid for which a student qualifies.  To apply for federal financial assistance, students should complete online the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

The Following Federal Student Aid Programs are Need-Based:

Federal Pell Grant Program: Grant aid does not have to be repaid.

Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG): Pell Grant recipients with exceptional financial need may receive additional funding, based on availability.

Federal Work Study: Provides jobs for students, encouraging work and community service related to a student’s course of study.

Subsidized Stafford Loan: The federal government pays interest accrued while in school.

Unsubsidized Stafford Loan: The student pays interest accrued while in school.

Federal Perkins Loan Program: Loans made on exceptional financial need or availability.

Federal Parent Loan For Undergraduate Students (PLUS): Repayment begins 60 days after receipt of funds.

ROTC Tuition Scholarship: May cover all or part of tuition, fees, and books, and a monthly allowance.  Requires military service after graduation.

Tax Credits and Savings Plans

The federal government allows tax deductions, tax credits and tax advantaged savings programs to pay for higher education.  View Publication 970 from the Internal Revenue Service on-line or call 1-800-TAX-FORM.

Lifetime Learning Tax Credit: Applies to 20% of the first $10,000 in tuition and fees (less grants, scholarships and tax-free tuition benefits).

Student Loan Interest Deduction: Special tax deduction applied to reported income for interest paid during the first 60 months of repayment on student loans.

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs): Can be used for your own education expenses or those of a spouse, child or grandchild.

Prepaid Tuition Programs & Tuition Savings Plans: Multiple college savings plans can be established for a designated beneficiary.

Additional Resources:


www.Finaid.org – More financial aid information.


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