Financial Aid for Continuing Students

1. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the Pre-filled FAFSA application on line (beginning 2008-2009):

Before you begin you will want to have your tax information or estimates from last year, and you may want to print the FAFSA worksheets to assist you. You will also want to have your PIN available so that you can sign your application upon completion. All students must apply each year for Federal aid by completing the FAFSA application. Continuing students may decide to complete the Pre-filled FAFSA on line. All filers will need the SUNY Potsdam Federal Code (002850) and the SUNY Potsdam TAP Code (0945 for undergraduate students) to input on the applications. More application information is available at

Eligible applicants who file the FAFSA will be offered aid based on full-time status.  If your enrollment status will not be full-time (12 or more credit hours for aid purposes), you will need to submit a Status Change Form (available through BearPAWS) to the Financial Aid Office so that your award is adjusted to reflect your correct enrollment status.  


2. Review your Student Aid Report (SAR)

The Federal Government will provide you with access to your Student Aid Report via e-mail if you apply on line. Please review this FAFSA summary and return the form to the Federal Government or our office with any corrections you may have to the application.

3. Complete the TAP Application

Continuing students who have received a TAP award in a prior year do not need to apply for TAP each year; only new TAP applicants will need to complete the application. Use the following link to complete your TAP application now.

Complete the TAP Application online

4. Notify the Financial Aid Office of any Private Scholarships

You will want to notify the Financial Aid Office if you will be receiving outside scholarships or grants from local, state, national, or corporate organizations. These awards may impact your financial aid eligibility.

5. Receive Your Award Letter

Once we have received your FAFSA information from the Federal Government, and we have received any other requested data needed from you, we will process your financial aid package and notify you of your aid eligibility. Continuing students will receive an award notification via e-mail directing them to the BearPAWS system. Notification begins in early March.

6. Respond to Inquiries

Respond promptly to any inquiries from federal and state agencies, or from our office. We will notify continuing students via e-mail to access the BearPAWS system to see what information is missing in order to process your financial aid. Delays in receipt of pertinent information will delay the review process, mailing of award letters, and disbursement of funds.