United States - Eligible Citizens Financial Aid for Colgate University Skip Navigation

U.S. Citizens and Eligible Noncitizens

Colgate offers need-based financial aid and does not offer academic merit aid.
Because Colgate notifies students of its admission and financial aid decisions at the same time, institutional aid is provided only to those first-year students who have demonstrated need and apply for assistance before an admission decision is made; and aid applicants can be considered for admission only when both their admission and aid applications are complete.  Therefore, if you are applying for Colgate aid it is important to send the required financial aid application materials by the appropriate deadlines.  Colgate cannot guarantee that an otherwise-qualified applicant will receive institutional aid if the deadlines are not met.  (Students applying only for federal aid may simply submit the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, at any time during, or in the months immediately preceding, the academic year for which they are seeking federal assistance.)

As discussed below, admitted students who are awarded aid and have decided to attend Colgate may also be asked to file, after payment of the enrollment deposit, both parent and student income tax returns.  However, at Colgate tax returns are not needed for the initial aid estimate.

Any questions regarding the financial aid application process should be directed to the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@colgate.edu.

Application Requirements

Prior to Admission


The CSS PROFILE is used to determine eligibility for institutional aid.  Widely used by many private colleges, the application is available online, beginning each year in early fall, at www.collegeboard.org/profile.  Please wait to submit your application until the correct year's form is available, selecting the school year for which you will be enrolling so we can properly track your submission.  Consult the PROFILE instructions for the necessary fees, which are waived automatically by the College Board for eligible applicants.  When asked, you should list Colgate, code 2086, on the PROFILE so we will be able to access your application.  Please be aware that because of annual software updates we may not be able to receive your data immediately upon submission.  Early decision applicants need not be concerned about this delay so long as the acknowledgment from the College Board indicates that Colgate will be among the colleges to receive the application.

Please use the "Explanations/Special Circumstances" section of the PROFILE to provide information about any special circumstances about which you feel the Office of Financial Aid should be aware. In many cases we are not initially able to take such circumstances into account; but with further documentation, such as might be requested during the course of a financial aid appeal, we are sometimes able to make adjustments.  Please feel free to contact the Office of Financial Aid if you have any concerns.

    Noncustodial PROFILE (if applicable)

Information must be provided by each living biological or adoptive parent.  If your biological or adoptive parents live apart and are divorced, separated, or were never married to each other, then the custodial parent (i.e., the parent with whom you more often reside) completes the PROFILE, and the noncustodial parent completes the Noncustodial PROFILE.  The Noncustodial PROFILE process begins after completion of the custodial parent's PROFILE.  Filing instructions will be provided by CSS electronically.  Students with questions or concerns about the Noncustodial PROFILE requirement should contact the Office of Financial Aid.

2) Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

The FAFSA is used to determine eligibility for federal student aid and can be completed online at fafsa.gov.  Colgate's code for the FAFSA is 002701Be sure to select the correct FAFSA application for your year of intended enrollment.  To complete the FAFSA you will need to have a Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID). The FSA ID will serve as your electronic signature.  For dependent students, at least one parent must also have an FSA ID.  If you need assistance with the log-in or ID-creation process, please call 1-800-433-3243. 

If at all possible, please use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) to complete the FAFSA.  This helps you reduce the chances of being selected for federal verification of income upon enrollment, which streamlines the process of receiving federal aid.

After Payment of the Enrollment Deposit

3) Income Tax Returns/W-2 Statements

If you are awarded financial aid and you enroll at Colgate, you may be asked at a later date to submit tax returns and other forms through the College Board's IDOC service.  Please do not send tax returns until/unless you are specifically requested to do so.  Once you've received your e-mail notification from the College Board, you may either upload or mail your documents directly to IDOC or visit idoc.collegeboard.org for more information about the submission process. 

The term "prior-prior-year," as used by the federal government, is meant to describe tax returns from two years prior to the fall term of the year of intended enrollment.  For example, if a student is enrolling during the 2017-18 academic year, prior-prior-year returns would cover tax year 2015.

The required tax forms are:
  • A signed copy of the parents' 2015 Federal Income Tax Return, including all schedules and W-2 forms; OR, if applicable, a Parent Non-Tax Filer's Statement, a link for which will be available on the student's IDOC dashboard.
  • If applicable, a signed copy of the noncustodial parent's 2015 Federal Income Tax Return, including all schedules and W-2 forms; OR, if applicable, a Parent Non-Tax Filer's Statement, a link for which will be available on the student's IDOC dashboard.
  • A signed copy of the student’s 2015 Federal Income Tax Return, including all schedules and W-2 forms; OR, if applicable, a Student Non-Tax Filer's Statement, a link for which will be available on the student's IDOC dashboard.

Providing false information in order to obtain financial aid will result in the cancellation of any aid.

*Generally, you are an eligible noncitizen if you fall into one of the categories noted here.  If you are neither a citizen nor an eligible noncitizen, please visit the section of our website for first-year students who are Canadian Citizens or International (Non-Canadian) Citizens, as appropriate.