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EIU Scholarships

EIU Cost Match

EIU will match the out-of-pocket cost of attendance of any regionally accredited public university in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin. To qualify, Illinois students can submit their Financial Aid Award letters from qualifying institutions in those states.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the EIU Cost Match program?

The EIU Cost Match program is a new financial aid program designed to benefit freshman students in Illinois and curb college-bound out-migration. EIU will match the out-of-pocket cost of attendance of qualifying universities in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin. EIU will cover the out of pocket cost not covered by other federal, state, institutional and private awards including Federal Pell Grant, State of Illinois MAP Program (MAP), Federal Loans and other awards. 

For example, if your out-of-pocket costs at EIU are $5,000 and your out-of-pocket costs at a qualifying university are $3,000, EIU will provide you with a scholarship for $2,000, allowing you to attend EIU for the same cost as the qualifying university.

How do I qualify?

To qualify, you must:

  • Submit the Financial Aid Award letter from a qualifying university
  • Be a resident of Illinois, with at least one parent (listed on your FAFSA) also an Illinois resident
  • Have a minimum 20 ACT / 1030 SAT and a 3.0 unweighted GPA
  • Not receive an athletic scholarship from EIU or any other NCAA Division I institution
  • Be admitted to EIU as an incoming freshman full-time (12 or more credit hours) with your EIU financial aid packaged by April 1
  • Meet AIM HIGH Grant requirements

How do I apply?

No separate application is required. However, you must complete your FAFSA requirements and be admitted to EIU. Also, you must submit the Financial Aid Award letter from the university you wish to cost match with EIU.

Do transfer students, graduate students, or current EIU students qualify?

No, this program is only available to first-time freshman undergraduate students.

What universities count as qualifying institutions?

Any regionally accredited public four-year university in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, or Wisconsin.

What universities do NOT count as qualifying institutions?

  • Colleges or universities in Illinois
  • Community colleges
  • Colleges or universities that do not offer a bachelor’s degree
  • Private colleges or universities
  • Unaccredited colleges or universities
  • Colleges or universities not in the seven states listed above

How do I submit the Financial Aid Award letter from a qualifying university?

Once you receive both your financial aid award letter from EIU and the qualifying institution to which you are admitted, send your financial aid award letter from the qualifying institution along with your E-number to costmatch@eiu.edu. The award letter will be reviewed soon after submission and EIU personnel will be in touch to discuss the details of your EIU Cost Match scholarship.

What if I plan to commute to an out-of-state school?

Cost Match award letters must include tuition, fees, room, board, and other miscellaneous expenses included in the school’s required on campus published cost of attendance. If your award letter does not include room, board, or other expenses (based on “with parent” or commuter expense estimates for example), please ask the school’s financial aid office for a revised award letter which includes on campus costs. This information is required to best compare the out of pocket costs of attending college. If the school does not offer on campus housing, off campus living expenses can be considered if included in the school’s award letter. If no living expense components can be provided, EIU living expenses will be used in order to make a fair comparison.

Will the program be available to me my whole time at EIU?

For most students, yes. You can be eligible for the program for up to eight continuous semesters (Spring and Fall) at EIU, as long as you meet the renewal criteria. The program is dependent upon continued state appropriation of associated funds.

What are the renewal criteria?

To remain qualified after your first year, you must:

Do I need to submit a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)?

Yes, to qualify for this program, you must submit a FAFSA at fafsa.ed.gov starting October 1. We recommend you file your FAFSA as soon as possible, and make sure to include EIU’s school code (001674) on your FAFSA so we receive your information. EIU’s priority deadline is December 15.

Are there any other eligibility requirements?

In addition to the qualifications listed above, to receive financial aid from the EIU Promise program, you must also meet the state’s AIM HIGH Grant eligible student requirements. You must:

  • Be an Illinois high school student who graduates in the same year as the scholarship is awarded
  • Be a citizen or eligible non-citizen (be eligible for federal student aid)
  • Not have received a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent of 135 semester credit hours
  • Not be incarcerated
  • Not be in default on any student loan or owe a refund or repayment on any state or federal grant or scholarship

How do I maintain full-time enrollment at EIU?

You must be registered for a minimum of 12 credit hours by the published census date policy each semester. Full-time enrollment is assumed until census date.

Who is a new freshman, as it pertains to the AIM HIGH Grant and EIU’s AIM HIGH scholarships’ eligibility?

Any Illinois high school student who graduates in the same year as the scholarship is awarded.

How is the EIU Cost Match program funded?

In Spring 2018, the Higher Education Working Group — a bipartisan group of Illinois legislators interested in finding common-ground and viable solutions — proposed and passed a new merit-based grant program. That program — the AIM HIGH Grant — was signed into law in August 2018. The EIU Cost Match program is dependent on that grant and on state appropriation annually.

How is a student determined full time?

You must be registered for a minimum of 12 credit hours by the published census date policy each semester. Full time enrollment is assumed until census date.

Related Pages

Contact Information

Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships

217-581-6405
finaid@eiu.edu


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