Apply for Financial Aid

The 2023-2024 FAFSA is currently available. The FAFSA for 2023-2024 will use information from the 2021 tax year. The 2023-2024 FAFSA will be used for the Fall 2023, Spring 2024, and Summer 2024 terms.
The U.S. Department of Education has implemented a new Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) system and process for 2024. Please be aware that you may encounter challenges when filling out your FAFSA for the 2024-25 academic year that begins with the 2024 Fall Term. 

Learn more about the new FAFSA process, what to expect, and how to stay informed.

Steps to Apply for Financial Aid

Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

The FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It is a free application to apply for Federal Grants (free money), Work-study (money you earn), and Student loans (money you payback). Many scholarships require the FAFSA to be completed. Anyone planning on going to college regardless of their family’s financial status should complete the application.

Get Your FSA ID and Password: To complete the FAFSA, you will need an FSA ID, username, and password combination that allows you to sign your FAFSA electronically. As you fill out the FAFSA, you can sign up for the FSA ID, but also have the option to get it ahead of time. Parents of dependent students will need their own FSA to sign their student’s FAFSA. Watch a step-by-step video to complete your FSA ID.

Add Our School Code: Central New Mexico Community College School Code 004742. Adding our school code will ensure your FAFSA is sent to CNM’s Financial Aid office automatically. 

Apply before May 1 every year to receive the most financial aid funding based on eligibility.

Complete Your Financial Aid File 

Complete Your Financial Aid file: After you submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSAform, you’ll get a Student Aid Report (SAR) that summarizes the information you provided on your application. You can check your myCNM account to see what information is requested of you.

FAFSA Verification: Additional Documentation may be needed to complete your file, often as a result of a process called Verification

If you are selected for verification, you must submit the appropriate documentation to the CNM Financial Aid Office. Documentation requirements may include, but are not limited to:

  • CNM Financial Aid Verification Worksheet, completed and signed by student and/or parents
    • Links to the Verification Worksheets are available to students through their myCNM account under the “Financial Aid” tab, select “Eligibility,” then click “Student Requirements,” and select the applicable aid year. Verification worksheets forms can also be downloaded or obtained at the Financial Aid Office.
  • Applicable tax transcripts and schedules for student/parent or student/spouse
  • All student/spouse/parent W-2 form(s) or 1099-MISC form(s) for total income
  • Parent verification of non-tax filing, if applicable
  • Statement of Educational Purpose
  • High school diploma or proof of equivalent 
  • Other documentation requested by school

Communication From CNM: You will receive email communication if any additional documentation is required in order to complete your Financial Aid File. The email will be sent to your CNM email account.

Corrections to Your FAFSA: In general, changes to income are not allowable as the FAFSA Is considered a snapshot of the student’s ability to pay. However, if you or your family have experienced a special circumstance that has affected your financial aid situation since reporting your information on your FAFSA, you can speak to a Financial Aid Advisor.

Review and Modify Your Financial Aid Offers

Financial Aid Offer Requirements: Financial Aid Offers occur for those students that:

  • Have a complete financial aid file
  • Have met eligibility requirements (you must be making Satisfactory Academic Progress) and have submitted all required additional documentation.

Notification of Financial Aid Offers: You will receive an email notification with instructions on how to access myCNM to access your financial aid information to review offers.

Purchasing Books With Financial Aid from the CNM Bookstore:

Certain time frames are designated each semester to allow you to charge your books against your financial aid. During these time frames, bookstore charges can be made online or in person. CNM will create a credit account at the bookstore based on your estimated Financial Aid Offer. Aid offered for a specific term can only be used for charges accrued during that term. Read more about the CNM Bookstore.

Prepare for Disbursement

Once you register for your classes, you can view your financial aid for the term by printing a copy of your schedule with tuition and fee details (myCNM > Registration/Grades tab). If you have aid listed on this schedule at the bottom in the Memo Balance, it is a good indicator that your financial aid file is complete.

CNM first disburses financial aid funds four weeks after the term begins, and will continue disbursing each Friday thereafter. Students will receive their aid money once their financial aid file is complete and eligibility has been established.

Refunds will only be issued if your financial aid exceeds the total amount of your charges. Any credit balance available after all charges are paid will be refunded to you for other educational expenses.

Students may receive their financial aid funds by direct deposit into their bank account, or by mail. Students who choose direct deposit will receive their financial aid funds earlier than those receiving a mailed check. All students who want to receive their financial aid funds through direct deposit must enter their bank account information in myCNM. Students who choose not to use direct deposit will have their financial aid funds mailed to them and need to make sure their address on file with CNM is correct.

Requirements for Financial Aid

To receive financial aid, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen
  • Sign a statement of educational purpose (FAFSA)
  • Enroll in an eligible program of study
  • Enroll in eligible courses at CNM (see the list of ineligible programs and ineligible courses)
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress defined by federal regulations
  • Be in compliance with Selective Service Registration
  • Have a high school diploma, GED, or have been home-schooled
  • Not be enrolled in elementary or secondary school
  • Not have been overpaid on a grant or be defaulted on a loan
  • Not exceed federal cumulative loan limits defined by federal regulations
  • Not be in default on any federal educational loans
  • Not owe a refund on a grant

You may not receive financial aid for more than 30 credit hours of attempted developmental coursework. Financial aid does not pay for audited classes, GED or apprenticeship classes. You will not receive federal Pell Grant from more than one college for the same period of time.