Disbursement Requirements

Many grants and loans have award-specific requirements that must be met before the award can disburse to your student account. The most common awards and their requirements are explained below. Review the list of financial aid awards in your Award Summary in MySSU to determine if any of them have award-specific requirements. Some awards also are prorated for less than full-time enrollment. See the Enrollment section of the Help Book for information about these awards.

Disbursement Requirements for Specific Awards


Cal Grants

If a Cal Grant is included in your award offer, we must confirm your eligibility prior to disbursement. If you do not meet all eligibility requirements, we will remove the Cal Grant from your award offer and send you a modified award offer email notification.

If you have limited remaining eligibility for the Cal Grant program, your award may be less than the Tuition Fee.

You are not eligible for a Cal Grant (fee award or B Access/Stipend) if you register for or drop down to less than 6 units in a semester.

Recipients of Cal Grant B Access/Stipend may request direct disbursement of the Access award. Contact the Financial Aid Office at finaid@sonoma.edu or (707) 664-2389 to make this request.

Middle Class Scholarship (MCS)

Disbursement of MCS will occur after the census date each semester.  Census happens about two weeks after the end of the add/drop.  See the academic calendar on the Registrar's website for more information.

State University Grant (SUG)

Half-time or greater enrollment is required as a condition of the SUG. For undergraduate students and initial credential candidates, half-time or greater enrollment means 6 or more units. For master's candidates, half-time or greater enrollment means 4 or more units.

Educational Opportunity Program Grant (EOPG)

Enrollment of 7+ units is required as a condition of the EOPG. Students enrolled in less than 7 are not eligible for the EOPG.

Graduate Equity Fellowship

Full-time enrollment is required as a condition of the fellowship.

Federal Pell Grant for Credential Students

Only students pursuing their initial credential (not a clear, professional or Special Education credential) are eligible to receive a Pell Grant.  The School of Education determines which students are pursuing an eligible initial credential.

If you are a credential student with a Pell Grant included in your award offer, we assume you will take at least 12 units of required coursework for your eligible initial credential each semester.

Only courses required as part of the eligible initial credential program will count toward your enrollment status in determining the amount of your Pell Grant each semester.  The School of Education determines which courses are required for each eligible initial credential program.  These requirements apply to all students in the same program.

Only eligible credential students enrolled in 6 or more required units each semester will receive a Pell Grant disbursement.  If you take less than 6 required units in a semester, your Pell Grant amount will be $0 for that semester.

The School of Education informs us of your required units after the add/drop period each semester.  This means disbursement of your Pell Grant will occur approximately four weeks after the first day of classes.


Direct Loans (Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized)

If you are interested in receiving a Direct Loan (subsidized or unsubsidized), you MUST use MySSU to accept the loan offer. For complete instructions on accepting your Direct Loan, see our Viewing and Accepting Your Aid Offer page.

Be sure to complete Entrance Counseling online at the Federal Student Aid website. Entrance Counseling is a one-time process for new borrowers or transfer students borrowing for the first time at SSU. All first-time borrowers and some transfer students also need to sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at the Federal Student Aid website as well. If you accept your Direct Loan before July, we will notify you by email when your MPN is available. Beginning in July, MPNs are typically available two business days after you accept your Direct Loans. You will sign your MPN electronically at the Federal Student Aid website. Signing the MPN is generally a one-time process at SSU.

Seniors graduating at the end of one semester attendance are subject to proration of their Direct Loan eligibility based on their registered units.

You are not eligible for a Direct Loan disbursement if you are not enrolled in or fail to begin attendance in at least 6 units. Classified and conditionally classified graduate students meet this requirement with 4 units.

Federal Direct PLUS (Parent) Loan

The Direct PLUS (Parent) Loan is only available to the parent or step-parent of a dependent student.

PLUS Loan applicants apply at the Direct PLUS Loan Application page of the Federal Student Aid website and are subject to credit requirements. If the PLUS Loan is denied due to adverse credit, the applicant can contest the credit denial or apply with an endorser. Or, the student whose parent has been denied the PLUS Loan can request additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan funding. To request these additional funds, the student must download and complete a Direct Loan Change Form for the appropriate financial aid year and submit it to the Financial Aid Office. The Direct Loan Change Form is located in the Other Forms & Instructions section of our website.

Approved PLUS Loan borrowers must complete the electronic Master Promissory Note (MPN) at the Federal Student Aid website. Completing the MPN is generally a one-time process. However, if a PLUS Loan was approved with an endorser, the MPN is only valid for that particular loan. Although the MPN is a one-time process, the parent-borrower must apply for the PLUS Loan each academic year s/he wishes to borrow at the Direct PLUS Loan Application page of the Federal Student Aid website.

In each subsequent year, a student must re-file the FAFSA to be offered a PLUS Loan for that year.

The student must be enrolled in and begin attendance in at least 6 units for the PLUS Loan to disburse.