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Award Letter Important Messages

Part 4 of your award letter (“Important Messages”) may include one or more items which require action on your part. Below are the most common messages and details of what action you can or should take.

Housing Choice and Financial Aid

The amount of financial aid you receive is related to the charges you incur. If your financial aid was based on the assumption that you are living on campus, a need-based grant from the College will be reduced if you decide to live at home or in an off-campus apartment. Work-Study is normally offered only to students who live on campus. 

Costs are also affected by your housing choice. See "Charges"

Changes in Eligibility vs. Last Year (applies to returning students)

The Office of Financial Aid knows that it is important for families to be able to plan on costs being similar from year to year. To make that happen as often as possible, the Office goes to significant lengths to keep financial aid comparable from one year to the next.

We will not remove or reduce financial aid without a clear reason.

If there is no significant change in your application from year to year, if you submit your application before the stated deadline, and if you meet scholarship renewal requirements, you can expect that your aid will remain similar to the prior year.   

It should be realized, however, that changes to income, net worth (savings, investments, etc.), the number of family members supported by the parent(s), the number of family members in college, and changes in “special circumstances” between academic years may affect the financial aid you qualify to receive. For example:

  • a student whose family income increased from $50,000 in their first year to $60,000 in their second year may no longer qualify for federal grants
  • a Lake Forest student whose older sibling will graduate college the following May and will live on their own may no longer qualify for a state grant in the fall
  • a family that reported $10,000 in healthcare costs for their first year but less than $4,000 in their second year may receive less grant funding
Citizenship Documentation

If you indicated on the FAFSA that you are either a U.S. citizen or permanent resident but the Social Security Administration did not confirm this, you need to provide documentation to prove your status. Please provide a clear .pdf of one of the following documents (samples are shown). If possible, submit a .pdf by email.

U.S. citizens: 

Permanent Residents:

Consumer Information

Here you will find a variety of federally-mandated information such as accreditation, retention, athletic participation, campus security, FERPA, outcome of our graduates, refund policy, and more.


If we have not received your FAFSA (financial aid application) we recommend that you complete it – at least for your first year  — if cost will be a factor in your decision, or if you want to use a student loan to help with the cost of going to school. If you completed the FAFSA but did not include Lake Forest College, click here. If you have not completed the FAFSA, click here.

FAFSA Signature

There are slightly different instructions depending on whose signature is needed:  you  (student)     your parent 

Data Retrieval Tool (DRT)

If you need to provide proof of income (called “verification”) and if you filed (or will file) a tax return, the Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) is the best and recommended method.  The DRT transfers answers from your tax return directly to your FAFSA, assuring you of 100% accuracy. See the Helpful Tools section of our FAFSA pageFind out if you are eligible to use the DRT.  

Special Circumstance Forms

There are several forms to allow your family to report unusual conditions that cannot be reflected on the FAFSA. They are optional, but must be completed each year if you want us to consider them. If you submitted one or more forms, it may be that what was submitted is considered “incomplete,” in which case you should contact our office to resolve the problem.

If possible, submit a .pdf by email or fax (see bottom of each page).

2021-2022 Special Circumstance Forms 
  • Educational Expenses - your parent pays $2000+ for his/her education, or for a siblings (grades K-12 only) during 2021-2021academic year
  • Educational Loans - parent borrower currently repaying $2000+/year to his/her own loan, or a loan for expenses for a sibling who is no longer in college
  • Healthcare Expenses - parent pays $3000+ in 2020 or 2021 not paid with “pre-tax” dollars
  • Unusual Expenses - parent pays $2000+ for childcare, funeral, legal, etc. in 2021

Nearly one of every three financial aid applications is selected for a process called “verification.” As a result, you are required to provide our office with documentation to confirm certain answers on your FAFSA. This usually involves completing a Verification Worksheet and providing proof of income (see “DRT” above) for a particular tax year.

There are several types of Verification Worksheets, and our records tell which needs to be completed. The special message on your award letter will say “Verification Worksheet, V-1” or something similar. There will be a link to that form within the award letter, or you can choose the form from this page.

Contact Financial Aid

Phone and Fax



Patterson Lodge, 2nd Floor
Middle Campus, Map


8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Jerry Cebrzynski
Associate Vice President for Financial Aid

Mark Anderson
Associate Director

Adriana Rodriguez
Associate Director for Financial Aid Operations
School Certifying Official

Si necesita hablar con alguien en español en la oficina de ayuda financiera, usted puede llamar a Adriana Rodriguez.