California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) awards Cal Grants to eligible California students. A grant is money that you don't need to pay back.
You apply for all Cal Grants – there are multiple types -- when you complete your
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or
California Dream Act application and have your high school provide a verified
grade point average (GPA) to CSAC.
Selection is based on financial need, academic performance and other factors. You must apply for a Cal Grant by the March 2 deadline by filing your FAFSA or Dream Act application and ensuring your school submits your verified GPA.
All Cal Grant recipients must:
These awards are available to students who graduate from high school in 2000-2001 or later and achieve a minimum high school
grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Your course of study at college should lead directly to an associate's and bachelor's degree, or qualify you to transfer from a community college to a bachelor's degree program.
Eligible students must have financial need at least equal to the amount of the award plus $1,500 and have family income and assets below the established ceilings.
Cal Grant A Entitlement Awards are for a maximum of the mandatory systemwide fees at the CSU, which is currently $5,742.
Students must apply by filing the FAFSA or the
California Dream Act application (CADAA) and submitting a verified high school grade point average by March 2 of their senior year in order to receive the award for the following fall.
If you missed the deadline during your high school senior year, you can apply by March 2 of the year immediately following high school graduation.
These awards are available to students who graduate from high school in 2000-2001 or later and achieve a minimum high school grade point average of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. Eligible students must have a minimum financial need of $700 and have family income and assets below the established ceilings. The income and asset ceilings for the Cal Grant B Entitlement awards are lower than those used for Cal Grant A Entitlement Awards.
First-time freshman awarded a Cal Grant B Entitlement award may not receive the tuition portion of the grant, but are awarded a supplemental grant to be used for books and supplies, transportation expenses, and living expenses.
Beginning the second and subsequent years of Cal Grant B benefits, students are eligible to receive the tuition portion of the Cal Grant B award to cover the mandatory Systemwide tuition fee as well as the supplemental grant. The current Systemwide tuition can be found here
Students must apply by filing the FAFSA or CADAA and a verified high school GPA by March 2 of their senior year in order to receive the award for the following fall. If you missed the deadline during your high school senior year, you can apply by March 2 of the year immediately following high school graduation.
These awards are for students who graduated from a California high school after July 1, 2000; who did not apply for and receive a Cal Grant Entitlement Award upon high school graduation; and who are transferring from a California Community College to an eligible four-year institution in California. Students must have a minimum GPA of at least 2.4 on all transferable community college coursework.
Eligible students must be under the age of 28 and be pursuing a bachelor's degree in order to be eligible for a transfer entitlement award. Transfer entitlement awards will be either A or B depending on which income and asset ceilings the student falls under. Award levels will be the same as those for the A and B entitlement programs.
A limited number of Cal Grant awards are available for students who are not eligible to be considered for entitlement awards. Eligible students must meet all basic eligibility requirements; have financial need; and be under the income and asset ceilings. These awards are for students who are not graduating high school seniors or recent graduates; eligibility for these awards prioritizes nontraditional students.
Students will receive either A or B awards at grant levels referenced above for the entitlement programs. Visit the
California Student Aid Commission to learn more about these grants.
Eligible students may receive up to a maximum of four years of full-time grant payments. The actual number of years of eligibility will depend on the student's class level at the time an award is initially received. Students who are enrolled in a mandatory five-year undergraduate program or who enroll in a
teacher credential program may be eligible to receive a fifth year of Cal Grant eligibility.
Yes. If you plan to enroll in summer courses and wish to receive Cal Grant funds, you must notify the
California Student Aid Commission or the school you're attending.
Summer Cal Grant payment amounts are based on the regular academic year grant and may not meet all summer tuition or charges. Summer payments will reduce a student's total program eligibility for Cal Grant benefits. A student must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible for summer payment.
Depending on your level of education during your first term of grant payment, the award may be renewed for up to four years of full-time attendance.
College seniors are not eligible to renew a Cal Grant unless enrolled in a mandatory five-year undergraduate program or an approved
teacher credential program.