Financial Aid Programs

At Rio, we’re committed to making education affordable, accessible, and flexible. That’s why we have a team of Success Coaches on hand to help walk you through the Financial Aid process.

Rio participates in the following financial aid programs:

Federal Pell Grant

What is it?

  • Grant assistance for undergraduate students.
  • Awards are based on need and do not have to be repaid.
  • Funds are available to all who qualify so long as they meet all other Terms and Conditions and eligibility requirements for this financial aid program.

Who is eligible for this financial aid program?

  • Your eligibility for this financial aid program is determined by a formula mandated by the U.S. Congress. It is based on the Expected Family Contribution, which is calculated by the information that you submit on the FAFSA.
  • You may be eligible at all levels of enrollment including Less Than Half Time students.
  • If you have completed a Bachelor's degree and are not working toward a Master's or Ph.D., you may still be eligible for Federal Pell Grant funding. Specifically, if you are enrolled in a post-baccalaureate teacher certification program, you may receive a Pell Grant under the Higher Education Amendments of 1998. You MUST be pursuing an INITIAL Teacher Certification, and be enrolled in and participating in AT LEAST 1/2 Time (6 or credits) of coursework per term. Pell Grant funds can only be applied to courses listed on the Rio Salado Online Post Baccalaureate Teacher Education Program Plan.

Does it have to be repaid?

  • You are not responsible for repaying any portion of a Pell Grant.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

What is it?

  • Grant assistance for undergraduates with exceptional need.
  • Priority is given to Federal Pell Grant recipients.
  • Availability is limited for this financial aid program.
  • Maximum award amounts are $1,000 per academic year.

Who is eligible for this financial aid program?

  • Eligible students must have exceptional financial need, enroll at least half time (6 credit hours or more per semester), and qualify for a Federal Pell Grant.

Does it have to be repaid?

  • Students who receive Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant funds are not responsible for repaying any portion of the grant.

Leveraging Education Assistance Partnership (LEAP) Grant

What is it?

  • Grant assistance for Arizona resident undergraduate students with need.
  • Availability is limited for this financial aid program.
  • Maximum award amounts are $1,000 per academic year.

Who is eligible for this financial aid program?

  • Eligible students must be a resident of Arizona and enroll at least half time (6 or more credit hours per semester).

Does it have to be repaid?

  • Students who receive a LEAP Grant are not responsible for repaying it.

To learn more about grant opportunities in your state of residence please visit your state's higher education agency

Federal Direct Loan

What is it?

  • A subsidized and/or unsubsidized loan that has a low, fixed interest rate.
  • Loan amounts cannot exceed the college's Cost of Attendance minus any other aid you receive.
  • Each loan is assessed a 1% processing fee by the federal government at the time the loan is disbursed.

Who is eligible for this financial aid program?

  • To be eligible for a Subsidized Direct Loan, you must demonstrate financial need as determined by the Expected Family Contribution calculated on the FAFSA, and be enrolled at least half time (6 credit hours or more per semester) at Rio.
  • To be eligible for an Unsubsidized Direct Loan, you must be enrolled at least half time (6 credit hours or more per semester).
  • You must meet all other Terms and Conditions and eligibility requirements for this financial aid program to receive funds.

Does it have to be repaid?

  • Loans must be repaid with interest. Use the Repayment Estimator to review repayment plan options and estimated monthly payments.
  • Interest is charged from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full.
  • Repayment of principal (the amount of the loan itself) and interest begins 6 months after you graduate, leave school or drop below half time status (takes less than 6 credit hours in a semester).
  • The government pays the interest on a Subsidized Loan while you are in school.
  • You are responsible for interest that accrues on an Unsubsidized Loan at the time of the first disbursement.

To learn more about Direct Student Loans and to complete Entrance Counseling, a Master Promissory Note, and Exit Counseling, please visit www.studentloans.gov.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan (Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students)

What is it?

  • A loan available to parents of dependent undergraduate students. The maximum amount of funds available to be disbursed is the Cost of Attendance minus any other aid that the student is receiving.
  • Each loan is assessed a 1% processing fee by the federal government.

Who is eligible for this financial aid program?

  • An eligible student must be enrolled at least half time (taking 6 or more credits per semester).
  • The parent borrower must be approved through the Direct Loan credit check process.

Does it have to be repaid?

  • Interest is charged from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. Repayment begins 60 days after the loan has been fully disbursed.
  • Learn more about applying for financial aid programs and determining your eligibility.