MAP Award Announcements
Students who apply for financial aid [via the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) or the Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid (Alternative Application)] and agree to share the information with ISAC are considered for a Monetary Award Program (MAP) grant. The announcement process begins with the college sending an award notification to eligible students indicating a calculated annual award amount. The inclusion of MAP grants in financial aid packages is critical information for students to make informed enrollment decisions. Potentially eligible students are Illinois residents with an EFC under 9000 who indicated a MAP-approved school as one of their school choices on the FAFSA or Alternative Application.
In order to ensure that all MAP recipients receive the same information about their award in a consistent manner, ISAC requires schools to announce MAP awards to the students enrolled at their institution - including the estimated amount of the award. Refer to the School Requirements section for details.
Links to various forms and notifications are available from the right-hand menu.
ISAC provides the specific language that is required to be included on or with the school-issued award notification at the beginning of each processing cycle. Schools are required to announce MAP awards to the students enrolled at their institutions, including students who are only eligible for a 2nd semester/2nd and 3rd quarter MAP award. Schools are required to clearly identify the estimated awards on the award notification as: State of IL MAP Grant (Est).
Additional information may be communicated about MAP in the award notification as long as ISAC’s required language is included as written and the additional language does not conflict with it. For example, schools may want to provide students with the link to the MAP Rights & Responsibilities form, which includes pertinent student consumer information, or direct them to the MAP section in the Students & Parents area of ISAC's website.
Schools are also required to notify applicants of changes in their eligibility status. Reasons for changes in eligibility status include students who:
- are not eligible due to a zero award;
- have an incomplete record;
- have a loan in default; or
- are considered late applicants.
The specific language required to be included on or with the school-issued award notification may differ depending on the academic year. For example, the 2021-22 MAP required school-issued award notification language was updated to include reference to possible student eligibility for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for all MAP-eligible students, as required by P.A. 101-0560. The reference to possible eligibility for SNAP benefits is also included in the MAP required school-issued award notification language for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 academic years.
With the agency's May 1, 2022 exit from the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP), ISAC is no longer reporting to colleges the default status of ISAC-guaranteed loans for students who apply for ISAC-administered gift assistance programs. All ISAC gift assistance program eligibility requirements related to default remain in place. Colleges need to follow the same established procedures being used to check the default status of non-ISAC-guaranteed loans in order to certify eligibility for applicants with ISAC-guaranteed loans.