But (there always seems to be a but), sometimes there can even be a catch with getting into a dream school. The complications of financial aid shortfall can turn that dream school into a nightmare scenario. The key phrase is “financial aid shortfall." A quick review:
There are two basic kinds of financial aid: need based and merit. Thinking back across your college application process, you no doubt recall the labor needed to fill in all those financial aid forms — the FAFSA, the CSS Profile, and maybe even a college's own school-specific form. The purpose of those forms (the latter two being required by private colleges and universities) is to assess your family's ability to pay the cost of attendance.