Financial Aid for Aviation Flight Labs

Students enrolled in Aviation Flight Labs are charged special course fees based on rates negotiated by the University with its contracted flight instruction provider, North Star Aviation.

Course fees amounts may be added to the student’s base financial aid budget each semester through the Budget Adjustment Request process. A budget adjustment increases student loan eligibility if needed to cover the additional allowable expenses. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) should be completed prior to requesting the budget adjustment for flight lab costs in order to first establish the base financial aid budget. Students who plan to rely solely on private educational loans are required to submit a FAFSA as well; those prohibited from completing a FAFSA should call or visit the Campus Hub to request an appointment to meet with a Financial Aid Advisor.

The cost of flight training is significant and requires intentional planning and preparation to meet the financial timelines and requirements each semester. 

Flight Lab Registration Approval Required, Strict Timelines Enforced

Aviation students must receive both academic and financial approval to register in flight lab courses.

Planning ahead is imperative in order to complete all requirements by the registration deadline. The Program and Student Support Coordinator for the Department of Aviation provides each student with information during the pre-enrollment advising period to begin the online request for academic pre-approval to enroll in flight labs. Financial approval requirements must also be met before department permission will be given to register.

Financial approval requirements vary depending on the student’s intended payment method. Those relying on personal/family funds as the sole resource for payment need to make a prepayment equal to 15% of the flight lab(s) course fee. Those whose flight lab course fee charges will be paid by an authorized third-party will need to provide official documentation to Student Financial Services. Those planning to use private educational loans will need to (a) have a FAFSA submitted and processed to determine a financial aid award, (b) call or visit the Campus Hub to schedule an appointment to meet with a Financial Aid Advisor to discuss costs and complete the financial aid budget adjustment process, and (c) provide proof of an approved private loan. In all cases the 15% prepayment can be made to obtain more timely financial approval if needed. Financial approval requirements must be completed before the first day of the semester.

Once both academic and financial approval has been given, electronic permission will be updated by the Department of Aviation, and the student must then complete the course registration process on e-services. 

All flight lab registrations must be completed by the fifth day of the semester. Aviation students must follow the same registration guidelines for flight labs as all other students follow for classes in other majors, i.e. no new registrations will be taken by the Office of Registration and Academic Records for flight labs after the initial five-day drop/add period for the academic term. 

Each semester, students enrolled in flight lab courses are required to abide by the Aviation Flight Lab Terms of Agreement with regard to academic preparedness, attendance, course completion, additional instruction, and financial obligation. Charges for flight labs are added to student accounts at time of registration and are subject to the same tuition obligation date and refund consideration as tuition and fees, regardless of actual flight hours logged. Please refer to published information about Dropping Courses and Official Withdrawal for specific details

More About Financial Aid Eligibility

Aviation students are eligible to receive additional aid for flight training labs under certain conditions.  Aviation students must be enrolled for the specific flight training lab for which they are requesting funding, during the term for which they are requesting funds; (i.e. you must register for Private Pilot Flight Lab during the same semester you request additional funding for Private Pilot Flight Lab).  The Code of Federal Regulations (34 CFR) as it pertains to Federal Financial Aid states: “an institution may disburse Title IV Higher Education Assistance program funds [financial aid] to a student or parent for a payment period only if the student is enrolled for classes for that payment period and is eligible to receive those funds.” [34 CFR, 668.164(b)(1)]   34 CFR also states an institution may contract with another institution to provide up to 50 percent of the training for a program.  [34 CFR, 668.5]  Minnesota State University, Mankato has contracted with North Star Aviation to provide the flight training for aviation students.  Therefore, to receive funding for flight training labs, both conditions must be met.  A student must be registered for the specific flight training lab for which they are requesting funding during the same semester the student requests additional funding and the student must be flying those flight training hours with North Star Aviation.

Flight Training Fees Information