Financial Aid

AIM HIGH Grant for New Freshmen

Award Amount $28,000
($7,000 annually)
$20,000
($5,000 annually)
  SAT 1060+ / ACT 21+
and 2.75/4.0+ GPA

Eligibility is determined on the student's expected family contribution and family income*.

AIM HIGH is a merit-based, means-tested matching grant pilot program by the State of Illinois designed to help achieve several state goals including increasing overall Illinois college student retention, improving Illinois college affordability and reducing student loan debt, as well as enhancing enrollment at Illinois public universities. The program began with incoming freshmen for the 2019-20 academic year. AIM HIGH grant funds along with other financial aid cannot exceed a student's total cost of attendance. The grant is not available in the summer.

Funds are limited and eligibility is based on 2021-22 FAFSA results. If eligible and funds are available, AIM HIGH will be listed on the student’s financial aid award letter once their FAFSA has been processed by the Financial Aid Office. Students must activate their ECOM, email, and STARS accounts to receive financial aid correspondence.

An eligible applicant is a first-time incoming freshman accepted into an undergraduate degree program who meets the following requirements:

  • Minimum 1060 SAT/21 ACT and a 2.75 high school GPA
  • Meet the Family Income Guidelines*
  • Illinois resident
  • U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • File a FAFSA
  • Enroll full-time at WIU
  • Has not yet received a baccalaureate degree or the equivalent of 135 semester credit hours
  • Is not incarcerated
  • Is not in default on any student loan or does not owe a refund or repayment on any state or federal grant or scholarship

For students starting in 2021-22:

*Minimum $2,000 FAFSA Expected Family Contribution (EFC) 
and meet the income threshold below
Number of People in Household Family Income AIM HIGH Max Income
One $12,490 $74,940
Two $16,910 $101,460
Three $21,330 $127,980
Four $25,750 $154,500
Five $30,170 $181,020
Six $34,590 $207, 540
Seven $39,010 $234,060
Eight $43,430 $260,580
For more than eight,
add this amount for
each additional person
$4,420  

For students starting in 2020-21:

NOTE: AIM HIGH Grant funds for the 2020-21 school year have now been exhausted.

*Minimum $2,000 FAFSA Expected Family Contribution (EFC) 
and meet the income threshold below
Number of People in Household Family Income AIM HIGH Max Income
One $12,140 $72,840
Two $16,460 $98,760
Three $20,780 $124,680
Four $25,100 $150,600
Five $29,420 $176,520
Six $33,740 $202,440
Seven $38,060 $228,360
Eight $42,380 $254,280
For more than eight,
add this amount for
each additional person
$4,320  

For students who started 2019-20:

*Minimum $2,000 FAFSA Expected Family Contribution (EFC) 
and meet the income threshold below
Number of People in Household Family Income AIM HIGH Max Income
One $12,060 $72,360
Two $16,240 $97,440
Three $20,420 $122,520
Four $24,600 $147,600
Five $28,780 $172,680
Six $32,960 $197,760
Seven $37,140 $222,840
Eight $41,320 $247,920
For more than eight,
add this amount for
each additional person
$4,180  

The grant is renewable for up to three years as an undergraduate student as long as renewal criteria is met. AIM HIGH Grant and other financial aid cannot exceed a student's total cost of attendance.

Renewal Criteria:
  • Be enrolled full-time at WIU as an Illinois undergraduate student in the degree-seeking program
  • Freshmen entering WIU in 2019-20 must maintain a cumulative 2.75 GPA each semester; freshmen entering WIU in 2020-21 must meet Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements
  • File a FAFSA for each academic year
  • Continue to meet the Family Income Guidelines* listed above
  • Not have received a baccalaureate degree or the equivalent of 135 semester credit hours
  • Not be incarcerated
  • Not be in default on any student loan or owe a refund or repayment on any state or federal grant or scholarship.

If eligible, AIM HIGH will be listed on the student's financial aid award letter once their FAFSA has been processed by the Financial Aid Office. Students must activate their ECOM, email, and STARS accounts to receive financial aid correspondence.