Is FAFSA required for merit scholarships?

If we are not looking for aid but are looking for merit scholarships, does MI require FAFSA to be filed?

https://finaid.umich.edu/types-aid/scholarships/undergraduate

The answer seems to be for pure merit scholarships - you don’t need to supply FAFSA, for merit scholarships that have a need based component - you do.

Michigan is a CSS school, if you fill out FAFSA you also need to fill out the Profile app as well.

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I thought CSS for Michigan is strictly for if you are looking for financial aid. Is that wrong?

Merit aid is financial aid.

Michigan directly states on this page that applicants must submit both fafsa and css to be considered for some merit scholarships that have a need based component.

If you wish to be considered for U-M grants and merit scholarships that address need, complete the CSS Profile using U-M’s CSS code 1839 to ensure that we receive your information.

https://finaid.umich.edu/apply-aid/new-undergraduates

So, do they not have merit scholarships that are not need based?

U Mich does have some merit scholarships that are not based on need. You just have to spend time doing research on their website:

https://finaid.umich.edu/types-aid/scholarships/undergraduate

https://finaid.umich.edu/types-aid/scholarships/undergraduate/ofa-scholarship-listing

Also look at the common data set. Students with no need don’t get much merit aid, on average. Section H2A shows that 952 first years who didn’t qualify for need based aid received merit aid. The average merit aid was $3,702 for 2020/21 class.

Have you run Michigan’s net price calculator?

https://npc.collegeboard.org/app/umich/start

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I thought I had to apply the FAFSA for my daughter’s Freshman year for Merit scholarships for Engineering. Ended up not needing it at all for merit based scholarships. Didn’t apply for it the next 3 years and each year my daughter obtained bigger merit based scholarships. Note a lot of these merit scholarships are not direct from the University, but alum groups or corporate sponsors… they choose the recipients, not the University.

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