Office of Student Finance

The Office of Student Finance (OSF) manages the entire lifecycle of student finances for all University of Minnesota students. OSF calculates financial aid eligibility and manages the awarding, origination, and disbursement of financial aid as well as billing, accounts receivable, student loan entrance and exit interviews, and loan and account collections. The Office of Student Finance makes sure to maintain compliance with federal, state, and institutional rules and regulations.

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View the 2022-2023 ASR OSF Annual Report.

OSF units

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Fiscal unit

The fiscal unit monitors and reconciles funding of financial aid programs, processes incoming and outgoing financial aid, and coordinates internal and external audits. 

Graduate/professional unit

The graduate/professional unit awards and revises financial aid packages for graduate and professional students. Additionally, they provide financial aid counseling to students and staff.

Loan/undergrad services unit

The loan/undergrad services unit provide financial aid counseling to students and parents, and administers federal and state financial aid programs. The unit also performs verification of student records and ensures that federal and state eligibility and satisfactory academic progress criteria are met.

Medical school financial aid office

The Medical School Financial Aid Office provides financial aid counseling and other resources to medical students.

Scholarship unit

The scholarship unit coordinates scholarships and student athletic financial aid. They also oversees federal and state compliance regarding federal and state regulations, and holds campus-wide informational meetings with scholarship administrators. Learn more about scholarship administrators.

Financial aid implications and why it matters

The Office of Student Finance must be informed of all non-service-related payments, stipends, or gifts a registered student receives. The Office of Student Finance must provide the following information to students because it determines whether a payment or stipend impacts a financial aid package.

The Office of Student Finance and the Tax Office created the University of Minnesota - Cash Equivalents and non-cash awards form for departments to report student information.

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The United States Department of Education requirement

The United States Department of Education requires a school’s operations to be administered in a way that ensures all the information the school receives which might affect a student’s Federal Student Aid eligibility is communicated to the financial aid office. In accordance with Volume 2, Chapter 3 of the US Department of Education’s Financial Aid Handbook, the Office of Student Finance at the University of Minnesota is the coordinating office of financial aid, and the Director is the coordinating official.

When creating a student’s financial aid package, the Office of Student Finance must include all assistance, such as federal, school, state, and private aid, the student is receiving to ensure that a student’s aid does not exceed their cost of attendance. To properly package and most effectively use the various types of student assistance (federal, school, state, private, etc.), The Office of Student Finance must be aware of all aid received by students attending the school, regardless of the source.

The Higher Education Act of 2008

The Higher Education Act (HEA) of 2008 (the first HEA became law in 1965) defines other financial assistance as any other assistance known to the school. If the assistance was a result of enrollment, but not a result of employment, the school must treat it as a financial aid resource and report it. Reimbursement for expenses is not included as financial assistance. Reimbursement for expenses can only occur if there was a legitimate business reason for the student to incur the expense for which they are being reimbursed, not simply as a form of payment for a prize, stipend for travel related to their education, or undefined “other” reason.


The US Department of Education provides over $380 million in financial aid each year to the University of Minnesota system campuses. Every year, the Office Student Finance receives and completes two types of audits: 

  • One for the over $1 billion in student tuition, fees, and financial aid handled by the University 
  • The Uniform Guidance (UG) Compliance Audit for its documentation of policies and procedures

The UG Compliance Audit ensures we have the necessary controls to administer federal and state funds. Failure to meet the requirements of the compliance audit can result in substantial fines as well as the loss of all federal and/or state financial assistance, including sponsored grants, not just financial aid. Part of the compliance audit tests whether or not the Office of Student Finance is able to trace all non-service-related payments, stipends, and gifts made to students.