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College (Financial Aid) Hardship Letter – Sample

Updated July 19, 2023

A financial aid hardship letter is written by a student who wishes to receive more financial assistance to pay for tuition. Commonly used when applying for scholarships or when appealing a financial aid package for a larger amount, the hardship letter should detail the economic challenges faced by the student due to extenuating circumstances and demonstrate their commitment to pursuing higher education.


Billy Bob
123 Street Way
Los Angeles, CA 90021

July 31, 2022

John Smith
Financial Aid Office
Gateway University

Dear Mr. Smith,

I’m Billy, an incoming freshman at Gateway University this fall. I received and reviewed my financial aid package from the university, and I’m very grateful for it. Unfortunately, since submitting my FAFSA, my financial situation has changed drastically due to unforeseen circumstances.

Last month, my mother was involved in an auto accident that has kept her hospitalized since. With mounting hospital bills and our primary provider no longer able to work, it’s been an extremely difficult time for my family. I’ve taken a second part-time job at the local movie theater earning minimum wage in order to help pay my family’s bills and put food on the table for me and my younger siblings.

Despite these new challenges, I am still committed to attending Gateway University this fall to pursue my dream of becoming an astronaut. So I’m requesting a review of my financial aid award in consideration of these recent events.

Please find attached a copy of my mother’s medical bills, accident report, bank statements, and a completed copy of the university’s financial aid appeal form.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you need any more information to consider my appeal.


Billy Bob