FASTrack & BANNER

These programs are designed to assist Badgers from low-income households pay for college through a combination of grants, work-study, and small loans. It includes a commitment to meeting a student’s financial need for four consecutive years.

About FASTrack & BANNER

  • What are the FASTrack and BANNER Programs?

    The FASTrack program is our Financial Aid Security Track for Wisconsin Residents attending UW-Madison.

    The BANNER Program is our Badger Aid for Non-Residents attending UW-Madison.

    Both programs are designed to assist Badgers from low-income households pay for college through a combination of grants, small loans, and work-study. The programs commit to meeting a student’s financial need for four consecutive years.

  • Who is eligible?

    Incoming freshmen who’s family receives public assistance, including Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Free or Reduced Price School Lunch, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, & Children (WIC).

  • How long can a student participate in the FASTrack/BANNER program?

    Benefits from participating in either program are guaranteed for four (4) consecutive years or eight (8) consecutive semesters, not including summer.

  • Why are only incoming freshman eligible for FASTrack/BANNER aid?

    The Office of Student Financial offers both Bucky’s Tuition Promise  and the Badger Promise  to incoming transfer students. Both FASTrack and BANNER are designed for incoming freshmen.

Receiving FASTrack/BANNER

FASTrack/BANNER Offers

While a FASTrack/BANNER student...

  • Suggestions on University Housing communities?

    We suggest Kronshage Residence Hall or Waters Residence Hall to live with other FASTrack/BANNER students like yourself.

    To save money we also recommend all students select a Tier 1 Housing Meal Plan.

    If you choose to live in University Housing, you will need to complete your housing contract and submit a deposit by your specified deadline to secure your space. As a FASTrack/BANNER student you qualify to apply for a deposit deferral. This allows you to request a deferral of part of your deposit that would be due on your fourth quarter housing bill, reducing the amount you need to pay when you sign your housing contract. Please note, you need to apply for the deferral prior to signing your housing contract and submitting your deposit. Apply for a deferral now!

  • Are the monthly workshops required?

    Although they are not mandatory, the goal of the monthly workshops is to support students beyond providing financial aid.

    These workshops provide students the opportunity to connect with other FASTrack/BANNER students over a meal while learning about different campus and community resources. Some of the workshop topics include information on funding study abroad experiences, funding graduate school, stress management and resume building.

    See our event listings to the right for upcoming workshops.

  • Will a FASTrack/BANNER student receive financial aid if they decide to enroll for summer?

    Yes, FASTrack/BANNER students that enroll for summer will have funding available, including a small grant. However in some cases, the student will be offered a loan to help cover their summer educational expenses.  Students should also make sure to apply for the Undergraduate Scholarship for Summer Study which can reduce or replace any offered loans.

  • Can a FASTrack/BANNER student study abroad?

    Yes, FASTrack and BANNER students are provided funding to study abroad. We encourage students to plan early and find programs that match the cost of attending UW-Madison to avoid taking on large amounts of student loan debt to cover excess costs (studyabroad.wisc.edu).  Students should also make sure to apply for study abroad-specific scholarships (https://www.studyabroad.wisc.edu/scholarships.html) which can reduce or replace any offered loans

  • What academic standards must a FASTrack/BANNER student maintain to continue receiving financial aid?

    All students receiving financial aid, including through FASTrack or BANNER must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

    Your academic record is reviewed at the end of each academic year (late May/early June).

Upcoming FASTrack/BANNER Events

Using Your Federal Work-Study

  • What is work-study?

    Work-study is federally funded financial aid in the form of part-time employment. Students can work on-campus or with approved off-campus employers to earn money for additional educational expenses. See the Work-study FAQ on our website for more information.

  • How do students receive payment from participating in work-study?

    The money earned through work-study is not disbursed to students directly nor is it applied towards tuition or housing; to receive this money, students must earn it through working in a work-study position. Students will be paid a portion of their work-study award every two weeks through a paycheck, based on their hourly wage and the number of hours worked. Students can decide how to spend the money earned with each paycheck depending on their needs at the time. The minimum wage on campus is $9.00/hour.

  • Are FASTrack/BANNER students required to work?

    We strongly encourage it. Working while in school can be a great way to not only help pay for living expenses, but also to be involved within the UW and local Madison community, meet new friends, discover new passions, learn about oneself, and gain valuable professional skills.

  • What types of jobs are available?

    Work-study can be earned through any student part-time position offered by UW-Madison departments.  In addition, work-study can also be earned through a position at any community based, non-profit organization in Madison.  Most UW-Madison employers strongly prefer to hire students who have work-study awards and many community based, non-profit organizations will only hire students with a work-study award.

  • How do students find a job?

    Visit the UW Student Jobs website to find hundreds of job opportunities available and it continues to be updated every day! Work-Study can be earned from any position offered at UW-Madison. You may also earn your Work-Study award from a position at any community based, non-profit organization in the surrounding Madison area. To find more information about these categories, visit the Federal Work-Study page on the Student Jobs website.

  • When should students start looking for a job?

    The earlier the better! While UW-Madison jobs are posted throughout the year, the vast majority are posted throughout August and filled prior to the beginning of the Fall semester. It is recommended to check the Student Jobs website daily leading up to the beginning of school so that students can find the best opportunity for them.  Job openings with both UW and non-UW employers continue to be posted daily on the Student Jobs website throughout the year.

  • What if the job is not work-study eligible; is that ok?

    Yes, although we do strongly encourage working either on-campus or at local community non-profits. If the student chooses a non-work-study employer, the student would not earn any funds awarded from their work-study award, but it would remain in the award to represent the FASTrack/BANNER work expectation.

  • Can FASTrack/BANNER students receive other financial aid in place of work-study?

    No. Whether the student chooses not to work or works in a non-work-study position, as a FASTrack/BANNER participant, it is not possible to switch work-study for another grant, scholarship, or loan.

  • Can students study on the job?

    The name work-study can be misleading. Work-study jobs are no different from any other job in which students are expected to work in exchange for wages. Work-study jobs are real jobs that play an integral role in an organizations daily functions.