PKF - Frequently Asked Questions


Frequently Asked Questions

What's the difference between the FAFSA and the Federal Student Aid Estimator Form? Which one should I file?

If you are a U.S. citizen or a eligible noncitizen, you will need to complete the FAFSA. The FAFSA will be available for you to complete starting December 1, 2023 for the upcoming 2024-2025 academic year. You can access the FAFSA via this link: fafsa.gov. When you complete the FAFSA, it will ask you to list UNL's FAFSA School Code, which is: 002565, and then your financial information will be shared with UNL and the College of Engineering.  

If you are an ineligible noncitizen, but you reside in the state of Nebraska and want to be considered for the Peter Kiewit Foundation Engineering Academy (PKFEA), we encourage you to complete the Federal Student Aid Estimator form via this link and attach it to your PKFEA application: go.unl.edu/altform.

In order to be considered for the PKFEA program, you need to submit a FAFSA to UNL or the Federal Student Aid Estimator form on your application. Since the FAFSA isn't opening until December 31, 2023 and has changed from previous years, we will allow all applicants to submit their FAFSA/Federal Student Aid Estimator form until March 15, 2024, at 11:59 PM. However, the sooner you can complete the FAFSA/Federal Student Aid Estimator form, the better off you will be in case you run into any issues with your submission. 

What housing will I be in for the Academy?

During their first year, students on City Campus (Lincoln) will live in Abel Hall, and students on Scott Campus (Omaha) will live in Scott Crossing. Students are expected to live in the Scholar Community with other members of the PKFEA for at least their first 2 years, and all related costs will be covered by the program. Students may continue to live on campus in the Scholar Community during their junior and senior years, which will also be paid for by the program. (Upperclassman housing is still TBD based on availability and interest, but the plan is for older students to live in suite/apartment-style housing on campus.) Gender Inclusive Housing is available for PKFEA students. Please contact program leadership if you have additional questions.

Some students might be interested in living in a different Learning Community. PKFEA students take part in a special type of learning community called a Scholar Community, thus students will remain in the PKFEA Scholar Community the entire time they are at UNL and not be permitted to join other Learning Communities. But there are hundreds of other Registered Student Organizations (RSOs) you can join if you are looking for additional ways to engage with other students outside the program!

Do I still need to complete a housing contract if I'm selected for this program?

Yes, you will need to complete a housing application in order to live in our scholar community. If you have already completed one before you were accepted to the program, great! We will notify Housing on both campuses of who is expected to participate in our program and live in our scholar community so you can easily find other PKFEA students to choose as your roommate(s).

Please note that since we don't announce who is in the PKFEA program until March, we advise our applicants from selecting a roommate(s) until they are notified about their status with the PKFEA program. If you have already agreed to live with someone outside of PKFEA, it's important to communicate with that individual(s) that you might not be able to live with them due to the PKFEA program requirements. If you are not selected to participate in PKFEA or do not accept your offer to join, you may move forward with whatever living arrangments you have lined up. 

Can I live in Gender Inclusive Housing (GIH)?

Absolutely! We want everyone to feel comfortable and safe in their personal space, and we are happy to make accommodations for those who prefer GIH. Simply select that option on your Housing Contract, and Housing will make the necessary changes to your profile so that you can see other individuals who would like GIH. Housing will then work with us to make sure you can still live among the other students participating in the PKFEA program. Please contact program leadership if you have additional questions.

What if I want to live at home?

Students are expected to live in the scholar community for at least the first 2 years, and all related costs are covered by the program. Students may continue to live on campus their junior and senior years paid for by the program. Please contact program leadership if you have additional questions or want to learn more about our accomodation process.

What is a learning community (LC)?

One of the best ways to develop strong friendships and succeed in college is to join a learning community!   It is an academic learning experience outside of the classroom in a fun and educational setting.

Can I join a learning community?

PKF Engineering Academy students are in a specific type of Learning Community called a Scholar Community and are not be permitted to join additional Learning Communities, as they have conflicting Housing requirements. While you can't join another Learning Community, there are hundreds of other Registered Student Organizations (RSOs) on campus you can join to engage with students with similar interests. 

Scholar Communities at Nebraska are comprised of students who share a commitment to the goals of academic excellence, leadership development, and involved citizenship. Membership in a Scholar Community is by invitation only, either through application or receipt of a specific scholarship attached to a given community. As a member of a Scholar Community, you can expect to have an amazing experience with other students who share your enthusiasm for academic achievement and your passion for personal growth. 

Can I stack my Peter Kiewit Foundation tuition and fees scholarship with my other awards?

The academy scholarship is considered "last-in." This means that PKFEA will cover what is left on your bill/balance* after other scholarships are applied first. For example, if you have a Regents or Traditions scholarship, the PKFEA will cover the rest of tuition and fees not covered by your Regents or Traditions scholarships. Thus, this scholarship amount varies by student up to the full cost of tuition and fees.

* Please note that we do not cover all fees/charges that might be charged to your account

Are there any scholarships or programs that I cannot stack on top?

While it is very exciting to receive substantial scholarship offers from multiple programs, the goal of our program is to spread the wealth and make college accessable for more students. Therefore, starting in the 2024-2025 academic year, we would request that any student that is accepted to our program are not elligible to receive aid from the following programs:

  • Kiewit Scholars Program
  • Raike School
  • Nebraska College Preparatory Academy (NCPA)
  • William H. Thompson (WHT) Scholars Learning Community
  • The Careers Scholarship
  • Scott Scholars
  • The Goodrich Scholarship
Can I participate Greek life or the Honors program or other programs on campus?

Students may choose to participate in the Honors program or Greek life in addition to the PKF Engineering Academy, as long as they balance their time and meet program commitments effectively. Please note that we have a live on requirement for the first two years of our program, so you will not be able to live in Honors housing or Greek houses during that time, but can opt to live in those accomodations at your own expense during the last 2-3 years of your career at UNL/UNO.

If you have a question about a different program on campus, such as Raikes or the pathway programs in Engineering, contact program leadership to learn more. Some programs on campus have conflicting time commitments, so students cannot participate in both. However, we encourage students to apply to all programs of their interest to find one that's the best fit for them.

Why do I still have charges on my bill if the program covers everything?

Students may see charges on their accounts for other billed services that are not part of the Academy commitment, such as the purchase of a parking permit or if they received a visit charge from the Health Center. These types of fees are not included in the scholarship.

How do I keep my scholarship?

To retain their position in The Peter Kiewit Foundation Engineering Academy, students must participate in all program requirements, maintain full-time status, and be in good standing in the College of Engineering.

Students will receive a Program Handbook that outlines additional information on all requirements, probation, and dismissal policies.

What fees are covered?

The following fees are covered: registration, technology, ID card, library, facilities, online courses, and other course fees (e.g., a lab fee). The program will not cover late fees, any fees applied to your account for damage or student conduct, any health care visits to the health center or the optional health insurance fees, and other indirect costs*. Any fees not listed here are subject to the discretion of program leadership.

Note: Deposits are not considered as fees.

*Cost of attendance that a student will likely incur, but not pay toward the university. This may include supplemental supplies, off-campus housing, transportation to and from campus, and other personal expenses.

Are online classes covered?

Yes, this scholarship will cover online classes. Engineering is largely an in-person major, but you may take some online while in your degree.

Can I take a gap year and still keep my scholarship?

The intent of this scholarship is for consecutive years. Any student with extenuating circumstances is encouraged to contact program leadership, as this may be considered on a case-by-case basis and at the leadership's discretion.

Can I utilize this scholarship for multiple undergraduate degrees?

The Academy scholarship requirements are that a student pursues a degree in the College of Engineering. Please visit with program leadership if you wish to pursue multiple degrees in four years (e.g., a double major outside of the College of Engineering).

What happens if I drop a class or withdraw?

Visit with program leadership if you need to drop a class or withdraw to learn how it will affect your scholarship.

Can I apply for the scholarship in my sophomore or junior or senior year?

The Peter Kiewit Foundation Engineering Academy is open to incoming freshmen, as it is cohort-based.

How many credit hours can I take each semester?

Students will follow the university's policy for the maximum number of credits allowed per semester. Students wishing to exceed this limit should visit with program leadership to learn about their options.

What does the Data Use Policy entail?

Since the Peter Kiewit Foundation Engineering Academy is financially supported by the Peter Kiewit Foundation, we share aggregate data with the Peter Kiewit Foundation to show the academic progress our students are making and to show how this program the mission. We will never share individual or identifying information with the Peter Kiewit Foundation as that is a violation of the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA). To review the Data Use Policy, please use this link: https://go.unl.edu/pkfeadatausepolicy