Who is Eligible for Financial Aid?
Financial aid eligibility is determined by information provided on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In general, to be eligible for financial aid, a student must:
- Have financial need, except for certain loans
- Have a high school diploma, General Education Development (GED) certificate, or have graduated from a certified homeschool program.
- Be enrolled as a regular student in an eligible program of study.
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.
- Have a Social Security Number.
- Make Satisfactory Academic Progress.
- Register with the Selective Service, if required.
In order to be eligible for federal financial aid funds, a student must have graduated from an accredited high school, earned a GED or have completed a certified homeschool program. If requested, a student must provide official documentation verifying proof of his/her graduation or completion. These documents must be submitted to and verified by the HFCC Records and Registration Office. NOTE: Beginning Fall 2013, in order to be eligible to receive financial aid, a student must have an official high school or GED transcript on record with HFCC. This includes new and returning students. Official transcripts must be mailed directly to HFCC by the issuing organization. To be considered for financial aid for Fall 2012, Winter 2013 and Spring/Summer 2013, a student must submit the 2012-2013 FAFSA at www.fafsa.gov. To complete the FAFSA as well as other financial-aid related electronic processes (Loan Counseling, Master Promissory Note), both students and parents of dependent students, will need a federal Personal Identification Number (PIN). Students and parents can apply for a PIN at www.pin.ed.gov. The Welcome Center has self-service computer stations for students needing access to a computer to complete these tasks.
Other Factors Affecting Eligibility
Once awarded financial aid, additional factors may impact a student’s financial aid award. Factors that may require a change in a student’s financial aid award include:
- Sometimes students attend more than one college during one award year. Students who have attended another college after July 1, 2012, must notify the Office of Financial Aid at HFCC they have done so. Annual award limits for most financial aid programs apply to funds received at all colleges (not just HFCC) and federal regulations generally prohibit a student from receiving financial aid funds at more than one college during the same enrollment period.
- Financial aid recipients must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). The Office of Financial Aid has a separate publication which details the standards of progress students must maintain in order to continue to receive financial aid. These standards are also described in detail later in this guide.
- If you receive funds from an outside agency (such as a scholarship), you MUST make the Office of Financial Aid aware of these funds. The Office of Financial Aid coordinates the funds you receive from all sources and the receipt of such outside funding may impact your eligibility for certain federal or state financial aid programs.
- If you have a change in financial or dependency circumstances during the award year, please contact the Office of Financial Aid to update your information.
- Effective for the 2012-2013 year, the amount of Federal Pell Grant funds a student may receive over his/her lifetime is limited to be the equivalent of six years of Pell Grant funding (based on full-time enrollment). The Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU) takes into account all Pell Grant funds received by the student from any college they attended and where they received Pell Grant funds. Once the lifetime limit has been reached, a student will no longer be eligible for federal Pell Grant funds at any institution, regardless of their EFC or credits still needed to complete their program.
- All financial aid programs are subject to change without notice. Major changes may occur between the time this guide was printed and the end of the award year. This can be due to circumstances such as changes in federal or state funding, or regulatory changes which are out of the College’s control. The College has the right to revise any financial aid package, which was incorrectly computed. The College reserves the right to make adjustments as a result of changes and new interpretations of federal and state guidelines and regulations. If it is determined that a student fraudulently submitted incorrect data on his/her financial aid application or forms, the situation may be referred to the U.S. Department of Education for investigation and possible prosecution.
- The HFCC Office of Financial Aid may report any student or individual acting on behalf of the student that has misreported information or altered documentation to fraudulently obtain federal funds. Suspicious activity may be reported and/or documentation provided to the Office of Inspector General with the U.S. Department of Education.