Basic Financial Aid
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Have I been assigned a Financial Aid Advisor? Do I have to see that person?
A. No, you do not have an assigned financial aid advisor. Enrollment Service Centers have been trained to answer most financial aid questions. However, if they feel that you need to see an advisor, they will set you up with an appointment to see one of the advisors at the Centennial or Rampart Range Campus.
Q. Can I turn in my paperwork at any of the campuses?
A. Yes. Turn in your paperwork at whichever campus is the most convenient for you. You may also fax your paperwork to 719.502.2074. Don’t forget to sign any and all documents that require a signature, such as tax transcripts and verification documentation.
Q. Are there Work-Study positions at any of the campuses?
A. Yes, but they are limited at Falcon and at the Downtown Studio Campuses. Therefore, you must apply early. This is another good reason to have your financial aid file complete to ensure a timely award and the best possible financial aid package that we are able to offer you.
Q. What happens if I have to withdraw from a class?
A. Federal and State financial aid pays at the beginning of each term. Students are expected to attend class and be successful. If you are considering withdrawing from a class (after drop/add is over), please contact a financial aid advisor prior to withdrawing. There could be serious consequences of not earning the financial aid that you were paid. There is a chance that you could be suspended from financial aid for future semesters here at PPCC. You may also have to pay a portion of the funds back.
Although the Colorado Opportunity Fund (COF) is not considered financial aid, there are also repercussions for withdrawing. The law creating the College Opportunity Fund caps a student's stipend at 145 credit hours to earn a bachelor's degree. When you withdraw from classes, you are still using COF credits; therefore, you will reduce the amount of COF you have available to you to earn your degree.
If you are considering withdrawing from a class, please contact a Financial Aid Advisor to discuss all of the issues you may encounter by doing so. There is a regulation called "Return to Title IV" which means you may have to repay some or all of the financial aid you have received. Even if it was a grant.
In a nutshell, it is critical to finish what you start. Financial aid funds are paid after the drop/add date. You are paid for the entire semester up front. Therefore if you withdrawal or fail the classes you were paid for; there are consequences. These consequences might include being ineligible for future financial aid assistance and also having to repay back some of the funding you received.
Q. The FAFSA asks questions regarding Unaccompanied Homeless Youth. Do you have more information explaining this?
A. Who are Unaccompanied Homeless Youth?
Unaccompanied Homeless Youth are young people under the age of 21, who lack safe, stable housing and who are not in the care of a parent or guardian. They may have run away from home or been forced to leave by their parents. Unaccompanied youth live in a variety of temporary situations, including shelters, the homes of friends or relatives, cars, campgrounds, public parks, abandoned buildings, motels, and bus or train stations.
Between 1.6 and 2.8 million youth run away from their homes each year. Generally, youth leave home due to severe dysfunction in their families, including circumstances that put their safety and well-being at risk. Unfortunately, physical and sexual abuse in the home is common; studies of unaccompanied youth have found that 20% to 50% were sexually abused in their homes, while 40% to 60% were physically abused. Unaccompanied youth do not receive financial support from their parents and do not have access to parental information.
Who are McKinney-Vento School District Liaisons?
Under subtitle VII-B of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, every school district is required to designate a liaison for students experiencing homelessness. Homeless liaisons have a number of legal responsibilities under the Act, including identifying youth who meet the definition of homeless and are unaccompanied. The education subtitle of the McKinney-Vento Act is overseen by the U.S. Department of Education. For more information see: http://www.ed.gov/programs/homeless/legislation.html.
What are HUD-funded Shelters?
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) administers funding for homeless shelters and services under Title IV of the McKinney-Vento Act. These funds are distributed to communities through a competitive grant process. For more information, see: http://www.hud.gov/offices/cpd/homeless/programs/index.cfm.
What are RHYA-funded Shelters?
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services administers the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act programs. These programs provide funding for Basic Centers, Transitional Living Programs, and Street Outreach programs that serve runaway and other unaccompanied homeless youth.
Q. What is the Federal Cleary Act? How do I find out more?
A. The Federal Cleary Act (The Student Right to Know and Campus Security Act of 1990) requires all institutions to make available to potential and current students our Annual Security Report. A paper copy of this may also be obtained at the Office of Human Resources Services upon request. This report includes statistics for the previous three years concerning crimes that occurred on campus or on property controlled or owned by Pikes Peak Community College, as well as public property within, or immediately adjacent to and accessible from our campuses. You can also find institutional policies concerning the annual security report, as well as policies governing sexual assault, and access to the facilities.
Q. Does the Pikes Peak Community College financial aid office cover courses for study abroad?
A. No, PPCC does not cover students that study abroad. For more information, please contact the Director of Financial Aid.
Q. How does violating the federal copyright law affect financial aid?
A. Copyright infringement is the act of exercising, without permission or legal authority, one or more of the exclusive rights granted to the copyright owner under section 106 of the Copyright Act (Title 17 of the United States Code). These rights include the right to reproduce or distribute a copy a copyrighted work. In the file-sharing context, downloading or uploading substantial parts of a copyrighted work without authority constitutes an infringement. Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or "statutory" damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For "willful" infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorneys' fees. For details, see Title 17, United States Code, Sections 504, 505. Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years and fines of up to $250,000 per offense. For more information, please see the website of the U.S. Copyright Office at www.copyright.gov.
Financial Aid Bookstore Purchases
The Financial Aid Office makes every attempt to assist you in getting the books and supplies that you need for your classes. We do not want to create barriers to your success. When your financial aid package is complete, the bookstore may already have an account created for you and the need for authorization may not be required.
Bookstore charges for Financial Aid students will be allowed approximately two weeks prior to the start of the term. You must take a photo ID with you in order to utilize your financial aid. It helps to print out your schedule and take it with you to the Bookstore. You will also want to make sure you have a FA award. Check your account online to make sure you have been awarded and check your balance due to ensure that you will have a credit balance before going to the bookstore. Please do not submit your financial aid paperwork and expect to get a bookstore authorization. It can take up to two weeks to process your aid.
If classes have started and you do not have your books, please contact the Financial Aid office at 502-3000 or email at email@example.com.
You may have to take out a loan for additional funding and have just applied for the loan. It may take up to two weeks to certify the loan, therefore creating an authorization application. In order to be eligible to apply for an authorization charge, the following must be applicable:
- You must have a valid Student Aid Report (SAR).
- You must have a complete file financial aid file. For instance, if selected for verification, the documents must be complete, signed, etc.
- You must have enough money on your account to cover all tuition/fees and potential bookstore charges.
- If you are a Colorado resident, you must have your Colorado Opportunity Fund (COF) applied and authorized. If you were just authorized that same day, your application voucher needs to state that fact.
- You must be in good standing with Satisfactory Academic Progress & Measurable Academic Progress (SAP/MAP).
- You have enough funds to cover additional costs at the bookstore such as art supplies, have more than $700 in books to purchase, a lap top computer, etc.
- Authorizations are for essential books and supplies that you need for class so as to not prohibit you from success.
There are many reasons the Financial Aid office is not able to authorize a charge. Some examples may be:
- Your residency has not been resolved and you do not have enough funds to cover all of your expenses. At this point, the Colorado Opportunity Fund (COF) would not apply toward your account.
- You are waiting for the results of a Financial Aid appeal.
- You have not even applied for the FAFSA.
- Your financial aid file is incomplete and/or you have conflicting data that needs resolution.
- You are military and/or a dependent and you have not turned in your Green Sheet. Therefore, you do not have enough aid to cover tuition/fees, supplies, etc.
- You may have a balance due from a prior term.
- You may have used financial aid funding at a prior school and there is not funding left over to use at PPCC to cover your current term.
- You may have already charged the bookstore this term.
Ultimately, you need to get your financial aid complete in a timely manner and cannot expect to enroll and get your books using financial aid funding in a matter of days. You need to allow the financial aid office no less than four weeks to process your financial aid application. If you have all of your documents in by the deadline dates and you are still not able to charge books, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 719.502.3000. If you choose to email, you must do so using your college assigned email account. Take a moment to visit PPCC's Bookstore.
Completing the FAFSA?
Frequently Asked Questions
- My parents don't provide me with financial support. Can I apply as an “Independent” student?
- But what if I'm an emancipated minor, am I now independent?
- What if a parent refuses to contribute towards my college education?
- If I have a parent who is enrolled in a college or university, can this parent be counted as a family member in college when calculating my financial aid?
- What's the difference between cash support and in-kind support?
- I am entering financial information for my mother and stepfather on the FAFSA. Should I give my father's Social Security number (SSN) and last name, or my stepfather's?
- How does a family decide who should be counted in the household size?
- My parents separated four months ago. I live with my mother. My parents filed a joint tax return and claimed me as an exemption. Do I report both their incomes, or just my mother's?
- If I (the student) am separated but filed a joint tax return, how is the information reported?
- Who qualifies to be counted in the number in college??
- My parents have more than one student in college. Do they need a separate PIN number for each student?
Q.My parents don't provide me with financial support. Can I apply as an “Independent” student?
A. In order to be considered independent for financial aid purposes you must meet one of the following criteria:
- You must turn 24 before January 1 of the academic year that you are applying for;
- Be a graduate/professional student;
- Be married;
- Have children who receive more than half of their support from you;
- Have dependents (other than your children/spouse) that live with you and receive more than half of their support from you;
- Be an orphan or ward/dependent of the court since turning 13;
- Been in foster care since turning age 13;
- Currently in legal guardianship or was under legal guardianship prior to the age of 18;
- Have legal paperwork showing you were emancipated from parents prior to age 18;
- Be currently serving in the United States Armed Forces for purposes other than training;
- Be a veteran of the United States Armed Forces.
- Be homeless or at risk of being homeless.
If you do not meet any of the criteria listed above, but can document extreme family circumstances that prevent you from obtaining your parents information/support, you will need to see a Financial Aid Advisor.
Q. But what if I'm an emancipated minor, am I now independent?
A. If you are an emancipated minor; please submit a copy of your court documents to the Enrollment Services Center. You will also answer question number 56 on the FAFSA as 'Yes'.
Q. What if my parent refuses to contribute toward my college education?
A. In fairness to all students, PPCC financial aid decisions are based on the ability, but not the willingness, of parents to contribute toward your college education. A financial aid offer will not be adjusted because of a parent's refusal to contribute. The basic concept of student financial aid, as established by Congress and the U.S. Department of Education, is that the student's parents have the primary responsibility for their children's education. Parents are welcome to speak to a financial aid advisor so that they may understand that they are not obligated to provide anything other than information for their child. If the parent continues to refuse, the student may apply for a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Documentation is still necessary to provide the financial aid office as to what the situation may be.
Q. If I have a parent who is enrolled in a college or university, can this parent be counted as a family member in college when calculating my financial aid?
A. No. When calculating the financial need of students, credit is given for each sibling enrolled at least half-time in a college program leading to an undergraduate degree or certificate. This is a way to recognize the financial impact that children attending college place on a family and it reduces the amount the family is expected to pay toward the student's college costs. Parents cannot be included in this number. The Office of Financial Aid will reduce the number of family members in college if you included a parent in this number; only the student and the student's siblings may be included. If you have a sibling in high school who is attending classes at a college/university, this sibling also cannot be counted as enrolled in college. A reduction in the number of family members in college may significantly reduce your eligibility for financial aid.
Q. What's the difference between cash support and in-kind support?
- A. Cash support is support given either in the form of money or money that is paid on your (the student's) behalf. You must report cash support as untaxed income. Thus, if a friend or relative gives you grocery money, it must be reported as untaxed income on the FAFSA. If the friend or relative pays your electric bill or part of your rent, you must also report those payments.
- Examples of in-kind support are free food or housing that a family receives, usually in exchange for work or services. You usually don't report such support. The application does require military and/or dependents of military to report BAS (not housing). Making Work Pay credit should also be reported.
Q. I am entering financial information for my mother and stepfather on the FAFSA. Should I give my father's Social Security number (SSN) and last name, or my stepfather's?
A. You should provide the SSN and last name of the same person or people for whom you are reporting financial information. In this case, provide the SSNs and names of your mother and stepfather.
Q. How does a family decide who should be counted in the household size?
A. Anyone in the immediate family who receives more than 50% support from a dependent student's parents or an independent student and spouse may be counted in the household size even if that person does not reside in the house. For example, a sibling who is over 24 but still receives the majority of his/her support from the parents can be included. Siblings who are dependent (as defined by the FAFSA) as of the date you apply for aid are also included, regardless of whether they receive more than 50% of their support from the parents. Any other person who resides in the household and receives more than 50% support from the parents may also be counted, as long as they will continue to reside with your parents and the support is expected to continue through June 30, 2014. An unborn child who will be born during the 2013-14 award year may also be counted in the household size. Household size and tax exemptions are not necessarily the same. Exemptions look at the previous year or tax year and household size refers to the school year for which the student is applying for aid.
Q. My parents separated four months ago. I live with my mother. My parents filed a joint tax return and claimed me as an exemption. Do I report both their incomes, or just my mother's?
A. Report only your mother's income and asset information because you lived with her the most during the past 12 months. Use a W-2 Form or other record(s) to determine her share of the income reported and taxes paid on the tax return.
Q. If I (the student) am separated but filed a joint tax return, how is the information reported?
A. You should give only your portion of the exemptions, income and taxes paid.
Q. Who qualifies to be counted in the number in college?
Any person (other than your parents) who is counted in the household and will be attending any term of the academic year at least half time qualifies to be counted. The person must be working toward a degree or certificate leading to a recognized education credential at a postsecondary school eligible to participate in the federal student aid programs. You (the student) need not be enrolled half time to be counted in the number in college.
Q. My parents have more than one student in college. Do they need a separate PIN number for each student?
A. Your parents can use the same PIN to sign all the FAFSA forms. They don’t need a new number for each student, but a FAFSA needs to be completed for each student
Financial Aid Eligibility
Frequently Asked Questions
- Why should I apply for financial aid? My parents make too much money.
- What is the income limit to qualify for financial aid?
- How long does it take to find out if I get aid?
- Is it too late to apply for financial aid?
- I want to apply for financial aid, but my parents haven't completed their Federal Tax Returns yet. Should I wait to file my FAFSA?
- If my parents are divorced or separated, which parent should complete the FAFSA?
- Do I reapply for aid in subsequent years?
- What if my family’s financial situation changes?
- What happens to my financial aid eligibility if I get married?
- Why am I only receiving loans?
- Am I allowed to receive financial aid from more than one institution at the same time?
- If my EFC indicates I'm not eligible for need-based financial aid, are there other options?
- Why does the Department of Education ask for income information from the year before I go to school?
- What is an EFC?
- I don't think that I'm eligible for anything, but I need help! What can I do?
- I applied for and received financial aid last year. I haven't received any this year. Why?
- Why did I not receive as much as the award letter said?
- If my Student Aid Report indicates that I am selected for verification, what do I do?
Q. Why should I apply for financial aid? My parents make too much money.
A. You should always try to apply for aid. First, it is free. It is also the foundation of other aid such as the State of Colorado merit-based aid, private scholarships and Federal Direct Stafford Loans. Federal Direct Loans are considered financial aid because the benefits are so much better than anything you could get at a bank with a private loan.
Q. What is the income limit to qualify for financial aid?
A. There is no specific income limit. A complicated formula is used to look at income, number of people in the household and in college, age of the eldest parent, investments, cash, savings, checking -- even the state of legal residence! You provide this information on the FAFSA application and the result is the EFC (Expected Family Contribution) which is used to determine the family's ability to pay for educational costs.
Q. How long does it take to find out if I get aid?
A. It depends on when you apply and if you complete your file in a timely manner. The key is to apply early. The FAFSA is available January 2 for the following August term. PPCC's priority date is March 31. If you apply and have a complete file by that date, you can be sure of getting packaged, being awarded work employment (if you choose) and being able to charge your book purchases at the bookstore. You may continue to apply for financial aid throughout the year; however, it could take 4 - 6 weeks to be awarded and students may or may not be able to get their bookstore purchases with the financial aid.
Q. Is it too late to apply for financial aid?
A. Probably not. The FAFSA takes approximately one week using FAFSA on the Web to process. It may take approximately 3 weeks for financial aid to be calculated and awarded to students once all data has been received and the student's file is complete. We would encourage you to review our priority application deadlines for Pikes Peak Community College's financial aid programs. You may apply for financial aid throughout the school year, however you cannot expect financial aid to pay up-front costs for tuition, fees or bookstore charges.
Q. I want to apply for financial aid, but my parents haven't completed their Federal Tax Returns yet. Should I wait to file my FAFSA?
A. In order for you to be considered for the best financial aid package you must submit your FAFSA before March 31. You may provide estimated financial information on your application. If the information changes once the tax returns are filed you must make corrections on your FAFSA.
Q. If my parents are divorced or separated, which parent should complete the FAFSA?
A. You should answer the questions using information about the parent that you lived with more during the past 12 months. If you did not live with one parent more than the other, give answers about the parent who provided the most financial support for you (e.g. money, gifts, loans, housing, food, clothes, and medical expenses). Child support payments from your other parent will be taken into consideration, and information about the income and assets of any stepparent must also be provided. We realize that these situations can be sensitive and complicated. Please feel free to discuss your individual circumstances with one of our advisors. All information will remain confidential.
Q. Do I reapply for aid in subsequent years?
A. Because your family’s financial position may change from year to year, you are required to resubmit the FAFSA by March 31 to be eligible for priority packaging for the next school year. If your family’s financial standing remains consistent with the previous year, then you can generally expect PPCC to re-issue your current federal and state aid package.
Q. What if my family’s financial situation changes?
A. If there are significant changes to your family’s financial circumstances, please contact the PPCC Financial Aid Office.
Q. What happens to my financial aid eligibility if I get married?
A. You will not necessarily receive more financial assistance if you get married. According to federal regulations, you are still dependent on your parents for the academic year if you get married after you file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Dependency status cannot be updated based on marriage until the following academic year. If you are married prior to filing the FAFSA, you will be considered an independent student for federal financial aid. This means that your parents will not need to provide financial information on the FAFSA; they also will not have to sign your application. You will need to provide your spouses' income information and if selected for verification, be able to provide a signed copy of their federal tax return and other requested documentation.
Q. Why am I only receiving loans?
A. Most likely you are a student with less financial need than others. Or, you are a student with financial need who applied later than others with need. Go to our scholarship page and start applying for as many private scholarships as you are eligible to apply for.
Q. Am I allowed to receive financial aid from more than one institution at the same time?
A. No. If you are enrolled at more than one college or university at the same time, you may receive financial aid from one of the institutions, not both. Contact a Financial Aid advisor for more information as Pikes Peak Community College works with other colleges on Consortium Agreements. However, not all colleges participate in that program.
Q. If my EFC indicates I'm not eligible for need-based financial aid, are there other options?
A. If your EFC indicates you are not eligible for need-based financial aid, you may apply for an Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan. If you are a dependent student, your parents can apply for a Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). Also keep in mind that the FAFSA is the foundation for many private scholarships and it is free to apply.
Q. Why does the Department of Education ask for income information from the year before I go to school?
A. Studies have consistently shown that verifiable income tax information from the base year (2010 for the 2011-12 award year) is more accurate than projected (2011) information when determining family financial strength in calculating the Expected Family Contribution (EFC).
Q. What is an EFC?
A. EFC stands for Expected Family Contribution. The federal processor calculates this number based on the information you provide on your FAFSA. It represents how much you/your family can afford to pay toward your education for the academic year. The EFC is subtracted from your cost of attendance (COA) to determine your financial need. If you have any financial need, the Office of Student Financial Assistance will offer you need-based aid on your award notification. COA - EFC = Your financial need
Q. I don't think that I'm eligible for anything, but I need help! What can I do?
A. You may be eligible for federal student loans, but you must complete the FAFSA on the Web in order to be considered. If you don't qualify for either of the two federal student loan programs, or if you need to borrow more than the allowable borrowing limits at your grade level, you may find assistance through alternative loans. Alternative loans are commercial student loans that are not subsidized or insured by the federal government. Alternative loans are available through some banks, guaranty agencies, and secondary student loan markets at competitive interest rates. We also encourage you to research scholarship opportunities.
Q. I applied for and received financial aid last year. I haven't received any this year. Why?
A. You must reapply for financial aid each year. Applications are available each January for the upcoming academic year, which begins with the fall term.
Q. Why did I not receive as much as the award letter said?
A. Federal student aid programs are awarded based on the percentage of time you are enrolled for the semester. Most scholarships and grants will be prorated so if you are attending 9-11 credits; your award will be 75%. If you are attending 6-8 credits; your award will be 50%. Most scholarships and grants will not pay under 6 credit hours. Federal Direct Loans will pay the same as long as you are enrolled in at least 6 credit hours.
Q. If my Student Aid Report indicates that I am selected for verification, what do I do?
A. We will notify you by mail if we need you to provide any further information and you will be able to see what is needed on Self Serve Banner. It is very important for you to respond promptly to any request for information from PPCC's office of Financial Aid to ensure that your student financial aid is processed timely and correctly. You may also watch our website to see what forms might be needed and what your financial aid package is. There are many Dept of Education forms on our website. If you are required to submit a federal tax return, please sign in the appropriate signature box. If you are unable to bring in your documents, you max fax to 719.502.2074 or mail. Please watch the website to ensure they have been received.
Q. I'm not sure if I want to take out a student loan or work during the school year. What should I enter for the questions asking if I am interested in student loans or Student Staff?
A. Some schools use the answers about loans and Student Staff on the FAFSA to construct a financial aid package for you. By answering with either "loans," "Student Staff," or "loans and Student Staff," says that you are interested in either or both types of aid but does not obligate you to take out a loan or accept a Student Staff position. It usually just means that the school will consider offering you a loan or Student Staff as part of your aid package. If you do indicate on the application that you are interested in either or both loans and Student Staff, you can change your mind and not accept the loan(s) or Student Staff later. Keep in mind that if you answer "No" to the Student Staff question when you apply—and subsequently change your mind—a Student Staff job may not be available if all of the Student Staff funds at the school have been awarded to other students.
Q. I have just learned that I must maintain "satisfactory academic progress." What does that mean?
A. At the end of each semester, PPCC will review each student's progress to determine whether a student is making satisfactory progress towards their educational goal in both qualitative and quantitative measurements.
The qualitative measurement consists of the cumulative grade point average as determined by the Colorado Community College System Standards of Academic Progress. This contains two components:
(1) the cumulative completion rate of credit hours completed versus credit hours attempted; expressed as a percentage rate of completion and
(2) the maximum time frame allowed for a student to complete their certificate of degree program expressed as a percentage of total credits required. Review of Satisfactory Academic Progress will take place at the end of each semester. All applicants will be evaluated in the same manner, whether or not they have previously received financial aid at PPCC. In order to meet satisfactory academic progress requirements financial aid applicants and recipients must meet the qualitative and quantitative measurements outlined:
Cumulative GPA Requirement - Students must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 for all credits attempted.
Cumulative Completion Rate - Students must complete at least 67% of cumulative attempted credit hours. The completion rate is defined as the percentage of the total number of credits completed divided by the total number of credits attempted over the entirety of a student's academic record at the school performing the calculation.
Transfer credits on the student's record are not taken into consideration when computing the student's completion rate.
All other credits, including remedial credits, are included in the calculation of the cumulative completion rate.
Maximum Time Frame -once students have attempted 100% of the number of credit hours required for their degree or eligible certificate program, they will be required to submit a degree completion evaluation with the signature of an academic advisor or counselor in order to be considered for continued financial aid eligibility.
Federal regulations allow financial aid recipients to receive financial aid for a maximum number of attempted credits. Students attempting credits in excess of 150% of the required number of credits to complete their program of study will be suspended. If at any point in time it is determined that a student cannot complete their program study within 150% of the program length, financial aid eligibility will be suspended. Transfer credit hours are included in the calculation of allowable maximum time frame. Attempted credit hours under all courses of study are included in the calculation of attempted and earned hours.
Appeals must be submitted to the Financial Aid Office with a completed appeal form (offered on the web or in one of the Enrollment Services Centers) and supporting documentation. The student is responsible for presenting sufficient information and documentation to substantiate the existence of extenuating circumstances. Appeals may be filed for extenuating circumstances, such as medical problems (family illness), family emergency (death of a family member), and other documented extenuating circumstances beyond the student's control.
Financial Aid Disbursements
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I get my financial aid paid to me and then I pay my bill?
- Do I have to let the cashier know that I have financial aid?
- May I get my textbooks with my financial aid?
- What about my online courses?
- My friends at CSU Pueblo get their refunds before school starts. Why do I have to wait so long?
- Can we get our refunds Direct Deposited?
- Can I pick up my refund check instead of having it mailed to me?
- Is there a cycle for refund checks?
Q. Can I get my financial aid paid to me and then I pay my bill?
A. Financial aid awarded in the form of grants, scholarships, and loans will first be applied towards the payment of outstanding tuition and fee charges owed to the College by you. If you should choose to have your financial aid applied toward any other charges on your account, separate arrangements must be made with the cashier’s office.
Q. Do I have to let the cashier know that I have financial aid?
A. No. The cashier will be able to access your account to determine what, if any, payment from you is required. Students who register for classes and who have not declined a financial aid offer will have their account credited for the amount of the grant and/or scholarship. Should you decide not to attend after you have registered, you must officially drop your classes. Failure to drop will result in your being charged for the tuition and fees. You are strongly encouraged to register early online at www.ppcc.edu. Students who register early can ensure that their financial aid appears on their bill if they have a complete financial aid file. Financial aid is paid on the student's account after the main census date, although loans may pay 30 days into the term.
Q. May I get my textbooks with my financial aid?
A. Yes. If you have already been awarded aid and it is enough to cover your tuition, fees and have enough left over to assist you with books, there will be an account already set up for you at the bookstore. When you finish picking out your purchases, you will go to the cashier and show them a picture ID and let them know that you are a financial aid student. You will have a limit of no more than your overage, not to exceed $700. Students that purchase their books using financial aid funds and then sell the books to have cash run the risk of losing their financial aid awards. Students may also have enough funds to purchase a laptop computer. Students that purchase any electronic device (limit 1 per student) and then sells it for cash may run the risk of losing their financial aid award.
Q. What about my CCCOnline courses?
A. If you are taking CCCOnline courses, you may use your financial aid to assist you in paying for tuition and bookstore charges. You may order your books via online order. There may be an additional charge for ordering online.
Q. My friends at CSU Pueblo get their refunds before school starts. Why do I have to wait so long?
A. PPCC's policy is to pay financial aid on the students account the day after Census (15% of the main term). Keep in mind that paying financial aid onto your account IS NOT the same thing as you receiving your refund. By Federal law, the financial aid office is not allowed to generate any cash refunds. The Student Accounts Office (Financial Services) takes over at that point.
Q. Can we get our refunds Direct Deposited?
A. YES! All students will receive a green envelope from Higher One. This envelope will have a Debit Card enclosed. You may contact the Cashier's Office to learn about your choices and benefits that accompany your all-new CCCS Refund Card. Once you receive your card, you will need to activate it and choose if you would like Direct Deposit or your refund on your CCCS Debit Card. PPCC strongly urges students to use Direct Deposit. You may choose your own bank or choose Higher One as your bank. Higher One does not put any holds or delays once your refund has been received. Some banks may have a 1 to 3 delay. Higher One offers excellent services to our students.
Q. Can I pick up my refund check instead of having it mailed to me?
A. PPCC strongly urges all students to use Direct Deposit. If you do not want to select the Debit Card or Direct Deposit options, a paper refund check will be mailed to the student 3 weeks after the initial refund was to be received.
Q. Is there a cycle for refund checks?
A. Yes. Because we are one of 13 Community Colleges in Colorado, we cannot run refunds whenever we choose. Refund checks are generated by the Student Accounts office once a week on Monday's (please note, these days are subject to change). If there is a credit balance by 9:00 a.m. on Monday morning, the credit will turn into a 'batch refund' on the Student's Account and a refund will be generated by Higher One. Student's will either have their funds direct deposited into their bank account or put onto their Debit Card and funds will be available one week later on the following Monday. Please remember that refunds may be held if there is a past due balance for a previous semester until payment is received in full When you see 'batch refund' on your account and have not received your funds within 10 business days after the refund date, please call Student Accounts at 502-2300 for further assistance. Again, we cannot stress enough the importance of keeping your address and telephone information up-to-date with the Enrollment Services Center.
Q.How do I get funding for Summer?
A.Each year; the student must let the financial aid office know that they are intending to attend the summer term. The Summer Intent Form becomes available on March 1 (or the closest Monday following March 1, if March 1st lands on a weekend). These forms are available in each Enrollment Services Center and on the Internet. The student must complete the form and leave it in the Enrollment Services Center. Or, they may print the form off of the Internet and fax it to the office at 719.502.2074. The time of day is not important; however, the date is. When awarding is taking place, each student is evaluated for awarding that had an intent form in on March 1. If there is funding left over, the students who waited until March 2 to turn in a form will be evaluated.
Q. The Veteran’s Affairs office counts full-time status for summer as 7 credits? Why does the financial aid office still count full-time as 12 credit hours?
A. Typically summer term is 10 weeks long and VA pays by the length of training. Because students may use their Federal Pell grant for the full amount in summer; we count the summer term as the same amount as we do for the fall term and/or the spring term. Therefore, if a student should attend spring/summer and be Pell eligible, they would receive the same award for summer as they did for the spring.
Q. Why do I have to apply for the 2012-2013 FAFSA if I want Student Staff for the summer in 2012? I plan to transfer to another college in the fall.
A. First priority is always given to current Student Staff students.The criteria for eligibility is that they have a 2011-2012 and a 2012-2013 FAFSA on record. Since July 1, 2013 is the start of a new fiscal year for both the Federal and State governments, it is necessary to have a new FAFSA on record.
How the Financial Aid Office Contacts Students
There is an expanding reliance on electronic communication among students, faculty and staff at Pikes Peak Community College. This is motivated by the convenience, speed, cost-effectiveness, and environmental advantages of using e-mail rather than printed communication. Because of this increasing reliance and acceptance of electronic communication, e-mail is considered an official means for communication within the College. If you have not yet activated your college assigned e-mail, please do so immediately. Many students forward their College assigned e-mail to their personal e-mail. The instructions to forward your email are included on the link above.
E-mail is an official means for communication for the financial aid office. The financial aid office may send correspondence exclusively through e-mail regarding important matters including awards, missing information, deadline dates and other pertinent information. Students are expected to check their college assigned e-mail on a frequent and consistent basis in order to stay current with FA related communications. The College requires that responses to inquiries made from external e-mail addresses be directed to the inquirer's official PPCC assigned e-mail address.
PPCC will assign each student an official College e-mail address as part of the Admissions acceptance process. This address is considered your official address that the financial aid office will use for e-mail communications.
- Expectations: Students are expected to appropriately manage their PPCC College mailboxes and to check their official College e-mail address on a frequent and consistent basis in order to stay current with financial aid communications. Prompt disposition of e-mail is necessary to manage storage space on the e-mail system.
All use of e-mail, including use for sensitive or confidential information, will be sent ONLY to the student's College assigned e-mail address. Confidentiality regarding student records is protected under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA).