What is Financial Aid?
- Financial Aid assists with educational expenses such as tuition, fees, living expenses, books, supplies, and transportation.
- Comes in many forms such as grants, loans, work-study, scholarships, college savings plans, Veteran Education Benefits, and tuition reimbursement.
- Requires the completion of a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine eligibility. The FAFSA application requires yearly renewal and eligibility is subject to change.
Who is eligible?
- Must have a High School Diploma or a General Education Development (GED) certificate
- Enrolled in a degree-seeking program (minimum 16 credit hours)
- Be a U.S citizen or eligible non-citizen (DACA and Dreamers not eligible)
- Have a valid Social Security number
- Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
- Not be in DEFAULT on a Federal loan or owe a repayment to the Department of Education
There are five critical steps in the financial aid process. Learn more about each below:
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the 1st critical step in apply for all financial assistance. The FAFSA is completed each academic year online at www.fafsa.gov by students and parents (if required). Watch our online video tutorials on how to create your Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID and complete the FAFSA!
Tutorial – First Time FAFSA Filers
The U.S. Department of Education will randomly select students to participate in a review process called Verification. If you are selected for verification you will be notified on your Student Aid Report (SAR) in addition to the communication you receive from PVCC. You must complete t his process prior to being considered for financial aid.
As part of the verification process you will be required to submit additional document to the financial aid office for review. Please log into your my.maricopa.edu student center and review your to-do list (located on the right side of the screen) to determine what documentation you are required to submit.
Sometimes during the verification process, the Office of Student Financial Assistance (SFA) will ask the student and/or their parent(s) for addition documentation. The need for these item(s) is not always known until the detailed verification process has begun.
You will receive a notification once all documents for verification have been received by our office, you will also receive a notification once the review of your verification has been completed successfully.
Please note that processing time frames for this process vary depending on time of year.
Peak Processing Time Frame (June/July/August/December/January)
- 9-14 business days
Non Peak Processing Time Frame (all other months)
- 5-7 business days
Once PVCC has received you FAFSA and processed any requested verification documents we will provide you with a financial aid award package. Your aid package may consist of grants, loans, work-study, and scholarships.
To review your award, go to my.maricopa.edu and click on “View Financial Aid”. If you were offered grants or scholarships (free money) they will be accepted on your behalf. If you were offered loans you will need to take additional action to accept these. Follow the directions provided in your award letter in the Student Center for accepting loans.
Excess aid (the amount remaining after all tuition, fees, book advance, and any other related charges are covered) will be disbursed through the Maricopa Student Refund process (MSRP).
Students must be enrolled in the minimum required hours as stated on their award letter in order to receive the financial aid offered.
Students should not expect their funds any earlier than the third week after their earliest class start, dependent upon their selected refund delivery method selected.
Students with late starting classes or overlapping classes from a prior term may have some (or all) of their grant and/or loan disbursements delayed further. Loans have multiple disbursements and first time borrowers have a 30 day delayed disbursement.
Federal Student Aid is given to students at the start of your classes with the assumption that you will attend school for the full semester, or the entire time you were scheduled to attend. When students withdraw from a class or all their classes there could be immediate impacts to their aid in addition to any long-term effects. Withdrawing from a class or all of your classes could result in you no longer being eligible for the aid you were given. If this happens you may have a debt that you will owe the college and/or federal government.
STOP before you DROP! Come see the financial aid office before dropping any classes to learn what the impacts to your aid may be.
Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
Federal regulations require a student to move toward the completion of a degree or certificate within an eligible program when receiving financial aid. Federal regulations state that Academic Progress Standards must include a review of all periods of enrollment, regardless of whether or not aid was received. Students will be evaluated using the standards described below. Failure to meet any of these minimum standards will result in loss of federal financial aid eligibility.
SAP is measured at the end of each semester: fall, spring and summer. Programs less than one year in length will be evaluated at the midpoint of the program. Non-standard sessions will be evaluated at the completion of the session
There are three measurements for SAP: (1) GPA; (2) Pace Rate (progress measurement), and (3) Maximum Timeframe. Failure to meet any of these standards will result in suspension of eligibility for financial aid. Visit the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) page for more details.