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STEP 6: Keep Your Aid & Maintain Eligibility
Once you have filed your FAFSA, received your books, attended your first classes for the semester and received your financial aid, the next thing you will need to know is how to keep your financial aid.
Financial aid eligibility is regularly reviewed throughout the academic year. The financial aid awards you see in your award letter are based on the information you provided on your FAFSA. After payments are made, enrollment changes and academic performance may affect your future eligibility.
Satisfactory Academic Progress
Federal and state regulations require that all financial aid recipients meet specific academic standards called Satisfactory Academic Progress. Except for some private and institutional funds, all forms of financial aid (grants, loans and work-study) are affected by this policy. Satisfactory Academic Progress is determined at the end of each semester a student is enrolled in.
A student’s entire academic history at Front Range Community College is considered, including periods when financial aid was not received. The three components of Satisfactory Academic Progress are:
- Cumulative GPA: 2.0 or above
- Cumulative completion rate: 67% or above
- Maximum time frame for the degree or program: Students must complete a degree or certificate prior to attempting 150% of the number of credits needed for their degree or certificate.
See the CCCS Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.
During the scheduled add/drop period of each semester (typically the first two weeks of classes), you can make schedule adjustments. Classes that are dropped during this period do not remain on your permanent record, but may affect your Satisfactory Academic Progress. Changes in enrollment may also affect the amount of financial aid that is paid. For a review of how certain financial aid awards are affected by changes in enrollment see our web page on Disbursement of Funds.
Late Start Classes
If you are in a Late Start Class and that class is dropped after financial aid has paid, an adjustment for your aid received may be made. Whether an adjustment is made depends on if your resulting enrollment falls below the required number of credits necessary for a financial aid award as outlined in the Disbursement of Funds page.
A withdrawal is when a student changes his/her enrollment after the end of the add/drop period. These classes are part of the student record and are assigned a grade of “W” on the student's transcript. W, F, I, U, and Z grades are classified as incomplete credits and will affect the completion rate for the student. These grades will also affect the student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress.
When Financial Aid has to be Returned
Financial aid eligibility depends greatly on enrollment and attendance. If a student withdraws, drops, or is unable to successfully complete a course, Front Range Community College may be required to return a portion of any financial aid received. Timing of when these actions occur are significant to what actions our office is required to take. If financial aid is returned, this may result in a student owing a balance to Front Range Community College and the U.S. Department of Education.
No Appeals Process
This payback requirement is a federal regulation with which the Front Range Financial Aid Office must comply to continue to award and disburse federal financial aid. There is no appeals process; therefore, we strongly encourage students to think carefully about whether a complete withdrawal is the best course of action. After a Return of Funds calculation is completed, you will be sent detailed information on the results of the calculation.
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