Financial aid is a general term for different types of money designed to help students pay for their educational costs. There are grants, work-study, loans, scholarships, and the Board of Governor’s Fee Waiver (BOGW).
You can apply for financial aid using the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) website www.fafsa.ed.gov or CA Dream Act at: https://dream.csac.ca.gov/ . Scholarships require separate applications and can be found at: http://westvalley.edu/services/financialaid/scholarships.html
The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) comes from the information you provided on the FAFSA. It is the amount of money the student /family is responsible for contributing toward the student’s educational costs for one year. It is used by financial aid offices to help determine eligibility for financial aid.
Registration is a way our government keeps a list of names of men from which to draw in case of a national emergency requiring rapid expansion of our Armed Forces. By registering all young men, the Selective Service ensures that a future draft will be fair and equitable. All male applicants for financial aid must register with the selective service between the ages of 18 and 25. For more information, visit: www.sss.gov
You can find a glossary of commonly used Financial Aid terms/ acronyms at: https://studentaid.ed.gov/glossary
EVERY YEAR. The FAFSA becomes available every January 1 for the next school year. Example: Apply January 1, 2015 if you want to go to college anytime between July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016.
Students should submit their FAFSA within the January 1st - March 2nd priority filing dates to be considered for Cal Grant; however, we will accept applications throughout the year.
To qualify you must have AB540 status. Assembly Bill (AB) 540 qualifications:
The deadline to apply for Cal Grant is March 2. You must submit two forms: a complete FAFSA or CA Dream Act application and a GPA verification form [If you have attended West Valley College and completed a total of 16 units, your GPA gets automatically sent]. For more information, visit: http://www.csac.ca.gov/.
You can get personal help by visiting our Financial Aid Office. Our staff can help you with specific questions or you may sign up for a workshop. You can sign up by calling us at 408-741-2024 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The FAFSA is just the first step. The financial aid office should receive your electronic FAFSA from the US Department of Education within two weeks. Log on to the WVCPortal and check your Financial Aid Application Status. The WVCPortal tells you what forms that you need to submit to our office.
If there are no forms listed as “Missing” then you must confirm with the financial aid office that your file is complete. Your funds will be transmitted to you on the scheduled disbursement dates. You may view the scheduled disbursement dates at: http://westvalley.edu/services/financialaid/calendar.html
How to locate the status of your financial aid application online:
No, everything is online. You must check your financial aid status frequently in WVCPortal at: www.westvalley.edu.
There is not a clear-cut income limit. The financial aid process looks at many different variables besides income to determine eligibility. The only way to know if you are eligible is to complete the FAFSA.
Effective July 1, 2012, new students who enroll in a program of study must have a high school diploma, GED or its equivalent in order to be eligible for financial aid. Students who completed a home schooling curriculum are considered to have received a high school diploma or its equivalent. Students no longer have the option of becoming eligible for federal student aid by passing an approved Ability to Benefit test or completing at least six credit hours of post-secondary education.
However, students who were enrolled in an eligible educational program of study or qualified for financial aid (prior to July 1, 2012) by passing the ATB test or completing 6 degree applicable credit hours will continue to be eligible for aid due to a grandfathering clause.
If a student did not receive a high school diploma or its equivalent, you can still be considered for the Board of Governor’s Fee Waiver and scholarships.
We can consider you for the Board of Governor’s Fee Waiver, but not for federal and other state aid. Federal and state aid is reserved for students who are pursuing a college degree or certificate.
International Students are not eligible for federal or state aid.
You may be eligible for the Board of Governor’s Fee Waiver, Federal Work Study (FWS) and/or a Student Loan. You will need to submit a Financial Aid Appeal in order to request FWS and/or Student Loans. Only one year of eligibility will be approved through the appeal process.
Students must meet the below requirements each semester.
You are on warning/disqualification because you failed to meet the Financial Aid’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements. The first time it occurs you will be placed on “Warning” status and the second consecutive semester that the SAP is not met, you would be “Disqualified” from receiving most types of Financial Aid. For more information, visit: http://westvalley.edu/services/financialaid/progress.html
If you drop all of your units while receiving financial aid, you may be required to repay a portion of the funds. The repayment amount will be determined after the add/drop period has ended. Students should periodically view there WVC Portal for any payment notices. Visit the Financial Aid office to consult an Advisor on how this may affect your Financial Aid.
Yes, you can change your major while receiving financial aid. However, students are required to declare a degree or certificate or transfer program with the Admissions & Records or Financial Aid office in person. Students must complete their educational objective (graduation, transfer, certificate, etc.) by the time they have attempted 90 units or 150% of the declared program of study. Consult a counselor or the Transfer Center to decide as early as possible on a major.
Winter and Spring semester units are combined to determine Spring disbursements. Students may qualify for Financial Aid in the summer depending on the number of units and if they have any Financial Aid remaining from the preceding award year.
Financial Aid considers “full-time” status as 12.0 units or more for all semesters (Fall, Spring & Summer).
You DO NOT have to be full-time student to receive Financial Aid, however, some financial aid programs have specific unit requirements. For more information, contact the Financial Aid office at: 408-741-2024 or email@example.com
The BOGW covers the $46 per unit enrollment fee and gives you a discount on the parking permit for the year that you apply. Yes, you will receive an automatic refund for your enrollment. Refunds are calculated and disbursed in approximately 2-4 weeks. See the Admissions & Records office for the parking fee reimbursement.
Out of state residents may be eligible for Federal aid. Any aid that is received can be used toward the $250 per unit enrollment and tuition fees. For example, a student who is eligible for the maximum Pell Grant (EFC = 0) and enrolled for 12 units will receive four payments equaling to $5775.
This can be due to many variables: change in income, lower-unit enrollment, completion date of FAFSA, etc. Visit our office for a more detailed explanation.
You can view our regular disbursement schedule online. See the Financial Aid Calendar on our website. Pell Grant and Loans will be divided into four disbursements per year, two disbursements in the Fall semester in increments of 50% and two disbursements in the Spring semester in increments of 50%.
Your disbursement will be adjusted to reflect the number of units in which you are enrolled (75% for 3/4-time, 50% for half-time, and you may have eligibility for less than half-time). For example, if your award letter states your total Pell Grant award is $5730 and you are a full time student then you can refer to the chart below.
No, your disbursement will not reflect the waitlist classes. Your disbursement will only include the units you are currently enrolled in, however, if you are added to the class then your second disbursement will reflect the update.
Your second disbursement may reflect late start classes if enrolled and starts by specific dates.
May include payment for late start Fall classes if enrolled by October 27 and starts by November 6.
May include payment for late start Spring classes if enrolled by March 23 and starts by April 2.
The only financial aid you can be considered for while in default on a student loan is the BOG Fee Waiver and scholarships.
Each student is considered for aid based upon their personal and financial information on the FAFSA.
Yes and No! If you are attending two California community colleges at the same time, you can receive a BOG Fee Waiver at both colleges but federal or state financial aid can only be received at one college for the same enrollment period. However, if you transfer from one college to another college during the year, you can add the new school to your FAFSA to be considered for additional aid. Students must notify the Financial Aid office of your transfer.
Yes, students can be paid for the combined units if the classes are taken at West Valley College and Mission College. If you are attending another college different than Mission and West Valley College you must contact the financial aid office at the college where you are receiving your financial aid.
Grants and scholarships are generally not taxable if you are pursuing a degree at an eligible educational institution and the total does not exceed your expenses. Contact the Internal Revenue Service for more information or read IRS publication 970, click here to download and print the brochure.
Yes. Any money received as the result of work is considered taxable income. You will be asked to file a withholding form (W-4) and you will receive a statement of income and taxes withheld (W-2) each calendar year.
Yes, you must include your parents’ income information until you turn 24 years old or based on how you answer the FAFSA questions.
The federal definition of an independent student is based on how you answer the FAFSA questions.
However, in unusual circumstances, a student may be considered independent if a compelling case can be made to override the dependent status. A Professional Judgment for Dependency Override must be completed and submitted for review. Please visit the Financial Aid office for more information.
In some unusual cases we can override the need for parents’ information. A Professional Judgment for Dependency Override must be completed and submitted for review. Please visit the Financial Aid office for more information.
The parent you lived with most during the last year. If you didn’t live with one parent more than the other, then the parent who provided the most support in the last year or, the parent who most recently provided support.
Yes, you still have to report their personal and financial information until you meet the federal criteria for an independent student. Please remember to convert their income information into U.S. dollars. If your parents do not have social security numbers enter all zeroes (000-00-0000) for that question on the FAFSA.
College student records are private and are protected by Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). A “Consent of Release” form allows the Financial Aid office to disclose information to whomever you designate. The consent of release form is available upon request for students to sign and submit to the Financial Aid office in person.
If you paid to get your taxes done you can contact your tax preparer to obtain a duplicate copy or you may contact the IRS at http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Get-Transcript to get a free copy.
Instructions to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool:
You may be able to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to transfer your tax information from the IRS to your FAFSA.
Important Notice: If you are unable to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool and you are selected for verification, you will need to order an official tax return transcript from the IRS.
Yes. When filling out the FAFSA, please remember to indicate you will not file taxes and report your total earnings for the year. However, if you were required to file a tax return but didn’t, you will need to file it before your application can be completed.
A scholarship is money donated from an individual or company designed to assist students in obtaining their education goals. Like a grant, scholarships do not require repayment. However, they often require a separate application. At WVC, scholarships are posted on our website at: http://westvalley.edu/services/financialaid/scholarships.html. Scholarships have various deadlines, so be sure to check frequently and be aware of when the applications are due.
No, the purpose of financial aid is to supplement your income for educational purposes.
Undergraduate students are eligible to receive Pell Grant for up to 12 full time semesters or 600%. This applies to all students regardless of when they received their first Pell Grant. You can monitor your Lifetime Eligibility Used for the federal Pell Grant by going to the Web site www.nslds.ed.gov
For example, if your 2013-14 Pell Grant award was $5645 and: