Financial Aid
Definitions

Academic Year: This is a measure of the academic work to be accomplished by the student. Federal law and regulations set minimum standards for the purpose of determining student financial aid awards. Term schools must have an academic year that is at least two semesters in length and must include at least 30 weeks of instructional time

Assets: Savings and checking accounts, business value, stocks, bonds, real estate, and trust funds. Cars are not considered assets, nor are possessions such as stamp collections or musical instruments. Do not include your home, family farm, or business if you have less than 100 employees.

Aid: Financial assistance to help meet educational costs.

Award Year: The award year begins on July 1st of one year and extends to June 30th of the next year. Funding for the Federal Pell Grant and campus-based programs is provided on the basis of the award year. Thus, a student is paid out of funds designated for a particular award year, such as the 2011-2012 award year.

Base Year: For need analysis purposes, the base year is the calendar year preceding the award year. For instance, 2010 is the base year for the 2011-2012 award year.

Central Processing Systems (CPS): The department’s processing facility for application data. The CPS receives student information from the FAFSA processors, calculates the student’s official EFC, and returns the student’s information to the FAFSA processor, which prints the Student Aid Report.

Cost of Attendance (COA): The total amount it costs a student to go to school. It is usually expressed as a yearly figure and is determined using rules established by law. The COA includes tuition, fees, on-campus room and board (or standard housing and food allowances for off-campus students), and allowances for books, supplies, transportation, loan fees, and if applicable, dependent care, costs related to a disability, and miscellaneous expenses, including an allowance for the rental or purchase of a personal computer. For students attending less than half time, the COA includes only tuition and fees and an allowance for books, supplies, transportation, and dependent care expenses. Talk to the financial aid administrator at the school you are planning to attend if you have any unusual expenses that may affect your cost of education or your ability to pay the cost.

Campus-based programs: Federal Perkins Loans, Federal Work-Study, and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG): These programs are called “campus-based” because they are administered by the financial aid administrator at the school. These three programs are based on need, and your student aid package may contain aid from one or more of these programs.

Compliance Statement: CNCC is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. In compliance with state and federal laws and institutional policy, CNCC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, or age.

Default: Failure to repay a loan according to the terms agreed to when your signed a promissory note. Students in default are not eligible for financial aid at any institution.

Direct Loan: Student Stafford Loan money borrowed directly from the Federal Government.

Financial Need: The difference between student’s cost of attendance and the expected family contribution and other resources available to students for attending school.

Financial Aid Package: The total amount of financial aid (federal and nonfederal) a student receives. The financial aid administrator at a postsecondary institution combines various forms of aid into a "package" to help meet a student's need. Using available resources to give each student the best possible package of aid is one of the aid administrator's major responsibilities. Because funds are often limited, a financial aid package might fall short of the amount a student is eligible for. Also, the amount of federal student aid in a financial aid package is affected by other sources of aid received (scholarships, state aid, etc.)

Full Time: At schools measuring progress in credit hours and semesters, “full time” is at least twelve (12) semester hours.

GPA: Grade point average.

Grant: Non-repayable financial aid award, gift aid.

Half time: At schools measuring progress in credit hours and semesters, "half time" is at least six semester hours.

Need Analysis: The process of analyzing the household and financial information on the student’s financial aid application and calculating the amount the family can be expected to contribute to educational costs. For the student financial aid program, the need analysis system is defined by law and results in a number known as the Expected Family Contribution (EFC).

Promissory Note: The binding legal document you sign when you get a student loan. It lists the conditions under which you're borrowing and the terms under which you agree to pay back the loan. It will include information on how interest is calculated and what the deferment and cancellation provisions are. It's very important to read and save this document because you'll need to refer to it later when you begin repaying your loan.

Regular Student: One who is enrolled in an institution to obtain a degree or certificate. Generally, to receive aid from the programs listed on this website, you must be a regular student.

Resources: Other student aid that must be taken into account to prevent an over-award in the campus-based programs, as defined in the regulations for the campus-based program.

Satisfactory Academic Progress: To be eligible to receive federal student aid, you must maintain satisfactory academic progress toward a degree or certificate. You must meet your school's written standard of satisfactory progress.

Selective Service Registration: If required by law, you must register, or arrange to register, with the Selective Service to receive federal student aid. The requirement to register applies to males who were born on or after January 1, 1960, are at least 18 years old, and are not currently on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces. (Citizens of the Federated State of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Republic of Palau are exempt from registering.)

Self-Help: Self-help awards consist of long-term student loans and part-time employment. All students are expected to make a commitment, from both current and future earnings, to the financing of their education.

Statement of Educational Purpose: A certification that Federal Title IV Higher Education Act Funds will be used solely for educational expenses. This statement is included in the FAFSA, as well as the CNCC Student Information Form.

Student Aid Report (SAR): The federal “out-put document” made available online by a FAFSA processor. The SAR contains the family’s financial and other information as reported by the student on the financial aid application. The student’s eligibility for aid is indicated by the EFC printed on the front of the SAR.