All students are encouraged to apply for financial aid. Financial aid is awarded based on financial need, maintaining enrollment in a degree or diploma program, satisfactory academic progress, and the number of credit hours a student is enrolled in.
Students that have already earned a bachelor's degree or a graduate degree are not eligible for Pell grants or state grants but can receive Federal Work-Study funds and Federal Direct Loans.
Full-Time vs Part-Time
You do not need to be full-time in order to receive financial aid. Grant award amounts for students attending less than full-time (12 in-program credit hours) will be subject to proration. North Carolina Community College Grant (NCCCG) requires students to be enrolled in at least 15 in-program credit hours to qualify for the full amount of their award each semester. You must be actively attending or have already completed, a minimum of 6 in-program credit hours to receive a loan disbursement. State grants require students to be actively attending a minimum of 6 in-program credit hours.
Clock Hour Payments
If you are enrolled in the Cosmetology Diploma, Esthetics Technology Certificate, or Manicuring/Nail Technology Certificate programs, you will be paid financial aid based on the number of clock hours you complete in the program.
Clock-to-Credit Conversion Payments
If you are enrolled in a Clock-to-Credit Conversion Program, you will be paid on the basis of contact hours (not credit hours) using a conversion formula determined by the U.S. Department of Education.
How Enrollment Status Affects Aid
Enrollment status is one criterion in determining a student’s eligibility for aid. A student’s enrollment status is determined by the number of credit hours or contact hours in which a student is enrolled. For financial aid purposes, full-time enrollment status for all semesters, including summer, is 12 credit hours or 29 contact hours.
Credit Hour Enrollment Status
Enrollment status for students enrolled in degree programs or vocational programs that can lead to a degree is calculated based on credit hours. 12 or more credit hours is full-time, 9-11 credit hours is three-quarter-time, 6-8 credit hours is half-time, and 5 or fewer credit hours is less than half-time.
Contact Hour Enrollment Status
Enrollment status for students enrolled in vocational programs that typically lead to a diploma and not a degree program is based on contact hours instead of credit hours. Enrollment status for these students is computed by converting semester contact hours to credit hours for payment purposes using a formula determined by the federal government. Generally, 29 or more contact hours is full-time, 22-28 is three-quarter-time, 15-21 is half-time, and 14 or fewer contact hours is less than half-time. Based upon Federal Government regulations, the following diploma programs will have financial aid calculated based upon contact hours instead of credit hours:
- Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Technology
- Dental Assisting
- Medical Transcription
- Practical Nursing
How Grades Affect Aid Eligibility
According to federal regulations, students must maintain Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (FASAP) in order to maintain eligibility for financial aid. Grades are checked at the time a student’s FAFSA is received by the Financial Aid Office and at the end of each spring semester. If a student is not in compliance with the FASAP Policy, they will be placed in a suspended status for financial aid purposes. The student has the option to submit an appeal to the Appeals Committee between semesters to try and regain eligibility for aid.