Financial Aid FAQ
- If I receive a scholarship after I have already received my financial aid award, will I lose any other aid?
- I received my Federal Stafford Loan and I don't want to borrow the full amount. Can I ask for less?
- Do I need to include financial aid I have received as taxable income on my income tax return?
- What happens to my financial aid if I withdraw from school?
- My parents don't claim me on their tax return and they don't support me financially. Can I file my financial aid application as independent?
- I'm going to be married during the academic year. Can I fill out my Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as married now, since I will be in a few months?
- Will I lose my financial aid if I make bad grades?
If I receive a scholarship after I have already received my financial aid award, will I lose any other aid?
In accordance with federal regulations, each student who applies for aid is eligible for a certain amount of need based aid up to their financial need. If an outside scholarship results in your receiving more aid than your financial need, (See How Financial Aid Works for more information about financial need and how it is determined) you may lose other aid. This will depend upon the type of aid you are receiving. Check with your Financial Aid Counselor to find out what action is required.
Yes! When you complete your Federal Stafford Loan application, only request the amount you will need for the enrollment period. If you have already received the loan funds, contact your Financial Aid Counselor to find out what action is required. Your Financial Aid Counselor can help you make the needed adjustments.
Probably! Students who receive financial aid must report portions of their financial aid as taxable income on their income tax returns.
Since the amount you must report is contingent upon your college expenses (e.g., cost of your tuition, fees, books, and required equipment and supplies), you should keep a detailed record of you expenditures for tuition, fees, books, and required equipment and supplies. If you r4eport financial aid on your tax returns, be sure to list the same amount on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid as a Title IV Income Expenditure.
We suggest you consult the IRS, your income tax instruction booklet, the FAFSA instructions, and/or your personal tax advisor for more information.
Depending upon when you withdraw from school, you may be required to repay a portion or all of any aid you have received for the period of enrollment for which you were charged, since the funds you are designed to help you meet your living expenses for the entire period of enrollment. If possible, check with your Financial Aid Counselor before withdrawing from school.
My parents don't claim me on their tax return and they don't support me financially. Can I file my financial aid application as independent?
The Higher Education Act of 1965 (last Amended in 1992) established requirements for establishing independence. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you will be considered independent for financial aid purposes. If you do not answer yes to one of the following questions, you will be considered dependent and must include your parent(s) financial information when you file your FAFSA.
- Were you born before January 1, 1989?
- Are you a veteran of the US Armed Forces?
- Will you be enrolled in a graduated or professional program (beyond a bachelor's degree) in the current academic year?
- Are you married?
- Are you an orphan or ward of the court, or were you a ward of the court until age 18?
- Do you have legal dependents (other than a spouse) that fit the definition in the FAFSA Instructions?
If you believe there are special circumstances which mitigate your situation, check out the Special Circumstances section of How Financial Aid is Determined.
I'm going to be married during the academic year. Can I fill out my Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as married now, since I will be in a few months?
No. You must indicate your marital status as of the date you are completing the FAFSA. Federal regulations do not allow you to update your martial status once you have filed your FAFSA. It is sometimes beneficial for students to wait and file the FAFSA after you have married. Your Financial Aid Counselor can help you make that determination.
Yes. Pitt Community College has a Satisfactory Academic Progress policy which is required by federal law. This policy sets forth a qualitative (minimum GPA), quantitative standard (minimum numbers of hours you must complete each term), and maximum time frame for degree completion.