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What Happens Next

? Contact the Financial Aid Office

Qualifying for Aid

The financial aid office calculates your eligibility for aid. There are many aid programs available to GCC students although not every student is eligible for every program. You must reapply for each year you need financial aid. You will be able to view the results of your application on your SAR, or student aid report, sent to you after your FAFSA or CADAA application is complete. Please review your SAR carefully for errors and omissions. Contact us if you determine you have made an error that needs correcting. We can guide you through the process.

The results of your FAFSA or the California Dream Act Application will be used by the Financial Aid Office to determine your eligibility. Need for financial aid is calculated by determining your family’s ability to contribute and subtracting that from your estimated cost of attending GCC. If you have calculated need, you will be offered need-based aid which comes in the form of grants and a fee waiver. Loans are available to most students irrespective of need. See loan section for more details.

Verifying Your Data

You might see a note on your Student Aid Report saying you’ve been selected for verification; or GCC may contact you to inform you that you’ve been selected. Verification is the process the federal government uses to confirm that the data reported on your FAFSA is accurate. GCC has the authority to contact you for documentation that supports the information you reported.

If you’re selected for verification, don’t assume you’re being accused of doing anything wrong. All you need to do is provide the documentation GCC asks for—and be sure to do so by GCC deadlines, or you won’t be able to get financial aid.

If you used the Internal Revenue Service Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT) when filling out your FAFSA form, you may not have to verify your tax information. If you didn’t use the IRS DRT, or if you filed an amended tax return and used the IRS DRT, GCC may require you to submit a tax transcript as part of the verification process. You can find your tax transcript through the IRS’s Get Transcript service at irs.gov/transcript .

Your Cost of Attendance

Your college costs include more than tuition. The financial aid office will help determine your estimated cost of attending GCC for one year based on the information you enter on the FAFSA or CADAA application. When we build your budget, or cost of attendance, we allow for the following costs: tuition and mandatory fees, room and board whether you are living at home or away from home, books and supplies, transportation costs, and a modest personal expense allowance. Your cost of attendance may be adjusted, upon appeal, for other educationally related expenses that you may incur during your academic year. Please see special circumstances for more details. GCC provides a net price calculator that can help you determine your net costs after financial aid is applied to your account. This is a tool only, and your actual financial responsibility to GCC will be determined by the tuition office. View GCC estimated cost of attendance (pdf).

Helpful Tool:  Net Price Calculator

Award Notification

Once your financial aid file is complete, including any necessary documents we ask for, an advisor will review your information and calculate the aid you qualify for at GCC. You will be awarded all of the grant and fee waiver you are eligible for up to your calculated need. Loans can be used to cover your remaining costs and your family contribution. Your financial aid award is also called a financial aid package because it typically contains different types of aid from the many programs we have available. Once this process is done you will receive an Aid Award Notification via email directing you to MyGCC to review your award.

Students who apply for a Fee Waiver will receive a separate email indicating their eligibility, or they will receive an Aid Award Notification email stating their Fee Waiver eligibility.

Receiving  Your Funds

If your financial aid exceeds the amount of outstanding charges, a refund will be generated and a disbursement check issued by the college will be mailed to you.

CA College Promise Grant (CCPG, formerly known as BOG Fee Waiver)
This is a waiver of fees, not an actual cash payment that you receive as a check. However, students who pay their fees prior to receiving a CCPG will receive a refund from the Tuition Office.

Pell Grant, SEOG, Cal Grant, Student Success Grant
Federal and State grant funds are disbursed to you in the form of a check that is mailed to you according to the disbursement schedule referred to in your award notification email. After the first disbursement date of the semester, checks are issued on a weekly basis for late awards and award adjustments.

Federal Work-Study (FWS)
The FWS award on your award letter indicates that you are eligible for FWS and the maximum amount you may earn through work. The amount you actually receive will be based on the number of hours you work and your hourly rate of pay. Job opportunities, time sheets, and payroll information are available from Student Employment Services.

Student and Parent Loans
Once you meet all loan application requirements your information is electronically forwarded to the Department of Education. Then the department will electronically process the loan and send the monies to GCC. After verifying your eligibility to receive funds, the check is then mailed to you by the Tuition Office.

Scholarship Checks
Scholarships received by outside agencies are mailed to you by the Scholarship Office. Please note that receipt of an outside scholarship may affect your eligibility for other aid.

Real Estate Scholarship Checks
This scholarship's checks are mailed to students by the Financial Aid Office once we receive the necessary state funding each semester. Please note that receipt of an outside scholarship may affect your eligibility for other aid.

Americorps Checks
Submit your Americorps voucher to the Financial Aid Office. The voucher is processed and forwarded to the National Service Trust Corps in Washington, DC. Checks, when received, are mailed to students by the Tuition Office. Please note that receipt of an outside scholarship may affect your eligibility for other aid.

  View complete Award and Disbursement policy.

Other Things You Need to Know

If you withdraw from all of your classes before you have completed 60% of the semester, you will be required to repay some or all of the financial aid you have received for that semester. Please see our calendar for important dates.

You must reapply for financial aid each year.

Grants are generally disbursed to you by check. Work-study funds must be earned and are paid according to your hourly rate of pay and the number of hours you work. All CCPG awards are waivers of your enrollment and, in the case of CCPG A, half of your health fees. CCPGs are only disbursed as cash if you have already paid these fees and are eligible for a refund from the College.

Carefully read GCC’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy. You may lose eligibility if you do not successfully complete all of your courses, exceed the total number of units allowed for your degree/certificate/transfer program, or your cumulative GPA falls below 2.0.

If your family's financial circumstances change during the year, contact the Financial Aid Office. In some cases we can adjust your application information and you may be eligible for additional funds.
  • FATV Videos: What Happens Next

    • Award Notification

    • Eligibility

    • Verification

    • What is Cost of Attendance

    • What is the Net Price Calculator?