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Special Circumstances Financial Aid

? Contact the Financial Aid Office

Dependency Status

Are you a student under the age of 24 with an unusual living situation that make it impossible for you to have contact with your parents? Examples of unusual living situations are:
  • A parent is in jail/prison or in a mental health facility
  • You moved out of your parent’s home due to abusive home conditions when you were below 18 years of age
  • For the majority of your childhood you were raised by people other than your parents
  • Your parent has passed away and the other parent’s whereabouts are unknown
If your living situation is similar to those mentioned above, please contact our office to meet with a Financial Aid Advisor to discuss your options. Our advisors will let you know if an override of your dependency status can be performed. Dependency overrides allow otherwise dependent students to apply for financial aid as an independent student without parental information. All requests are reviewed by the Financial Aid Office but not all requests are granted.

Change in Income

Students and families sometimes experience changes in income and or resources (such as job loss, illness, etc.) during the application period or academic year. In such cases, the FAFSA or CADAA may not accurately reflect your family’s financial circumstances.  If this applies to you, notify the Financial Aid Office as early as possible.

Federal and state regulations require all applicants to report prior prior year income figures on their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or CA Dream Act Application (if AB540 or AB2000).  Regulations also allow the Financial Aid Office to revise the information on your financial aid application to reflect a reduction in income if documented special circumstances exist.  Examples of special circumstances include:  loss of student’s or parents’ income due to lay-off or termination of employment, separation, divorce, or other mitigating circumstances beyond your or your parents’ control.

If you are experiencing, or have experienced, documentable special circumstances like those described above, schedule a time to meet with a financial aid advisor in our office to discuss your options. You will be asked to submit documentation to support a change of income appeal.

Cost of Attendance Adjustments

Your financial aid eligibility is based on a standard cost of attendance, or student budget. We may be able to increase your budget—and your financial aid eligibility—if you incur expenses during the academic year that are higher than your standard financial aid budget. This is called a Cost of Attendance (COA) Adjustment.

Expenses that may be considered for a COA Adjustment include:
  • The cost of your rent and utilities that exceeds your housing budget
  • The cost of purchasing a computer (one time only)
  • The cost of uninsured medical, dental, or optical expenses that exceeds your personal expense allowance
  • The cost of transportation that exceeds your transportation budget
  • The cost of childcare expenses if you have documented dependents,
  • The cost of books and supplies that exceeds your books and supplies budget

Please contact our office and ask to meet with an advisor to discuss your eligibility for a cost of attendance adjustment.

Study Abroad and Financial Aid

If you enroll in a Glendale Community College sponsored study abroad program, you may apply for financial aid through the GCC Financial Aid Office. You will be considered for all aid programs (Federal Pell Grant, Cal Grant (California Residents and AB 540 students), CCPG (California Residents and AB 540 students), Scholarships and Federal Direct Loans) except Federal Work-Study.

Depending on the cost of your study abroad program, the financial aid you receive may or may not meet your full demonstrated financial need. To make up the gap between your aid and the cost of your program, you may want to apply for a private scholarship or an alternative loan. Please also contact the Study Abroad Office for more information about additional financial resources and payment deadlines.