Financial Aid Checklist 2011-2012
- Complete the 2011-2012 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which is available online at www.fafsa.gov.
- Request a Personal Identification Number (PIN) at the FAFSA website or at www.pin.ed.gov. The PIN is your electronic signature when completing the FAFSA online. You will need your PIN throughout the federal aid process as well as throughout your educational career. One of your parents will also need a PIN if you are considered a dependent student according to the FAFSA definition.
- Submit your FAFSA online to the FAFSA Processing Center. File the FAFSA as soon after January 1 as possible.
- You will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) in response to the FAFSA. The SAR will be sent to you electronically if you provided an e-mail address on your FAFSA. If you did not, the SAR will be sent to you via the mail. Call the FAFSA Processing Center at 1-800-433-3243 if you do not receive your SAR within four weeks of filing your FAFSA.
- Review your SAR for accuracy. This report contains the information you provided on your FAFSA. If the SAR is correct and you listed GCC as a college choice, keep it for your records. If it is incorrect or you did not list GCC as a college choice, you need to go back online to the FAFSA website and make the necessary corrections. You will also be asked to sign the form with your PIN. After all corrections are made and the form is signed, submit the form to the FAFSA Processing Center.
- Submit all requested documentation to the GCC Financial Aid Office. You will receive a letter(s) from the Financial Aid Office (pending file completion) after the FAFSA has been submitted telling you what is needed to complete your file. Your file is placed on hold until the additional information is received.
- Review your financial aid award to determine if the resources are adequate to meet your college expenses. If you are eligible for financial aid, you will receive an award letter from GCC listing the types and amounts of financial aid being offered. Read the award letter carefully and understand all of the information. If you are ineligible for need-based financial aid, you will receive a letter listing other funding options and alternatives. Students with complete files begin receiving financial aid awards in May. Your financial aid is not official until an award letter is received from the GCC Financial Aid Office.
- Calculate your educational costs (tuition, fees, books, room/board, travel and miscellaneous) to determine if your financial aid will be sufficient to meet your expenses. If you believe additional assistance of some type will be necessary after reviewing your financial aid award and expenses, you will need to investigate scholarships, grants and loans offered by outside professional, business and private organizations. Never begin attending college without knowing the cost of your education.
- Return your award proposal only if you want to decline your student loan or college work-study offer, you receive other aid not listed on your award letter or your enrollment status changes. Otherwise, keep your proposal for your records.
- Submit a work-study application and all required work-study documentation, if you have been awarded college work-study. The materials are mailed to the students who are participating in the College Work-Study Program in July and students receive their job placements in August.
- Apply for a student loan if you would like to participate in the loan program. All students who are applying for a student loan are required to submit a Master Promissory Note (loan application) online, return the Federal Direct Student Loan Request Form to the GCC Financial Aid Office and complete an online loan entrance interview. Student loan materials are mailed with your financial aid proposal. Visit www.studentloans.gov for additional information.
- Apply for a GCC scholarship by filling out and submitting a scholarship application to the GCC Financial Aid Office. Applications can be found online at www.gogebic.edu by clicking on Financial Aid.
- Promptly notify the financial aid office of any outside or private scholarship, grant, or other types of student aid you have received or expect to receive.
- Investigate the many financial aid resources available for college. Check with your school and local libraries, local businesses and civic organizations, and your parents’ employer(s). Check useful free resources on the Web, such as:
- Check the following sources to verify the legitimacy of any financial aid consultants or search services you may use or hire and for tips on avoiding scholarship scams:
- Apply early…the application process can take six to eight weeks. Financial aid is awarded on an annual basis so you must reapply every year.
- Call the GCC Financial Aid Office if you have any questions regarding your financial aid file. The telephone number is (906) 932-4231, ext. 206.
Students who have attended GCC in the past may need to appeal their financial aid status in order to be eligible for financial aid. Contact the GCC Financial Aid Office for information and the deadline date regarding this process.