Financial Aid Handbook

Once the student’s financial aid eligibility is established, a “package” of aid is provided which may be a combination of grants, tuition credits, work-study, and loan funds. Grant eligibility is based on the number of matriculated units for which a student is enrolled in at the time of disbursement.

Full-time is considered 12 or more units per semester; Three-quarter time is considered 9-11½ units; Half-time is considered 6-8½ units per semester; Less-than half-time is 1-5½ units per semester. Federal Pell Grants are scheduled for payment once a semester. Federal Work-Study is paid twice a month based on payroll information. Loans are disbursed twice per loan period (period of enrollment for which your loan covers).

Funding Estimate (Award Letter)

Once a student’s financial aid package is processed, they will receive a text message from Campus IVy advising them of their award. Most financial aid programs offered at Pacific College. do not require the student to accept the awards. Grants and scholarships are assumed to be accepted by the student and will be appropriately disbursed during the semesters for which the student enrolls and is eligible. Student loans and Federal Work Study have additional processes beyond the packaging and posting of the awards, so students should contact their college Financial Aid Office for additional information on these types of aid programs.

Students may receive text notifications of revisions to their original Award Offer throughout the academic year. The revisions may reflect additional fees or allowances added to the Cost of Attendance, educational resources which must be accounted for, semesters of enrollment (partial year vs. full year and vice versa) changes, and additions or deletions of specific awards.

Special Circumstances

In certain cases, a family’s situation can change because of:

  • Death in the family
  • Separation or divorce
  • Loss of employment or other income
  • Loss of non-taxable income or benefits

If you encounter circumstances similar to the ones above, contact your Financial Aid Office to discuss a professional judgment.

Financial Aid Refund/Disbursement

Disbursement dates and deadlines are determined by Federal, State, College and/or institutional regulations and policies. The College usually disburses funds 3 weeks after classes begin. Students who are new to Pacific College will receive information by mail and e-mail from BankMobile regarding the process to select their refund preference. For more information about BankMobile, visit this link: .

Change of Enrollment Status

Colleges must review disbursement of funds to students each enrollment period to determine if students have received overpayments. If you did not attend any of your classes prior to the first day of instruction, and were dropped by the instructor after you already received financial aid funds, you will have to repay all of the funds you received. If you received a disbursement and then drop units, you may be subject to repayment of some or all of the funds you received.

Example: You were enrolled in 12 units (full-time) at the beginning of the semester and received your first disbursement for $1,000. You then drop 9 units and remain in 3 units (less-than half-time). The disbursement for less-than half-time enrollment is $432. You are overpaid $568 and you must repay this amount before receiving any future financial aid.

Return to Title IV (R2T4)

Students who receive federal financial aid and then withdraw from ALL approved classes at the school may have to repay some or all of the federal funds they received. This also applies to students enrolled at more than one campus.

A student’s eligibility for financial aid is based upon enrollment. The Higher Education Amendment of 1998 governs the Return to Title IV Funds Policy for a student who completely withdraws from a period of enrollment (i.e., semester). A student who receives federal financial aid and then withdraws to less than one financial aid eligible unit is considered withdrawn for R2T4 purposes and may have to repay some or all of the federal funds received. R2T4 rules indicate that during the initial 60% of the semester a student “earns” aid in direct proportion to his/her enrollment. The percentage of time the student remains enrolled is the percentage of aid for that period of enrollment. A student who remains enrolled beyond the 60% point of the semester earns all aid disbursed for the period. “Unearned” aid is the amount of federal financial aid disbursed that exceeds the amount the student has earned. Unearned aid other than Federal Work-Study may be subject to repayment.

If R2T4 calculations determine that a student owes a payment, the student will be notified by the Student Account Office. Unpaid overpayments will be reported to the US Department of Education for collection. Students should contact the Financial Aid Office before withdrawing from all of their classes to understand the implications of their actions.

Students who withdraw prior to receiving the disbursement may be eligible for a post withdrawal disbursement.

Student Responsibilities:

Students must take responsibilities for:

  1. Checking their email on a regular basis. All official communication will be done through this website.
  2. Submitting all financial aid applications and requested documents by specified deadlines.
  3. Having a valid Social Security Number (SSN) on file in the Registrar’s Office for the purpose of processing and reporting federal aid and most state aid (this does not apply to California Dream Act applicants).
  4. Enrolling in an eligible program which is defined as a Certificate, an associate degree (AA/AS), baccalaureate degree, a master’s degree or doctorate program.
  5. Maintaining Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards.
  6. Completing all financial aid forms ACCURATELY AND COMPLETELY. If this is not done, aid could be delayed. Errors must be corrected before any financial aid can be disbursed.
  7. Reading and understanding all financial aid forms and information. We advise students to retain copies of all documents submitted.
  8. Notifying the appropriate entity (college, lender, California Student Aid Commission, US Department of Education, HESC, etc.) of changes in your name, address, school enrollment status, or transfer to another college.
  9. Dropping or withdrawing from classes for which you are no longer attending and actively participating.
  10. Repaying financial aid funds if determined to be ineligible to receive funds for any reason (i.e. Return to Title IV, overpayments, and over-awards).
  11. Providing accurate information. Intentional misreporting of information on application forms for financial aid is a violation of the law and is considered a criminal offense subject to penalties under the US Criminal Code, and the denial of the student’s application. Additionally, regulations require that all cases of suspected fraud emanating from misrepresentation be reported to the US Department of Education Office of Inspector General (OIG).

Satisfactory Academic Program (SAP) Policy

In accordance with the Higher Education Act of 1965, These standards apply to all students who apply for and receive financial aid from the programs listed below.

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Work Study (FWS)
  • Federal Direct (student) and PLUS (parent) Loan

Current and previous coursework earned at any Pacific College Campus will be reviewed for compliance with the standards put forth in this policy. Units reported on transcripts submitted to Admissions may be evaluated for SAP purposes.

To meet satisfactory academic progress standards, students must:

  • Maintain a 2.0 or higher cumulative GPA (Grade Point Average)
  • Successfully complete a minimum of 66.5% of cumulative units attempted:
    • Entries recorded in the student’s academic record as Fail (F), Incomplete (INC), No Pass (NP), No Credit (NC or NCR), Excused withdrawal (EW), and/or Withdrawal (W) are not considered to be successfully completed and must be less than 33% of the cumulative units attempted.
  • Have attempted less than 150% of the number of units required of the student’s academic program.
    • Remedial ESL and other remedial classes classified as “Basic Skills” are excluded from the unit limit when determining attempted units. Students who have already earned an associate or higher degree outside the LACCD (excluding students enrolled under the BA/BS Dental Hygiene program at West Los Angeles College) will not need to follow the petition process.
    • In Progress (IP) grades count as attempted units in the maximum time frame only. They do not affect cumulative grade point average in the qualitative measure nor are they included as completed units in the quantitative measure.

Application of Standards

Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial aid applicants will be determined at the end of each payment period/semester.

Maximum Time Length

Students need to complete their objective before reaching the 150% limit. Exceptions may be made when the requirements of a student’s objective cause the student to exceed the maximum time limit.

Consortium Courses

  • All classes through Pacific College will be included when reviewing satisfactory academic progress.
  • For students aided under a Consortium Agreement will be counted during satisfactory academic progress review.


A student who attempts to obtain financial aid by fraudulent means will be suspended from financial aid for unsatisfactory conduct. The college will report such instances to local law enforcement agencies, HESC and to the US Department of Education Office of Inspector General. Restitution of any financial aid received in such manner will be required.


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) protects the privacy of student records by requiring prior written consent before disclosing personally identifiable non-directory information to a third party. It applies to colleges and universities that receive funding from the federal government.


1098Ts are provided by the Student Accounts Office. (This is NOT AVAILABLE in the Financial Aid Office)

Determining Your Financial Need

How are Need and Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Determined?

Most financial aid awards are based on demonstrated financial need, which is the difference between the Cost of Attendance (COA) and the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). COA – EFC = Need. Your EFC is determined from the information you reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). All awards are subject to availability of funds.

How is Cost of Attendance Established?

Standardized budgets (COA) have been established by each program. Students with similar circumstances will receive the same allowances for tuitions and fees, room and board, books, supplies, transportations, and personal expenses.

Adjustments may be made on an exception basis to a student’s COA for certain documented expenses. For example, if you are paying for child care during the academic year, please contact your college’s Financial Aid Office to request an adjustment.

How is Financial Aid Awarded?

Your financial aid eligibility is determined using Federal Methodology (for FAFSA applicants). Awards can consist of a combination of grants, work-study, scholarships and/or loans.