Types of Financial Aid

There are two main types of aid:

Merit-based Aid

Merit-based Aid is given to students who have a special characteristic, skill, talent or ability. A scholarship is an example of merit-based aid. Merit-based aid is usually a gift that does not have to be paid back, although students who get merit aid sometimes have to promise to teach or perform some other service when they finish school.

Need-based Aid

Need-based Aid is given to students who can show they need financial assistance to pursue an education beyond high school. Most financial aid is awarded on the basis of need. There are three kinds of need-based aid:

Grants

Pell Grant and FSEOG

Pell Grants and the Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) subsidies the U.S. federal government provided for students who need it to pay for college. These grants are limited to students with financial need, who have not earned their first bachelor’s degree, or who are enrolled in certain post-baccalaureate programs, through participating institutions. These types of grant money does not have to be paid back.

MCC Grant

The MCC grant is a need-based grant available to students who show financial need. This can be in combination with federal grants or on its own.  Each student is automatically considered for this Grant and no application or additional materials are required.  (*MCC Grant eligibility requires a minimum semester enrollment of 6 credits.  Note that enrollment requirements for other aid programs, Pell or federal loans for example, vary.  Students are always encouraged to discuss their aid package with the Financial Aid Office.)

Roberta B. Willis Scholarship

The Roberta B.  Willis Scholarship is a scholarship awarded annually to eligible need-based financial aid and need-based merit students. Eligible Connecticut residents enrolled as undergraduates at Connecticut’s public and nonprofit, independent institutions of higher education may qualify. Recipients must complete a FAFSA and have a federal Expected Family Contribution (EFC) within the allowable range. The scholarship was formally known as Governors Scholarships.

Work study

Purpose and Program Design

Student employment plays an important role in the day-to-day functioning of MCC and participating community agencies/schools. Many departments rely on their student employees to operate at full potential, and the students themselves depend on the income and experience derived from their work-study employment to help cover the cost of attendance. Funds available through the federal government or other sources allows the development of on and off-campus part-time, paid positions for eligible students. Student employment has a positive impact on the lives of students as it exposes them to real-life job interviews, resume building and submission, workplace etiquette, and allows them to expand their network. Our student workers perform many tasks and responsibilities that are imperative to the well-functioning of our institution and community agencies/schools. Studies show that participation in work-study programs has a positive impact on academic performance and goal attainment: “Employment within student affairs divisions offers environments in which students can apply the knowledge they have gained, as well as acquire new competencies, helping them to build solid foundations for their futures.”– Athas, C., Oaks, D., Kennedy-Phillips, L. (2013). Student Employee Development in Student Affairs. Research and Practice in Assessment, 8(2), 55-68.

Student Eligibility

To be eligible to participate in the work-study program, a student must:

  • Apply for financial aid and demonstrate financial need for such employment, based on federal and institutional standards.
  • Apply and be admitted at Manchester Community College.
  • Complete and submit all required documentation to the Financial Aid Office.
  • Be making satisfactory academic progress.
  • Be matriculated in a financial-aid-eligible associate degree or certificate program.
  • Be enrolled at least half-time (six credits or more).
  • Be a citizen or eligible non-citizen of the United States.
  • Submit a Work Study Application with an attached resume to the Financial Aid Office.

Student Expectations

  • Work up to 17 hours a week, around the needs of the hiring department.  Students are not required to have prior employment experience.
  • Participate in at least one of the scheduled Career Services workshops, designed specifically for placed work-study students (i.e. Resume Development, Interviewing Skills, or Workplace Etiquette) or the Work-Study Information and Networking Sessions (typically offered in the fall).
  • Provide comments for the Student Employee Evaluation – to be completed with the supervisor each semester.
  • Use the online job posting system, College Central Network (CCN), and post/submit resume to review/apply for on-campus positions.
  • Log into the MCC student email account regularly to check for announcements with available Work Study positions.
  • Remain enrolled in at least six credits while participating in the work-study program to avoid penalties.
  • Complete any background check requirements.
  • Develop a formal, updated resume.
  • Students under financial aid warning or probation/waiver will meet with Financial Aid staff to discuss important policies resources for successful completion of the program and academic goals.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of a semester in the work-study program, students will:

  • Develop a sense of belonging to the college and campus community.
  • Work with others, including culturally and intellectually diverse peoples.
  • Think critically and develop problem-solving skills; and gain an appreciation for life-long learning.
  • Demonstrate leadership and show initiative as a contributing member of a mission-driven organization.
  • Develop the ability to multitask, follow instructions, and set goals.
  • Exhibit exemplary written and spoken communication skills.
  • Experience a formal job interview, and learn interview skills and resume preparation techniques.
  • Develop networking skills and establish professional relationships within the campus community or community service agency/school.  These may serve as sources of recommendation for future employment.

Federal Work Study and Student Application Process

Federal Work Study (FWS) funds are awarded to Manchester Community College students as part of their financial aid package once eligibility is determined and a position has been offered to the student.  In order to participate in the program, a student must submit a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and any and all verification requirements by the published deadlines, if they apply.  Eligibility for receiving work-study funds is based on financial need.  As a federal program, Federal Work Study is governed by a series of federal regulations. Students must visit the Financial Aid Office to determine eligibility for work study and complete a Work Study Application.  Similar to the FAFSA, the Work Study Application must be renewed every academic year.  Work study is not the same as grants that are disbursed into the student’s account based on eligibility.  The student must work in order to get paid.  Due to funding limitations, work-study positions are NOT guaranteed for all eligible students. Depending on the fund allocations received by the federal and state government, we may be able to offer other work-study funds.  If institutional funds are approved for work study, the program will follow the same guidelines as for the FWS program.
Work study placement process
Work study frequently asked questions

Student Direct Loans

The William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program provides low-interest loans for students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student’s education after high school. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education, rather than a bank or other financial institution.

Eligibility

We advise students to wait for a complete review of their eligibility for other forms of (free) financial aid before considering submitting a loan application. Because MCC is so affordable, we recommend that students explore other options, such as work-study or payment plans. We encourage our students to graduate from MCC as close to debt-free as possible. We do understand that sometimes loans are necessary. To be considered for a Direct Student Loan, all students must:

  • Have a complete FAFSA on file with MCC’s Financial Aid Office.
  • Be meeting the basic eligibility requirements
  • Enrolled in six credits hours or more
  • Be in good standing with other student loans
  • Fill out and submit the MCC loan application (in the Financial Aid section of the Form Depot).

The deadlines for submission of loan applications to the MCC Financial Aid Office are:

  • Fall semester: October 1
  • Spring semester: March 1

Entrance Interview

Once we receive your application, all students are required to attend an entrance interview before they are awarded a loan. During the interview, students will learn about:

Post Interview

After the entrance interview, students must complete the Master Promissory Note to finalize their loan.

All students with loans are required to verify their enrollment approximately three weeks after the start of the semester. You will be sent an enrollment verification form for completion.

PACT

PACT funding covers the gap between federal and state grants you receive, and community college tuition and mandatory fees.  You must meet certain criteria to be eligible for PACT.  You can learn more here: https://www.ct.edu/pact#start.

Scholarships

There are a range of scholarships available to students. The MCC Foundation offers scholarships throughout the academic year. Students are also encouraged to research and apply for other outside resources that may be available.

Aid for Summer and Winter Intersessions

Intersession financial aid availability varies from year-to-year. It is important to check with the Financial Aid Office or updates on this website for the availability of funds for the current year.

Summer 2021

The Pell grant is the only available source of financial aid for Summer 2021. In order to determine summer eligibility for the Pell grant, a student must complete the 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and be continuing in a matriculated degree program. Students should consult with the Financial Aid office to confirm eligibility for summer financial aid. Book credit funds may be available for students who qualify.

Students who did not enroll full time for the fall/spring semesters, and who will be registering for summer in classes applicable to their degree program, may be eligible for summer Pell.  Students who have used their full-time eligibility during fall and spring of 2020-2021, may also be eligible for additional Pell funds (this is called “Year-Round Pell”), conditional to at least half-time enrollment for the summer (six credits or more).  Students who could be eligible for Year-Round Pell should consult with the Financial Aid office to confirm eligibility.  Book credit funds may be available for students who qualify.

The following are key summer policies that may affect student eligibility. Other federal, state or institutional policies may apply. All students attempting to access financial aid for summer courses must become familiarized with the process and governing policies:

  • Students accessing in Year-Round Pell must remain enrolled for at least six credits to be eligible for summer aid. If such student withdraws from one or all of the summer courses, the student may become ineligible for the funds and will need to cover the balance out of pocket.
  • Failure to academically engage in classes when registered will result in a loss of financial aid. The student will be required to cover the cost of the course and materials out of pocket.
  • Students who are not pursuing a degree at Manchester Community College (i.e. taking courses at MCC to transfer to a different home institution) are not eligible for financial aid at MCC. They should contact their home school in order to discuss the possibility of receiving financial aid toward a course taken at the host school (MCC). Out-of-pocket payment will still be due at the time of registration.
  • Students attending MCC for the very first time during the summer will not have aid eligibility for that period. While they are welcome to enroll, students must plan to pay for summer courses out of pocket and may apply for financial aid for the following fall and spring semesters and possibly for future summer terms once history of attendance and academic engagement have been established.
  • Students taking summer courses not part of their MCC program, or solely to transfer the credits to another institution, will not be eligible for summer aid to cover those courses.
  • Students who graduate in Spring 2021, will not be eligible for summer aid since they will no longer be pursuing a degree at Manchester Community College. Once the academic major is removed, the student is considered “non-degree/non-matriculated.” Only students with declared majors will meet the requirement to be eligible.
  • Certain courses may have special fees that can increase the total charges for the summer. At times, the aid may not fully cover all tuition, fees and book charges. Students should plan accordingly. Any remaining balance that is not covered by financial aid will be the student’s responsibility.
  • If a student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress status for Spring 2021 is “Warning” or “Probation/Waiver,” the student must pass all classes in order to be eligible for summer aid. Any grade of F, W, or I in the spring will result in ineligibility for summer financial aid. If a student chooses to register for a summer course and fails to meet the satisfactory progress minimum requirement during the spring, the student will be responsible for covering all summer charges out of pocket.
  • Students who will have reached their maximum credit hours (outlined in the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy) for the summer are not eligible for summer aid.
  • If planning to withdraw, students must check with the Financial Aid Office to discuss any potential penalties. Withdrawal from courses is likely to result in a reduction or cancellation of the awarded funds for the summer, and students may be responsible for covering part or all summer charges out of pocket. If a student is withdrawing from a course but has another course beginning in a later session, the student may be asked to provide written notice of intent to return for the later session.
  • Summer disbursements are generally processed by late July.
  • Part-time enrollment in the summer may affect the cost of attendance or total student budget which can, in turn, affect the final award and disbursement amount. If a student’s aid is cancelled due to a change in eligibility, the student will be responsible for any charges or balances due to the college. Changes to students’ eligibility will appear in myCommNet. It is also imperative that students regularly review important emails in their student email account.

Full financial aid coverage is not guaranteed for every student. Feel free to contact the Financial Aid office at 860-512-3380 or finaid@mcc.commnet.edu to discuss eligibility.

Winter 2021-2022

Students may be eligible for aid for winter intersession courses. There will not be a separate or additional aid package for winter; rather, aid for winter courses will come from the student’s spring aid eligibility and award. All students attempting to access financial aid for winter courses must become familiarized with the process and the following governing policies to avoid penalties:

  • If students withdraw from any winter courses, they will be responsible for all winter charges. Financial Aid will NOT cover courses from which a student has withdrawn.
  • If students withdraw from all winter courses, they must provide written notification to Financial Aid of their intent to remain enrolled and engaged in spring term courses; otherwise, the student is considered to have withdrawn from the college and the eligibility for winter aid will need to be redetermined. This is likely to result in a bill the student will need to cover out-of-pocket.
  • Since the winter intersession is considered part of the spring aid period; all fees and winter book purchases will be charged against the spring award. Students must use book credit funds wisely and must be aware, depending on the amount used in the winter, they may run out of book funds for the spring.
  • Any winter balance not covered by spring financial aid must be paid in full at the time of registration. For instance, a full-time schedule in the spring may exhaust the student’s financial aid package, depending on their eligibility, and may not always cover the full winter/spring bill.
  • Students who are not pursuing a degree at Manchester Community College (i.e. taking courses at MCC to transfer to a different home institution) are not eligible for financial aid at MCC. Students should contact their home school in order to discuss the possibility of receiving a reimbursement through a consortium agreement at their home school. Out-of-pocket payment will still be due at the time of registration. Students should review the Concurrent Enrollment policy posted on our financial aid website.
  • Failure to engage in classes when registered will result in a loss of financial aid. The student will be required to cover the cost of the course and materials out-of-pocket. Students should review the academic engagement policy found here: https://www.manchestercc.edu/enrollment/registrar/.
  • Students not making satisfactory academic progress (per the financial aid Satisfactory Progress Policy) after the fall semester will be responsible for balances, as aid will be cancelled for winter/spring. Although students should never assume they will be automatically dropped for non-payment, non-payment drops can happen. Students are encouraged to check their registration status through MyCommNet regularly.
  • Students who reach their maximum credits hours after the fall are not eligible for winter/spring aid. The full Satisfactory Progress policy is posted on the MCC financial aid website.
  • Students who complete their degree requirements and graduate at the culmination of fall 2021, will not be eligible for winter/spring aid since they will no longer be pursuing a degree at Manchester Community College. Once the earned degree has been awarded, the student is considered “non-degree/non-matriculated.” Only students with declared majors, pursuing a degree at MCC, meet eligibility requirements for financial aid. Students are not able to declare an academic major during the winter intersession.
  • If a student’s aid is cancelled due to a change in eligibility, the student will be responsible for any charges or balances due to the college. Changes to students’ eligibility will appear in MyCommNet. It is also imperative that students regularly review important emails in their student email account.
  • Fees may apply for dropped/withdrawn courses. Consult with the Bursar’s office for applicable fees and refund policies.
  • Winter/spring disbursements are generally processed by late February.