Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute

Financial Aid FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Would I be eligible for financial aid?

Prejudging eligibility is nearly impossible. Family income is only one of many variables which effect each other in the formulas. Completing the FAFSA is the only way to determine eligibility.

How do I apply for financial aid?

A student should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). It is the only form needed to apply for all aid programs. The FAFSA is available at

Can I receive the Federal Pell Grant if I am in default on a student loan?

No, your default status must be cleared, and an official letter from the Department of Education stating your status must be provided.

Does CCC&TI offer federal student loans?

No, our institution does not participate in any federal loan program. If you are interested in a student loan, you must apply for a private or alternative loan. Learn more at:

Do I have to be a full-time student?

No, financial aid recipients do not have to be enrolled full-time.However, aid is prorated based on the number of credit hours enrolled.

When will I know if I qualify for aid?

After completing the FAFSA, students will receive an eligibility report called a Student Aid Report, or SAR, from the Department of Education. After the FAFSA is processed at the college, students will receive eligibility notification via official school email.

How is my aid amount determined?

The amount of your Pell Grant award is based on your eligibility index or expected family contribution (EFC), your dependency status, and whether you are classified as in-state or out-of-state.  Your actual disbursement, however, will depend on whether you are enrolled as a full-time, three-quarter, half-time or less than half-time student.

Status Hours
Full-time 12 or more credit hours
Three-quarter time 9-11 credit hours
Half-time 6-8 credit hours
Less than half-time 1-5 credit hours

The State of North Carolina uses a fifth enrollment status level known as Full-time Plus with 15 or more credit hours. This is taken into consideration when students have be awarded the North Carolina Community College Grant (NCCCG). The NCCCG is the only grant with a fifth enrollment level.

North Carolina state aid is not available for students enrolled less than half-time.

What information is needed to complete a FAFSA?

Your personal identifiable information, and data from the tax return two years prior from the aid year for both you and your parent(s), if applicable, are the two most important things. Using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool within the FAFSA will reduce the chances of your record being selected for verification. The Office of Financial Aid is always happy to help you, and your parent(s) if applicable, complete the FAFSA.

What if my two years prior income provided on the FAFSA is not accurate today?

A student must follow the instructions concerning income on the original application, but is given an opportunity to request special consideration from the Office of Financial Aid in a case where the financial circumstances have drastically changed since the prior-prior tax year. In some cases, allowances will be made for loss of income during the special consideration process. Allowances will not be made for a student who quit a job to return to school.

What kinds of help can I receive?

A financial aid offer usually includes federal and state grants, and/or scholarships.

What does it cost?

Overall cost depends on the particular academic program. All calculations of cost of education includes tuition and fees, books and supplies transportation, food, personal expenses, and miscellaneous expenses. Students are encouraged to use the Net Price Calculator.

Where can I get more information about financial aid programs you offer?

Details of all aid programs we administer are in the online catalog, and on the financial aid website under Financial Aid Services.

Is child care available?

We do offer a child care grant. To learn more go to the NC Childcare Grant Program webpage.

I'm 21 years old, single, and have my own apartment. Why do I have to use my parent's income to apply for financial aid?

Self-sufficiency alone is not a determining factor of dependency status. Learn more at:

I still live at home with my parents, but they won't give me the information I need to apply for aid. Can I be considered an independent student?

A parent's refusal to assist a student is not a condition to qualify a student for independent status. Learn more at:

May I receive financial aid for classes I audit?

No, classes for which a student receives an audit grade of "Y" cannot be included in one's the enrollment status calculation for financial aid purposes. Audited classes do not earn credit towards graduation.

Do independent study courses count for financial aid?

No, a student must be in a degree seeking program or an eligible certificate program

Do I automatically receive aid for a second semester or for a second year, or must I reapply?

Each FAFSA application covers a period from August to July. To receive aid for a second year, a students must complete a new FAFSA. The FAFSA is available beginning October 1 for the following aid year beginning with the fall semester.

What happens to my financial aid if I register for full-time and later withdraw from one or more of my classes?

Whatever enrollment status a student has at the census date (10% point) of the semester, is the enrollment status that financial aid recognizes for the semester. If a students reduce their registration status after the census date, the Federal Pell Grant would not be adjusted. Federal Pell Grant funds will be recalculated for the following reasons if a student withdraws from all courses after the census date. A Return of Title IV funds process will be completed. This involves taking back the percentage of aid that the student did not earn which could leave the student with a balance due to the Business Office.

If a percentage of the funds are earned and have not been disbursed, the student will receive a post-withdrawal disbursement for aid that could have been disbursed. The unearned portion, days the student was not enrolled in class, must be returned to the Department of Education. A database calculation is completed using the last day of attendance, enrollment status, and percentages of aid earned and unearned. If a student withdraws from all classes after the 60% date of the semester, the student will retain all Title IV aid received.

Please see our financial aid webpage for disclosures and regulatory requirements for Return of Title IV Aid.

To which Title IV and State Funds can return of funds calculations apply?

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants
  • Longleaf Commitment Grants
  • North Carolina Community College Grant
  • North Carolina Educational Lottery Scholarship
  • TEACH Grants

How does the school determine the student’s withdrawal date for return of funds calculations?

Financial aid will use the date that the instructor updates the student record with the last day of attendance.

What is the institution’s and the student’s responsibilities for the Return of Title IV funds?

The Return of Title IV funds policy requires the US Department of Education and the school to calculate the “earned” amount based on the last day of attendance of the semester. If the student stopped attending prior to the 60% point of the term, the student will be billed for the outstanding charges as a result of the Return of Title IV funds.

A school must return any unearned funds within 45 days or offer any post-withdrawal disbursement within 30 days of the date of the institution’s determination that the student withdrew.

If the Return of Title IV funds results in a balance due to the school, the student must pay their account in full before they are eligible to enroll in future classes. If the balance the student owes is $200 or less, then it may be possible for future financial aid funds to pay for that balance.

Is the Pell Grant available for the summer session?

The Pell Grant is available year round for all three semesters of the academic year. However, summer semester aid is evaluated and awarded based on the student’s enrollment status from the prior fall and spring terms.

Additional Questions?

Email us at, or call (828) 726-2713 to leave a message (you can expect a return call within 24 hours) or visit the office virtually by selecting : “CCC&TI Student Services Virtual Sign-In” below or copy and paste the following link into a new browser:

Student Services Virtual Sign In Form