Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions


How do I apply for financial aid?

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You can complete this application online at

Do I need a PIN before filling out the FAFSA?

Yes, it will speed up the process of having your financial aid application processed to apply for the PIN prior to completing the FAFSA.

What is a PIN?

A PIN is your personal identification number.  It allows you to enter many of the U.S. Department of Education’s Web sites and view the personal information maintained about your accounts. The PIN will also serve as an electronic signature for various documents maintained by the U.S. Department of Education.

Do I have to apply every year?

Yes. Financial aid eligibility is based on data from the prior calendar year which may change from year to year.  You should complete the FAFSA, or renewal FAFSA, as soon as you complete your taxes each year and if possible prior to March 15th.

What is Roanoke-Chowan Community College’s school code?

Our federal school code is 008613.  You must enter the school code on your FAFSA for the Financial Aid Office to receive your FAFSA data.

Do I have to report my parent’s income information on my FAFSA?

For 2013-2014, to be considered independent for financial aid purposes you must be born before before 1/1/1990, married, working on a Master’s or Doctoral degree, currently serving on active duty, are a veteran, have a child that you support more than 50%, at any time since age 13 both parents deceased and you were in foster care/ward of the court, you are emancipated, or any time on or after July 1, 2010 did your high school/school district homeless liaison/emergency shelter/transitional housing program/homeless youth basic center determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless.

What if my parents refuse to give me their financial information?

If you are classified as a dependent student outlined on the FAFSA, you will be ineligible for financial aid without this information.

If my parents are separated or divorced, whose income is reported on the FAFSA?

The parent you live with should complete the FAFSA. If the parent you live with has remarried, you must also include the step-parent’s information. If you do not live with either parent, you should provide the one that provides financial support for you.


Do I have to attend college full-time to receive financial aid?

For most financial aid, you do not have to attend full-time. However, financial aid is prorated for less than full-time attendance.

What is a Student Aid Report (SAR)?

A Student Aid Report (SAR) is a document you will receive after your FAFSA is processed. Your SAR will list all of the answers you provided on your FAFSA. You should review these answers carefully to make sure they are correct.  If you need to make any corrections, you may make the corrections on the SAR and mail it back to the address provided, or you can go to and select “Make Corrections to a Processed FAFSA” from the FAFSA follow-up section.

What does EFC mean?

Your SAR will also contain your EFC (Expected Family Contribution), which measures your family’s financial strength, and is used to determine your eligibility for federal student aid. Your school will use this number to decide how much financial aid you are eligible to receive based on your school’s cost of attendance. If you did not provide electronic signatures or paper signature pages with your FAFSA, you must sign the SAR and mail it back to the address provided for final processing.

My SAR indicates it was selected for “verification.” What does that mean?

The federal government randomly selects approximately 30 % of all aid recipients for verification. This means the Financial Aid Office must verify the information you submitted on your FAFSA by collecting tax return transcripts and other documents to confirm the accuracy of your information.  The college will contact you by letter to inform you of what is needed.  You should submit all documents promptly to avoid delays in processing your application

What if my family’s financial situation changes after I apply for Financial Aid, or it differs from the tax return?

If you or your parents’ financial situation is different than what is listed on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you can request a Special Circumstance form from the Financial Aid Office. This form allows you to list how your situation has changed, and document these changes. Common changes are: a loss of employment, reduced employment, loss of untaxed income, or having one or more of your parents attending college. Please contact the Financial Aid for more information concerning a special circumstance.

How will I receive my financial aid refund?

Upon being awarded, you are eligible to charge your tuition, fees and books against your financial aid. Once all charges have been deducted from your award amount and your attendance has been verified, a check for any excess monies will be mailed to you. It is the policy of the Business Office that checks be mailed and not picked up. It is critical that your correct address be on file in the Registrar’s Office.

How does withdrawing from classes affect my financial aid?

Federal and State regulations require that students receiving financial aid maintain satisfactory academic progress. One requirement is that each student must complete at least 67% of the total cumulative credit hours attempted.  Therefore, withdrawals and failing grades will count against you.  Also, if you completely withdraw from the college before the 60% point of the semester, you may be required to return all or part of the aid awarded to you.

How does my academic performance affect my financial aid?

Withdraws, failing grades, and incompletes will count against you in maintaining satisfactory academic progress. You may view the SAP policy on the Financial Aid web site.


How can I regain financial aid eligibility if I am put on probation/terminated?

You may appeal the termination if you have extenuating circumstances that can be documented. You can pick up an Appeal Request at the Financial Aid Office. You may also pay out-of-pocket until you meet the SAP policy requirements.

What is LEU and how does it affect me?

LEU stands for Lifetime Eligibility Used.  Lifetime Eligibility Used is the percentage of financial aid you have received. You can only receive Pell Grant funding for 6 years which is equivalent to 12 full-time semesters.  The maximum amount you can receive each year is 100%.  Therefore, once you have received 600% you will no longer be eligible to receive Pell Grant at any institution. 

What is Unusual Enrollment?

Students who have received financial aid and withdraw from several institutions during the last three consecutive years may be selected for unusual enrollment patterns. To help prevent fraud and abuse in the federal programs, the U.S. Department of Education established a new regulation that required students with unusual enrollment patterns to provide documentable reasons for withdrawing from multiple institutions. In addition to providing a legitimate reason, the student must provide an official or unofficial transcript from each institution.

What is Federal Work Study?

The Federal Work Study program provides part-time employment for enrolled students with financial need, allowing students to earn money to help pay education expenses.  This is an excellent opportunity to gain work experience.

How do I apply for the Federal Work Study Program?

You must complete the work study application in the Financial Aid Office. If you are approved for the work study program, you will be notified.