Financial Aid FAQs
What is financial assistance?
Financial assistance could cover school expenses, including tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and transportation. Financial Assistance is composed of four major categories, including: grants, work-study, loans and scholarships. Lean more at TYPES OF AID.
How do I apply?
A student should begin the financial assistance process by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.fafsa.gov. The FAFSA is the application form required for all federal, state and institutional aid.
When should I apply?
It is recommended that you apply early to increase the chances of receiving state and institutional aid. Every year the new FAFSA opens on October 1. Contact the Financial Assistance Office if you need assistance completing your FAFSA.
Do I have to reapply for financial aid every year?
Students must apply for financial aid every year. The FAFSA opens October 1 every year!
I don't think I qualify, should I even apply?
Yes, the FAFSA is a free application and even if you are not eligible for need based programs there are other sources of aid such as unsubsidized Stafford and PLUS loans that are available regardless of need.
What is a Pell Grant?
Pell Grants are need based awards that are that are awarded to student meeting certain criteria as determined by the FAFSA.
How do I apply for a state and institutional awards? Work-Study?
The FAFSA serves as the primary application for all federal, state, and institutional awards. To be considered for any state or institutional grant awards, students must have a FAFSA on file. Students interested in work-study can indicate interest in work-study by checking the appropriate box on the FAFSA. Checking the box does not commit you to accepting work-study or guarantee an award.
How long should it take to process my FAFSA?
The entire process could take 45 days from start to finish, depending on a number of factors.
How long will I know if I was selected for verification?
Students selected for verification will receive a Missing Items email upon receipt of their FAFSA. Students can also check the To Do list in the MyWNC Student Center. It is recommended students check their To Do list periodically after submitting the FAFSA.
What is a Cost of Attendance or Budget?
Every financial assistance student will be assigned a Cost of Attendance (COA). COA are developed by institution as a basis for awarding aid. The COA identifies the maximum amount of aid a student could receive. COA are unique to students based on their residency status, enrollment levels, and if there is specific program costs. The COA takes into account average tuition expenses, books, room and board, personal miscellaneous expenses, and transportation. The COA is not designed to reflect a students actual cost as student lifestyles vary, the COA sets an average for students in the WNC service area. The COA is not the actual cost or amount that would need to be paid to WNC to secure enrollment.
I turned in my verification, why has it not come off my "To Do" list?
Your To Do list item will not come off the moment you turn in your documents. A To-Do list item comes off when a Financial Aid Advisor processes your documents.
I'm 18 years old and I live on my own, why do I have to add my parent's information to my FAFSA?
Federal philosophy is that its the familys primary responsibility to assist with college expenses and the governments secondary responsibility. We realize this does not always seem fair but it is how our federal financial aid system is set up.
What is Satisfactory Academic Progress?
Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is the required standards that all financial aid students must achieve to continue receiving financial aid. To maintain SAP a student must maintain a 67% or higher cumulative completion rate, a 67% or higher semester completion rate, and maintain a minimum of a 2.0 cumulative GPA. Additionally if a student has attempted 90 credits or more, the student will have to fill out a Max Credit appeal.
How do I determine my award amount?
Students are notified of their awards via email in the form of an award letter. Award letters are also stored in the students MyWNC Student Center under the Communication Center. Additionally, students can view a real time award letter (Shopping Sheet) in their MyWNC under the View Financial Aid link.
Will Financial Assistance pay for my (insert class name) class?
Federal aid can pay for classes that are part of your declared degree/program. However, financial aid wont pay for classes if you re-attempt a class for the 3rd time, if the class does not fit your degree that you are currently seeking, or if you have not completed all required checklist items and your file is not complete.
Do I qualify for Summer financial assistance?
Summer financial assistance could depend on the students enrollment level for the summer term. The office will review your disbursement data from the prior Fall and Spring semesters, to determine your eligibility. You can learn more about receiving a Pell Grant during the summer under TYPES of AID .
Do I have to fill out a Loan Request Form every semester?
No, Loan Request Forms need to be completed every academic year. Academic years consists of Fall, Spring and Summer semesters. Note: Summer loans, for continuing loans borrowers, require a Loan Revision Request Form.
What if mine or my parents financial situation has changed?
The Financial Assistance Office recognizes that your circumstances can change. If you or your familys financial situation has changed, you are encouraged to contact the Financial Assistance Office.
Will I be dropped on the Tuition Due Date as I wait for financial assistance to process?
- Students who have been offered financial assistance, meaning you have received a Financial Aid Offer Letter and you can view your financial aid award in your MyWNC, are protected from the first enrollment cancellation.
- Students with disbursed financial assistance are protected from the second enrollment cancellation.
- Students with disbursed financial assistance are protected from the third enrollment cancellation.
- Students who still have outstanding checklist items or submitted paperwork after July 1 (Fall), December 1 (Spring), or May 1 (Summer) are encourage to set-up a payment plan or make payment.
When is disbursement?
WNC begins the disbursement process the week prior to the start of every semester. Disbursement/Refund jobs run regularly throughout the week prior to the start of classes and during the first 2 weeks of school. In general, beginning the 3rd week of school the disbursement/refund jobs run weekly throughout the semester. You are encouraged to learn more on the Disbursement/Refund Policy page.
How do I set-up direct deposit?
Set up your Direct Deposit online:
- Log in to your Student Center in MyWNC
- Scroll down to the Finances section.
- Click on Enroll in Direct Deposit (Link is on the left side).
- Click on Add Account.
- Enter your bank account information (including routing number).
- Once all information is entered and correct, click Save.
Why is my loan in 2 disbursements?
Federal regulation require that your loan is split into 2 disbursements. In general, loans will be divided equally between the Fall and Spring semester. One semester only loans will be divided into 2 disbursements, one at the beginning of the semester and the second one after the midpoint.
I am in high school. Can you tell me if I will be eligible for the Millennium Scholarship?
Millennium Scholarship eligibility is determined by your high school and the Governor Guinn Millennium Scholarship Program. You are encouraged to contact your high school counselor or visit the programs webpage at http://www.nevadatreasurer.gov/GGMS/GGMS_Home/ for more information about high school eligibility criteria.
Why is my Millennium Scholarship not showing up on my award letter?
- New Millennium Scholars:
- The most common reason your Millennium Scholarship is not showing up is likely because the Nevada State Treasurers Office is showing that you have not gone online and acknowledged your award.
- If you are positive you have acknowledged your award AND you are in a degree seeking program in 9 credits applicable to your declared program, there may be an error in the system. Contact the Financial Assistance Office in this case.
- All Millennium Scholars:
- You must be a degree seeking student.
- You must be enrolled in at least 9 credits that are applicable to your declared degree program.
- You must be maintaining your eligibility by having a 2.60 semester GPA of 2.60 up to 29 credits and a 2.75 GPA when you have 30 credits and beyond.
NOTE: Beginning for Fall 2020, all students regardless of credits earned, must maintain a 2.75 semester GPA.
I have the Millennium Scholarship. Why do I still owe money?
- The Millennium Scholarship covers a portion of the per credit fee. At community (or two year) colleges the scholarship pays $40 per credit, at state colleges it pays $60 per credit and at universities it pays $80 per credit. Therefore, if you are a Millennium Scholarship only student, the scholarship is only covering a portion of your fees.
- Example: 2020/2021 fees are $109.75 per credit. If you are in 15 credits, that is 15 x $109.75 = $1646.25. The Millennium pays $40 per credit so $40 x 15 = $600. You would therefore be responsible to pay the $1046.25 difference which also doesnt include other course or campus-based fees.
Will I get dropped if I have the Millennium Scholarship only?
Students who have anticipated aid are protected from the first enrollment cancellations, which usually occur 2 weeks prior to the semester. If students can see the Millennium Scholarship is awarded for the semester in question in their myWNC, they have anticipated aid. Students who are unsure how to read the myWNC financial aid screens, should contact the Financial Assistance Office.
Only students who have paid 100% OR students with any disbursed aid, even if it does not cover the balance due, are protected in the second enrollment cancellation and all follow enrollment cancellations. Students who are unsure of their status should contact the Financial Assistance Office for clarification.
Learn more about Disbursements and Refunds.
How do I know what the Millennium will pay and what I will owe?
Once you have finished registering for the semester, you can view your term charges
in your myWNC account. Multiply the number of credits you are enrolled in by $40.
Subtract that total from your total tuition and fees. The difference is the balance
due that you would be responsible to pay for.
Note: Millennium Scholarship will not be awarded for classes below the 100 level (examples Math 95 and English 99).
My Millennium is awarded but has not disbursed why?
Please review the Disbursement and Refunds section to learn more about disbursement and refunds process.
For your Millennium to disburse, all of the following criteria would need to be met:
- In good standing.
- In a declared degree program.
- In a minimum of 9 credits that apply towards the degree program you are in.
- The system updates nightly during disbursement. If you just enrolled, the system will update that night and your award is likely to disburse the next day.
I am in 9 credits, but my Millennium only paid for 6 credits how come?
You are most likely enrolled in a remedial class (for example, Math 95, ENG 99, etc) and while remedial credits can count towards the required enrollment, the Millennium will only pay for college level courses which are numbered 100 and above.
I had the Millennium last semester, but now I dont. What happened?
Most likely, the treasurers office has flagged you as ineligible. This is usually because:
- You didnt meet the semester GPA requirement. (2.60 up to 29 credits, 2.75 for 30+ credits)
NOTE: Beginning for Fall 2020, all students regardless of credits, must maintain a 2.75 semester GPA.
- You didnt complete at least 9 credits.
- Please contact us if you need more help confirming why you lost your eligibility.
- You didnt meet the semester GPA requirement. (2.60 up to 29 credits, 2.75 for 30+ credits)
I lost my Millennium Scholarshipis it gone for good?
- Students can lose the Millennium scholarship one time. In order to regain eligibility, the next semester they attend, they need to complete a minimum of 9 credits and meet the required semester GPA requirements.
- The Millennium will automatically be reinstated the next semester.
- If a student loses the eligibility for the Millennium Scholarship a second time, they will lose their eligibility permanently.
I am in 9 credits at WNC and in 6 credits at TMCC can I be paid from both colleges?
- Students enrolled at two NSHE colleges can combine their enrollment to be paid for a maximum of 15 semester credits.
- On the Millennium web page http://www.nevadatreasurer.gov/GGMS/GGMS_Home/ under Forms, print out the Co-Enrollment form. Follow the instructions on the form and submit it to your Home Institution.
- Financial Aid staff at both colleges will work together to process your Millennium Scholarship Co-Enrollment form. If approved, you can get awarded from both colleges.
- Co-enrollments must be processed during the term you are enrolled. You cannot apply for a retroactive payment after the semester is over.
I moved out of state after high school and never used my Millennium. Can I use it now that I am back in Nevada attending college?
- Students have up to 6 years to use their Millennium Scholarship funds from the time they graduate high school.
- Students can use up to a total of $10,000 of Millennium funds.
- Students would need to acknowledge their award in the Millennium website.