Leonard Kelley
Leonard Kelley

We were on the front line for you and we want you to be on the front line for us. The Financial Aid counselor said to me, “$1,500 is not available due to the fact that the financial aid fiscal year has ended this Summer. We are now in the new year of 2014.” I must have missed that calendar presentation in my orientation class.

Unfortunately, I was to believe that two years of owed financial support would be available to me when the required paperwork was done, but no payment has been made to my Higher One account. The truth of the matter is that I was honest about my college past during my enrollment as well as my real age of 58 years old. The form said, “Please list any other colleges you have attended and the dates to coincide with the college.” I am not sure if anyone read this information I have documented and I was pushed into a trap box being twirled around not knowing what to do. I inquired about every third or fourth week since.

Assured of support from the veterans assistance office and being a priority enrollment student, I had a false sense of security. It is smart to check, recheck, and check again.
The system ignored my age and homelessness, and stopped all money from financial aid. I was told my money has not been issued because I needed some transcripts from 36 years ago when I attended Virginia Tech for a two-week course to better serve my country.

The 36-years-ago comment was stated over and over to the LBCC Financial Aid office, while they still insisted on the transcripts. Virginia Tech finally wrote two semesters later that they are not responsible for producing old transcripts, as the law states colleges are only liable to hold transcripts for seven years. I would think LBCC has the same time limit. I am disappointed that the system failed me. I am a homeless veteran in school on the veterans retraining assistance program. I started as an out-of-state Fall student at LBCC paying high dollars. Now before Christmas I will be cheated out of my Summer financial assistance.

LBCC students are unprotected at the front line. Financial aid, veteran officers, counselors and LBCC staff are receiving paychecks for the seat they sit in. I implore the administration to find the solution to this ongoing problem, rather than forcing the student to oversee their job. This college teaches to know about and solve these administration problems but it does not seem the administration uses the wisdom that is taught here. I was told this is not the first time of a Financial Aid failure, it happens all the time. Fall and Spring aid is already prepaid by the computer on remote control, but Summer and Winter semesters have to be done the old-fashioned way, by human work.