By Arnold James / Staff Writer
All students who meet the eligibility requirements will receive financial aid.
The basic requirements are being a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen, enrolled in an eligible degree or certificate program.
Also, a valid social security number, satisfactory academic progress standards, high school diploma or a GED and not being in default on a student loan are required.
The three types of student aid are grants, loans and work-study. The easiest way to apply is on-line at www.fafsa.gov and also as soon as possible after Jan 1 of the year the money is needed. The best way to receive student aid is the Federal Pell Grant.
The amount financial aid students will receive will also depend on the cost of attendance, expected family contribution, year in school and being a full or half time student.
The most common student aid is the Federal Pell Grant which is available to all undergraduates who have yet to earn a bachelor’s or professional degree.
The Pell grant does not have to be repaid and pays up to $5,645 per semester with two refund disbursements put on a Higher One card.
The loan programs, which have to be paid back with interest, are the Federal Perkins, Direct Subsidized, Direct Unsubsidized and Direct Plus Loans.
Most of the loans range from $5,000 and up to $20,000 and the interest rate is about 5 percent depending on which one students choose.
If a person cannot qualify for a Pell Grant it might be the best way to go, officials say.
The Federal Work Study program is a good way to earn money for school expenses. Students can earn money while attending school that does not have to be repaid and available for undergraduates and graduate students, and the pay is at least the federal minimum wage.
The jobs can be both on-and off-campus and no maximum amounts are set.
The new 2014-2015 financial aid forms are now in the system ready to print and submit. Students are encouraged to remember to start checking their LBCC Student Center after a week to make sure their FAFSA was received.
The forms must filled out correctly with tax and IRS information. The IRS DRT form will speed up the process if the student or their parents filed taxes that year.
Applicants may check the account activity regularly on the Viking student system and see if the funds were disbursed.
Financial Aid is in A1075 at the LAC and the phone number is (562) 938-4485 and MD 146 at the PCC.
The office is open Monday to Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed on Fridays. The hours and phone number are the same for both campuses.