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Important Updates to the Student Bill

The U.S. Department of Education regulations require that a student must be enrolled in a degree-seeking program to receive federal financial aid (Pell Grant, Stafford Loans, Work-Study). These funds can only be disbursed for the courses needed to fulfill the program of study requirements; we affectionately refer to this as CPOS, or Courses in a Program of Study.


Added safeguards have been put in place to ensure federal financial aid pays only for courses inside a student’s program of study. This technology will compare a student’s registered courses for each term with the degree requirements listed on DegreeWorks. Courses that do not apply towards a student’s officially declared program of study will be ineligible for federal financial aid.


In order to effectively communicate to students, faculty, and staff courses that qualify for federal financial aid, updates were made to the bill and schedule to readily identify if the course is covered by federal financial aid.


In the sample bill and schedule below, please see fields that have been updated to effectively communicate the courses that qualify, and those that don’t. Note the insertion of a new column titled “Eligible for Federal Aid” in the schedule portion. This column shows if the course will be covered (Yes), not covered (No), or if it is a lab (NA) as labs do not have charges. Note: In the sample below, BUS 101 has “No” in the eligible column. While the course itself is eligible for aid, it is NOT in this student’s case because he has met all of his general elective credits and the course doesn’t apply to his TCTC program of study. Even if a course will count towards a future bachelor’s degree elsewhere, it must fit inside the program of study here at TCTC in order for federal aid to pay.


This DOES NOT mean a student cannot take additional courses. Often students want to take courses here at our institution to better prepare themselves for four-year institutions, or to take courses needed for a bachelor’s degree at a much more sustainable tuition rate. They can still take the courses; the courses just cannot be considered for federal financial aid. This is not new. This process is a much tighter look at the courses to ensure federal compliance is met without fail.


CPOS DOES NOT affect state aid. Students who are attending at no cost due to the governor’s increased funding in Workforce Grants and Scholarships will not be affected.


Student Bill screenshot