How do I know if I'm eligible for financial aid?
You must meet all the following general eligibility requirements:
Financial aid will not be processed if one or more of the above are not in compliance.
How is Need-Based Aid Awarded?
Need-based aid is determined by the EFC (Expected Family Contribution) assessed by information entered on the FAFSA and is available for you to review on your Student Aid Report. The EFC includes many factors such as number of household members, income-earned, savings, and investments. The EFC is not the amount the family or individual is required to pay. The financial aid counselor will use the EFC to determine eligibility for all need-based aid.
Financial need is calculated by a standard federal formula:
Estimated Cost of Attendance - EFC = Financial Need
Some financial aid programs base awards on academic achievement, abilities or academic major. Eligibility for each of these programs normally is based on standards determined by the school, a state agency, or a private organization.
What is my dependency status based on?
A student is considered a dependent of their parents until they reach the age of 24 as of Jan. 1 of the award year, are married, or have dependents of their own (a biological or court-appointed child). A dependent student must include parent information on the FAFSA in order to receive aid and, if necessary, have it verified. Other qualifying factors to be independent are: working on a master's or doctorate program, serving on active duty or a veteran of the US Armed Forces, being an orphan or ward of the court, an emancipated minor, in legal guardianship, or homeless.
If a dependent student has extenuating circumstances where parent information is not available, they can contact the Financial Aid Office. Students appealing their dependency status should expect to provide documentation describing the situation where parent information is unavailable.
Method and Frequency of Disbursements
Financial aid is disbursed (released) to students throughout the semester. In general, the Business Office credits your financial aid to your student account as it is received. Any and all funds received will be applied to your student account first to pay all outstanding charges. Federal Pell Grant funds are disbursed at the start of each semester and subsequently as needed. Federal Direct Loan funds are issued in payments called “disbursements.” Disbursements begin at the start of the semester and rosters are created and processed weekly as needed. New students must be enrolled in class for 30 days prior to their first disbursement. New transfer students who have received federal student loans previously at another institution can request early disbursement of loans by speaking with a Financial Aid Counselor. Single-semester loans will disburse in two equal installments. The first disbursement will be no sooner than the 30th day of the semester for which you are applying. The second disbursement will be no sooner than the midpoint of the semester for which you are applying. The Financial Aid Office will notify you via email about your loan disbursement.
If you receive aid in excess of your charges, the Business Office will issue a refund check for the credit balance within fourteen days after your charges are paid in full. Refund checks are processed on a weekly basis and available in the Business Office for pick-up each Friday, beginning with the 3rd Friday of the semester. Students will be notified via email by the Business Office when a check is available for pick-up. Students picking up checks must have a photo ID and sign for the check in-person. Students attending Missouri Valley College through the Wentworth campus or online must contact the Business Office to have their proceeds check mailed.
If a credit on account is the result of an approved Parent PLUS Loan with the proceeds not requested to go to the student, a check will be mailed to the parent listed on the loan application to the address on file at the school. A parent can request the credit to be released to the student by speaking with a representative in the Business Office and submitting a written request that is kept in the student’s file.
What happens if I withdraw before the semester is complete?
Students are always encouraged to meet with the Director of Student Success prior to making the decision to leave school before the end of the semester. Typically, it is in the best interest of the student to complete the term, however if a student feels the need to withdraw, there is a process they can follow.
In relation to financial aid, a student’s federal aid must be prorated based on a specific formula developed by the Department of Education. The Financial Aid Office will use the student’s last date of attendance as recorded in the College’s attendance records and reported by the Registrar to determine the percentage of the semester the student completed. Using this data, the Financial Aid Office will determine how much, if any, aid must be returned.
Additionally, the Business Office will use the same dates to determine the student’s costs. The current refund policy as set forth by the Business Office can be found in the MVC Catalog.
The Financial Aid Office requests that students interested in withdrawing complete the in-person withdrawal process. This allows our office to better assist you in understanding any financial obligations that you may incur from an early withdrawal. Additional information on withdraws and student refunds can be found in the MVC Catalog.
What is SAP (Satisfactory Academic Progress)?
All students who receive federal or state aid must maintain minimum standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress toward degree completion to be eligible. Students must maintain at least a 2.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale, not exceed 192 hours before obtaining a degree, and pass 67 percent of coursework attempted. Coursework attempted includes all failed, withdrawn and retaken classes.
Students who fail to meet SAP for two consecutive semesters are placed on financial aid suspension and not eligible to receive federal or state aid. Students have the opportunity to appeal their financial aid suspension before the next semester begins. Appeal dates are set by the Director of Financial Aid and those seeking an appeal must submit all requested documentation to have their appeal reviewed by the SAP committee. Appeals must have a valid reason for not meeting SAP standards and include supporting documentation listed on the appeal form. If granted an appeal, students may remain eligible for aid and return to satisfactory standing following stipulations set forth by the appeal committee.
Students suspended from aid and not granted an appeal can continue their education at Missouri Valley College and re-establish their aid by bringing their academic progress into satisfactory standing, as set forth by the college.
Additional information about SAP can be found on our Satisfactory Academic Progress page.
What is verification?
Verification is a process used to confirm the information you provided on the FAFSA. Verification selection is typically random with 1 in 3 students being flagged by the Department of Education each year. However, your FAFSA could also be flagged for verification because your FAFSA data was incomplete, estimated or inconsistent. In most cases, students are flagged by the Department of Education, however the Financial Aid Office reserves the right to flag any student who's FAFSA contains conflicting information.
The verification process is regulated by the Department of Education. We are required to verify certain items on your FAFSA and must obtain documentation of any changes that need to be made. If your FAFSA is flagged, you will receive written correspondence from our office within 2 weeks of us receiving your FAFSA. Please submit all documentation and return all worksheets completed and signed.
Forms related to verification can be found in the Documents and Forms section of our website.