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Financial Aid

Questions and Answers

Q. What other sources of aid are available?
A. There are many local, state and national organizations that grant scholarship funds each year. See BRCC's Scholarship E-Bulletin Board >

Q. Who has access to the information on the forms filed as part of the financial aid application?
A. Only the financial aid office staff at BRCC has access to this confidential information.

Q. If my parents are separated or divorced, do they both have to contribute to my education?
A.
For federal student aid (Pell grant, SEOG, and work-study), the custodial parent and current spouse, if any, must complete the FAFSA. The non-custodial parent is not required to report information for federal student aid purposes.

Q. How do I become an independent student for federal aid purposes?
A. If you meet one of the following: are 24 years old, are a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces, are married, are a ward of the court, have no living parents and have no legal guardian, or have a legal dependent who gets more than half of their support from you. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) has more details about these categories.

Q. What is my Expected Family Contribution (EFC)?
A. Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the amount you and your family are expected to contribute toward your education. You receive an EFC based on the processing results of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Q. What if I have a credit balance on my student account?
A. If you have a credit balance in your account (after tuition and, if applicable, textbook charges have been paid) you will be mailed a check from the State Treasury’s Office in Richmond, Va. Checks are scheduled to be mailed out during the last week in September for the fall semester and the last week in February for the spring semester.

Q. How do I get a work-study job?
A. You must first complete a FAFSA form. All eligible financial aid applicants will be mailed a BRCC Federal Work-Study Application. If you are interested, complete the form and submit it to our office. Once all current positions are filled we will start a waiting list. Students often drop or change jobs during the year, thus vacancies may arise.

Q. When and how do I get paid for my student job?
A. You will be paid twice a month for the hours that you work. It is your money to spend as you see fit on your education related expenses.

Q. Do I have to work if I am given a job as part of my financial aid package?
A.
The job is an opportunity to earn money to pay for ongoing personal and book expenses during the year. One can decide not to work and pay for these expenses some other way, such as through summer job earnings or work during vacation periods.

Q. When do I apply for Summer Work-Study?
A.
Notify the Financial Aid Office during the first week of March if you are interesting in summer work-study. One must have financial need as defined by the Federal need analysis methodology, which is applied to the information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form is available in the Office of Financial Aid.

Q. Will I have to pay back any financial aid money if I drop out or withdraw from school?
A.
If you receive federal financial aid and drop out or withdraw from school during the first 60% of the semester you may be required to repay a percentage of the aid that you received.

Q. Will my financial aid award be reviewed while I am at BRCC?
A.
Each year you will be asked to re-apply for aid by completing the current FAFSA form so that changes in your family's financial situation and changes in BRCC’s fees can be considered.

Q. How do I apply for a Pell grant?
A.
When you complete a FAFSA, you are automatically considered for a Pell grant.

Q. What do I do with a Student Aid Report (SAR) that I receive in the mail?
A.
Submit it to the Financial Aid Office if you did not list BRCC on your original FAFSA application. If you listed BRCC on your application we will receive your information electronically and you should keep your original Student Aid Report for your records.

Q. Why did my financial need change from last year?
A.
Since need represents the difference between total costs of attending BRCC and the ability of you and your family to contribute; any change in your family's situation or in BRCC’s charges may mean a change in need.

Q. What is the difference between the Business Office and the Office of Student Financial Aid & Scholarships?
A.
These two offices are located in different locations and are separate from one another administratively. The Office of Student Financial Aid Services awards grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study. The Business Office sends bills and collects payments for college charges not covered by aid. The Business Office also mails your financial aid balance checks to you.

Q. If my or my family’s current year income will be drastically lower than last year’s income what do I do?
A.
Contact the Financial Aid Office and request a Reduced Income Statement Form. Complete and submit the form, along with the appropriate documentation, to the Financial Aid Office for consideration. Often projected year income can be considered. These considerations are made at the family’s request and on a case by case basis.

Q. What is BRCC’s Title IV Code?
A.
Our Title IV School Code is 006819.

Q. If I have corrections that need to be made to my Student Aid Report, can I bring the forms into the Financial Aid Office for electronic submission?
A.
Yes, Make all the necessary corrections and make sure you have the required signatures on Part 2 of your SAR. Drop off your SAR and we will submit the corrections electronically. We normally receive the corrections back in about a week. It is also a good idea to submit copies of your tax returns to our office so that we may verify the corrections.

Q. What is my Data Release Number (DRN)?
A.
Your Data Release Number is a four-digit number assigned to your application by the U.S. Department of Education and printed on the top right corner of your Student Aid Report (SAR). Anyone wanting to receive or change your FAFSA information must have your DRN in order to do so. Do not give out your DRN to anyone unless you have agreed to give him or her access to your FAFSA information.

Q. What is a PIN?
A.
Formerly known as the Electronic Access Code (EAC), a PIN is the code that you need to: Sign your FAFSA electronically; Retrieve your Renewal FAFSA information over the Internet; File your Renewal FAFSA using the FAFSA on the website; Access the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) website and view information about other federal student aid you may have received. Your PIN is similar to the PIN you use to access your bank account. To protect the privacy of the information you are submitting, you must keep your PIN secret. If you need a PIN, have lost or forgotten your PIN, or if you think someone else knows your PIN, you can request a new one at the Federal Student Aid PIN website