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Financial Aid

Financial Aid

HCC Student Financial Aid Office (SFAO) administers and coordinates federal, state, foundation, and other external financial aid. There are many forms of financial aid available at HCC such as: grants, scholarships, loans, and work study. You may be eligible for one or more of these types of aid. The SFAO staff will work with you to determine for what types of aid you may qualify and to help you apply. Looking to pay your bill? Contact the Finance Office.


The Financial Aid Process

The financial aid process can be very complicated and time-consuming. This timeline provides students and parents with more of an understanding of the process from start to finish, as well as an outline of when documentation should be submitted. Please understand that the following is in general terms. While the average time to complete the financial aid process is approximately five to seven weeks, in some cases it can take longer. A student who submits the FAFSA later than the earliest dates listed on the timeline is not guaranteed to have a complete file by the first day of classes.

Important Financial Aid Information

Please be careful when completing your FAFSA (financial aid application) as there are two available on Students can complete both the 2021-2022 and the 2022-2023 applications at this time. If you are completing the 2021-2022 FAFSA, it requires 2019 tax information. The 2022-2023 will require 2020 tax information. The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) is available for both years. If you cannot use the DRT, a copy of your tax information can be entered manually. You may be required to submit a copy of your 2019 or 2020 tax return and/or proof of non-filing from the IRS to the Student Financial Aid Office, if the Department of Education selects your 2021-2022 or 2022-2023 application for verification.

Step 1

File your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). It is recommended to file your FAFSA no later than five to seven weeks before classes start to ensure you receive financial aid in a timely manner.

Our school code for the FAFSA is: 002074.

Note: Maryland Residents should complete the FAFSA by March 1 of every year to be considered for grants and scholarships from the Maryland Higher Education Commission.

Step 2

The Student Financial Aid Office receives your FAFSA within approximately one week to two weeks after it is submitted.

Step 3

The Student Financial Aid Office sends out emails requesting any documents needed to complete your file. Requested documents can also be viewed on Self-Service under your checklist – “Complete Required Documents.” It is important that you respond to this request as quickly as possible as processing will be delayed until the missing documentation is submitted.

Step 4

You should submit all requested documents accurately within one week after receiving the missing information notification. Also, you should complete the student loan steps if you think you will be interested in borrowing student loans.

Step 5

The Student Financial Aid Office processes the submitted paperwork within two to three weeks (may be longer during peak processing times) after all documents are submitted due to communication between Hagerstown Community College and the Department of Education.

Step 6

The Student Financial Aid Office awards students, usually within one week after paperwork is processed. After you have been awarded, you will receive an award notification email. You will need to accept your financial aid award(s) as soon as possible after you receive this email. Your award letter can be found on Self-Service under your checklist. Please look for “review and accept your financial aid award package” under your checklist. This step allows you to adjust/decline/approve student loans as well. Failure to submit required documentation and/or accept financial aid awards can result in a delay in processing.

Step 7

The Student Financial Aid Office reviews any requested changes once your award letter has been submitted (approximately one week).

Reminder: Complete all steps to receive student loans if you are interested in borrowing student loans.

Step 8

You may have the ability to use any leftover funds to purchase books at the HCC Campus Store two weeks before classes begin. You must have completed all the previous steps, the Student Financial Aid Office has processed all your financial aid, and you have funds available above the cost of tuition and fees. Check Self-Service under the “Student Finance” section to determine if you have available funds. A negative after the “Balance” number means you have a credit available for books.