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Student Financial Aid

Student Financial Aid

2023-2024 FAFSA

If you plan to attend college for the 2023 fall, 2024 spring, and/or 2024 summer semester(s), make sure you get a head start on applying for financial aid by completing the FAFSA. The 2023-2024 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available NOW! You can file your 2023-2024 application online via FAFSA Website.

If you are a Maryland resident, you MUST FILE the FAFSA before MARCH 1, 2023 to be considered for Maryland State financial aid. Some of the Maryland financial aid programs have separate applications. You can find further information on MHEC’s website here: State Programs.

We understand that the financial aid process can be confusing and time-consuming. If you need assistance completing the FAFSA, please click here to schedule an appointment with a member of the Student Financial Aid Office staff. The staff is available to assist you Monday - Thursday from 8:30a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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 help you apply and determine your eligibility. If you are looking to pay your bill, please 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 2022-2023 and the 2023-2024 applications at this time. If you are completing the 2022-2023 FAFSA, it requires 2020 tax information. The 2023-2024 will require 2021 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.

Steps to applying for financial aid

Step 1

File your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) online here. It is recommended to file your FAFSA no later than five to seven weeks before classes start to ensure that the SFAO receives it 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 state grants and scholarships.

Step 2

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

Step 3

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

Step 4

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

Step 5

Due to communication between Hagerstown Community College and the Department of Education, the Student Financial Aid Office processes the submitted documentation within two to three weeks (may be longer during peak processing times).

Step 6

The Student Financial Aid Office awards students, usually within one week after your file is considered complete. 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. Please look for “review and accept your financial aid award package” under your checklist on Self-Service. This step allows you to adjust/decline/approve your student loans. Failure to accept financial aid awards can result in a delay in processing.

Step 7

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

Reminder: Complete all steps to receive student loans if you think you will be borrowing student loans.

Step 8

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