Federal student aid is financial help for eligible students to pay for educational expenses at an eligible postsecondary school. Federal grants do not have to be paid back to the U.S. Department of Education as long as you do not withdraw from college. GCC participates in the following two federal grant programs.
Federal Pell Grant
The Federal Pell Grant is the largest of the federal grant programs. It assists you in paying for your college education and is only awarded to undergraduate students - those who haven't earned a bachelor's or graduate degree. Pell Grants are the foundation of federal student financial aid, to which aid from other federal and nonfederal sources might be added. Amounts can change yearly. The awards for the 2019-2020 academic year range from $650 to $6,195 and are based on the need analysis of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You are eligible to receive the Pell Grant for a total of six years as a full-time student. This time frame is prorated based on your enrollment status.
Federal Supplemental Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) awards grants to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need - those with the lowest Expected Family Contribution (EFC) numbers. Priority is given to Pell Grant recipients. The average award amount at GCC is $400 per academic year. The priority deadline date to receive this grant is March 1.
The state of Michigan as well as all other states offers all residents many opportunities to pursue education beyond high school. There are many students who are unable to pay for a college education without financial assistance. Financial aid programs were created to help students and parents realize that a college education is attainable and achievable. GCC students participate in the following state programs.
Michigan Competitive Scholarship (MCS)
This scholarship is based on both financial need and merit. Awards are restricted to the cost of tuition and fees. Eligibility ends when you complete a baccalaureate degree, complete the equivalent of 10 semesters or 15 terms, or when you have been out of high school over ten years, whichever occurs first. You must take the SAT test prior to entering college and achieve a qualifying test score. The SAT must be taken by December of the senior year of high school for priority consideration. You should contact your high school counseling office for additional information.
To be eligible for the MCS, you must demonstrate financial need; achieve a qualifying score on the SAT; earn a high school diploma, GED certificate, or certificate of completion; qualify as a Michigan resident as of July 1 of the previous year; be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or approved refugee; enroll at least half-time; maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0; meet GCC's Satisfactory Academic Progress policy; not have a bachelor's degree; not be in default on a federal student loan; and not be incarcerated. Students must file the FAFSA before March 1 of every year to be considered for an award. The maximum award amount for 2018-2019 is $1,000.
Tuition Incentive Program (TIP)
This is an incentive program encouraging you to complete high school by providing tuition assistance for the first two years of college and beyond. Students are identified annually by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as having met the Medicaid eligibility requirement. You need to be Medicaid eligible for 24 months within the 36 consecutive months before application. (The Medicaid benefits received only while in Michigan and only from DHHS are eligible.) Once identified, the Michigan Office of Student Scholarships and Grants (SSG) will send you a notification of eligibility. SSG sends reminder notifications to you during your senior year of high school. You must complete the application by logging into the MISSG Student Portal or by calling 888-447-2687. You must complete a FAFSA to qualify for TIP and initiate the TIP benefits within four years and one fall semester of high school graduation or GED or certificate completion. (Example: June 2013 graduates must initiate by Fall of 2017.) TIP benefits expire six years after high school graduation.
To be eligible for TIP, you must: complete the application via the MISSG Student Portal (www.michigan.gov/missg) or by phone at 888-447-2687 no later than August 31 of the academic year in which the student graduates from high school or completes the recognized high school equivalent; graduate with a high school diploma, certificate of completion, or its recognized equivalent prior to age 20; not be incarcerated; meet the institutional SAP policy; not be in default on a Federal/State student loan; and be enrolled in at least six credit hours within the degree program during any period of enrollment. TIP will pay up to a maximum of 24 semester credits per academic year and mandatory fees up to $250 per semester. Mandatory fees are defined as only those fees charged to all students across the board as a requirement for enrollment. Eligible fees include student activity fees and registration fees. No college admission or course-specific fees are eligible. GCC will award the TIP Grant for the number of credits you are enrolled in for the first semester. This number will be subtracted from 24 to determine the amount of your second semester TIP award.
Fostering Futures Scholarship
The Fostering Futures Scholarship (FFS) is an award designed to assist former foster care students with college expenses. You must submit an application each year for this funding. The scholarship covers up to $3,000 (2019-2020) or need, whichever is less. You must have been in Michigan foster care due to abuse/neglect on or after your 13th birthday and you must be attending a Michigan public or private degree granting four-year college, university or a community college. Funding can only be used for undergraduate students and is not available for graduate study. The funding can be used along with the Education and Training Voucher (ETV), but may impact eligibility for other tuition specific aid such as the Tuition Incentive Program (TIP). There is no upper age limit for the scholarship.
Children of Veterans Tuition Grant
This grant is designed to provide undergraduate tuition assistance to certain children older than 16 and less than 26 years of age who are the natural or adopted child of a Michigan veteran. The veteran must have been a legal resident of this state immediately before entering military service and must not have later resided outside of Michigan for more than two years, or the veteran must have established legal residency in Michigan after entering military service.
To be eligible for the CVTG, the veteran must: have been killed in action or died from another cause while serving in a war or war condition in which the U.S. was participating; have died or become totally and permanently disabled as a result of a service-connected illness or injury prior to death and now has died; or be listed as missing in action in a foreign country as determined by the U.S. government. You must: be enrolled at least half-time; be a Michigan resident for one year prior to program application; be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident; maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.25; be older than 16 and less than 26 years of age; be the natural or adoptive child of a Michigan veteran; and not have been convicted of a felony involving an assault, physical injury, or death.
The maximum CVTG award for a full-time student is $2,800 per academic year up to four academic years and a maximum of $11,200. Application forms may be downloaded at www.michigan.gov/studentaid or requested by calling 1-888-447-2687.
Michigan Education and Training Voucher (ETV) Program
The ETV program provides financial assistance to help youth in foster care pay for training or education beyond high school. You are eligible until your 21st birthday as long as you meet the eligibility criteria. If you participate in the program before your 21st birthday, you will continue to be eligible until age 23 as long as you receive and maintain at least a 2.0 GPA. The maximum amount of the award is $5,000 per academic year for qualified expenses.
To be eligible for the ETV you must have been in foster care on or after your 14th birthday or have been adopted from foster care or placed in relative guardianship from foster care on or after your 16th birthday and have a high school diploma or GED. You must also be attending, at least part-time, an accredited post-secondary institution and complete the FAFSA. For information on applying contact the Michigan Department of Human Services Central Office at 1-517-241-8904, Lutheran Social Services of Michigan at 1-877-660-6388 or online at www.mietv.lssm.org.
Police Officer’s and Fire Fighter’s Survivors Tuition Grant (STG)
This program provides for the waiver of tuition for the surviving spouse and children of Michigan police officers and fire fighters killed in the line of duty. To be eligible for the program, the applicant (spouse or child) must: be a legal resident of Michigan for 12 consecutive months preceding application; meet GCC's Satisfactory Academic Progress policy for each enrolled semester; not be in default on a federal or state student loan; be below the 400% federal poverty guidelines; not have a bachelor's degree; and provide satisfactory evidence to the Michigan Department of State Police that the applicant is an eligible child or surviving spouse of a police officer or fire fighter killed in the line of duty. The child must be less than age 26 at the time of death of the police officer or fire fighter and apply for the first time before age 21. For additional information, contact the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards at 1-517-322-2968, or visit the website at www.mcoles.org and click on "Law Enforcement Resources."
Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS)
MRS assists eligible Michigan citizens with physical or mental disabilities to prepare for, enter, and maintain employment. For additional information and a listing of MRS district offices, call 1-800-605-6722 or visit the website at www.michigan.gov/mrs. You can also call the local office at 906-663-6219 or the Houghton office at 906-482-6045 for information. Wisconsin has a similar program and additional information can be obtained by calling 715-682-7252.
Michigan Indian Tuition Waiver
This program provides free tuition for North American Indians in the state of Michigan. It does not pay for books or fees. You must: be no less than one-quarter blood Indian as certified by your tribal enrollment department; be a legal Michigan resident for not less than 12 consecutive months; and provide adequate proof of Michigan residency. You must submit the Michigan Indian Tuition Waiver Application to your individual tribal organization. After review, the state will send the college your official letter of eligibility. For additional information, contact Melissa Kiesewetter, Michigan Department of Civil Rights, at 517-241-7748 or request a brochure describing this program from the GCC Financial Aid Office.
Michigan Works and Northwest Wisconsin CEP, Inc.
Michigan and Wisconsin both have job training agencies located throughout the state to assist you in paying for your eligible educational expenses. For more information regarding the Michigan program, call 906-932-4059 (Ironwood) and 906-482-6916 (Houghton). In Wisconsin, call 715-682-4889 (Ashland) or 715-762-2477 (Park Falls).
For a complete listing of state agencies that are responsible for administering state financial aid programs, click this link http://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/Programs/EROD/org_list.cfm?category_ID=SHE.
To access additional information on the State of Michigan’s financial aid programs, go to michigan.gov/mistudentaid.
A college education will help you achieve your career and monetary goals far faster than if you did not pursue one. You have the opportunity to utilize the following programs to assist you in meeting your educational goals.
Carl Perkins Grant
Many of GCC’s economically disadvantaged students qualify for financial aid assistance. To alleviate financial barriers for students struggling to stay in school, GCC will utilize Carl Perkins funds to assist individuals with tuition, fees and other allowable educational costs. The Career Counselor/Special Population Coordinator along with the Director of Financial Aid will review all Carl Perkins applications and determine the recipients and the amount of Carl Perkins funds to be awarded. The criteria used in determining the recipients of Carl Perkins funding is financial need, program of study, special populations, timeliness of the Carl Perkins application, availability of funding and the student’s special circumstances. The students will be ranked according to need taking in to account financial aid from all sources. Special consideration will be given to students who may be experiencing unusual circumstances in their financial status which are not adequately considered in the regular need analysis formula.
Students receiving funding for the Carl Perkins Grant are required to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), submit an Education Development Plan (EDP) and fill out the Special Populations Program Application. The students with the greatest financial need are determined by the expected family contribution, financial aid received, tuition, fee, supply and book costs, unmet cost, direct expenses paid through financial aid, and special circumstances of the student. All of these components are reviewed for each student applying for funding. The receipt of a Pell Grant or low income does not necessarily mean the student has the greatest need. For example, the first student receives $10,000 in financial aid; the student’s income is $5,000; the student receives a Pell Grant of $5,800 and the program cost is $6,000. The second student receives $5,000 in financial aid; the student’s income is $35,000; the student does not receive a Pell Grant; the program cost is $10,000 and the student has a documented disability. The second student would be the student who is defined as having the greatest need even though the student’s income was higher and the student did not receive a Pell Grant.
Bureau of Indian Affairs Grant
The Bureau of Indian Affairs provides assistance to those students who are enrolled tribal members as proven by the member's individual tribe and who indicate a financial need as determined by the college in which the student is enrolling. Applications may be obtained by contacting the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, the local tribal chairperson or the local tribal education department. In order to be considered for these funds, you must also submit the FAFSA to the U.S. Department of Education.
Senior Citizens Tuition Waiver
Tuition rates are established by the Board of Trustees for Gogebic County residents, out-of-district Michigan residents, and out-of-state. Tuition charges for partial credit courses will be based on the next higher full credit charge.
Adults aged 60 or older who live in Gogebic County may take GCC credit courses tuition free provided there is space available. Seniors who live outside Gogebic County may take GCC credit courses for the difference between the in-district and out-of-district or out-of-state rates. All seniors are required to pay relevant institutional and course fees, purchase course textbooks and classroom supplies, and adhere to customary academic expectations.
Courses offered as C.E.D. or workshops (except the portion of the workshop that may be offered within the normal tuition structure) are offered on a cost plus basis as determined by the administration and available at the time of registration. All students, including senior citizens, will pay the established rates for these offerings.