About Financial Aid

What is Financial Aid?

Financial aid is money made available by federal, state, institutional and private sources in the form of grants, scholarships, loans, and wages. Such aid makes it possible for you to continue your education beyond high school, even if you and your family cannot meet the full costs of the college/university you choose to attend. All programs are based on the premise that parents have the primary responsibility of assisting their dependents in meeting educational costs. Financial aid is available only to fill the gap between a family's contribution and your annual educational expenses.

Who Can Apply for Financial Aid?

To be considered for financial aid, you must meet all the following minimum requirements:

  1. Be a U.S. Citizen or an eligible Non-Citizen.

    An eligible Non-Citizen is a U.S. permanent resident who has a document such as an I-151, I-94, I-688 or I-551 (Alien Registration Receipt) from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (formerly the Immigration and Naturalization Service) verifying that your stay in the U.S. is for other than a temporary purpose.

    If you are in the United States on an F-1 or F-2 student Visa only, or on a J-1 or J-2 Exchange Visitor Visa only, you cannot receive federal student aid. Also, persons with G Series Visas (pertaining to international organizations) are not eligible for federal student aid.

  2. Demonstrate financial need.

  3. You are enrolled in at least 6.0 units (half-time).

  4. Enrolled in a declared academic program of at least 24 units required for completion.

  5. Show satisfactory progress in a course of study. See Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.

  6. You are not in "default" status on a Federal Direct Loan, Federal Perkins Loan, Direct Loan, California Loans to Assist Students (CLAS), or Supplemental Loans for Students (SLS).

  7. You do not owe a repayment to the Federal Pell Grant, the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) program.

  8. You are registered with the Selective Service if required to do so.

  9. If you do not have a high school diploma, GED, or equivalent, you must take a placement test and the “Ability to Benefit” (ATB) exam.

When to Apply for Financial Aid?

Every year the FAFSA and the GPA Verification forms are made available beginning January 1st for the next Fall and Spring semesters.

Cal Grant Program Deadline for 2010-2011: March 2 (Entitlement) September 2 (Competitive)

You must have the FAFSA and the GPA Verification forms completed and already mailed off by March 2, 2010 for entitlement consideration and by September 2, 2010 for competitive consideration.

Financial Aid Priority Deadline: July 8, 2011

You must have a completed financial aid file by July 8, 2011 for the Fall 2010 and Spring 2011 semesters.

If you have missed the priority deadline date…

After the priority deadline, financial aid is awarded on a first come, first served basis. You are encouraged to apply as soon as possible since any surplus funds that become available will be awarded. In addition, you can continue to apply for the Federal Pell Grant and the Federal Direct Loan until April 15 of each year.

If you have any questions, call or come to the Financial Aid Office. Staff members are available to answer your questions and help you complete the forms.

Please keep in mind that it may take up to two (2) months from the time you apply for aid to the time your award is completely processed. It all depends on your ability to submit the necessary paperwork to complete your file in a timely manner.

Female and male student hanging out in Palm Bosque on Ohlone's Fremont campus.

How to Apply for Financial Aid?

Step 1: Requirements

Find out the Ohlone College's requirements for enrollment, placement testing, fee waivers, financial aid, etc.  Read the catalog and class schedule. Make an appointment to see a counselor. Pay attention to eligibility requirements and deadlines.

You can also visit How to Enroll on the Ohlone College Admissions and Records website.

Step 2: The Application

In California, you may apply for aid from several sources by completing a single application - the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You will need to include the following information on the FAFSA:

  • Ohlone College Title IV Code: 004481
  • Ohlone College Address: 43600 Mission Boulevard, Fremont, California 94539

We strong recommend that students complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Apply for a Personal Identification Number (PIN) at www.pin.ed.gov for yourself (and a parent if you are a dependent).

It would be wise to bring your completed online applications, your Federal tax forms, and any other pertinent income information to our office to be sure you filled out the FAFSA correctly. Our team will be happy to review your application and documentation for you.  Or attend a FAFSA Workshop for assistance.

When you complete the FAFSA online, you will receive within a few days an email from the U.S. Department of Education with a link to your Student Aid Report (SAR).  If you complete the paper FAFSA application and do not provide an email address, you will receive your SAR by mail in four to six weeks after you send in your application.

Verify that all the information on the SAR is correct. If the information on the SAR is not correct, either make the correction online at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov or submit the SAR with corrections needed to the Financial Aid Office (if your award has already been processed).

A special word for students who were or are in foster care, under the care of the court system or have been living on your own without parents: Pay close attention to the Student Dependency questions on the FAFSA.  If you do not have parents or parent financial information, please call us to help you answer these questions.

Two female Nursing students practice on human simulation dummy in lab.

Step 3: Enrollment Fee Waiver*

You must obtain a fee waiver before registering for classes.

Completing the FAFSA is sufficient to apply for the Board of Governors Fee Waiver. This is a much simpler process than completing the Board of Governors Fee Waiver Application, which will require copies of your family’s federal income taxes and verification of other non-taxed income.

After your fee waiver is entered in the system, don’t forget to ask for the reduced parking fee voucher.


* If you have already registered, you are NOT eligible for a waiver.

Step 4: Documentation and Verification

Approximately two-to-three weeks after submitting your FAFSA online at www.fafsa.ed.gov, you will be mailed a Missing Document Request. This Request letter will list the forms and other documents you will need to submit to the Financial Aid Office to complete your file. Please provide signed copies when requested. We will not make copies and we will not accept originals in place of copies. Forms can be printed from the Forms and Documents page.

The following documents may be requested:

  1. A signed copy of your and/or your parents' Federal Tax Form 1040/1040A/1040EX, including all attachments, schedules and W-2s for the prior calendar year.
  2. Agency Certification of Untaxed Income form completed by the Social Services Agency (TANF, CalWORKs, General Assistance); Social Security Office (SSI, SSDI, SA, etc.); Veteran Benefits, etc.
  3. Unofficial college transcripts from each college or university you have attended other than Ohlone College if you have a Bachelor’s degree.
  4. Additional data and forms. Requesting additional information may be necessary if further clarification is needed.

Your aid cannot be processed until all documents are in and your file is completed.

Step 5: Notification of Financial Aid Award Letter

After all documents are submitted, your financial aid file will be reviewed for awarding purposes. Once awarding is complete, an award letter will be posted on your WebAdvisor account. If a student is ineligible for financial aid, a letter will be mailed. (Please ensure that your mailing address on our files is current.) There are two (2) disbursement dates scheduled for each semester.

Instructor in class at Newark Center's Total Health and Wellness Center.

Step 6: Direct Student Loan Program

For students who want to apply for a Direct Loan, students must attend a loan workshop. Loans can only be certified if the student is enrolled in a minimum of 6 units, has met Standard Academic Progress, has completed their financial aid file, is not in default, and are not required to return federal grant funds.

Step 7: You Must Renew for Financial Aid Each Year

Every academic year you must renew your financial aid application (FAFSA) to continue receiving aid for the next academic year. Continuing financial aid students who provide an email address should receive a renewal reminder via email from FAFSA by the end of January. The quickest way to renew is to renew online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Students who need a paper FAFSA will need to contact the Federal Student Aid Programs at 1-800-433-3243 to request the paper FAFSA.

How is a Student and/or Parents' Financial Need Determined?

Need and Budget

Most financial aid awards are based on demonstrated financial need, which is the difference between the cost of attendance and the expected family contribution (e.g., Cost of Attendance - Expected Family Contribution = Need). Contribution is determined from the information reported on the FAFSA and is verified by a Federal Income Tax Return (1040/1040A/1040EZ) and agencies providing non-taxable income to the family. All awards are subject to availability of funds.

How are Student Budgets Established?

In order to treat all students equally, standardized budgets have been established and are applied to all applicants. This means that all students with similar circumstances will receive the same allowance for rent, food, personal expenses, books, supplies, transportation, and registration fees. Exceptions may be made to the budget in cases where special need can be shown and documented.

2011-2012 Nine-Month Student Budgets
Standard Student Budget Allowance Dependent and Independent (without dependents) At Home All Others Away From Home
Total $11,720 $20,320
Tuition* $ (If applicable) $ (If applicable)
Enrollment Fees $1,080 $1,080
Meals and Housing $4,644 $12,744
Books and Supplies $1,972 $1,972
Personal / Miscellaneous Expenses $3,024 $3,024
Transportation $1,000 $1,500

* Resident and Non-Resident Tuition

Tuition is set per unit. Tuition for non-residents of the State of California are higher. See Fees / Tuition information for the current semester on the Admissions and Records website.

Additional Mandatory Fees

May be added to Student Budget if required for student's course of study upon submission of appropriate written documentation to the Financial Aid Office.

Dependent/Child Care Expenses

May be added to Student Budget upon submission of appropriate written documentation to the Financial Aid Office.

Disabled Student Expenses

May be added to Student Budget for services and equipment not covered by assisting agencies upon submission of appropriate written documentation to the Financial Aid Office.

How is Financial Aid Packaged?

Once your financial need and eligibility is established, a "package" of aid is provided which may be a combination of different aid programs. This package could consist of a combination of grant, work-study, and loan monies.

Ohlone College most often meets a student's need with a combination of grant and self-help aid. Self-help aid consists of Federal Work-Study or a Federal Direct Loan.