Frequently Asked Questions

The Office of Financial Aid is pleased to provide answers to the following Frequently Asked Questions. Although this information is primarily intended for prospective students, others will also find it helpful. The staff of the Office of Financial Aid looks forward to assisting you!

What is Title IV Financial Aid (Federal Student Aid)?
Title IV financial aid is federally funded aid, which includes, Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program (SEOG), Federal Work Study and Federal Direct Loans. Federal Student Aid is assistance for students enrolled in a degree program. It helps cover school expenses, including tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, transportation, and other educational related expenses. The three types of aid offered are grants, loans and work-study.

GRANT- financial aid that does not have to be repaid. Generally, grants are for undergraduate students and the grant amount is based on need, school cost, and enrollment status.

LOANS - borrowed money that must be repaid with interest. Parents may also borrow to pay education expenses for dependent undergraduate students. Maximum loan amounts increase with each year of completed study.

There are three types of Federal Direct Loans:

Direct Subsidized Loan – Loans made to eligible students that have demonstrated financial need to help cover the costs of higher education. The federal government subsidizes these loans; therefore, they do not accumulate any interest until the student begins repayment.

Direct Unsubsidized Loan – Loans made to eligible students, but eligibility is not based on financial need. Interest accrues from the time the funds are disbursed until the loan is paid in full.

Direct PLUS Loan – Loans made to parents of dependent students to help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid. Eligibility is not based on financial need, but a credit check is required.

WORK-STUDY - Provides part-time jobs for students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay for education expenses. Students can work on or off campus.

What are the eligibility requirements to apply for Federal Student Aid (Financial Aid)?

To be eligible to receive federal student aid, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen of the United States with a valid Social Security Number;
  • Have a high school diploma, General Education Development(GED) or HSE/TASC certificate
  • Be enrolled in an eligible program as a regular student seeking a degree or certificate; and
  • Register (or have registered) for Selective Service if you are a male between the ages of 18 and 25.

How Do I Apply for Financial Aid?

Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).The FAFSA can be filed beginning October 1st of the previous year you plan to attend. For example, the 2020-2021 FAFSA is available October 1, 2019. We recommend that you file your FAFSA prior to the beginning of the semester you are going to enroll in.

Three to five days after you file your FAFSA electronically a Student Aid Report (SAR) will be generated. The SAR is a document that gives you some basic information about your eligibility for federal student aid and lists your answers to the FAFSA questions. The SAR will also include your Expected Family Contribution (an amount you and your family are expected to contribute toward your education. This amount may not exactly match the amount you and your family end up contributing).

Read your SAR carefully. If you have been selected for verification, bring the required documents to the Financial Aid Office.

What is the Kingsborough Community College Code for the FAFSA and TAP?
FAFSA – 002694                        TAP – 1402

How can I review the completion of my Financial Aid Application?

The financial aid application process is considered complete when the following exists:

  • The student has received a confirmation email upon completion of the FAFSA application which lists the college's school code of 002694.
  • If "Verification" is required or comments exist as a result of the processing of the FAFSA, additional documentation may need to be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid to resolve the issue. Students can review all documents required by Financial Aid on the their “To Do List” on the Student Center page

I've Been Selected for Verification. Now What?

The U.S. Department of Education may select your FAFSA for review in a process called verification. Verification is the process where we confirm the data that you reported on the FAFSA is accurate. We may request additional documentation such as tax returns to support the information that was reported.

How do I know if I have to provide additional documentation to the Office of Financial Aid?

All currently enrolled students who have applied for financial aid must check their “To-Do-List” in the CUNYfirst portal to verify whether additional documents and/or actions are required by the Office of Financial Aid to complete their financial aid application. The “To-Do-List” will list the documents that are required to complete the financial aid process.

After I receive my award letter, will my funding change?

Your award letter and funding can change if additional resources not previously considered are received on your behalf. This may result in revised awards, or reduction in loan eligibility, etc. It also may change if you enrollment status changes.

What is the difference between "need-based" and "merit-based" financial aid?

Need-based aid is awarded based on your family’s financial need. Your need is determined by subtracting your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) from the Cost of Attendance (COA) at the college. Merit-based aid is awarded without regard for financial need. This is usually awarded for a student’s academic achievement in school as well as for special talents and unique traits.

What if I am not in good academic standing; will this affect my Financial Aid?

Every institution must publish standards of good academic standing and satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes. These standards are in the University Bulletin and on the Financial Aid Website. Some academic conditions which must be met include:

  • A minimum grade point average
  • A minimum number of credits earned each term
  • A minimum number of cumulative credits earned each payment period

The Federal Government requires institutions to develop these standards because it wishes to monitor the fact that students make progress toward their educational objective i.e., a baccalaureate degree, etc. These measures ensure that reviews take place, and that the institution complies with the regulation.

How can I regain financial aid eligibility (Pell, Work Study, FSEOG, Perkin, Direct Loans) if I am not in good academic standing?

In some cases, a student's failure to be in compliance with the SAP standard is due to extenuating circumstances beyond the student's control. If such event can be documented for the specific semester(s) when the SAP standards were not met, the student may appeal their financial aid suspension. The student must submit a SAP Appeal form with supporting documentation to the Financial Aid Office. 

The SAP Appeal must be based on extenuating circumstances that affected their academic performance. Examples of possible extenuating circumstances are:

  • Serious illness
  • Severe injury
  • Death of a family member
  • Other similar situations

Check with the Financial Aid Office, U-201 for details on submitting an appeal. 

I submitted my appeal and was told I was approved. What happens next?

If your SAP appeal is approved, students must meet with a financial aid representative to sign and agree on an academic plan. An academic plan assists students in meeting the SAP standards. Once on an academic plan, the SAP appeal will be approved for one or more terms. The students are then eligible to receive federal student aid provided that they meet the plan in all the approved terms.   

I submitted my appeal and was told I was denied. What happens next?

If your appeal has been denied you will not receive financial assistance for one or more terms. Students must cover all tuition liabilities out of pocket.

If you choose to remain enrolled without the receipt of Federal Student Aid, you may request a review of your academic record at the end of that term to determine whether the appropriate standards for the degree program in which you are enrolled have been met. Eligibility is regained for subsequent terms in the academic year.

I want to Drop and/or Withdrawal some or all of my courses. Will this affect my Financial Aid?

Yes. Please visit the Office of Financial Aid (Room U 201) to determine how this may affect you.

How can I understand the effects of Drops and Withdrawals, are there any terms that are used that may assist me in the process?

Yes. Please see some terms that may assist you in understanding your financial aid eligibility.

Degree Status
You must be a matriculated student (enrolled in a degree program) to meet basic financial aid eligibility requirements. In addition, matriculation must be maintained from semester to semester through the maintenance of an acceptable grade point average (GPA). For additional information on this subject, speak with a financial aid counselor in Room U-201. 
Credit Loads 
The award year at Kingsborough Community College consists of two terms, Fall and Spring. The Fall term includes a 12-week Fall session and a 6-week Winter module. The Spring term includes a 12-week Spring session and a 6-week Summer module. In order to receive full-time financial aid for any term, a student must register/(preregister) for at least 12 equated credits for both the session and module (Fall/Winter or Spring/Summer) by the seventh day of the 12-week session, e.g. by the seventh day of either the Fall or Spring session.

In some cases, financial aid is paid close to the beginning of the Fall or Spring session and covers both that session and the module (Fall/Winter or Spring/Summer). If a student fails to attend the module (either Winter or Summer), they may have to repay a portion of their aid.

Finally, remedial credits in excess of 30 equated credit hours will not be considered in establishing eligibility for Pell and the other Title IV programs. In addition, since remedial courses and their remedial component of developmental and compensatory courses do not carry degree credit, enrollment in these courses will not result in the inclusion of the non-credit portion as cumulative earned and/or attempted credit. 
Course Withdrawals 
If you contemplate withdrawing from a course or from the College, consult with an academic counselor and a financial aid counselor. If withdrawal is required, it must be done before the deadline, otherwise a grade of "WU," an unofficial withdrawal, will result and adversely affect the GPA. A "WU" is equivalent to a grade of "F." 

Incomplete Courses
Courses with incomplete grades are included as cumulative attempted credits. However, these courses cannot be used as credits accumulated toward the degree, as only successful course completion is the criterion for positive credit accumulation.

If a grade of "INC" is given, these grades will become "F" if the course is not completed, and will ultimately have a negative impact on the GPA. Consult with your professor to determine the process of completing the course.

Repeated Courses 
Successfully completed courses will be accepted toward degree requirements. However, each time a course is attempted, it is included as part of the cumulative attempted credit record and GPA. If a failed course is repeated with a grade of "C" or better, the grade in the successfully completed course will count in the GPA, replacing the "F" grade earned on the first attempt. Only 16 such repeated course credits may be attempted in this fashion during a career at Kingsborough.

Why can't I be an independent student?

The two types of student status (dependent and independent) are regulated in legislation within the Higher Education Act of 1965, and require that students meet specific conditions for independent status. These conditions appear on the FAFSA and the Renewal FAFSA and require the student meet at least one of the following conditions listed on Step three of the FAFSA Form, before being considered as an "independent" student.

If you have unusual circumstances that you feel make you Independent, even though none of the criteria applies to you, please contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss your situation.

Students who do not meet at least one of these conditions are considered "dependent" for financial aid purposes.

What if I don't register as a full-time student after I receive financial aid?

Some financial aid programs require full-time attendance. These include TAP, full Pell Grant funding, and at Kingsborough Community College, College Discovery.  If registration falls below full-time status (12 credits per term), these awards may be reduced or canceled. TAP and College Discovery are canceled, and Pell Grants are reduced to reflect 3/4 time, 1/2 time, or less than 1/2 time status. Loan eligibility can also be reduced or canceled if registration falls below 1/2 time status.

What types of financial aid are available at Kingsborough Community College? 

As a student at KBCC, you may qualify for federal and state financial aid including the: Federal Pell Grant; Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG); Federal Work Study Program; Federal Direct Loan; and Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS).

Should I apply for Financial Aid? I know my household income is too high. Can you give me an idea, based on my family’s income, whether it’s worth applying?

Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. Because many factors (e.g. household size, number of family members in college, income, certain assets, etc.) are considered in the determination of your eligibility for financial aid, it is difficult to estimate your eligibility based on income alone. The Office of Financial Aid recommends that every student apply for financial aid at least once to have his or her eligibility reviewed. Keep in mind that, in general, any accepted student is eligible for some type of financial assistance regardless of his or her calculated financial need.

I didn’t complete the FAFSA application is it too late?

Students are able to complete the FAFSA beginning October 1st of the year they will enroll in college. The Office of Financial Aid recommends that students complete the FAFSA as soon as possible once the application is available. Late applicants may not be eligible for Federal Work-Study or Federal SEOG because these funds are limited to the college and offered on a first come first served basis.

My parent(s) cannot help me with college expenses. Does that mean I’ll receive more money?

Financial aid programs are based on the belief that students (and their parents or spouses, if applicable) have primary responsibility for paying their educational expenses. If you are a dependent student, your parent(s) inability to assist you with expenses should be evident from the information you and your parent(s) provide on the FAFSA form. Although it may mean a significantly increased amount of debt, which should be carefully considered, most students can cover their educational expenses with the help of available financial aid programs.

Our family has special circumstances (e.g. recent loss or reduction of income, considerable un-reimbursed medical or dental expenses, private school tuition expenses, etc.). Can the Office of Student Financial Aid consider these circumstances when reviewing my eligibility for financial aid?

Please contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss any special circumstances you feel might affect the amount you and your family can contribute toward your educational expenses. A staff member will determine whether your eligibility for financial aid can be reevaluated due to your family’s special circumstances.

When will I know how much financial aid I am eligible for?

The Office of Student Financial Aid begins sending Financial Aid Award Notices to new freshmen and transfer students between February and March. Most new freshmen and transfer students receive their Financial Aid Award Notices by the end of March.

Please use this guide to review your financial aid awards https://www.kbcc.cuny.edu/financialaid/cunyfirst.html

When will I receive the fall semester bill?

You will receive the fall semester bill from the KBCC Office of the Bursar by the end of July. All awarded federal and state financial aid will be listed on the bill and deducted from your fall semester charges. Please note that Federal Work Study will not be listed on the bill. Students employed under the Federal Work Study Program receive bi-weekly paychecks for wages earned. If any of your awarded federal and state financial aid is not listed on your bill, please contact the Office of Financial Aid for assistance. If you are receiving other sources of funding not listed on the bill, please contact the KBCC Office of the Bursar (718) 368-5416.

Does Kingsborough Community College offer a payment plan?

KBCC offers a payment plan thru Nelnet. Please contact Nelnet for more information 888-470-6014 or visit http://www.mycollegepaymentplan.com/cuny.

The amount of financial aid I’m receiving exceeds my bill. Can I use that money to buy my books?

Your financial aid must be processed and you also must be registered for classes at least 2 weeks prior to the beginning of the semester in order to receive a book advance prior to the first day of classes.  Keep in mind, however, that, while every effort is made to issue a book advance, we cannot guarantee that the money will be available in time for you to buy your books. Therefore, you should plan to use other funds to buy your books.

I’d like to work on campus. How do I find out about jobs?

Students should come to the Office of Financial Aid for information about Federal Work-Study (FWS) jobs if they have not received a FWS award. If a FWS award is received, the student will receive an email notification on how to apply for a job online at inside KCC.

I Owe Money. Help!

If you have a problem paying the balance due on your tuition, go to the Bursar’s Office, Room A-205. If you have received a bill and your TAP or Pell awards have just come in, go to the Financial Aid Office, Room U-201, to get a statement of your awards to bring to the Bursar, Room A-205.

If You Can't Pay Your Tuition Balance, Nelnet can Help. If your financial aid does not cover the tuition you owe at the time of registration, and you are unable to pay the balance due in a lump sum out of your own pocket, you might want to enroll in a Nelnet payment plan. The City University of New York permits families to budget payments for tuition each year by spreading out the payment of your unpaid balance over several payments. For additional information about Nelnet, call 888-470-6014 or visit http://www.mycollegepaymentplan.com/cuny.

I am an International students can I receive Financial Aid?

International Students – students who are here on a student visa – are not eligible to receive financial aid or loans from the Federal Government or from the State of New York. This includes the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) as well as all the Title IV Programs such as Pell, S.E.O.G., College Work Study, subsidized and unsubsidized loans, and the College Discovery and Bilingual Programs.

Only U.S. citizens and permanent non-resident aliens holding “Green Cards” or other eligible non-citizens may participate in U.S. and/or state-sponsored financial aid programs. If you are unsure of your immigration status, see an international student counselor, located in room V-101.

There are some scholarships for international students from private sources. Use scholarship search engines such as edupass.org, finaid.org to find them.

You might also wish to check with the government of your home country to see if it provides educational support to its nationals studying abroad.

It is important to speak with our international student advisors who are located in Room V-101.They are best qualified to answer any of your questions regarding immigration, employment and finances. Additional information is available during international student support group meetings held each week. For time and location, please stop by Room V-101 or call 718-368-6800.