Federal Pell Grant
Pell Grants are awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or a professional degree. The student must meet all eligibility requirements and be admitted to Highland Community College. Eligibility for Pell is determined by the results of the FAFSA application and the amount of the Pell award is prorated based on the number of credit hours enrolled. The Pell Grant is a gift aid and does not have to be repaid. Please read this important announcement regarding Pell Grant eligibility.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) program is for undergraduates with exceptional financial needs. Pell Grant recipients with the lowest expected family contributions (EFCs) will be considered first for a FSEOG. Funding is limited so not all eligible students will receive this grant. FSEOG is a gift aid and does not have to be repaid.
Federal Direct Student Loans
For more information regarding Federal Direct Student Loans, click here.
Federal Work-Study Program
- Students must complete the FAFSA and show financial need in order to be eligible to work through the federal work-study program.
- Students must maintain standards of satisfactory academic progress.
- Students must meet other general eligibility requirements for federal aid, including be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen, have received a high school diploma or GED, be enrolled in classes leading to a U.S. Department of Education approved certificate or degree and not be in default on a federal student loan or owe repayment of a Pell Grant.
- Students must be enrolled at least half-time status (6 credit hours).
If you qualify for the federal work-study program and you are interested in obtaining employment on campus, please contact Career Services at 815.599.3536. Federal work-study positions are limited and require a student to complete an application and interview process.
The State of Illinois also offers a number of financial aid programs. To learn more about state programs, go to http://www.isac.org/isac-gift-assistance-programs/index.html.
If you completed the FAFSA form for federal aid and you are an Illinois resident, your information will be automatically forwarded to the Illinois Student Assistance Commission to determine your eligibility for the Illinois MAP grant. Information on the Illinois MAP grant can be found at http://www.isac.org/isac-gift-assistance-programs/index.html.
Veterans Educational Benefits
We are proud to be serving you as a Military Friendly School. Please contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 815-599-3519 for further assistance in the use of any questions regarding your benefits. Some quick links of the benefits accepted are listed below.
Veterans may apply for educational benefits either through the VA or by getting paperwork from the Office of Financial Aid. The VA will provide financial assistance to veterans to the extent that the credits for which the veteran is enrolled are applicable toward an approved degree or certificate program. Further, the veteran must make continued and satisfactory progress toward the degree or certificate. Veterans are responsible for notifying the College and the VA of reduction in their course load.
Changes to Schedule or Program
- Any time a student eligible for any type of Veterans Benefits, registers or makes an adjustment to their schedule, they must contact our Certifying Official in the Financial Aid Office to ensure that benefits are applied correctly and/or updated to reflect changes.
- Veteran Policy Fall 2023
- Veteran Policy Spring 2024
In order to qualify for any of the following benefits, the student must first apply online through the VA. You may also print the form and mail it in or bring it to the Financial Aid Office and we will mail the form for you. A copy of your DD214 Member 4 must be attached; if you have more than one, include all of them. This is a one-time application and will not need to be updated each academic year. For assistance in obtaining a copy of your DD214 if you have misplaced yours please contact the Illinois Department of Veteran’s Affairs, PO Box 19432, Springfield, IL 62794-9432 or by phone at 217-782-4652. You may also contact the National Personnel Records Center. Should you mail the form please keep a copy for your records as well. It may take around 8 weeks to receive your award letter from the VA stating that you are eligible to receive the benefits or a request for more information/denial letter. Please be patient and plan ahead.
Click here to view current Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) payment rates for all GI Bill® Chapters.
For additional information on any of the GI Bill® Chapters, please visit https://www.va.gov/education/
- For students utilizing GI Bill® benefits other than Ch 33, your BAH is paid directly to you, this means it is still your responsibility as the student to pay your tuition and fees to the school unless you are eligible for other types of aid.
- For students utilizing GI Bill® Ch 33, your tuition and fees will be paid by the VA to the school up to the percentage you are eligible. You will also receive your BAH as well. Verify with the school if you will still have a balance due after VA payment.
- Students receiving benefits under Chapter 30 must certify their hours each month during enrollment by either calling 877-823-2378 or electronically on WAVE.
- Student must contact their VA Vocational Rehabilitation Office for approval.
- Funds for tuition and fees are paid directly to the school based on the percentage of eligibility but the student still receives the BAH. Student may be responsible for some fees to the school not covered based on percentage of eligibility.
- Students must complete the application and attach a copy of their DD214 Member 4 (include all if more than one). This is a one-time application and is good for a lifetime. For assistance in obtaining a copy of your DD214 if you have misplaced yours please contact the Illinois Department of Veteran’s Affairs, PO Box 19432, Springfield, IL 62794-9432 or phone by phone at 217-782-4652. You may also contact the National Personnel Records Center. Students may also bring the completed application in to the Financial Aid Office and we can mail it for you. Should you mail the form please keep a copy for your records as well. It may take around 8 weeks to receive your award letter from the VA stating that you are eligible to receive the benefits or a request for more information/denial letter. Please be patient and plan ahead.
- Once approved, students are eligible to receive up to 120 units and have a lifetime to use these. Eligibility units are used as follows…
- Full Time (12 credits or more) – 12 Units
- ¾ Time (9 to 11 credits) – 9 Units
- ½ Time (6 to 8 credits) – 6 Units
- < ½ Time (3 to 5 credits) – 3 Units
- ½ Time (1 to 2 credits) – 1 Unit
- Students must complete an application each academic year. It may take around 8 weeks to receive your award letter from the VA stating that you are eligible to receive the benefits or a request for more information/denial letter. Please be patient and plan ahead.
- For more information, contact Tracy Smith at 217-782-3564
Interested in working on campus?
Highland Community College participates in the Federal Work-Study Program offering jobs on campus to help pay education expenses. Work-Study is a need-based financial aid award. It is not a grant (you must work to earn it), and it is not a loan (you don’t have to repay it). Students must qualify for need-based financial aid to receive Work-Study. The formula for determining eligibility for Work-Study is this: Total Cost of Attendance (COA) minus Expected Family Contribution (EFC) minus any “gift” aid (grants, waivers, scholarships) equals Work-Study eligibility. If this eligibility is filled by a need-based loan (typically Subsidized Direct Student loan or Perkins loan), then you can either borrow less loan, and work for the money instead, or if you still want the loan, we can switch some or all of the Subsidized loan to Unsubsidized Direct Student loan (a non-need-based loan that can fill EFC) and award Work-Study.
Want to apply?
If you are interested in becoming a student worker, you must meet the following requirements:
- Registered at least part-time
- 2.0 GPA (waived for new students)
- Federal Work Study Eligible
All student worker positions are posted on Handshake™. To apply for positions, please activate your Handshake™ account. If you don’t have one, please contact Career Services to get you set up.
Applications are accepted throughout the year. However, most student workers are hired in the weeks leading up to the start of a semester.
Highland Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, or disability.