Financial Aid Policies
In order to encourage students who may not have been successful during their previous college work, YVC has established an academic renewal policy.
Students who return after an absence of at least a year and who subsequently pass two quarters of work (at least 12 credits each quarter) with a 2.0 GPA or better, may petition the Registrar and Director for Enrollment Services to implement the academic renewal policy. If the petition is accepted, grades for the quarter chosen and all quarters prior to the one chosen, will be changed to “No Credit.” All courses previously taken remain on the transcript, but the grade point average is adjusted. Courses subject to this policy will not count toward completion of the student’s program of study. Students who wish to rescind this policy must petition to the Registrar.
The policy may be used only once, and students must be enrolled at the time the policy is implemented. No other college work is subject to the provisions of this policy.
Yakima Valley College (YVC) encourages early application of either the FAFSA or WASFA, with priority for those who apply by between October 1 and March 1 of one school year for financial aid in the following school year. Only students with “completed” financial aid files are packaged with available grant funding. YVC generally begins the award process over the summer after a significant number of applications have been reviewed and are ready for financial aid awards. Although awarding continues through the year, the student who completes the financial aid file early will have access to the most funding available and later applicants will be considered only for funds that remain.
Initial financial aid packages are based on the assumption that students wish to be considered for the maximum level of “gift aid” available and will enroll full-time. Federal Pell Grant is first awarded to all eligible students. Next, priority applicants who continue to have more than 50% of their cost of attendance (equity level) unmet are considered for their maximum eligibility in State Need Grant, followed by Supplemental Grant (priority to out-of-state residents), and, for Washington residents only, tuition waivers and YVC grants. College Bound Scholarship funds are awarded to all qualifying students regardless of priority. At YVC, self-help awards consist of Federal Direct Stafford Loans and a limited amount of Work Study funding. Students submit requests for Federal Direct Loans after YVC has determined the level of gift aid funding. Student should allow at least one month for processing and be familiar with loan restrictions. Students wishing to participate in the work study program must attend a student employment orientation. Orientations are scheduled as needed (generally near the start of a quarter) and are announced on the financial aid office home page.
Summer enrollment occurs at the end of the YVC award year; students who request funding for summer will submit summer aid applications that are made available at the beginning of summer registration. Unlike academic year awards, summer awards are based on the level of enrollment of the student’s course schedule that is submitted with the summer aid application, and the student’s unused financial aid entitlement funding (Federal Pell Grant and Direct Stafford Loans) for the year. Any additional grant funding that is available will be prioritized first for students completing their programs in summer, and then for students who are required to attend in summer by the schedule of the curricula of their programs.
Due to the requirements for qualifying for financial aid, sometimes financial aid is offered after a quarter has begun. It is the student’s decision whether to accept financial aid for any quarter. the student should accept aid during a quarter, only if the student is in good standing and can successfully completing the quarter. The consequences of accepting aid for an unsuccessful quarter including loss of eligibility for failure to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements and, because funding is limited, the potential of not having funding to complete a program because it was used on an unsuccessful term.
In April 1999, the Board of Directors of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) adopted the following 12 point Statement of Ethical Principles that has served as a common foundation for standards of conduct for financial aid professionals. As financial aid administrators, we embrace the responsibility of ensuring ethical behavior through established standards and guidance, as put forth in the following Statement and Code of Conduct.
NASFAA’s STATEMENT OF ETHICAL PRINCIPLES
The financial aid professional shall:
- Be committed to removing financial barriers for those who wish to pursue postsecondary learning.
- Make every effort to assist students with financial need.
- Be aware of the issues affecting students and advocate their interests at the institutional, state, and federal levels.
- Support efforts to encourage students, as early as the elementary grades, to aspire to and plan for education beyond high school.
- Educate students and families through quality consumer information.
- Respect the dignity and protect the privacy of students, and ensure the confidentiality of student records and personal circumstances.
- Ensure equity by applying all need analysis formulas consistently across the institution’s full population of student financial aid applicants.
- Provide Services that do not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, disability, age or economic status.
- Recognize the need for professional development and continuing education opportunities.
- Promote the free expression of ideas and opinions, and foster respect and diverse viewpoints within the profession.
- Commit to the highest level of ethical behavior and refrain from conflict of interest or the perception thereof.
- Maintain the highest level of professionalism, reflecting a commitment to the goals of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.
YAKIMA VALLEY COLLEGE FINANCIAL AID CODE OF CONDUCT
The Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) requires educational institutions to develop and comply with a code of conduct that prohibits conflicts of interest for financial aid personnel [HEOA 487 (e)]. Any Yakima Valley College officer, employee, or agent who has responsibilities with respect to student educational loans must comply with this code of conduct. The following provisions bring Yakima Valley College into compliance with the federal law [HEOA 487 (e)].
These principles apply throughout the administration of the programs for which the financial aid professional is responsible. There should never be any difference between “ethical” and “best” practices. The ethical practice is always the best practice. As an organization, Yakima Valley College unequivocally supports the principles and practices described in this Code of Conduct. When a practice or policy arises that appears in conflict with these principles, it is the obligation of financial aid professional to bring this to the attention of those responsible within his or her institution, and to seek a timely resolution consistent with these principles.
The obligations in this Code of Conduct are in addition to any requirements imposed by state ethics laws, federal laws, or Yakima Valley College policies, i.e., the stricter standard of ethical behavior will apply in all instances. Violations of this Code of Conduct may result in disciplinary action, including termination of employment.
- Neither Yakima Valley College an institution or any individual officer, employee or agent shall enter into any revenue-sharing arrangements with any lender.
Revenue-sharing arrangement includes circumstances where an institution recommends a lender or the loan products of a lender who provides or issues a loan in exchange for a fee or provision of material benefits including revenue or profit sharing, to the institution, or employee or agent of the institution.
No officer or employee of Yakima Valley College who is employed in the financial aid office or who otherwise has responsibilities with respect to education loans, or any of their family members, shall solicit or accept any gift from a lender, guarantor, or servicer of education loansFor purposes of this prohibition, the term “gift” means any gratuity, favor, discount, entertainment, hospitality, loan, or other item having a monetary value of more than a minimum amount. (the term includes a gift of services, transportation, lodging, or meals whether provided in kind, by purchase of a ticket, payment in advance, or reimbursement after the expense has been incurred.
- An officer or employee of Yakima Valley College who is employed in the financial aid office or who otherwise has responsibilities with respect to education loans, or an agent who has responsibilities with respect to education loans, shall not accept from any lender or affiliate of any lender any fee, payment, or other financial benefit (including the opportunity to purchase stock) as compensation for any type of consulting arrangement or other contract to provide services to a lender or on behalf of a lender relating to education loans.
- Yakima Valley College shall not:
a. for any first-time borrower, assign, through award packaging or other methods, the borrower’s loan to a particular lender; or
b. refuse to certify, or delay certification of, any loan based on the borrower’s selection of a particular lender or guaranty agency.
- Yakima Valley College shall not request or accept from any lender any offer of funds to be used for private education loans, including funds for an opportunity pool loan, to students in exchange for the institution providing concessions or promises regarding providing the lender with:
a. a specified number of loans made, insured, or guaranteed under Title IV;
b. a specified loan volume of such loans; or
c. a specific loan volume of such loans; or
d. a preferred lender arrangement for such loans.
“Opportunity pool loan” means a private education loan made by a lender to a student attending the institution or the family member of such a student that involves a payment, directly or indirectly, by such institution of points, premiums, additional interest, or financial support to such lender for the purpose of such lender extending credit to the student or the family. (20 U.S.C.A. 1094 (e)(5)(B)).
- Yakima Valley College shall not request or accept from any lender any assistance with call center staffing.
- Any Yakima Valley College employee who is employed in the financial aid office, or who otherwise has responsibilities with respect to education loans or other student financial aid, and who serves on an advisory board, commission, or group established by a lender, guarantor, or group of lenders or guarantors, shall be prohibited from receiving anything of value from the lender, guarantor, or group of lenders or guarantors, except that the employee may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in serving on such advisory board, commission or group.
YVC, in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) 34 CFR, Part 99, has designated the following items as Directory Information: name; photographs; major field of study; eligibility for and participation in officially recognized activities, organizations and sports; weight and height of members of athletic teams; dates of attendance (quarters in attendance); enrollment status (number of credits enrolled in for a quarter at YVC); degrees and awards received; and the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by the student.
YVC may disclose any of the above-listed items without the student’s prior written consent unless the Registration and Records Office is notified in writing to the contrary. Once a student has designated a confidential classification, it will not be removed until the student submits a signed authorization requesting that it be removed.
Some of the effects of the student’s decision to request confidential status may have an adverse effect. Friends or relatives trying to reach the student will not be able to do so through the college; information that someone is a student here will be suppressed, so that if a loan company, a prospective employer, family members, etc., inquire about a student, they will be informed that we have no record of the student attending here.
All other student academic information is considered confidential and will not be released, with certain exceptions as stated in 34 CFR, Part 99, without the student’s written permission. Students must appear in person in the Registration and Records Office with photo identification and must submit their written consent for the release of other academic information.
All new degree-seeking students must establish that they are prepared to succeed in their chosen educational program. Students with fewer than 30 college-level credits will be required to see their academic adviser before they can register for the following quarter. Upon completion of 30 college- level credits, students who have not declared a program or major area of study will be required to meet with their advisor to prepare a degree audit and declare a major.
The college uses Higher One to provide electronic distribution of financial aid funds to students.
1. The college follows SBCTC’s Electronic Funds Distribution (EFD) for Financial Aid Disbursements.
2. Student biographical and disbursement files are transmitted daily to SBCTC by the college financial aid office. In turn, SBCTC transmits files daily to Higher One.
3. The college financial aid office emails an approved Higher One Electronic Funds Disbursement report to the college business office.
4. The college business office wires funds to Higher One.
5. Higher One distributes funds electronically to students based on the student’s refund option.
6. Students receive communications from Higher One regarding their refund disbursement options. Students are responsible for choosing a HigherOne refund option in order to receive their financial aid funds. The financial aid refund options include: a) Higher One card (funds are available the same day), b) ACH transfer to the student’s own bank account (funds are available 2-3 business days), OR c) Paper check from HigherOne mailed to the student (funds available 5-7 business days).
All financial aid at YVC is administered in accordance with nationally established policies. Financial need is determined by comparing the student applicant’s resources (parents’ contribution, if applicable; student earnings, assets, and other income sources), as reflected on the student’s financial aid application forms, with standard costs for attending YVC. If the standard costs are greater than the student’s available resources, an award package to cover all or part of the difference is offered as long as program funds permit. The financial aid award may be comprised of grants, student employment, and/or loans.
YVC awards grants first and then student employment and loans based on remaining need. Students interested in work study/student employment attend an orientation to learn about the requirements and request an award and referral form. Students may submit loan request forms after determination of eligibility for need-based grant funding and registering for classes.
Most YVC financial aid applicants do not have their full needs met because of the lack of sufficient funds from federal and state funding sources.
Refunds are made for official withdrawals only, and no refund will be given for an amount of less than $10. No refunds will be given if an instructor withdraws a student after the first week of the quarter. All refunds are determined by a formula based upon when the withdrawal is made relative to the beginning of the class. Attendance or nonattendance is not considered when granting refunds.
Complete withdrawal fees are assessed whether or not students actually attend class. There is a fee of $5 for a complete withdrawal of 11 or fewer credits (part-time), and a fee of $10 for a complete withdrawal of 12 or more credits (full-time). Students who withdraw from college in accordance with withdrawal regulations are entitled to the following refund:
- One hundred percent refund for classes canceled or changed by the college.
- One hundred percent refund (less complete withdrawal fee) for complete withdrawal prior to, and through, the 5th day of classes (4th day of classes for summer quarter).
- Fifty percent refund (less complete withdrawal fee) for complete withdrawal after the 5th day of classes and through the 20th calendar day after the start of classes (5th through the 14th day for summer quarter).
- No refund is granted after the 20th calendar day following the start of the quarter (after the 14th day for summer quarter).
Refunds for classes which do not follow the regular college calendar are applied on a timetable (as established above) proportionate to the standard length of a quarter. Also, refunds for lab fees will be in proportion to the regular tuition refund schedule. Refunds for tuition and fees not paid by Financial Aid will be applied to outstanding charges. Any remaining funds will be processed and refunded within four to six weeks from the date of official withdrawal. If the original form of payment was a debit or credit card, the refund will be credited to the original card that was charged. If the original form of payment was cash, check or online payment, a check will be issued in the student’s name and mailed to the address on file in Registration. Any student, receiving federal or state financial aid, who officially or unofficially withdraws from YVC and qualifies for a refund, will have funds returned to the appropriate financial aid program based on the regulations governing the program. Contact the Financial Aid Office at the phone number in the directory for details.
The Satisfactory Academic Progress policy ensures that students who receive financial aid make progress toward their academic goal. It is the expectation that students prepare themselves to be successful by enrolling in an appropriate program, selecting classes carefully, and accepting financial aid only if they are in good standing and fully committed to successfully completing the quarter. Students should not accept aid after the start of any quarter unless they are meeting the standards to be successful in each of their classes. To receive financial aid at YVC, students must be in compliance with the YVC Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Policy. The policy consists of three measurements that are monitored quarterly after grades have been posted. These three areas are:
1. Grade Point Average. GPA is a measurement of the quality of a student’s academic performance. Financial Aid recipients are expected to maintain a GPA of at least 2.0 at all times. (For help on raising GPA under an Academic Plan, learn about how your Grade Point Average and Financial Aid interact.)
2. Pace of Progression. Pace of Progression is the measure of a student’s successful progression through an eligible program. All aid recipients must maintain a Pace of Progression of 67%. The Pace is calculated by dividing the number of credits successfully completed by the total number of attempted credits. Credits transferred to YVC count both as attempted and earned credits.
3. Maximum Time Frame. Maximum Time Frame is defined as 150% of the standard length of the program. If a student is not capable of successfully completing the program within 150% of the credits required for completion, the student loses eligibility and may not complete the program on financial aid. A new time frame may begin after a student completes and graduates with a degree and enters a different eligible program.
You may view a downloadable copy of the full Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.
Students who lose their financial aid eligibility may request reinstatement by submitting an appeal for financial aid reinstatement after bringing their academic records in compliance with the financial aid requirements or identifying mitigating circumstances and remedies that should be considered in reviewing the students progress. For a copy of the Appeal for Financial Aid Reinstatement.
The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) 34 CFR, Part 99, affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights are:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education
- The right to request the amendment of any of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. See “Directory Information” in this
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the college to comply with the requirements of
More detailed information about each of these rights is contained in the YVC Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook. For more information on these rights, contact the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402, or visit U.S. Department of Education.