Types of Financial Aid
Federal Pell Grant - Pell Grant is a Title IV program offering need-based grants with a maximum award of $5,775. Awards are dependent upon appropriations by Congress, costs to attend school, student eligibility, and level of enrollment. Students can only receive the Pell Grant for up to 12 semesters or the equivalent.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) - FSEOG is a Title IV program offering grant funds for students demonstrating exceptional financial need. Grants can range from $100 to $4,000 per year, based on the student’s need and funds available from the U.S. Department of Education. Typical full-time awards at HCC range from $100 to $1,200 per year. Priority for FSEOG is given to those students with the lowest Expected Family Contributions (EFC) as determined by the FAFSA and those who apply by the college’s priority filing date of March 1 each year.
Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant (IASG) - IASG is for eligible students whose parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. Armed Forces and died as a result of service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after September 11, 2011. The student must be ineligible for a Federal Pell Grant due only to having less financial need than is required to receive Pell funds. The student must also be under 24 years old or enrolled in college at least part-time (6 credits or more) at the time of the parent's or guardian's death. The grant award is equal to the amount of a maximum Pell Grant for the award year, not to exceed the cost of attendance for the award year.
- HCC Grants - This is a need-based grant program funded from Howard Community College’s operating budget. HCC Grants are available to new and returning students. Awards range from $100 to $3,000, not to exceed the cost of tuition, fees, and books in combination with other grant/scholarship aid. Priority is given to those who apply by the March 1 priority deadline each year and demonstrate financial need as determined by Financial Aid Services.
A scholarship is considered financial aid that typically does not have to repaid, and is usually awarded to students who may demonstrate financial need, are recognized for academic achievements or other talents, and/or who are preparing for certain career fields. Each scholarship has different requirements. It is important to read the required scholarship criteria to be considered and/or maintain the scholarship. Scholarships are available through Howard Community College, the Maryland Higher Education Commission, and private outside sources. For more information on scholarships, click here.
Maryland State Scholarship Program - The Maryland Higher Education Commission offers several need-based scholarships for Maryland residents. The scholarships most frequently awarded to HCC students include, but are not limited to, Educational Assistance Grants, Guaranteed Access Grants, Senatorial Scholarships, and Delegate Scholarships. In order to be considered for a Maryland State Scholarship, a student must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 1 each year. Some state scholarships may have additional application requirements. Additionally, some scholarships require full-time (12 or more credits) enrollment.
HCC Scholarships - The HCC Educational Foundation maintains a scholarship program through contributions from private businesses, foundations, civic organizations and individuals. Scholarships are available to new and returning students who demonstrate academic achievement, leadership and/or financial need. Scholarship awards can range from $100 to $5,000 per year, not to exceed the cost of tuition, fees, and books in combination with other grant/scholarship aid. Award amounts and availability of funds are subject to change.
- DC Adoption Scholarship - The DC Adoption Scholarship assists District of Columbia students who were adopted from the DC Child & Family Services agency after October 1, 2001 and students who lost one or both parents as a result of the events of September 11,2001. The DC Adoption Scholarship awards up to $10,000 toward the total cost of attendance at eligible colleges and universities throughout the U.S., Guam, and Puerto Rico. DCTAG is neither need nor merit based. The DC Adoption Scholarship is only available to returning students who were previously deemed eligible for the program by the OSSE, Government of the District of Columbia. There are no new awardees at this time.
- Pathway Scholarship Program - Howard Community College has established the Pathway Scholarship, a need-based scholarship program designed to help Howard County families afford college and attain their pathway to success.
The Pathway Scholarship serves a wide range of students, including:
- High school students dually enrolled at Howard Community College
- Recent high school graduates
- Adult learners taking credit courses
- Students with at least 15 credits remaining to finish their associate degree
Direct Stafford Loans, from the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program, are low-interest federal loans for eligible students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student's higher education after high school. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education rather than a bank or other financial institution. The Direct Loan Program charges a nominal fee that is deducted from the loan proceeds of each disbursement. For more information on Federal Direct student loans, click here. For more information on Federal Direct PLUS, click here.
- Federal Direct Loans — Direct Loans are a Title IV financial aid program and federal aid eligibility requirements apply. Loan applicants must be actively enrolled half-time (6 credits or more). Student are also required to maintain satisfactory academic progress. In order to be awarded a loan at HCC, students must follow the directions on myHCC under Request a Loan.
- The loan limit for a first year student (0-29 credits completed) in an eligible degree or certificate seeking program is $3,500. The loan limit for a second year student (30 or more credits completed) in an eligible degree or certificate seeking program is $4500. “Dependent” students, as defined by the FAFSA, have additional unsubsidized loan eligibility of $2,000. “Independent” students, as defined by the FAFSA, have additional unsubsidized loan eligibility of $6,000. Annual and aggregate limits apply. For the Federal Direct Subsidized loan and Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan current interest rate information click here.The financial aid office will determine which type of loan the student is eligible to borrow.
Students enrolled in certain certificate programs may not be eligible for the full loan amount due to the short duration of the program. Students who wish to borrow funds from the Direct Lending loan program at HCC are required to complete loan entrance and exit counseling.
- Federal Direct PLUS Loans — Federal Direct PLUS Loans are a Title IV program which enables parents with favorable credit histories to borrow funds to pay the educational expenses for their dependent child if the student is classified as a “dependent” as defined by the FAFSA and is enrolled at least half-time (6 credits or more). The student and the parent must meet the general eligibility requirements for federal student aid and the student must maintain satisfactory academic progress. The parent must be a citizen or eligible non-citizen and may not be in default or owe a refund to any federal student aid programs. A credit check is completed for all applicants. The PLUS loan is a non need-based loan. A parent is eligible to borrow up to the students cost of attendance less any other financial aid the student is receiving. For the Federal Direct PLUS loan interest rate information click here. In order to be awarded a PLUS loan at HCC, students and borrowers must follow the directions on the HCC website under Financial Aid - Loan Information.
The work-study program offers HCC students part-time job opportunities with flexible hours and competitive wages that are earned throughout the academic year. The program also provides students with the opportunity to gain valuable work experience and marketable skills. Students are paid for hours worked on a semi-monthly basis. The hourly funds earned do not directly reduce the cost of tuition and fees and are not directly credited to the student's account. At the discretion of the student, earnings can be used to pay any outstanding balance to the college. For more information on work-study, click here.
Federal Work-Study Program - Federal Work-Study is a Title IV program offering part-time work for HCC students who demonstrate financial need. Students work up to 20 hours per week during the regular semester, depending upon the student’s financial need, availability of federal funds and the student’s class schedule. Seven percent of the school’s annual Federal Work-Study allocation will be used to fund community service jobs.
HCC Student Work-Study Program - HCC Student Work-Study is an institutionally funded part-time work program. Any student who desires part-time employment at the college may apply. Students work up to 20 hours per week during the regular semester, depending upon the availability of the college’s funds, and the student’s class schedule.