Financial Aid Programs

Financial Aid Programs

ProgramsEligibilityProgram Characteristics
Federal Pell Grant

Undergraduate Students Only -Need Based

The maximum Pell Grant eligible expected family contribution (EFC) for 2015-2016 is $5,198

The maximum Pell Grant eligible expected family contribution (EFC) for 2016-2017 is $5,234

15-16 Full Year Awards Vary from $588 to $5,775

16-17 Full Year Awards Vary from $590 to $5,815

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)Undergraduate Students Only -Need BasedAwards Vary
Charter Oak State College GrantUndergraduate Students Only -Need BasedAwards Vary
Connecticut Governor's Scholarship Grant

Undergraduate Students Only who are Residents of Connecticut -Need Based

*on or after 7-1-2016, the program will be known as the Roberta B. Willis Scholarship Program.

Awards Vary

Charter Oak State College Student Grant Aid Program

Undergraduate Students Only who are Residents of Connecticut -Need Based

*Program to be phased out through the 2015-2016 academic year. Funding available to returning COSC students only - if previously awarded in 2012-2013 and who continue to meet program eligibility requirements.

Awards Vary

CHESLA Scholarship Program

Undergraduate Students Only who are Residents of Connecticut -Need Based

Funded by the Connecticut Higher Education Supplemental Loan Authority (CHESLA), the scholarship provides assistance to students (other than loans) to finance their education.

Awards Vary
Charter Oak State College Fee Award

Degree Seeking Undergraduate Students Only -Need Based

 

Awards Vary
Federal Direct
Subsidized
Stafford Loan

Undergraduate Students Only -Need Based

*Graduate students are not eligible for Subsidized Loans.

Maximum Subsidized Loan Amounts for Dependent and Independent Students:
$3,500 (freshmen); $4,500 (sophomore); $5,500 (junior/senior)
Federal Direct
Unsubsidized
Stafford Loan

Undergraduate and Graduate Students -

Non-Need Based

* Additional loan funds are available to dependent students if the student's parent is denied a PLUS Loan.

 

Maximum Loan Amounts:

Dependent Undergraduate
Freshman: $5,500 (max. $3,500 subsidized)
Sophomore: $6,500 (max. $4,500 subsidized)
Junior/Senior: $7,500 (max. $5,500 subsidized)

Independent Undergraduate
Freshman: $9,500 (max. $3,500 subsidized)
Sophomore: $10,500 (max. $4,500 subsidized)
Junior/Senior: $12,500 (max. $5,500 subsidized)

Graduate

$20,500 annually

Federal Direct PLUS Loans

Available to graduate students and parents of dependent undergraduate students to help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid.

*A credit check is required for a PLUS Loan.

Student's Cost of Attendance
-   Other Aid Student Received
=  Maximum PLUS Loan Amount
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Undergraduate Students Only who are Residents of Connecticut Non-Need Based

*Created by the Board of Regents (BOR) for Higher Education, and effective award year 2014-2015, this limited time program is no longer accepting applicants. Students who are grandfathered into this program must continue to meet the terms and conditions of their GBTGA scholarship. Eligible students must complete their degrees by June 20, 2018.

Covers the cost of tuition and fees for one 3-credit course (up to a total of three 3-credit courses).

Disclaimer: Descriptions of financial aid programs are subject to change without advance notice due to changes in federal, state, college policies, and/or changes in funding levels. The Financial Aid Office will make every reasonable effort to keep applicants and students aware of changes as they occur. Financial aid does not cover the admissions application fee, late fees, non-credit courses, CLEP/Dantes testing, transcript fees, portfolio assessment fees or certificate program courses. There is no federal, state, or institutional aid for international or undocumented students. Anytime the College enters into an agreement with a student or parent regarding a Title IV Federal Direct Loan, loan information is submitted to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), and will be accessible by guaranty agencies, lenders, and other Title IV schools that are authorized user of the data system.

Grants and Scholarships

Federal Pell Grant
Federal Pell Grants are awarded to needy undergraduate students who have not earned a first bachelor's degree.

The amount of your Federal Pell Grant eligibility will depend on your cost of attendance, EFC, enrollment status, and whether you will attend for a full academic year or less. You may not receive Pell Grant funds from more then one school at a time. To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA.

The amount of Federal Pell Grant funds a student may receive over his or her lifetime is limited by federal law to be the equivalent of six years of Pell Grant funding. Since the maximum amount of Pell Grant funding a student can receive each year is equal to 100%, the six-year equivalent is 600%.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) program is for undergraduates with exceptional financial need. Pell Grant recipients with the lowest expected family contributions (EFC's) will be considered first for a FSEOG. To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA.

Charter Oak State College Grant
Funds are given to undergraduate degree seeking students with financial need who are either residents or non-residents of Connecticut. Grant awards vary per year depending on a student's need and the availability of funds. To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA.

Connecticut Governor's Scholarship Grant
Funded by the State of Connecticut, this program makes full and part-time need based financial aid awards to undergraduate students for eligible educational costs.  Available to Connecticut residents only. Full-time is considered 12 or more semester credit hours. Part-time is considered 6 to 11 semester credit hours. Eligible educational costs are tuition and fees, plus a fixed amount for books and educational supplies as determined by the Connecticut Office of Higher Education.

On or after July 1, 2016, the program will be known as the Roberta B. Willis Scholarhship Program.

To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Studen Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA, and as a result, have an EFC of $7,999 or less (for students in a two year program) and an EFC of $10,999 or less (for students in a four year program). Student's must also be matriculated into an undergraduate program of study, leading to a first associate or bachelor degree. Awards for full-time Pell Grant recipients may not exceed a student's calculated educational costs minus any Pell Grant eligibility. Non-Pell Grant students are also eligible for funding under this program based on the EFC amounts as described above.

Charter Oak State College Student Grant Aid Program

This program will be phased out through the 2015-2016 academic year and funding is only available to returning COSC undergraduate students who previously received awards in 2012-2013 and who continue to meet program eligibility requirements. After 2015-2016, this program will be transitioned into the Governor's Scholarship Grant as described in the section above.

Awards can be given to returning full or part-time students with financial need, who are enrolled at the college and who are residents of Connecticut. The COSC Student Grant Aid Program is funded by the State of Connecticut through the Connecticut Office of Higher Education. The award amounts cannot exceed a student's financial need. Awards vary per year as determined by the college. To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA. Funding is limited and is awarded on a first come first served basis.

CHESLA Scholarship Program

Funded by the Connecticut Higher Education Supplemental Loan Authority (CHESLA), the scholarship provides additional assistance, other than loans, to needy undergraduate students who are residents of Connecticut.  Awards will be made to new or returning full or part-time.  To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA.  Funding is limited and will be awarded on a first come first served basis. 

Charter Oak State College Fee-Award
Connecticut state law authorizes the Board of State Academic Awards, Charter Oak's governing board, to allocate funds to be given as fee awards to degree seeking undergraduate students with financial need who are either residents or non-residents of Connecticut. Fee-Awards vary per year depending on a student's need, actual fee(s) and the availability of funds. To apply, a student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA. These awards can only be applied towards:

  • College Fee
  • Graduation Fee
  • Program Change Fee

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Created in 2014 by the Connecticut Board of Regents for Higher Education, and the State of Connecticut, the program provided in-state residents an incentive to complete their undergraduate degrees by offering up to three free 3-credit courses. This limited time degree completion program is no longer accepting new students for the current academic year. Students who are grandfathered into the program must continue to meet all program requirements as outlined in the scholarship's terms and conditions. All eligible students must complete their degrees by June 20, 2018.

Federal Direct Stafford Loans

Charter Oak State Colleges participates in the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program. These are federal loans and we also refer to them as Direct Loans. These loans have fixed rates with low interest rates and fees. Students must be at least half-time (six credits) in order to receive a loan.

There are two types of Federal Direct Loans:

Subsidized loans are need-based and available to undergraduate students only.  Interest does not accrue on these loans while students are enrolled in school at least half-time, during their grace period*, and authorized deferment periods. *Note: Students who received a Direct Subsidized Loan that was first disbursed between July 1, 2012, and June 30, 2014, will be responsible for paying interest that accrues during their grace period.

Unsubsidized loans are not need-based, and students are responsible for all of the interest that accrues on the loan, including while enrolled in school.  However, interest does not have to be paid during this time. Unpaid interest that is deferred until after graduation can be "capitalized" (added to the loan principal). This means that a student will pay interest on a higher loan amount when they go into repayment.

Loan Limits

Dependent - UndergraduateAnnual Loan Limit
Freshman$5,500 ($3,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $2,000 in unsubsidized)
Sophomore$6,500 ($4,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $2,000 in unsubsidized)
Junior/Senior$7,500 ($5,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $2,000 in unsubsidized)
Independent- UndergraduateAnnual Loan Limit
Freshman$9,500 (3,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $6,000 in unsubsidized)
Sophomore$10,500 ($4,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $6,000 in unsubsidized)
Junior/Senior$12,500 ($5,500 between subsidized and unsubsidized, plus an additional $2,000 in unsubsidized)
GraduateAnnual Loan Limit
 $20,500 - unsubsidized only

Undergraduate Dependent Lifetime Limit:
$31,000 (up to $23,000 may be subsidized)

Undergraduate Independent Lifetime Limit:
$57,500 (up to $23,000 may be subsidized)

Graduate Lifetime Limit:
$138,500 (up to $65,000 may be subsidized and includes all federal loans received for undergraduate studies. *The $65,000 subsidized  aggregate loan limit includes subsidized loans that a graduate student may have received for periods of enrollment that began before July 1, 2012.)

Federal PLUS Loans

To receive a Direct PLUS Loan, the borrower must be the parent (biological, adoptive, or in some cases, stepparent) of a dependent undergraduate student enrolled at least-half time; not have adverse credit history; and also meet the general eligibility requirements for federal student aid.

Graduate students may also borrow the remainder of their college costs not covered by other financial aid.

Credit checks are required.

Interest Rates for Direct Loans First Disbursed on or After July 1,2015 and Before June 1, 2016

Loan TypeBorrower TypeLoans first disbursed on or after 7-1-2015 and before 7-1-2016
Direct Subsidized LoansUndergraduate4.29%
Direct Unsubsidized LoansUndergraduate4.29%
Direct PLUS Loans
Parents of Dependent Undergraduate Students and Graduate Students6.84%
*interest rates shown are fixed rates for the life of the loan.

Interest Rates for Direct Loans First Disbursed on or After July 1,2016 and Before June 1, 2017

Loan TypeBorrower TypeLoans first disbursed on or after 7-1-2016 and before 7-1-2017
Direct Subsidized LoansUndergraduate3.76%
Direct Unsubsidized LoansUndergraduate and Graduate5.31%
Direct PLUS LoansParents of Dependent Undergraduate Students and Graduate Students6.31%

*interest rates shown are fixed rates for the life of the loan.

 

Federal Student Loan Fees for Award Year 15-16

Loan TypeFirst Disbursement DateLoan Fee

Direct Subsidized Loans and

Direct Unsubsidized Loans

On or after 12-1-2014 and before 10-1-20151.073%

Direct Subsidized Loans and

Direct Unsubsidized Loans

On or after 10-1-2015 and before 10-1-20161.068%
Direct PLUS LoansOn or after 10-1-14 and before 10-1-20154.292%
Direct PLUS LoanOn or after 10-1-2015 and before 10-1-20164.272%

 

Federal Student Loan Fees for Award Year 16-17

Loan TypeFirst Disbursement DateLoan Fee

Direct Subsidized Loans and

Direct Unsubsidized Loans

On or after 12-1-2015 and before 10-1-20161.068%

Direct Subsidized Loans and

Direct Unsubsidized Loans

On or after 10-1-2016 and before 10-1-20171.069%
Direct PLUS LoansOn or after 10-1-15 and before 10-1-20164.272%
Direct PLUS LoanOn or after 10-1-2016 and before 10-1-20174.276%

*Effective as of July 1, 2013, the Direct Loan interest subsidy will be limited for new borrowers.

  • The new limitation impacts only new borrowers -defined as a student with no outstanding Direct Loan balance as of 7-1-2013.
  • The law restricts the period of time for which a new borrower may receive subsidized loans, in the aggregate, to 150 percent of the published length of the student's current educational program.
  • Once a student reaches that limit, he or she can only borrow an unsubsidized loan, and interest begins to accrue on the student's outstanding subsidized loans.
  • While new borrowers will not see the effect of the subsidy limit until a minimum of 150 percent of his or her published program length has elapsed, it is important to understand that academic progress will be tied to the cost of borrowing student loans.

Private Education Loans

Private education loans may be available to students seeking loan assistance above and beyond the federal financial aid programs. They are used to cover "gaps" that may exist between education costs and the amount of financial aid received (if any).

Charter Oak State College requires all students to apply for Title IV financial aid first -by filing a FAFSA, exhausting all student financial assistance options, prior to borrowing a private education loan. Charter Oak State College does not have a preferred lender list for private education loans. Students and their families need to do their own due diligence to determine what loan best suits their borrowing needs.

There are many types of private education loans, each are calculated with different interest rates, fees, deferment options, repayment terms, co-borrower, and credit criteria. As a convenience to our students, there is an independent research firm called Student Lending Analytics who have developed an unbiased list of loan options for students who need a resource to assist them with finding a private education student loan. Inclusion on this list is not an endorsement or recommendation by Charter Oak State College. Nor is the list inclusive of all education loan programs (private and state loans) that may be available.

All private education loan borrowers, pursuant to revisions in the Truth in Lending Act, are required to complete a self-certification form before their loan can be approved. Your lender will provide you with this form. The form can also be downloaded using the above link. However, the Office of Financial Aid recommends that you complete the self-certification form that your lender provides. You should complete the form and return it promptly to your lender and not to the Office of Financial Aid.

Some lenders may ask the student to provide Charter Oak's OPE ID # which is 03234300. In order to complete the self-certification form, the student will also need to know "cost of attendance" and "estimated financial aid assistance" (if any) for the period of enrollment covered by the loan. Students may contact our office to obtain this information at sfa@charteroak.edu.  Students are responsible for returning the signed self-certification form to their lender before a disbursement  of the private education loan is made.