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To be eligible for federal financial aid, the student must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Be in compliance with Selective Service registration requirements (male students only)
    For information on how to register - click on the following link: http://www.sss.gov/Default.htm 
  • Have completed all required forms
  • Have “financial need” as defined by the federal need analysis methodology (for need-based aid, including the Federal Pell Grant)
  • Effective 7/1/12, in order for students to qualify for financial aid (excluding the BOG Fee Waiver), they must have a high school diploma, GED, passed the California Proficiency Exam or completed an approved homeschool program. Students who previously met the ATB requirements of either completing 6 units of college level coursework or meeting or exceeding the minimum test scores on the Accuplacer exam at College of the Desert (COD) are still eligible for financial aid. Additionally, all students who were enrolled in an eligible program prior to 7/1/12 can still complete 6 units of college level coursework or take the Accuplacer exam (and meet the minimum scores) in order to qualify for financial aid. Please contact the Financial Aid Office for additional assistance in determining your eligibility.
  • Be enrolled in a program of study that leads to an Associate’s Degree, or a two-year program that is “transferable” toward a Bachelor’s Degree at a four–year college or university or in a vocational/career education certificate program that meets federal Title IV requirements.  
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress as defined by the COD Financial Aid Office:
    • Maintain the required minimum grade point average (GPA) and minimum unit completion rate according to COD’s Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy [See separate section entitled "Satisfactory Academic Progress"]
    • Complete a program of study within 150% of the published length of the program
  • Meet eligibility requirements if the student has been convicted of either the sale or possession of illegal drugs
  • Sign a statement on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) certifying that you:
    • Will use federal and/or state student financial aid only to pay the cost of attending an institution of higher education
    • Are not in default on a federal student loan or you have made satisfactory arrangements to repay it
    • Do not owe money back on a federal student grant or you have made satisfactory arrangements to repay it
    • Will notify your current college if you default on a federal student loan 
    • Will not receive a Federal PELL Grant from more than one college for the same period of enrollment
    • Understand that the Secretary of Education has the authority to verify information reported on the FAFSA with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and other federal agencies  

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