VCOM College Catalog and Student Handbook

school, and other miscellaneous expenses. Borrowing money from these programs is a privilege, not a right. Students must remember that a loan is not a gift or grant; it must be repaid. Student loans are to be used only for the student’s education-related and personal living expenses. Over-borrowing can cause a student to default on a loan. Default is the failure of the borrower to make an installment payment when due or the failure to meet other terms of the promissory note. Defaulted loans are reported to national credit agencies, thus affecting credit ratings and future ability to borrow money. If a student’s loan goes into default, the College, the organization that holds the loan, and the federal government can all take action to recover the money. The federal government and loan agencies can also deny a school’s participation in the student loan programs or charge students higher fees if the default rate is high. So, for protection of a student’s personal credit rating and the school’s ability to continue to provide financial aid to future students, VCOM encourages students to learn basic budgeting techniques, keep track of the amount they are borrowing, and borrow wisely. VCOM offers the following options for financial aid assistance: • Information to students regarding scholarship opportunities; • Access to loans through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan and Graduate Plus Loan Programs; and • Information on private (Alternate) loans obtained through lending agencies. Information about the financial aid application and process timeline can be found on the VCOM website at: https://www.vcom.edu/admissions/tuition-and-fees/financial-aid-faqs. Students need to follow these steps if they are interested in receiving financial assistance: • Complete and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the Department of Education. It is recommended that students submit their FAFSA no later than May 31 st . The electronic FAFSA form is available on the web at: https://studentaid.gov/. • VCOM’s school codes are G37093 for the Virginia campus, E01970 for the Carolinas campus, E40408 for the Auburn campus, and E40498 for the Louisiana campus. Students must enter this number in the section of the FAFSA that requests the school code in order for VCOM to receive a copy of the Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Department of Education after the FAFSA is processed. The Student Aid Report is necessary for the Office of Financial Aid to be able to calculate financial aid eligibility. • Provide verification of the students’ citizenship status, if requested. • Provide any further information that is communicated as being required to evaluate financial need. Students must be sure to respond quickly to any requests for additional information. • Set up a MyVCOM account and login at: https://myvcom.vcom.edu/CMCPortal/secure/student/loginstu.aspx. Your financial aid will later be posted to this site. • Set up your VCOM email account. Instructions will be forwarded to you from the Registrar’s Office after the receipt of your admissions deposit. This email account is how we will communicate with you. • Sign a promissory note with Direct Loans for the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan and Graduate PLUS loan or with the lender of your choice for a private loan. This step is completed after the Financial Aid Offer is received. • Complete online entrance counseling at: https://studentaid.gov/entrance-counseling/ In order to qualify for some loans, students must have a good credit record and be credit worthy. Lending agencies vary in the information they use to calculate credit scores. It is the student’s responsibility to assure their credit worthiness for borrowing funds and to resolve directly with the lender or a credit bureau any issues regarding their credit report or credit score.

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