Financial Aid Policies

Financial aid applicants have the right to:

  • Be informed about financial aid application procedures, cost of attendance, aid availability, and renewal requirements.
  • Confidential protection of your financial aid records. The contents of your file are maintained in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
  • Appeal decisions made by the Financial Aid Office staff. Appeals should be submitted to the appropriate offices.

You have the responsibility to:

  • Complete applications accurately and on time.
  • Read and understand all materials sent to you from the Financial Aid Office and other agencies.
  • Keep copies of all forms and materials submitted.
  • Know and comply with the rules governing your aid programs.
  • Comply with the provisions of any promissory note and all other agreements you sign.
  • Inform the Financial Aid Office of any outside resources you have or will be receiving.
  • Register for the number of credits required and maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • Request personal assistance if you have questions or don't understand the information provided to you.
  • Use the financial aid award for school expenses, tuition and fees; room and board; books and supplies; and transportation.

Official and Unofficial Withdrawal

When a student who is receiving financial aid from a campus partially withdraws, completely withdraws or stops attending classes, a revision is made to their financial aid award. It is the student's responsibility to follow the official withdrawal process and to notify the Financial Aid Office of any changes made to their enrollment status. View the campuses catalog for the official withdrawal process.

Official Withdrawals

  • Withdrawing from all classes during a term may result in a change in institutional charges and will change the financial aid awards for that term. Recent changes to Federal financial aid regulations have created a new Return of Title IV Funds Policy.
  • Upon withdrawing, the Financial Aid Office will do a calculation to determine how much aid a student "earned". This is based on a pro-rated schedule of enrollment up through the 60% point in an enrollment period that shows how much aid the student and school will need to return to the Federal aid programs. Basically, it is any "unearned" aid that must be returned to the Federal aid programs; which Federal aid programs funds will need to be returned; and does the student have a post-withdrawal disbursement due to them, if so, how it will affect the student and their future eligibility.
  • Students who are considering withdrawing from classes should contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss the impacts it will have on their current financial aid and future financial aid eligibility.

Unofficial Withdrawals

  • Students who cease attending all classes during a term may also be subject to the Return of Title IV Funds Policy. In all cases, official withdrawal procedures should be followed. This is based on a pro-rated schedule of enrollment up through the 60% point in an enrollment period. The calculation will show any "unearned" aid that the student and school will need to return to the federal aid programs.
  • Also, students who fail all classes during a term will be reviewed to determine if the failure was due to not attending the class. Students who have stopped attending classes before the end of the term will be treated as an unofficial withdrawal.

Course Program of Study

Course Program of Study (CPoS) is a process that helps our school stay in compliance with Title IV Federal Student Aid guidelines that state financial aid can only be awarded for courses that are required for the degree or certificate you are enrolled in. These guidelines make it very important to take the right classes for your degree requirements. Doing so will help you ensure your courses are eligible for financial aid and will also help you finish your degree faster!

How do I know what degree or certificate I am enrolled in?

You can see your degree plan in your STAR account. Your major will be listed at the top of your GPS Registration page.

Screenshot of major designation in STAR

How do I know what courses count for my program?

Your STAR account will be a helpful tool in displaying the required courses for your degree or certificate. They are listed in your STAR Graduation Pathway. You can also click on a requirement for more details regarding what courses count for that requirement.

Screenshot of display of required courses in STAR

What if I need to change my program?

To change your degree or certificate, you need to contact your Academic Counselor as soon as possible.

How do I know if my classes "count" for financial Aid?

When you register for classes, be sure to check your STAR GPS Registration. Any course listed as NOT IN PLAN or Non-Applicable will not count for financial aid. Here is how the courses will appear in your STAR GPS:

Screenshot of courses in STAR

If you see a course labeled as NOT IN PLAN or Non-Applicable, you should contact your academic counselor as soon as possible to determine the best course of action.

Why would a class not "count" for financial aid?

Generally, a course will display as NOT IN PLAN because it does not count for a requirement for the degree. This could be because the course is not part of the degree plan or because you took a course(s) that already fulfills that requirement.

A course will display as Non-Applicable when it is a repeat; however, some repeats can count and will be adjusted accordingly.

Can I repeat classes and still have them count for financial aid?

Per Financial Aid Title IV guidelines, you may repeat an applicable course once for financial aid if you previously earned a passing grade (D grade or higher). In order for a repeat course to be considered for financial aid, the course must be taken at Honolulu CC. Repeat courses taken at another UH campus will not be considered. Please see below for some examples of when a repeat of a passed course may or may not be counted towards financial aid:

IMPORTANT: There are two separate policies for Repeat Courses: (1) Financial Aid repeat regulations and (2) Honolulu CC's academic repeat policy. Please refer to the Honolulu CC Catalog for the details of both policies.

Example 1st Attempt 2nd Attempt 3rd Attempt Course Counts for Financial Aid?
Example 1 F D Enrolled Yes
Example 2 C Enrolled - Yes
Example 3 D C Enrolled No
Example 4 D F Enrolled No
Example 5 W F Enrolled Yes
Example 6 D W Enrolled No
Example 7 W Enrolled - Yes
Example 8 W D Enrolled Yes

What about courses that can be repeated for credit?

Courses which can be repeated for credit â€" meaning they can count more than once â€" may be considered for financial aid (see repeat examples in chart above). Be sure to check with your academic counselor if a repeatable course will be counted as a requirement in your degree pathway.

What if I am taking courses at another University of Hawai'i campus?

Course(s) taken at another UH campus may be considered for financial aid at Honolulu CC if the following requirements are met:

  1. Your home campus is Honolulu CC
  2. You are enrolled for at least one course at Honolulu CC.
  3. The course(s) taken at the other UH campus must apply to your Honolulu CC degree (qualify under Course Program of Study).