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Financial Aid


We encourage all students to apply for financial aid and will do whatever we can to help all students with the process of applying for financial aid. Financial aid includes various types of assistance available to help meet the costs of attending college. The WSCC Financial Aid Office believes all students, regardless of the amount of financial resources available to them, should have the opportunity to pursue an education. The WSCC Financial Aid Office will assist all students with finding resources to pursue their education. Below you’ll find information regarding requirements for Financial Aid.

*The Financial Aid office will be unavailable between May 20th and May 22nd*

Financial Aid Flyer

*Important Financial Aid Update*

Financial aid will be available for 2024-25 but has been delayed because information from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) will not reach colleges and universities until March 2024.

Students who haven’t already done so are encouraged to do their 2024-25 FAFSA online at https://studentaid.gov. This year’s FAFSA is shorter than past years due to FAFSA Simplification. It is important for every student who is eligible to complete the FAFSA.

On January 30, 2024, the U.S. Department of Education announced they are further delaying the release of FAFSA information to colleges until the first half of March 2024. These delays are impacting colleges nationwide, not just West Shore Community College. The FAFSA experience has changed along with the way eligibility is determined.

As a result of these changes, more students should qualify for higher amounts of financial aid. The recently announced additional delay is because an error was discovered by the Department of Education, which they are correcting. The good news is that an additional $1.8 billion in federal aid will be available once corrected.

The delay in FAFSA information may be stressful for students and families, as paying for college is a significant expense. Financial aid will be available and even more than ever for qualifying students. Right now, we urge students to complete the FAFSA, and if they need assistance, schedule an on-campus appointment with a financial aid professional.

Access your complete guide to Financial Aid resources and services.

See all of the details below. Still have questions? Contact us and we can help.

Requirements for Financial Aid

Stay informed with all the standards, funds, policies and procedures that may apply to you.

Eligibility Requirements for Financial Aid

In order to be considered for federal financial aid, a student must:

  1. Be a U.S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen.
  2. Most males must be registered with Selective Service. Go to www.sss.gov to register.
  3. Have a valid social security number.
  4. Not be in default on a student loan or owe a refund on a federal grant.
  5. Have demonstrated financial need except for some types of student loans.
  6. Have earned a high school diploma or GED.
  7. Be pursuing a degree or certificate program at WSCC.
  8. Maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  9. Cannot have a criminal conviction for drug possession or sale while receiving financial aid
How You Qualify for Federal Financial Aid
  • There is no set income level at which students qualify for federal financial aid. The FAFSA information is used in a formula to determine the amount the student may be able to contribute to their education. The result is called an EFC or Estimated Family Contribution.
  • Most of the funds awarded by the Financial Aid Office are based on financial need from the FAFSA results. Financial need is calculated by subtracting the student’s EFC from their Cost of Attendance (COA) Budget. The COA is an estimated amount that it will cost you to go to school for a year. Your COA may include tuition, fees, books, housing, transportation, and miscellaneous costs.
  • Regardless of financial aid need a student will qualify for a student loan unless the student is in default on a previous student loan. Many scholarships are awarded regardless of financial need.
  • Students experiencing unusual financial circumstances such as unemployment, reduction of pay, excessive medical expenses, etc. may appeal to the WSCC Financial Aid Director for a review of their circumstances. Adjustments may be made to the student’s EFC that may result in the student receiving additional financial aid.
Return of Title IV Federal Financial Aid Funds

Federal legislation requires that unearned Title IV funds including Pell Grants, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG), and Direct Stafford Loans be returned to the appropriate aid program if a financial aid recipient totally withdraws from classes prior to completing 60% of the semester.
Students considering withdrawal from all classes prior to completing 60% of the semester are strongly encouraged to contact the WSCC Financial Aid Office to determine how withdrawal will affect current and future financial aid. The complete Return of Title IV Funds policy is available in the WSCC Financial Aid Office or on the WSCC website www.westshore.edu.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Federal and state regulations require that students receiving financial aid be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) toward the completion of their certificate program or associate degree regardless of whether the student received financial aid in the past.
The SAP policy applies to all students who receive assistance from all federal and most state financial aid programs including but not limited to Pell grants, student loans, work study, TIP, Veterans Education Benefits, and some scholarships.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards
  1. Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 that is calculated from all attempted classes that earn GPA points. Incompletes, withdrawals, forgiven repeats, transfer credits, pass/fail courses, and developmental classes are excluded from the GPA calculation.
  2. Each semester students must complete all attempted credits at a pace of at least 67% including courses below the 100 level. Incompletes, withdrawals, repeated classes, transfer credits, pass/fail courses, and developmental classes are used to calculate the completion rate.
  3. Students must complete their degree program within 90 attempted credit hours or the 150% limit of their program of study. Attempted credit hours include transfer credits; credit hours for courses passed or failed, repeated courses, withdrawals, and incompletes. A student may earn no more than three degrees or certificates regardless of total accumulated credit hours.
  4. Students that attend WSCC and already possess a bachelor’s degree will need to complete the 150% appeal process, and provide official transcript(s) from their former school(s).
Satisfactory Academic Progress Procedures
  1. Satisfactory Academic Progress is reviewed at the end of each semester.
  2. Students will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for the semester if they fail to meet the minimum cumulative 2.0 GPA requirement and/or fail to complete 67% of credit hours attempted overall. Students are eligible to receive financial aid for the Warning semester. Students who fail to achieve Satisfactory Academic Progress at the end of the Warning semester will go on Financial Aid Suspension and will be canceled from financial aid.
  3. Students will be canceled from financial aid after the semester the student reaches 90 credits, or reaches 150% of the credits needed to complete their program of study.
  4. Any student canceled from financial aid, after two semesters of failing to meet the SAP policy, has the right to appeal the suspension to the Financial Aid (FA) Director if there were circumstances that prevented the student from meeting the requirements of the SAP policy. Special circumstances can include but are not limited to medical, employment, transportation, or any other mitigating circumstances deemed extenuating by the Financial Aid Director.
  5. All financial aid appeals must be made by completing the appropriate WSCC Appeal form and the student must meet with the Financial Aid Director. Supporting documentation may be required. After reviewing the appeal, the Financial Aid Director will inform the student of the decision in writing.
  6. If a Financial Aid appeal is approved for failure to meet the pace and/or GPA requirement the student will be placed on Probation and eligible to receive financial aid. To continue on Probation, an SAP plan must be created with an Academic Advisor and followed that requires a minimum 2.0 GPA for the semester and 67% of the credits attempted to be completed each semester. The SAP plan may require additional conditions, established by the Financial Aid Director or Academic Advisor, which the student must follow.
  7. Students will typically be allowed one Financial Aid SAP appeal, but an additional appeal may be considered if circumstance are warranted. A student wishing to appeal the decision of the Financial Aid Director may do so in writing to the Dean of Student Services.
  8. Students that are approved for an appeal to exceed their 150% credit limit will be able to receive financial aid for the specified classes needed to complete their degree program. Failing to meet the pace or GPA requirements for the classes approved with their 150% appeal will result in financial aid cancellation.
  9. Students’ financial aid eligibility will be reinstated after cancellation if they use non-financial aid resources to enroll in classes and earns enough credits to meet the minimum 67% completion rate and attains the required 2.0 cumulative grade point and has not exceeded their 150% program limit. Students should notify the financial aid office once they are again meeting all SAP requirements.
  10. Students that fail to meet the terms of their appeal will be canceled from financial aid. They have the option to appeal again or use non-financial aid resources to enroll in classes until thy are meeting all SAP requirements.
Financial Aid Awards

Federal financial aid awards are made after the student’s FAFSA has been processed and finalized by the WSCC Financial Aid Office. Students should allow up to four weeks for their FAFSA to be finalized. Student will be notified by mail and/or email of all financial aid awards including grants, scholarships, waivers, student loans, and work study employment. Financial aid awards are subject to change based on the student’s enrollment status before, during, and after the semester.

Disbursement of Financial Aid Awards

All financial aid funds, scholarships, grants, and student loans are credited to the student’s account. If the student has any remaining funds after all tuition, fees, and bookstore charges are paid, a check will be mailed to the student for the balance remaining. It is the student’s responsibility to verify the accuracy of all charges, credits, and financial aid awards. Refund checks for remaining financial aid are mailed approximately four to six weeks after the semester begins.

Types of Financial Aid

Know your options, there is more than one way to afford college.

Mason County Promise

The Mason County Promise is a promise to provide scholarships for free tuition to WSCC to graduates in Mason County who:

  • Graduate with a diploma and reside within the boundaries of one of the following three school districts within Mason County (Mason County Central Schools, Mason County Eastern Schools, Ludington Area School District) with a cumulative 2.00 Grade Point Average (GPA) or above; or,
  • Graduate from Gateway to Success Academy with a cumulative 2.00 Grade Point Average or above; or,
  • Obtain a GED and reside within the boundaries of Mason County

To learn more: http://masoncountypromise.org/

Michigan Reconnect

What is Reconnect?

It’s your ticket to a tuition-free college degree or certificate! The Reconnect program provides eligible students with a chance to work toward an associate degree or Pell-eligible skills certificate at in-district community colleges, tuition-free.

Why Apply?

You’ll make more money per paycheck — community college graduates make $7,500 more per year with a two-year degree. Now you can get an affordable college education while taking advantage of benefits like:

  • Flexibility and convenience of online programs letting you learn at your own pace.
  • Built-in support network of Navigators and Success Coaches to help with everything from FAFSA to course enrollment.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible, you just need to:

  • Be at least 21 years of age.
  • Apply and enroll in a community or tribal college no later than fall semester 2024.
  • Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
  • Have lived in Michigan for at least a year.
  • Have a high school diploma or equivalent or certificate of completion.
  • Have not yet completed a college degree.

To learn more, click here.

To apply, click here.


A grant is a type of financial aid based on financial need (or other eligibility requirements) that a student may not have to pay back.

Federal Pell Grant is awarded based on need an requires completion of the yearly Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Federal Supplemental Opportunity Grant (SEOG) is awarded to students determined to have exceptional need. An SEOG Award may range from $100 to $4000 per academic year.

www.FAFSA.gov (When you apply, use WSCC’s Title IV school code: 007950)


View the link here to learn about scholarships.


West Shore Community College provides loans through the US Department of Education’s Direct Loan Program. Direct Loans are low-interest loans for students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student’s education after high school.

  • Complete a FAFSA.
  • Be enrolled at least half-time (6 credit hours).
  • Be pursuing a degree or certificate at West Shore.
  • Complete loan application process at www.studentloans.gov
  • Please contact Student Services Office so we can forward you the required loan forms request at (231)843-5510 or finaid@westshore.edu

There are two types of Direct Loans:

  • Subsidized Direct — Loans that are based on financial need. The government will pay the interest on the loan while a student is in school.
  • Unsubsidized Direct — A student may borrow an unsubsidized loan regardless of need, but will have to pay all interest charges.
Work Study

Federal Work-Study is a need-based federal program that provides students with employment opportunities, both on- and off-campus, to assist with educational expenses.

Benefits of Federal Work Study

  • A variety of jobs are available that may work with your class schedule.
  • Federal Work Study income does not affect your financial aid eligibility for next year
  • You gain valuable work experience.
  • You can avoid student loan debt by working to pay for your education.

Requirements to participate in the Federal Work Study program

  • Determined eligible by completing a FAFSA.
  • Be enrolled at least half-time (6 credit hours).
  • Be pursuing a degree or certificate at West Shore.
  • Complete student and employment application process.
  • Secure a position through an interview.

www.FAFSA.gov (When you apply, use WSCC’s Title IV school code: 007950) For work study positions visit my.westshore

Tuition Assistance

Tuition Assistance is available from a number of different sources, not all are listed below. Funding requirements for each program will vary.

  • Michigan Indian Tuition Waiver
  • Michigan Tuition Incentive Program
  • Michigan Children of Veterans Tuition Grant
  • Michigan Education Trust (MET)
  • Michigan Education Savings Plans (MESP)
  • Promise Zone Funding
  • Michigan Works
  • Michigan Vocational Rehabilitation
  • Education and Training Vouchers for Foster Care Children
  • Employer Sponsored Authorization
  • Employer Reimbursement
Veteran's Benefits

Veterans Educational Benefits are available to veterans, service persons, reservists and spouse or dependents of qualified veterans.

Eligible students apply online at the Veterans Administration Website. Have available a DD214 and banking information. Students also need to:

  • Meet with the WSCC Financial Aid Director/VA Certifying Official.
  • Provide the office with a copy of Certificate of Eligibility.
  • Meet requirements of the WSCC Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy (SAP).
  • Make payment arrangements or apply for financial aid if tuition and fees are not covered by the Veterans Administration.

Veterans are also eligible to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to review options for additional funding.

www.GIBILL.va.gov (Official source for VA Education Benefits & Application)
www.FAFSA.gov (When you apply, use WSCC’s Title IV school code: 007950)

How to Apply

All the steps you need to complete your FAFSA!

Step 1. Be accepted for admission to the College as a regular student

New students must complete and submit an online Application for Admission

Step 2. Gather the information required to complete the FAFSA
  • Social Security Cards (remember to input the name exactly as it appears on the card).
  • Tax returns and other related documents
  • For additional assistance on filling out FAFSA, click on video
Step 3. Enter your FAFSA information on the Web
  • Go to https://studentaid.gov/..
  • Click on START HERE, if this is the first time completing a FAFSA.
  • Click on LOG IN if you completed or started a FAFSA previously.
  • Click on I am a student and want to access the FAFSA form.
  • Click on Log In to Continue if you already have a FSA ID or click on Create an FSA ID if you do not already have one.
  • Enter the information requested, then click NEXT.
  • Click on START 2021-2022 FAFSA. Click on NEXT to continue.
  • If attending Summer 2021, Fall 2021, or Winter 2021, file the 2021-2022 FAFSA using your 2019 federal tax return.
  • If attending Summer 2022, Fall 2022, or Winter 2022, file the 2022-2023 FAFSA using your 2020 federal tax return.
  • Answer the questions on each screen by referring to any necessary documents.
  • If you need additional help, refer to the HELP and HINTS bar on the right hand side of the screen.
  • WSCC’s school code is 007950.
Step 4. Sign Your FAFSA
  • The easiest way to sign your FAFSA is to create an FSA ID.
  • Go to https://studentaid.gov/fsa-id/create-account/launch
  • Click on create an FSA ID Now. Follow the instructions.
  • If you are required to provide parent information on the FAFSA, one of your parents will need to create an FSA ID also.
  • Remember your FSA ID, you will need it each year to complete your FAFSA and for other financial aid websites.
Step 5. Submit Your FAFSA
  • If you are unable to complete the FAFSA at one sitting, click on SAVE and your FAFSA is saved for 45 days. Make sure you keep the password you created when you began the FAFSA.
  • If you provide an email address when you complete the FAFSA, you will receive an email notifying you that your FAFSA has been processed.
Step 6. What Happens Next
  • You should receive an email confirmation from FAFSA within 48 hours.
  • The earliest you should expect to receive a response from WSCC is March 1.
  • If it is after March 1, please allow up to three weeks to receive a response.

Ready to Apply?

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