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Financial Aid

170 North St, P.O. Box 139, Dryden, NY 13053

Regular Hours

Monday, Friday, 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Tuesday, 8:30 a.m.–6 p.m.
Wednesday, 8:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m
Thursday, 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m

Phone: 607.844.6580
Fax: 607.844.6538

Room 101
607.844.6538 (fax)
E-mail Financial Aid

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Academic Requirements for Financial Aid

Grants, loans, and scholarships provide financial aid to people who otherwise would be unable to pursue post-secondary education. Financial assistance is available to Tompkins Cortland students through a combination of private endowments and Federal and state programs. Forms for financial aid programs may be obtained in the financial aid office or high school guidance offices. If you have any questions about financial aid, contact the financial aid office for assistance.

All financial aid programs require recipients to be matriculated in a program of study and make normal progress in courses. If students are not making normal progress, they will be notified and may not be eligible for financial aid. The effective date of this information is September 2011. Subsequent legislative changes by the U.S. Congress could alter the conditions of the financial aid programs. Check with the financial aid office for updated information.

Academic Requirements for Receiving Financial Aid

All students who receive financial aid must make satisfactory academic progress in their degree program to continue eligibility for aid.

Federal Satisfactory Academic Progress

Federal regulations require that students make satisfactory progress in their degree programs to be eligible for federal financial assistance. The following programs at Tompkins Cortland Community College are covered under this policy: Federal PELL Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Student Loans, Federal Direct Parent (PLUS) Loan, and Federal College Work-Study.

In addition, eligibility for student employment and scholarships through the TC3 Foundation requires that students meet these same standards.

Satisfactory progress is determined by a qualitative (Grades) and quantitative (Pace of Progress) evaluation of the student’s transcript at the end of each grading period. All courses, credit, and credit-equivalent (ie., courses with less than “100” course designation), will be used in the calculation of these standards. The calculations used for federal financial aid standards will often be different than those used to determine academic status or that are shown on an academic transcript.

Grades: What a student must  achieve at each evaluation (qualitative standard)

At the time a student has attempted at least 12 credits, students must have earned a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0.

Grade credit is assigned for courses for which students have been assigned letter grades excluding: P (Pass), AW (Administrative Withdrawal), W (Withdrawal), WP (Withdraw Passing), MW (MMR Withdrawal), PTA (Permission to Attend), SUNY (SUNY Gen. Ed.), and TR (Transfer Credit).

Pace of Progress: Ensures completion within the maximum time  frame (quantitative standard)

At the time a student has attempted at least 12 credits, the students must have earned at least 50 percent of all credits attempted.

Unlike the Grades standard, the earned/attempted ratio also includes the following: P (Pass), AW (Administrative Withdrawal), MW (MMR Withdrawal), W (Withdrawal), and WP (Withdraw Passing)

Exhausted Aid

Students must complete a first associate degree within 92 attempted credits (150 percent of the degree credit requirement)

A student seeking a second degree must complete that degree within 114 attempted credits

If a review shows that the student cannot complete his/her program within the above number of attempted credits, all federal financial aid must
stop (i.e., Pell, loans, student employment)

A student may receive financial aid for a maximum of 30 credit-equivalent credit hours of coursework. No further federal financial aid may be granted until all required credit-equivalent courses have been successfully completed.

Repeated Coursework that can count toward FA eligibility

Students may repeat a previously taken course ONLY once, whether the grade meets program requirements or not. Failed courses can be repeated until passed.

Recalculation of attempted credits at TC3

Students returning to TC3 after an absence of five years or more may request a recalculation of attempted credits for financial aid eligibility purposes. Any attempted credit for which the student received a passing grade, failing grade, or withdrawal that, if passed, would not meet new degree program requirements will not be counted toward the 92 attempted credits for a first degree and 114 credits for a second degree.

The recalculation is available one time only

The recalculation will only occur in conjunction with a program change

The recalculation must be completed within the first year of returning to TC3

Requests should be made to the Dean of Student Life Office

Transfer Credits

Transfer credits from other schools that have been accepted toward completion of a student’s program will count as both credits attempted and credits earned.

Financial Aid Status

Financial Aid Probation: Student is below 2.0 GPA and/or 50 percent completion rate (including developmental coursework). Financial Aid office will notify by mail and email at the end of the grading term. Student will be asked to acknowledge their financial eligibility status and complete an academic success plan. Student cannot be in FA Probation for consecutive terms. (FAPB)

Financial Aid Suspension: Student was on FA Probation and at the next review student is still below 2.0 GPA and/or 50 percent completion rate (including developmental coursework). Financial Aid Office notifies student by mail and email. Student no longer has federal financial aid eligibility at TC3 due to two consecutive semesters of being out of compliance with GPA and/or 50 percent completion. Student is given directions on how to appeal if eligible. (FASU)

Financial Aid Plan: There are two circumstances under which a student will be placed on a Financial Aid Plan; the student has appealed to the Deanof Students and been granted reinstatement of financial aid or the student  is on Academic Repeat Probation. Any deviation from the plan will result in suspension of financial aid eligibility. (FAPL)

Financial Aid Exhausted: Student is notified that they no longer have federal financial aid eligibility at TC3. Student will be placed on the hold list as financial aid exhausted when they have not completed their equivalent coursework within the 30-credit limit or they are not able to complete their first associate degree within 92 attempted credits or their second degree within 114 credits. (FAEX)

Financial Aid Holds: Student will be notified by financial aid when they are placed on the hold list. One or more of the following financial aid holds may appear on a student’s account:
• FAPB – Financial Aid Probation
• FASU – Financial Aid Suspension
• FAPL – Financial Aid Plan
• FAEX – Financial Aid Exhausted

Students with Disabilities

Effective with the 1998-99 academic year, students who are disabled, as defined by the 1990 federal Americans with disabilities act (ADA), do not have to attend school full time to be eligible for TAP awards. These students are eligible for a partial TAP award if they are attending part time (at least three credits per semester or the equivalent). The student must still meet all other TAP eligibility requirements. In addition, the TAP certifying officer must be able to document that the student is disabled as defined by the ADA. Those records can be obtained from the designated campus ADA representative.

Procedures for evaluating Satisfactory
Academic Progress (SAP)

TC3 will review SAP at the end of each grading term:

  • End of the fall term
  • End of the spring term
  • End of second five-week session for courses taken
    in the summer

Students who fail to meet SAP standards will be placed on financial aid probation for one semester.

After the probation semester,

  • If the student is back in compliance with SAP,
    he/she will be off financial aid probation
  • If the student has done well (semester GPA of 2.0
    and completed 75 percent of attempted courses)
    but has not achieved full SAP compliance, the
    student will be placed on a financial aid plan until
    back in SAP compliance. If, while on the FA plan,
    the student does not meet all plan requirements,
    financial aid will be suspended for the subsequent
    semester and until back in SAP compliance.
  • If the student has not met standards for the second
    semester, federal financial aid will be suspended
    Students whose financial aid has been suspended may regain financial aid eligibility by successfully completing courses that they pay for until back in
    SAP compliance.

To appeal a Financial Aid Suspension

To appeal suspension a student can submit a
financial aid appeal request based on a documented extraordinary circumstance. Only one appeal of this type is possible. The decision of the Financial Aid
Appeal Committee is final. To submit an appeal,
students must:

  • Arrange for payment of any past-due bills to the
  • Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal
    Student Aid) at
  • Submit a written appeal to the Financial Aid Appeal
    Committee. The Financial Aid Appeal request and
    instructions can be downloaded at or
    are available at the Office of the Dean of Student
    Life, room 218. Completed Appeal form and
    documentation should be turned into the Dean of
    Student Life, room 218.
  • Adhere to all deadlines as indicated on the Financial
    Aid Appeal form
  • The decision of the Financial Aid Appeal committee
    is final

Academic Suspension: If a student is placed on academic suspension, a financial aid appeal request will not be considered unless the student has filed an appeal with the Committee on Academic Status (COAS) and is allowed to return to TC3. The academic decision of COAS is not based on the student’s ability to receive financial aid.

Possible outcomes to an appeal request, as
determined by Financial Aid Appeal Committee:

Approved with a specific FA plan: Allows a student to receive aid and if student’s performance does not follow the FA plan, no further waivers will be permitted.

Denied: Student pays for courses until student regains financial aid eligibility.

New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) Guidelines

Pursuit of Program (POP)

POP is a requirement that a student receive a passing or failing grade (A-F letter grade) in a certain percentage of courses each term, depending on the number of stat awards the student has received. This is evaluated at the end of the term to establish eligibility for the next payment. The percentage is determined according to the following schedule:

Number of payments

Must receive a grade for


50% of minimum full-time requirement (6 credit hours on a semester calendar)


75% (9 credit hours)

5 or more

100% (12 credit hours)

For this evaluation final grades are considered to be A,B,C,D, F or P. Grades of W (withdrawal), WP (withdrawal passing), or I (incomplete) are not considered to be course completions and do not count toward Pursuit of Program.

Satisfactory Progress

Satisfactory Progress means earning a minimum number of cumulative credits and a minimum cumulative grade point average prior to receiving the next TAP payment. Students at 2 year institutions may only receive 6 TAP payments.

There are two sets of standards that may apply:

Standard 1
applies to students receiving aid in 2007-08 through and including 2009-10 and remedial students first receiving aid in 2007-08 and thereafter.

Before being certified for this payment

A student must have accrued at least this many credits

With at least this grade point average



















Standard 2
applies to non-remedial students first receiving aid in 2010-11 and thereafter.

Before being certified for this payment

A student must have accrued at least this many credits

With at least this grade point average



















Time of Assessment

Good academic standing must be evaluated each term. Students must meet both Pursuit of Program and Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements for that term to be considered in good academic standing

Reinstatement of Good Academic Standing

Students who have lost good academic standing may restore this standing in one of the following ways:

  • Make up past academic deficiencies by completing one or more terms of study without receiving any state grants or scholarships
  • Be readmitted to school after an absence of at least one calendar year
  • Transfer to another institution; or
  • Be granted a one-time waiver

One-time waiver

New York State Commissioner of Education regulations permit students to receive a one-time waiver of the good academic standing requirement. The institution issues the waiver if there are documented extenuating circumstances. The institution is required to publish and adhere to criteria under which it will grant a waiver. Institutional personnel are required to discuss the waiver with the student before granting one. TC3 uses the following criteria to review waiver requests.

TC3 requires a written waiver request and documentation of the extenuating circumstances. This might be acute health problems, or the death of an immediate family member. Examples of documentation would include medical records or death certificate.

Note: Students who are in default on any student loan are not eligible for any state- sponsored grant or scholarship.