Video: Will financial aid pay all of my expenses?

Here’s what happens after your Financial Aid Award Letter is posted on your MyPortal account.

Your Award Letter

The Award Letter details all of the types of financial aid and amounts for which you are eligible, for the entire school year.

The amounts for awards and cost of attendance are always shown on the basis of full-time enrollment status (taking at least 12 units per quarter). The amount you may receive will depend on your enrollment status, which means it will be prorated if your enrollment is less than full-time.

The total amount of aid you’re awarded, including aid based on need or other factors, may not exceed your cost of attendance.

How to Accept an Award

Your letter will include instructions for how to indicate online whether you are accepting or declining each element of your award. This will include reading and accepting all the items listed on our Terms and Conditions webpage.

You do not have to return the Award Letter to the Financial Aid Office.

If you do not want to accept a certain award, you may decline the award on MyPortal. If you wish to reduce a dollar amount, you must submit a Revision Request at the Financial Aid Office.

Accepting a Loan

If you are awarded a Federal Direct Loan, you will need to follow some additional steps. You also must enroll in at least six units each quarter to receive the loans.

Important Note: You are not required to accept any student loans.

Accept or Decline

To indicate your choice, select Accept or Decline next to each loan offer that is listed, and then click “Submit Decision.”

  • If you are offered both a subsidized and unsubsidized direct loan, and you want to accept them, then you must accept the subsidized loan first.

  • If you wish to accept less than the offered amount, you should contact the Financial Aid Office at De Anza.

Federal Requirements

After accepting a loan, you must immediately take the required online “entrance counseling” AND submit a completed Master Promissory Note before the loan funds can be released to you. You will find both of these at studentloans.gov. (If you have received a direct loan at De Anza or Foothill College previously, you won’t need to take the entrance counseling again.)

  • Once you have completed those two tasks, the Federal Student Aid office will notify De Anza that you have satisfied these requirements.

  • You can check the status of these tasks on MyPortal, by clicking on the Student Requirements tab. 

Receiving Your Loan Funds

Once you have satisfied federal requirements, you can check your MyPortal account to find your “disbursement date,” or the date when your loan funds will be paid into your De Anza student account.

  • De Anza only disburses financial aid on Mondays. Please see our Funding Dates page for the upcoming funding dates.

  • After any outstanding fees owed to De Anza are paid, the remainder of your loan funds will be "refunded" to you (see below) on the Friday after the loan is disbursed.

First-Time Borrowers

If you’re a first-year college student and a first-time borrower, your loan funds may not be provided to you until 30 days after your first quarter of enrollment begins. Since De Anza only disburses financial aid on Mondays, your loans will be paid into your De Anza account on the first Monday after the 30-day waiting period.

  • You can check with the Financial Aid Office to learn whether this rule applies to you.

  • Please see our Funding Dates webpage for the specific funding dates for 30-day delay loans.

Getting the Money: 

"Disbursement" and "Refunds"

Your award letter will include a Financial Aid Disbursement Date. This is the date when your financial aid funds are "disbursed," which means they are deposited into your student account at De Anza. This money will be applied first to any outstanding charges that you owe to the college. The remaining money will then be “refunded” to you – through an electronic transfer to your personal account at BankMobile or another bank of your choosing, or through a paper check if you prefer.

Funds are generally “disbursed” to your student account on a Monday and “refunded” the following Friday. Visit our Funding Dates page for some additional rules and upcoming dates when funds will be distributed.

De Anza partners with BankMobile to process all refunds and provide students with a convenient way to receive their financial aid funds. Opening a free BankMobileVibe account is the fastest way to get your funds. You can also choose to have the money transferred to your account at another bank, which may take an additional day or two. As a third option, you can choose to receive a paper check, which may take an additional 21 days.

When you are awarded financial aid for the first time, you will receive a letter from BankMobile that explains how to select the method that you want to receive funds.


Some Frequently Asked Questions

For more answers to your questions, see our Financial Aid FAQs webpage.

What do the Award Messages mean?

Depending on your situation, your award letter may list one or more types of aid offered. Visit the Types of Aid webpage for more information about the different programs available.

What if my situation changes?

We understand that financial circumstances can change. See our Special Circumstances webpage to find out what you can do if this happens.

Do I need to remain a full-time student?

No, you don’t have to be a full-time student – although you must be enrolled in at least six units to qualify for a student loan. If you have part-time status (taking fewer than 12 units per quarter), you will receive a  grant that is proportionately less than the amount you would get as a full-time student. If you withdraw from school entirely, you may be required to return some or all of the federal aid funds you received. (See below.)

What if I withdraw?

If you withdraw from school, you may be required to return some or all of the federal aid funds that you have received. See our Title IV Repayment  webpage for details.

If your plans have changed and you decide not to enroll at De Anza for a quarter or academic year, please contact our office in writing to cancel aid. This step is especially important if you are seeking financial aid from another school. 

Do I need to maintain a certain GPA?

Yes! You must meet academic eligibility requirements in order to qualify and receive financial aid. You are responsible for making sure that you are aware of the academic requirements to maintain eligibility for financial aid. 

Satisfactory Academic Progress, or SAP, includes three things:

  • You must successfully complete at least 67 percent of the units attempted each term.

  • You must maintain a minimum 2.0 quarterly and cumulative GPA.

  • You must complete your program of study without taking more than 150 percent of the units required for completion. For example: You may attempt no more than 135 units for an Associate Degree or Transfer program that requires 90 units. After the 135 units, you will be ineligible for further financial aid.

If you fail to meet minimum SAP standards, you may receive aid for one probationary term on warning status, or you may be suspended from receiving financial aid. If you receive aid while on warning status, you must meet SAP for continued funding consideration.

See our Maintaining Eligibility webpage for details. 

 

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About Financial Need

Most types of financial aid are awarded on the basis of financial need

  • The information you report on the FAFSA or CADAA is used to calculate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC is then used to determine your eligibility, under this formula:
    (Cost of Attendance) – (EFC)
    = Financial Need

  • A low EFC means you have greater need, and you may be eligible for more aid. However, funds are limited, so your award might fall short. To maximize your award, make sure you apply early.

  • Under some special circumstances – such as unusual debts or expenses, divorce or death – your estimated need may be adjusted by the Financial Aid Office. You will have to provide documentation of your family’s financial situation. For more information, see our "Special Circumstances" web page.

About Eligibility

To be eligible for financial aid, you generally must show the following

  • Financial need

  • U.S. citizenship, federal status as an "eligible noncitizen" or – for state aid – qualification under the California Dream Act

  • No current defaults on student loans and no outstanding amounts owed to any financial aid office

  • Enrollment or acceptance in an eligible program for the purpose of obtaining a degree or certificate (or transfer)

  • High school diploma, GED certificate, state certificate of proficiency, home school diploma or previous qualification through testing or completion of degree-applicable units

  • Satisfactory academic progress

Male students also must satisfy Selective Service requirements for draft registration.  


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