All qualified students will be awarded financial aid, if financial aid funds are available, regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, or disability. The Financial Aid Office provides information and assistance in completing applications. To receive federally funded financial aid and some other financial aid, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), (Make this a link to the FAFSA) enroll as regular students in an approved degree or certificate program, meet citizenship requirements, demonstrate financial need, and maintain satisfactory academic progress. In addition, students must not be in default on any student loan program or Stafford Loan or owe a refund on a Pell Grant, SEOG, or state aid.
The majority of financial aid programs offered at South Arkansas Community College are need-based; however, a number of institutional scholarships are based on academic achievement and merit. Students must reapply for financial aid every year. For all financial aid, enrollment is calculated as of the eleventh (11th) class day of the semester for fall and spring semesters and the fifth (5th) class day for summer semester.
Return of Title IV Funds
If a student receiving Title IV funds withdraws or stops attending on or after the first day of class during the period of enrollment for which they were charged, the College must determine the amount of the Title IV funds students have earned. This calculation is done in accordance with Federal Title IV guidelines. If students have not been in attendance long enough to earn all of the awarded aid, they may have to repay some of the unearned aid. Copies of SouthArk’s Return of Title IV Funds policy are available in the Financial Aid Office.
Federal Pell Grant. This federally funded program is designed to provide financial assistance to individuals to attend institutions of higher education. Eligibility is determined according to a congressionally mandated formula that computes the expected family contribution. The aid administrator at the school the student attends must calculate the actual amount of the student's award based upon the expected family contribution, the cost of attendance, and the student's enrollment status.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG). This program provides grants to students with exceptional financial need. Funds are provided by the federal government and administered by the College.
Federal Work-Study Program. This program provides part-time employment opportunities for students who have financial need. Most work-study jobs are on campus, but in some instances students are referred to off-campus nonprofit agencies. At South Arkansas Community College, students work an average of six to twenty hours per week. Students are paid once per month.
Students eligible for work-study should access SouthArk’s website, www.southark.edu, for information on how to apply and for current job listings. Work-study eligibility does not guarantee students a job. The work allowance awarded represents the maximum amount students can earn under the program during the school year.
Institutional Employment. A small number of students are employed each year in shortterm, part-time jobs. Students receive minimum wage. Interested students should apply in the Financial Aid Office.
Federal Direct Loan. This program enables students to receive low-interest subsidized or unsubsidized loans to finance educational expenses. If a student receives a subsidized loan, the federal government pays the interest while the student is in school, during the grace period, and during periods of deferment. If a student receives an unsubsidized loan, he/she is responsible for the interest on the loan from the time of issue. Payments normally begin six months after the student graduates, drops below half-time, or withdraws from college. Students may be allowed up to 10 years to repay the loan. The amount of each monthly payment depends upon the size of the debt. Repayment schedules are provided by the lender. Aid administrators may refuse to vertify a loan application or may reduce the amount of the loan if they document the reason and provide an explanation to the student in writing.
Arkansas Department of Higher Education. The ADHE administers financial aid programs for Arkansas undergraduate students that include Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarships, Workforce Improvement Grant, GO Grant, Governor’s Scholars, Law Enforcement Officers Dependents’ Scholarships, MIA/KIA Dependents’ Scholarship, and the State Teacher Assistance Resource (STAR) Scholarship. More information about these and other forms of financial aid available from the ADHE is available at www.arscholarships.com.
Arkansas Technical Careers Student Loan Forgiveness Program. The Arkansas Technical Careers Student Loan Forgiveness Program is designed to provide financial assistance to individuals who complete technical education programs that lead to employment in high-demand technical fields in Arkansas. Persons who qualify for the program may be eligible for student loan forgiveness of up to $2,500 per year for up to four years. Students must file the Intent to Apply form as soon as they enroll in school. The list of designated technical programs and steps for applying are posted on the Department Of Workforce Education web site at http://dwe.arkansas.gov.
Sixty (60) and Over Waiver. Any person sixty (60) years of age or older will be granted a tuition and mandatory fees waiver on a space-available basis for enrollment in credit courses. Waiver forms are available in the Bookstore.
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services. Arkansas residents who have disabilities that hinder them from employment may receive retraining assistance from the state to prepare them for return to gainful employment. For more information go to www.arsinfo.org or contact the El Dorado office at 708 W. Faulkner, (870)862-5451.
Workforce Investment Act. This program is designed to provide a variety of job-seeking and training services to youth, adults, and dislocated workers who qualify. Training services are provided through the voucher system. Information and eligibility requirements are available from the following agencies:
Southwest Arkansas Planning and Development District, Inc. -- Counties served: Calhoun, Columbia, Dallas, Hempstead, Howard, Lafayette, Little River, Miller, Nevada, Ouachita, Sevier, and Union. Call (870) 234-4030 or 234-9097 in Magnolia, (870) 863-0218 in El Dorado, (870) 798-3223 in Hampton, or (870) 863-5024 in Camden.
Southeast Arkansas Economic and Development District, Inc. -- Counties served: Arkansas, Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Grant, Jefferson, and Lincoln. Call (870)226-3742 in Warren.
Union Community Action Association, Inc. -- Parishes served: Marshall, Union and West Carroll. Call (318) 368-9606 in Farmerville, (318) 283-0849 in Bastrop, and (318) 428-8640 in Oak Grove.
Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund (SPSF). The Arkansas SPSF works with organizations and individuals at the county level to develop incentive scholarship funds for single parents who wish to complete a college education in preparation for well-paying employment. For more information, contact the Financial Aid Office.
Arkansas Human Development Corporation. This program pays for fees, books, supplies, and an hourly allowance for qualified students. To be eligible, students or parents of dependent students must have derived at least fifty-one (51) percent of their gross income for the past year from farm-related employment. The AHDC representative will determine student eligibility. For further information contact AHDC at (870)382-2050.
The College is approved to provide assistance to veterans and veterans' beneficiaries. The Financial Aid office will assist students in completing forms necessary to apply for educational assistance from the Veterans Administration. The Financial Aid Office is responsible for veterans' services and the maintenance of records required for certification. Students receiving educational benefits from the Veterans Administration are subject to the rules, regulations, and policies set forth in this catalog that are applicable to all students. However, students qualifying for veterans' benefits are also required by the Veterans Administration and the State Approving Agency to meet certain other standards of approved certification. All veterans should familiarize themselves with the regulations outlined below.
Minimum Standards of Progress for Veterans - The following will apply to all veterans:
1. A freshman student who does not attain a 1.50 grade point average will be placed on academic probation.
2. A freshman student on probation whose grade point average for the probationary semester is less than 1.50 will be suspended from drawing Veterans Administration educational benefits.
3. A sophomore student whose grade point average is less than 2.00 will be placed on academic probation.
4. A sophomore student on probation whose grade point average for the probationary semester is less than 2.00 will be suspended from drawing Veterans Administration educational benefits.
5. Students who fail to qualify for V.A. benefits, as a result of being placed on suspension, may appeal their status to the Financial Aid Committee. All appeals must be in writing and must include the reason(s) the student failed to meet minimum academic standards.
Approved Length of Course for Veterans - Students drawing full-time benefits are expected to complete an associate degree in a maximum of five semesters and a baccalaureate degree in a maximum of ten semesters. The maximum hours of credit which may be awarded on the basis of previous experience as shown in the "Credit for Previous Training or Experience" section of this catalog shall be waived for veterans who can demonstrate that a larger number of credit hours should be awarded. If a veteran is awarded such credit or has previous college credit, the approved length of course at South Arkansas Community College will be decreased proportionately; and the veteran and the Veterans Administration shall be notified of the shortening of the course length.
Class Attendance Policy for Veterans - All persons receiving veterans' benefits are required by the Veterans Administration regulations to maintain satisfactory class attendance. The Veterans Administration will be notified of unsatisfactory attendance.
Withdrawal Policy for Veterans - If a student receiving VA benefits withdraws from a course with a non-punitive grade, mitigating circumstances must exist or benefits for that course may be terminated retroactively to the first date of enrollment.
Enrollment Certification – Veterans Affairs will pay for courses that apply toward the student’s declared major. Students must submit a copy of their schedule each semester to the VA Certifying Official before enrollment will be submitted to the VA.