Financial Aid
Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I lose my ability to receive Financial Aid?
A: Yes, you can.

Q: Would I ever have to pay back any aid I received?
A: Yes! If you have a complete withdrawal or don’t pass any of your classes, you may have to pay back the unearned portion of your aid. This is called a Return to Title IV calculation and is based on the last date of attendance. This applies even if an instructor drops you for nonattendance (and they will). All loans have to be repaid according to the terms and conditions you signed under. 

Q: How do I keep my Financial Aid?
A: Keep these three requirements in mind:
1) Maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA (Grade Point Average) – this is a “C” average.
2) Complete 67% of your courses (Completion Rate %)
3) Complete your degree in a reasonable amount of time (no more than 150% of the program length)

Q: What if I don’t make a cumulative 2.0 GPA?
A: After one semester below a 2.0, you will be placed on Financial Aid Warning. After two semesters, your account will go into Suspension. Financial Aid Suspension means you will not be eligible to receive financial aid assistance and your awards will be removed.

Q: What if I don’t complete 67% of my attempted classes? What does this mean?
A: This means that you have signed up for classes that you are dropping or failing. Too many drops or fails will ruin your Completion Rate. First semester below 67% will result in Warning – two semesters will result in Suspension. Financial Aid Suspension means you will not be eligible to receive financial aid assistance and your awards will be removed.

Q: How do I find out my status with Financial Aid?
A: Check the Pirate Portal. All Financial Aid correspondence will go to the Pirate Portal because it is sensitive information. It is your responsibility to make sure your Financial Aid is complete. Check your Pirate Portal regularly.

Q: What do I do if I go into Suspension?
A: You may have the right to appeal. See the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for details.

Q: If I sit out, when will my Suspension status reset or go away?
A: Your suspension status will never go away. Financial Aid must always look at your Academic record as a whole, even if you don’t go to school for a few semesters. If you are eligible to appeal, then you may be able to receive Financial Aid again.

Q: When will refunds go out?
A: Refunds will go out 30-45 days after the first day of class. There are no advances. No exceptions.

Q: How will I know if I have a financial aid award?
A: A student will be notified of an award by email through the Pirate Portal. A student will then be able to access the award information on the Pirate Portal.

Q: Why do I still have a balance on my account?
A: Victoria College policy states that a balance must remain on the student’s account until the Official Reporting Date (ORD), which is the 12th day of class in fall/spring semesters and the 4th day of class in summer. Adjustments, if any, are then made to student’s accounts to reflect the number of hours the student is registered for. The balance will then be paid and refund checks will be issued. Make sure enough financial aid is available to pay all tuition and fees!!! Any remaining balance will be the student's responsibility!!!

Q: When will I get my money?
A: Pell grants and scholarships for the fall and spring semesters are issued approximately 14 days after the Official Reporting Date (ORD - 12th day of class) and loans are issued 30-45 days after the semester begins. Summer Pell grants are issued two weeks after ORD (4th day of class).
If a student is registered for a 2nd 8 or 5 week fast track course a portion of your Pell/Loan funds will be held until AFTER the Official Reporting Date (ORD) of that course.

Q: How will I get my money?
A: Victoria College offers two ways for students to receive their refund. Students can log in to the Pirate Portal and set up direct deposit or have a check mailed to them using the mailing address the Admissions Office has on file.

Q: What if my classes don’t all start on the same day?
A: VC does offer classes that are in “modules” or sections. This means that they may not all begin at the start of the semester – this is commonly called a “Fast Track” course. Always be aware of your class start dates because when your class begins will affect when your Financial Aid goes out. For example, you may have begun one class in August, but you have another starting in October. Any Financial Aid designated for the class that starts in October will be held in your account until after your October class begins. You are not eligible to receive Financial Aid for a class you have not yet started.

Q: What if I drop a class?
A: Be aware that your Financial Aid (loans, grants, scholarships) could be adjusted for that drop, and probably will be.

Q: What if I repeat a class?
A: If you pass a class with a “D” or better, then Financial Aid can only pay for it one more time. Some exceptions may apply if you are registered within a program and must re-take a portion. See Dates & Important Information, Repeating Courses Affect Financial Aid for details.

Q: How do I get my books?
A: Once you have been awarded your Financial Aid, you will be able to check with the Bookstore on campus to find out when you can start charging for your books and supplies. The Bookstore can be reached for questions at (361) 572-6430 or you can stop in to see them in person.

Books and Supplies for Title IV (Pell Grant, SEOG, Direct Loans) Recipients

Students may charge at the Victoria College bookstore for books and supplies to be used for educational purposes. Once a student is registered and the Pell grant funds are authorized to the student account, the student’s tuition and fees will be deducted from the authorized aid and the remaining balance will be available to charge against. Victoria College gift cards may also be purchased 10 calendar days before the start of the semester. Students must present to the bookstore a picture I.D. and V# to make
purchases on their student account. There are cut-off dates for charging, so please contact the bookstore for specific schedules. The Bookstore is located in the Student Center and the phone number is (361) 572-6430. Any unused funds will be refunded to the student approximately 14 days after the term ORD.  All Pell eligible students have the right to opt out of the process to purchase books and supplies that VC provides. 

Q: Why do I receive more than one email award offer?
A: You receive a new award offer every time your award information is changed. If you apply for a loan after your original award offer, you will get a new offer which now includes your loan eligibility. If you have changed your enrollment status from full time (12 credit hours) to three quarter time (9-11 credit hours), half time (6-8 credit hours) or less than half time (1-5 credit hours), you might receive a new offer.

Q: Why don’t I get the same amount of Pell Grant that it tells me I will receive when I submit my FAFSA?
A: The award amount shown after submitting a FAFSA is a preliminary estimate and represents an amount you “may” be eligible to receive. Once your financial aid file is fully processed by the U.S. Department of Education or the Financial Aid Office, there may be adjustments to this amount. An award offer will be sent to your VC Pirate Portal email with your official award amount which is based on the assumption of full time enrollment (12 credit hours).

Q: How do I know how much I owe and how much money I am getting back?
A: You can see the charges and financial aid available each semester by logging into your Pirate Portal, click on Financial Aid & Scholarships, Financial Aid Dashboard and Account Detail by Term. If you add or drop classes, this information will show you any changes to your charges and your financial aid awards.

Q: Why does my Pell Grant change during the semester or year?
A: Financial Aid awards are based on full time status (12 credit hours) until after the Official Reporting Day (ORD) of each semester. Awards will then be adjusted and paid out according to how many hours you are enrolled in and attending on that date. If you drop a class prior to that date, your Pell Grant may be reduced and your charges may be adjusted accordingly.  The financial aid office will also adjust awards if a class is not on your degree plan.  YOU CAN ONLY RECEIVE AID FOR CLASSES THAT ARE REQUIRED FOR GRADUATION FROM A PROGRAM THAT IS OFFERED BY VICTORIA COLLEGE.

Q: What happens if I take classes at another College or University at the same time I am enrolled at Victoria College?
A: Per Federal Guidelines, a student may not receive federal aid at two schools at the same time.  Victoria College has a Consortium Agreement with UHV but the student must contact UHV to be approved for these classes and the student must pay Victoria College by payment deadlines to avoid being dropped from classes. 

If you have further questions, please read the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy listed in your Terms and Conditions. You are also welcome to call (361-572-6415) or visit the Financial Aid Office.