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Eligibility & Policies


Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic ProgressFinancial Aid Refund PolicyCode of Conduct 

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Please understand that Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress is also different than NCC’s Academic Standards, and different from the required academic standards that may be set by your specific program.

Federal regulations require Northwest Iowa Community College to establish satisfactory academic progress standards for student financial aid recipients. These standards ensure that only those recipients demonstrating satisfactory progress toward the completion of their educational programs continue to receive financial aid. Your entire NCC record will be reviewed for satisfactory academic progress, including terms for which you did not receive financial aid.

Any grade forgiveness granted from the Academic Restart Program does not apply to the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress standards. When calculating a student’s satisfactory academic progress for financial aid, all grades earned from all previous enrollment periods will be considered.

Whether a student is considered to be making satisfactory academic progress depends on:
  • successful completion of courses (credit hours earned)
  • cumulative grade point average (GPA)
  • maximum time limits to complete his or her course of study
Students must meet all of these requirements to maintain satisfactory academic progress. To read the complete 2013–2014 Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy click here.

Return of Title IV Aid -- Financial Aid Refund Policy
The law (Section 485 of the Higher Education Amendments of 1998-P.L. 105-244) specifies how NCC must determine the amount of student financial aid assistance that is earned if you cease to attend.

If you receive federal financial assistance and fail to complete your education, your financial aid may be adjusted based on the date of the official or unofficial withdrawal. The amount of financial assistance you have earned is determined on a pro-rated basis using the number of calendar days completed divided by the number of calendar days in the payment period. Once you have completed more than 60 percent of the payment period, you earn all your financial assistance.

In accordance with federal regulations, when Title IV (Federal) Funds are involved, unearned aid is returned by NCC in the following order:
1. Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
2. Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan
3. Federal Direct PLUS (Parent) Loan
4. Federal Pell Grant
5. Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)
6. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
7. Other Title IV Assistance

The adjustment of aid may cause you to owe money to the U.S. Government and/or NCC. If NCC is required to return Title IV funds, the amount returned will be billed to the student.  If the repayment of funds is not made to NCC within the designated deadline, the student will be turned over to the U.S. Department of Education for collection or a collection agency, depending upon the funding source.  Anyone in a repayment situation will remain ineligible for federal aid until the repayment is resolved.  Students will remain ineligible for federal aid until the College receives notice from the Department of Education or collection agency that the student has reestablished his/her eligibility.

If you need to withdraw from your classes it is important that you contact your Advisor to complete a “Withdrawal Form.” The “Official Withdrawal Date” is recorded by the Registrar after the “Withdrawal Form” is returned to the Student Services Office, or is the date that the student otherwise provides official notification to NCC of his/her intent to withdraw. If, however, documentation is received indicating the student’s last day of attendance is different than the date the student officially withdrew, the student’s last day of attendance may be recorded as the withdrawal date and used to calculate the refund of tuition and fees. Students who stop attending and fail to follow the withdrawal process are considered to have unofficially withdrawn and the student’s last day of attendance may be used to determine the refund calculation.

If you drop below half-time, withdraw, or graduate, you are required to complete an Online Exit Counseling Session. You may complete this Online Exit Counseling Session by going to www.nslds.ed.gov. If your enrollment status drops below half-time, your future loan disbursements may be cancelled, you will no longer qualify for an in-school deferment of your loan payments, and you will either begin your grace period or your loans may enter into repayment.

An example of a Return of Title IV Aid is available upon request from the Financial Aid Office.
Code of Conduct for Educational Loans Summary
Iowa Code Section 261E.2 and Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Section 601.21, require the development, administration, and enforcement of a code of conduct governing educational loan activities. Our officers, employees, trustees and agents, including the alumni association, booster club, and other organizations associated with Northwest Iowa Community College, agree to the provisions of this Code of Conduct and will refrain from:

• Refusing to certify or delaying the certification of an education loan based on a borrower’s choice of lender.
• Assigning a first-time borrower to a particular private education loan lender through the student’s financial aid award or another means.
• Packaging a private education loan in a student’s financial aid award, except when the student is ineligible for other financial aid, has exhausted his or her federal student aid eligibility, has not filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or refuses to apply for a federal student loan.
• Accepting impermissible gifts, goods, or services from a lender, lender servicer, or guarantor. The institution may accept default prevention, financial literacy, or student aid-related educational services or materials, or other items of a nominal value.
• Accepting philanthropic contributions from a lender, lender servicer, or guarantor that are related to the educational loans provided by the entity that is making the contribution.
• Serving on or otherwise participating as a member of an advisory council for a lender, lender affiliate, or lender servicer.
• Accepting from a lender or its affiliate any fee, payment, or other financial benefit as compensation for any type of consulting arrangement or other contract to provide education loan-related services to or on behalf of the lender.
• Accepting fees or other benefits in exchange for endorsing a lender or the lender’s loan products.
• Requesting or accepting an offer of funds for private education loans from a lender, in exchange for our promise to provide the lender with placement on a preferred lender list, or a certain number of volume of private education loans.

This institution is committed to providing the information and resources necessary to help every student achieve educational success. To accomplish this goal the financial aid staff will consider each student’s individual needs.

A comprehensive Code of Conduct detailing permissible and impermissible activities has been provided to all of our officers, employees, and agents. You may review the detailed Code of Conduct here.
For more information: