Financial Aid

Professional and Community Education

This state grant funding is administered through the Missouri Department of Higher Education. Missouri residents may apply by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by April 1st each year. Students must be enrolled on a full-time basis and have financial need as determined by the state.

This state grant program is administered through the Missouri Department of Higher Education. Full-time students who have attended an A+ eligible school and meet the requirements may qualify for payments of tuition.

May help pay training costs for individuals within specific economic guidelines or who may qualify as a dislocated worker, a displaced homemaker, a youth with specific job training needs, and others who may qualify under WIA criteria.

A federal program through which loans are made available to students and parents to provide access to post-secondary education. FFELP loans include Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans and Federal PLUS Loans for parents of students. Applies to programs of 600 hours or more in length.

Pell Grant

Awarded by the US Department of Education for undergraduates who do not have a bachelor’s degree. This is a need-based award with a maximum of $5,550 per year (dependent on financial need and program length). Applies to programs of 600 hours or more in length. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply.

Vocational Rehabilitation funding for school may help pay re-training costs for persons with an eligible disability.

Eligible veterans or dependents of an eligible veteran may receive assistance with costs associated with training or living expenses during the education process.

For initial eligibility applicants must score 265/2650 or better on the GED examination. The maximum award is a waiver of $200 toward tuition, in a certificate training program.

Recipients must have applied for acceptance into the Practical Nursing program and have made application through Missouri Department of Health, Bureau of Primary Care. Number of loans awarded are limited and determined by yearly education, associated costs and individual’s financial need. Maximum award of $2,500 per year to be repaid (forgiven) through service in defined need areas.

  • Obtain a Financial Aid Packet by calling the Financial Aid Office at 573-214-3809.
  • Complete all forms including the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students must submit the FAFSA by April 1 to be considered for a Missouri state grant.
  • Make an appointment with Financial Aid and bring the completed forms along with documentation of all family income for the base year. You will also need to bring copies of any of the following documents which apply to you: Driver’s License
  • Social Security Card
  • High School Diploma, transcript or GED Certificate
  • Federal Income Tax forms
  • Verification of child support received
  • Verification of workmen’s compensation received
  • After your file is complete and has been verified, the Financial Aid Office will send you an award letter outlining the types of financial aid you will receive and the amounts of that assistance. You must sign, date, and return this letter to the Financial Aid Office before the award will be processed.
  • Prior to the first day of attendance, your financial aid file must be complete, verified, and you must qualify for enough assistance to cover direct school costs, or have completed the requirements and be approved to receive assistance from other agencies. If not, you will be required to pay for books, supplies, prorated tuition, and sign an promissory note for payment of any remaining balance.

To be eligible for federal financial aid, a student must:

  • Have financial need
  • Have a high school diploma or a G.E.D. certificate
  • Be enrolled as a student working toward a Certificate in an eligible program
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Be making satisfactory academic progress
  • Have a valid Social Security number
  • Sign a statement of educational purpose/certification statement on refunds or default
  • Sign a statement certifying that he or she will be drug-free
  • Sign a statement of updated information, if required
  • Register with the Selective Service, if required.
  • Post-secondary education costs time, money and effort. It is a big investment and students should carefully evaluate the school options available. A student has the right to know certain things: The school’s accreditation
  • Specific information concerning the school’s training programs
  • General information about student financial aid
  • What financial assistance is available including federal, state, local, private and institutional programs, and how the school selects student financial aid recipients
  • The school’s procedures and deadlines
  • How the school determines financial need and how financial need is met.
  • How a student may request reconsideration if he/she believes that a mistake has been made in the award package
  • How the school determines whether or not a student is making satisfactory academic progress
  • Who the school’s financial aid personnel are
  • What the school’s refund policy is.
  • Most of these things are answered in the Student Handbook, however, if there are any questions at any time, please call the Financial Aid office at 573-214-3809.
  • As a student, it is your responsibility to: Complete the application for financial aid accurately and completely, submitting it in a timely manner to the appropriate office.
  • Provide all documentation, corrections and/or new information requested by either the Financial Aid Office or the agency to which you submitted your application.
  • Notify your school of information that has changed since you applied.
  • Read, understand and keep copies of all forms you are asked to sign.
  • Repay any student loans you may have.
  • Notify your school of a change in your name, address or attendance status. Also notify previous and current lenders of these changes if you have a loan.
  • Maintain satisfactory progress.
  • Understand your school’s refund policy.
  • Attend an exit interview at your school if you have a student loan.

Award packages will be based on documentation considered necessary to verify the data provided in order to assure integrity and equity in all student aid programs.

Student recipients will be provided with the terms and conditions of their financial aid awards.

No Title IV funds are disbursed until a student’s enrollment and attendance has begun and financial aid file is complete. Academic progress and attendance reports are required for disbursements due beyond the first 30 days of enrollment. Pell grant disbursements will be made in two equal payments during an academic year: one disbursement initiated at the beginning of enrollment and the second after the academic year mid-point. In the case of programs shorter than an academic year, the second disbursement is initiated after the student satisfactorily completes one-half of the total program clock hours. It is the policy for the Career Center that all student financial aid will first be credited toward a student’s school account. When the school balance is zero, financial aid will be awarded to the student for school-related expenses. All monies for Pell grants and federal student loans will be processed through the Financial Aid office and the school district business office.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy Students are required to maintain satisfactory academic progress throughout their training to be in compliance with institutional policy and to remain eligible for HEA, Title IV federal student financial assistance. Satisfactory academic progress is measured in both quantitative terms (attendance), as well as qualitative terms (academics/grades). Students must meet the school’s attendance standard and the academic standard on a cumulative basis (start date to evaluation date) to maintain eligibility for federal student financial assistance funds including Federal Pell grants, Subsidized Federal Stafford loans, Unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans, and Federal PLUS (Parent) loans.    Quantitative (Attendance) Standard Students must attend at least 90% of the hours they are scheduled to attend based on the student’s enrollment agreement. A student’s attendance pace is determined by the following formula: Cumulative clock hours of actual attendance as of the evaluation date (divided by) Cumulative clock hours of scheduled attendance as of the evaluation date For example, a student who is enrolled for 30 clock hours per week for 20 weeks would have a cumulative scheduled attendance of 600 clock hours. If the student attended 545 of the 600 scheduled hours, his/her attendance pace would be 90.8% (545/600) and would be meeting the attendance requirement of this policy –          Transfer clock hours accepted toward the student’s program are included in both the attempted clock hours and completed clock hours. –          Excused absences must be made up. –          The institution does not offer grades of “incomplete” and, accordingly, these have no impact on SAP. Qualitative (Academic/grades) Standard All theory, practical, and lab/clinic exams for the Practical Nursing and Surgical Technology programs will be graded using the following scale:Grading System: 93% – 100% A Excellent 85% – 92% B Above Average 80% – 84% C Satisfactory Below 80% F Unsatisfactory Practical Nursing and Surgical Technology students must maintain an academic pass rate of at least 80% (C) or higher per course as of the evaluation date to meet the academic standards of this policy and be considered as making satisfactory academic progress. Medical Coding, Massage Therapy, and Welding students, and students in other less than full time programs approved for federal aid, must maintain a passing grade based on the grading system determined by the instructor of that program. For programs like Medical Coding, Massage Therapy, and Welding that have two payment periods, students who are not making Satisfactory Academic Progress at the end of the first payment period will have the second payment period as a Financial Aid Warning period, therefore there is no suspension of financial aid for these students during the second and final payment period. Maximum Timeframe All students must complete their program requirements within 150% of the time it normally takes to complete the certificate program (as measured in weeks according to the program’s attendance policy). Review and Evaluation Periods Formal satisfactory academic progress evaluations, which determine continuing eligibility for federal student aid, will be performed at the end of each financial aid payment period. Students who meet the attendance and academic standards described herein will be considered to be making satisfactory academic progress until the next scheduled evaluation.“Financial Aid Warning,” “Appeals,” and “Financial Aid Probation”Students who fail to meet either of the two progress standards as of an evaluation date will be placed on Financial Aid Warning status, and the student will remain eligible for federal student aid funds for the subsequent payment period. A student may not be placed on Warning for consecutive payment periods. At the end of the Warning period, the student must be meeting the published attendance and academic standards on a cumulative basis to be considered as making satisfactory academic progress and to remain eligible for further federal student financial aid. Any student who fails to meet the published standards at the end of his/her Warning period is considered as not making satisfactory academic progress and is ineligible for further federal aid. At this point, the student may submit a written appeal in accordance with this policy and be granted “Financial Aid Probation” by the institution. In the event the student submits a successful appeal and is granted Probation, federal student aid eligibility will be reinstated for the payment period that the appeal was requested for only.     ReinstatementsGenerally, most students who enroll in the school are considered to be making satisfactory academic progress during their initial evaluation period. Students who are returning to school after a temporary interruption are reinstated under the same SAP status as they had prior to their departure.Appeals Students who have been designated as not making satisfactory academic progress may appeal this determination with the institution based on mitigating circumstances. The student’s appeal must be made in writing to the Financial Aid Administrator and must be turned in within 10 days of the date the student received the notification of unsatisfactory progress. The student’s appeal must document the unusual or mitigating circumstances that caused the student to fail to meet the institution’s standards (reasons for an appeal may include: death of a relative, injury or illness of the student, or other special circumstances) as well provide information regarding what conditions have changed that would demonstrate that the student could regain satisfactory academic progress standards during the probationary period. The institution will review the student’s appeal and related documentation and its resulting decision will be final. Returning Students If a student withdraws from a program of study and re-enrolls in the same program within 180 days of withdrawal, the student is treated as returning to the same payment period that was in place when the student withdrew and must complete any clock hours for which the student previously received federal funding before being eligible for additional funding. A student who returns to a program after more than 180 days have elapsed since withdrawal may be eligible for federal aid for any classes the student must repeat to obtain academic credit. Students should meet with a financial aid advisor to discuss the conditions under which federal aid may be awarded for repeated courses. Reinstatement of Federal Financial AidFederal student financial aid is suspended when a student is considered as not making satisfactory academic progress. A student not making satisfactory academic progress is ineligible for aid for the entire payment period subsequent to the determination of ineligibility, unless the student makes a successful appeal, at which time the student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation. In the event the student submits a successful appeal and is granted Probation, federal student aid eligibility will be reinstated for the payment period that the appeal was requested for only. NotificationStudents will be sent written notification if their status changes as a result of an SAP evaluation.

If a student finds it necessary to withdraw from school prior to completing the program of enrollment, notification should be submitted in writing to the appropriate program coordinator as follows: Practical Nursing: Practical Nursing Coordinator
Surgical Technology: Surgical Technology Coordinator

All Other Programs: Assistant Director

It is important that students who stop attending classes withdraw formally from the courses in which they are enrolled. Students who merely stop coming to class, but remain on the official roll will receive an “F” in the course. Students who complete the procedure for dropping a class officially during the first three fourths of the term will receive a “W”. Students who drop a course during the final quarter of the term will receive a “W” if they are passing, or an “F” if they are doing unsatisfactory work. Students are personally responsible for dropping courses which they stop attending. If a student receives an “F” because of failure to complete the official withdrawal procedure, that grade will not be changed. Students withdrawing from a course must return any textbooks, equipment, etc., that belong to the school or program.

NOTE: Students receiving federal or state financial aid should be aware that if they withdraw/drop from a class they may be asked to repay financial benefits received for the course.

REFUND POLICY For any student with a credit balance on their student account, Columbia Public Schools will mail a check to the student’s permanent mailing address within approximately 2 weeks of the credit. For any student who withdraws from school prior to completing their program of enrollment, Columbia Area Career Center will calculate a refund for tuition charges, book charges, supplies charges, and fee charges within 45 days of withdrawal.  Should this result in a credit balance on the student’s account, a refund will be issued. The recipient of this refund will be determined by the funding source of the student’s tuition (e.g. Department of Education, VA, student). Withdrawing students should submit a written notification of withdrawal to their Program Coordinator and their withdrawal date is defined as the last day of attendance. COLUMBIA AREA CAREER CENTER TUITION CHARGE REFUND POLICY 

  1. Written withdrawal prior to the beginning of the term: full refund of tuition charges.
  2. Written withdrawal during the first week of classes: 80% refund of tuition charges, less administrative processing fee of $100.
  3. No refund of tuition charges after the first week of classes.  Administrative processing fee of $100 also applies.

Students will not be charged for supplies or fees for which costs have not been incurred or for books they have not started units of study in, if the books are returned to the program unused and in excellent condition within 20 days of withdrawal from the program. Deductions may be made from the refund for used laboratory materials or any other financial obligation due the school, lending or granting institutions.  This policy may be adjusted on a case by case basis for students with extenuating circumstances; students with extenuating circumstances may submit a written appeal to the Financial Aid Administrator for review.

Pro rata refund does not apply to any student whose date of withdrawal is after the 60 percent point in the time of the period of enrollment for which the student has been charged.

Pro rata refund is defined as a refund to a student who is attending the institution for the first time, of not less than that portion of tuition, fees and other charges assessed the student by the institution equal to the portion of the period of enrollment for which the student has been charged, that remains on the last day of recorded attendance by the student, rounded downward to the nearest 10 percent of that period, less any unpaid charges owed by the student for the period of enrollment for which the student has been charged, and less a reasonable administrative fee not to exceed the lesser of 5 percent of the tuition, fees and other charges assessed the student, or $100. Refunds will be made within 30 days of withdrawal or last day of attendance.

The following applies to students in the Practical Nursing and Surgical Technology programs:

  • Written withdrawal prior to the beginning of the term, full refund of tuition, less administrative processing fee.
  • Written withdrawal during the first week of classes, 80% refund of tuition, less administrative processing fee.
  • No refund after the first week of classes for programs that are eligible for financial aid; administrative processing fee.
  • Request must be made in writing and submitted within 20 days of withdrawal from program and signed by the student and the Program Director. Deductions may be made from the refund for laboratory materials or any other financial obligation due the school, lending or granting institution.

This policy applies to students who complete 60% or less of a payment period for which they received Federal Title IV aid. The term “Title IV aid” refers to the following Federal financial aid programs: Federal Pell grants, Subsidized Federal Stafford loans, Unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans, and Federal PLUS (Parent) loans. Columbia Area Career Center does not participate in the Federal Perkins Loan, Academic Competitiveness Grant, National SMART Grant, TEACH Grant, and FSEOG programs. To conform with the policy, Columbia Area Career Center (CACC) must determine the student’s withdrawal date. The withdrawal date is based on the earlier of the two:

  1. The last date of attendance at an academically-related activity by a student, or
  2. The date the student began the withdrawal process, officially notified CACC of their intent to withdraw, or was dismissed from their program.

The calculation required determines a student’s earned and unearned Title IV aid based on the percentage of the enrollment period completed by the student. For all students, the percentage of the period that the student completed is derived by dividing the clock hours scheduled to have been completed as of the withdrawal date in the period by the total clock hours in the period. Until a student has passed the 60% point of a payment period, only a portion of the student’s aid has been earned. A student who remains enrolled beyond the 60% point is considered to have earned all awarded aid for the payment period. Unearned aid must be returned by CACC as soon as possible but no later than 45 days after the date of CACC’s determination that the student withdrew. If the total amount of Title IV grant or loan assistance, or both, that the student earned as calculated above is greater than the total amount of title IV grant or loan assistance, or both, that was disbursed to the student, or on behalf of the student in the case of a PLUS loan, as of the date of CACC’s determination that the student withdrew, the difference between these amounts must be treated as a post-withdrawal disbursement. Post withdrawal disbursements must be made from available grant funds before available loan funds and will be credited to the student’s account up to the amount of the student’s outstanding charges. In the case of loan funds, this disbursement will be made only after obtaining confirmation from the student, or parent in the case of a parent PLUS loan, that they still wish to have the loan funds disbursed (written notification will be sent within 30 days of the date of CACC’s determination that the student withdrew to the student, or parent in the case of parent PLUS loan, requesting this confirmation and advising that they may accept or decline some or all of those funds). Any post-withdrawal disbursement amount not credited to the student’s account will be disbursed directly to the student as soon as possible, but no later than 45 days after the date of CACC’s determination that the student withdrew (as soon as possible, but no later than 180 days after the date of CACC’s determination that the student withdrew in cases where confirmation from the student, or parent in the case of a parent PLUS loan, is necessary). Earned aid is not related in any way to institutional charges. In addition, CACC’s refund policy and Return of Title IV Funds procedures are independent of one another. A student who withdraws from a program may be required to return unearned aid and still owe CACC for the program tuition. For more information on CACC’s withdrawal and institutional charges’ policies, please consult the CACC handbook or contact the Financial Aid Office. The responsibility to repay unearned Title IV aid is shared by CACC and the student. For example, the calculation may require CACC to return a portion of Federal funds to the Federal Title IV programs. In addition, the student may also be required to return funds based on the calculation. A student returns funds to the Federal Stafford loan programs based on the terms and conditions of the promissory note of the loan. A student who receives a Federal Pell Grant may be required to repay 50% of the funds received. The return of Federal aid is in the following order: Unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans, Subsidized Federal Stafford loans, Federal Perkins loans, Federal PLUS (Parent) loans, Federal Pell Grants, and Federal SEOG (Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant).

How to Handle an Overpayment

Students who owe funds to a grant program are required to make payment of those funds within 45 days of being notified that they owe this overpayment. During the 45 day period students will remain eligible for Title IV funds. If no positive action is taken by the student within 45 days of being notified, CACC will notify the U.S. Department of Education of the student’s overpayment situation. The student will no longer be eligible for Title IV funds until they enter into a satisfactory repayment agreement with the U.S. Department of Education. During the 45-day period, the student can make full payment to CACC of the overpayment. CACC will forward the payment to the U.S. Department of Education and the student will remain eligible for Title IV funds. Please make check payable to Columbia Public Schools, Attn: Financial Aid Administrator. Our mailing address is Columbia Area Career Center, 4203 South Providence Road, Columbia, MO 65203. If a student is unable to pay their overpayment in full, they can set up a repayment plan with the U.S. Department of Education. Before doing this please contact the CACC Financial Aid Office. You will need to make sure we have referred your situation to the U.S. Department of Education before any repayment plan can be set up. If you want to contact the U.S. Department of Education, their address is listed below. U.S. Department of Education Student Financial Assistance Programs P.O. Box 4222 Iowa City, IA 52245 Phone: 1-800-621-3115 E-Mail: DCS_HELP@ed.gov For examples of the Return of Title IV Funds calculations or questions regarding the overpayment policy, please contact the Financial Aid Office.

Refunds will be calculated according to the Department of Elementary and Secondary State Board of Education requirements.

Columbia Area Career Center strives to make the financial aid process transparent and fair to students and is committed to avoiding potential conflicts of interest with lenders. It is our goal to provide information and advice, in keeping with federal requirements, and determined solely by consideration of the best interests of our students and their parents. To ensure students and their families continue receiving sound and impartial advice from the financial aid personnel, and to avoid the potential for, or appearance of, conflicts of interest regarding student loans, Columbia Area Career Center shall abide by this Code of Conduct in its relationships with lenders, guarantors and servicers of education loans. It is the intention of Columbia Area Career Center that this Code of Conduct comply with all the letter and spirit of the Higher Education Act, as amended by the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008. Any questions regarding interpretation of, or definitions used in, this Code of Conduct should be interpreted in light of this intention. Click here for the full Code of Conduct.

Requests for a leave of absence will be considered on a case-by-case basis and only for situations in which the absences cannot be made up within standard program make-up policy. A student may only be granted one leave of absence in any 12-month period and under no circumstances may a leave of absence exceed a total of 180 days in any 12-month period. Requests must be submitted in advance in writing, signed and dated to the program coordinator and the Financial Aid Administrator. In cases of extreme emergency, a student should call the program coordinator and verbally request approval as soon as possible. This must be followed up with a written request before official approval is granted. Written request must include the beginning and ending date of requested interruption and specific reason for request.

The Career Center collects, publishes and distributes information relative to Public Law 101-542, the Student Right to Know and Campus Security Act, as amended. A crime report information brochure provides information for students, employees and members of the public concerning reporting of crime and other emergencies, security and access to campus facilities, campus law enforcement, crime prevention, reported occurrence of criminal activity on campus and the drug and alcohol policy. This information is made available to students and employees annually and to any applicant for enrollment or employment upon request. If you have questions about any of these policies or would like to obtain additional copies of the brochure, contact the Financial Aid Office.

The use and the unlawful possession of illicit drugs and alcohol are wrong and harmful. Because of the physical, emotional and legal consequences involved in the illegal use or possession of drugs, drug paraphernalia or alcohol, students are prohibited from such involvement in or on school premises and school-sponsored activities. Any student who is found consuming, under the influence or in possession of such substances shall be subject to disciplinary action. The Director of Security may be notified and if the situation warrants, the appropriate law enforcement agency shall be notified. The student shall be subject to disciplinary action within the guidelines developed by the administrative staff up to and including expulsion for students and termination of employment for employees. Students selling or distributing drugs or imitation drugs or alcohol in or on school premises or at school-sponsored activities shall be subject to the same disciplinary action. The school will impose sanctions on students and employees consistent with local, state and Federal law, including referral for prosecution for the violation of these standards of conduct. Along with possible probation or suspension from the Career Center, students may face legal sanctions under local, state, and federal law that may include up to seven years in prison and/or a $10,000.00 fine for a Class A felony.

All federal financial aid recipients must follow federal financial aid regulations which include but are not limited to the following: If you are convicted of drug distribution or possession, the court may suspend your eligibility for Title IV financial aid.

If you are convicted three or more times for drug distribution, you may become permanently ineligible to receive Title IV Federal financial aid.

Violations of this policy will result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination, and may have legal consequences. (Section 5301 of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988). Students should consult the Code of Conduct for penalties concerning possession, use or sale of drugs.

Click this link to get an estimate of financial aid and program costs. The data used for this calculator is based on full-time, first-time, certificate-seeking students in the Practical Nursing program.

net price calculator