Federal Pell Grant
The main source of grant money is the Federal Pell Grant program. Your lifetime eligibility
for Pell Grants is limited to 12 full-time semesters or their equivalent.
A regular Pell Grant applies to fall and winter semesters, but Year-Round Pell boosts
your regular grant by 50 percent so you can continue with summer classes. Taking classes
during summer semester helps you finish your degree faster.
To qualify for summer Pell money, you must take at least six credits total during
the two summer semesters and meet the other Pell Grant requirements. That’s it. If
you’re eligible to receive a grant, you’ll get it automatically when you register
for summer classes.
How much Pell money you receive for summer depends on:
- How much you received for fall and winter semesters
- How many credits you take during the summer
Here’s an example: Say you took 12 credits in both fall and winter and qualified for
a Pell Grant of $4,000, or $2,000 per semester. If you took 12 credits during the
summer semesters, you’d get another $2,000. If you took nine credits, you’d receive
$1,500. And if you took six credits, you’d get $1,000.
State Grant Programs
The State of Michigan offers several grant programs for college students:
- Dual Enrollment: Students in grades 9-12 can take up to 10 classes at OCC for free through Dual Enrollment.
The Michigan Department of Education funds the program. Learn more.
- Michigan Indian Tuition Waiver: Students who are at least 25 percent Native American blood quantum and are enrolled
citizens of a U.S. Federally Recognized Tribe qualify for free tuition at OCC.
- Tuition Incentive Program: TIP provides tuition assistance to eligible Medicaid recipients for qualifying certificate,
associate degree, and bachelor’s degree programs.
- Michigan Reconnect: Michigan residents who are at least 25, have a high school diploma or GED, and don’t
have a college or university degree can get free tuition at OCC. Learn more.
OCC Grant Programs
OCC has two grant programs of its own:
- Board of Trustees Awards: Students who live in the district and have financial need
are eligible to receive up to $1,600.
- Student Success Fund: Students who suffer a sudden crisis can apply for a grant. Depending on funding availability,
you can receive up to $500 or a laptop computer. You can’t use the money for tuition.
Instead, it’s designed to help with rent, utilities, transportation, food, technology
needs, textbooks, required course materials, or unexpected expenses. To learn more,
contact the OCC Foundation or 248.341.2137.
If Your Financial Situation Changes
After you’ve qualified for a Pell Grant, stuff can happen that affects your ability
to pay for college. For example, you or a parent might lose a job, or a family member
might need expensive medical care that’s not covered by insurance.
If something like this happens, contact the Financial Aid office to see if we can
increase your Pell Grant. You’ll need a compelling explanation and documentation to
support your request. But if you have a strong case, you may be able to get more money.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant
Students with exceptional financial need may qualify for a Federal Supplemental Educational
Opportunity Grant. Pell Grant recipients receive priority.
As with Pell Grants, your eligibility is determined from information you supply on
your Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Funds for this program are limited, so it’s critical to submit your FAFSA as early
Don’t Be Forced to Repay Your Federal Grants
Normally, you don’t have to repay federal grants that you receive for college. But
in some cases you do.
This can happen if you drop classes, withdraw from school, or just don’t show up for
your classes. Consider two cases:
- If you completely withdraw from OCC before 60 percent of the semester is over, you
must repay a pro-rated portion of the federal aid you received. For example, If you
complete 20 percent of the semester you must repay 80 percent of the money, if you
complete 30 percent you must repay 70 percent, and so forth.
- If you don’t show up during the first 20 percent of a course, you receive an N mark.
This blocks you from attending or dropping the course. You also must repay all your
federal financial aid.
If you have to repay your grant, you won’t be able to register for classes or receive
financial aid until you do.
Michigan Education Savings Program
The Michigan Education Savings Program allows parents to save money for their child’s college education while saving on
taxes. Taxpayers filing jointly may deduct up to $10,000 in MESP contributions each
year from their Michigan adjusted gross income. In addition, investment earnings are
not subject to federal or state taxes when they’re used for qualified education expenses.