Financial Aid FAQs

Financial Aid FAQs

The following FAQ section has been added to help expedite finding answers to many of our commonly asked questions, such as:

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Must be over 16 years old and not concurrently enrolled in high school, an elementary or secondary program, or taking college credit to earn a high school diploma or GED.
  • Have a high school diploma or GED.
  • Be a U.S. citizen, national, or permanent resident of the U.S.
  • Be enrolled or admitted to a degree or certificate program at GateWay, which is eligible for financial aid.
  • Cannot be in default on a federal loan or owe a repayment of a federal grant.
  • If required, you must be registered with selective service
  • Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress as outlined in our Standards of Academic Progress

You may complete the FAFSA electronically using one of the computers in the Financial Aid Office area, or use a personal computer by accessing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In addition, you may complete and submit the paper FAFSA. Be sure to list GateWay's federal school code (008303 - credit hour programs or E00701 - clock hour programs). Our office will receive an electronic record of your application from the federal processor.

Generally, all you will need is your federal tax returns (IRS 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ) if filed. You may also want to have your W-2 forms and any other records of money earned in the tax year you are using to complete the FAFSA. This would include records of untaxed income, such as welfare, social security, AFDC or ADC, or veteran's benefits. You may also need to use current bank statements, business or farm records, and any records of stocks, bonds, or other investments.

You will need to complete a FAFSA every year for each academic year. An academic year is Fall, Spring, and Summer terms. The FAFSA may be completed on or after October 1st.

You can complete a Special Circumstances Form and submit it to our office. You will need to attach a letter explaining your circumstances and supporting documentation.

Add question: What is FAFSA simplification?

The FAFSA Simplification Act represents a significant overhaul of the processes and systems used to award federal student aid starting with the 24-25 award year. This also includes major changes to the following: 

  •  Replacing the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) With the Student Aid Index (SAI)
  • Modifications to Family Definitions in FAFSA formulas
  • Expanding Access to Federal Pell Grants
  • Streamlining the FAFSA Form

GWC has two federal school codes:

For credit hour - use 008303

For clock hour- use E00701

If you have added both federal codes to your FAFSA, please contact our office. 

Financial aid options include federal grants and loans for eligible students. Students have the option to request additional aid or seek alternative loan options.

  • You will be considered for a Pell Grant when you take 1 credit or more.
  • To be considered for other campus-based grants, you will need to take 6 credits or more at GateWay.
  • To be considered for federal loans, you need to be enrolled in 6 credits or more at GateWay.

Your FAFSA will be reviewed by our office. If additional information is needed, it will appear in your Tasks on your Student Center.

You may receive aid for the courses you are attending at another Maricopa Community College by completing a Consortium Agreement. If you are a GateWay student, you will receive funds from our office. You will be required to make payment arrangements at the participating school or risk being dropped for non-payment.

Consortium Agreements are subject to approval and will not be granted if classes are not part of the student's program of study on file, or if the student has not maintained MCCCD academic progress or is not taking six or more credit hours at GateWay. Courses taken at other schools need to be at the 100 or 200 level and count toward a student's degree. You must also ensure that class dates fall within GateWay’s semester dates. 

Visit the Financial Aid office for assistance with this form.

Disbursement of financial aid funds starts approximately 20 days after the semester starts, except for first time borrowers for loans, in which case aid will be disbursed 30 days after the beginning of the semester. Please plan for a delayed disbursement for late starting classes.

Excess financial aid funds will be disbursed by the Cashier's Office.

Please visit the Scholarships webpage. Our office posts scholarships as they are received so you should check often. The private donor scholarships, amounts, and deadlines vary. One key to receiving a scholarship is to apply early.

Most tribes require you to first submit a FAFSA to the Federal Processor. In addition, you should contact the tribal office to obtain a tribal application.

During the financial aid disbursement phase, your grants, loans, and scholarships are applied to the balance of your tuition, fees, book advance, and other charges. Any amount remaining will be issued to you in the method you choose from the Financial Account tile in your Student Center.

Additional FAQs

Course Applicability is the direct result of a federal mandate which requires that an eligible student receive federal student aid for only those courses which apply toward that student's degree, certificate, or other recognized credential.

To receive Federal Financial Aid, students must achieve satisfactory progress toward completing their degree. Academic Progress is measured by your Grade Point Average (GPA) and rate of completion. Please refer to the measurements outlined in the Maricopa County Community College District Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy. 

If you drop a class(es), withdraw from a class, or are removed from a class roster after your Pell Recalculation date, you may be required to pay back financial aid money. Please contact the Financial Aid Office about your specific situation. You can also find more information here: Financial Aid Withdrawal Policies and Procedures.

This is the date when your financial aid award is calculated, based on your eligible level of enrollment. If you drop classes after the Pell Recalculation date, you may be required to pay back financial aid money.