Student Aid Programs

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Students interested in applying for aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form should be submitted online at Mountwest students should include the school code, 040414, when completing the FAFSA. Application deadlines vary by program so that students are encouraged to complete the FAFSA as soon after January 1* as possible. Financial Aid is available for both full-time and part-time students. Generally part time students should be enrolled six semester hours in order to receive aid.


Types of Federal Aid

Federal Pell Grant

Federal Pell Grants are awarded to students on the basis of financial need and do not have to be repaid. These grants are considered the foundation of Federal Financial Aid, to which aid from other federal and non-federal sources might be added. Pell Grants are only awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet earned a bachelor's degree. The Pell award is based on enrollment status and Pell eligibility as determined by the U.S. Department of Education.

See note about lifetime limits to Pell Grant.

Federal SEOG

The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) is given to undergraduate students who demonstrate extreme financial need as determined by the U.S. Department of Education. Generally students with an EFC of zero are awarded first. If funds remain after awarding the zero EFC students then students with higher EFC's will be considered. This fund is limited and students are encouraged to file the FAFSA prior to March 1 in order to receive priority consideration. This limited fund is generally awarded at $300 per semester to qualifying students.

Federal Work Study

This fund is available to those students who demonstrate financial need. You must come to the Financial Office  to request work study. If this award is granted, you must  complete employment paperwork and get a work assignment. Students are generally limited to no more than twenty hours per week at an hourly rate specified in the employment paperwork. Students may be employed on campus or may be able to request work at one of our community service work sites.

Federal  Loans

There are three types of low interest Federal Loans available:

• Subsidized Student Loan- a subsidized loan is awarded on the basis of financial need. Students will not be charged any interest before entering repayment or during authorized periods of deferment. Deferment is a period during which a borrower who meets certain criteria may suspend making loan payments. The federal government "subsidizes" the interest during these periods. Attending school at least half time (six semester hours) is considered a period of deferment. Students must be enrolled and attending at least half time in order to qualify for a subsidized loan. There is a time limit on subsidized loan usage. For more information please visit the subsidized loan usage page.

• Unsubsidized Student Loan-  An unsubsidized loan is not awarded on the basis of need. Students accrue interest charges from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. Disbursement is the release of loan funds to the school for delivery to the borrower. Payments on unsubsidized loans may also be deferred but, interest will continue to accrue until the loan is repaid in full. Students must be enrolled and attending at least half time in order to qualify for an unsubsidized loan.

• Parent PLUS Loan- Direct PLUS loans are provided to parents to assist with the costs of undergraduate school expenses. Plus loans are unsubsidized and will accumulate interest until paid in full. The qualifying student must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 semester hours, be a financial dependent of the parent and the parent must agree to a credit check.  (parents may borrow up to the cost of attendance for a dependent student).

Types of West Virginia State Aid

WV Higher Education Grant 

The West Virginia Higher Education Grant is a need-based financial aid program designed to ensure West Virginia students who have financial need are given an opportunity to pursue post-secondary education.  In order to qualify for a West Virginia Higher Education Grant a student must meet all eligibility requirements which includes GPA, residency and other requirements as determined by legislative rule. Renewal students must also complete the required number of hours. For priority consideration file the FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1, but before April 15 at For more information visit CFWV WV Higher Education Grant.

Higher Education Adult Part-Time Student Grant 

The goal of the Higher Education Adult Part-Time Student Grant Program (HEAPS) is to encourage and enable West Virginia students who demonstrate financial need to continue their education on a part-time basis at the post-secondary level.  Applicants must submit the FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1 and demonstrate financial need as well as meeting other eligibility requirements. Visit CFWV HEAPS for additional information.

PROMISE Scholarship 

The PROMISE Scholarship is a merit-based financial aid program for West Virginia residents. Students who achieve certain academic goals are eligible to receive funds to help pay for college. Eligible high school graduates will receive annual awards up to $4,750 to cover the cost of tuition and mandatory fees at public or independent institutions in West Virginia.  Students must complete the PROMISE Scholarship Application (Application for State-Level Financial Aid Programs) and the FAFSA must be received by the Federal Student Aid Processing Center on or before March 1 and meet the condition for processing. For more information visit CFWV Promise.

WV Engineering, Science and Technology Scholarship 

The West Virginia Engineering, Science and Technology Scholarship Program is a student financial aid program designed to enable and encourage academically talented individuals to pursue careers in the fields of engineering, science and technology. Scholarships, not to exceed $3,000 per academic year, are awarded on the basis of academic qualifications and interest in the fields of engineering, science and technology. 

For more information and requirements for state-level financial aid, go to

Institutional Aid

Mountwest offers scholarships and tuition waivers. MCTC scholarships are generally not need based. Tuition waivers require some specific qualifications but, are not need based. For a listing please visit our scholarships page.

Pell Grant Limit Questions

In December 2011, President Obama signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2012 (Public Law 112-74). This law has significantly impacted the Pell Grant Program. Beginning in fall 2012, Students are now limited to 12 semesters (or 600%) of Pell Grant eligibility during their lifetime. This change affects all students regardless of when or where they received their first Pell Grant.

Q: How do I know if this affects me? 

A: If you have attended college for 4 years or longer*, and have been receiving the Pell Grant each year, you may have already exhausted your lifetime limit of 12 semesters of Pell Grant eligibility. If you have attended college and received the Pell Grant for 3 years or less you will most likely be eligible to receive a Pell grant during the 2014-2015 school year. Students with a bachelor’s degree are not eligible to receive a Pell Grant. 
**Please be conscious about the lifetime limit of the Pell Grant when changing majors and scheduling classes.

Q: Where can I see my lifetime Pell Grant usage? 

A: You may view your Pell Grant usage by logging into,; using the FSA User ID you created to file the FAFSA. Beginning in April 2015 you will need to create an FSA User ID.

Q: Where can I get my FSA User ID if I don’t remember it? 

A: You may access the FSA User ID website at  FSAID.

Q: How is the Pell percentage used calculated? 

A: The percentages are based on your annual award at full-time enrollment status. For instance: If your annual award for the 2014-2015 academic year was $5,730 and you attended full-time both fall and spring terms, you used 100% of your lifetime limit.  If you attended 9 credits for both fall and spring terms, you used 75% of your lifetime limit. 

Q: I have questions about this, who do I call? 

A: Our Financial Aid Counselors are available to discuss the change in the lifetime Pell Grant eligibility with you.


*Beginning October 1, 2016 students may begin filing the 2017-2018 FAFSA using the 2015 tax information. Every year, thereafter, the FAFSA filing date will begin on October 1, for the new aid year.