DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) — Several students at Calhoun Community College have contacted WHNT News 19 this week, most are wondering when they will see the leftover funds from their financial aid.
Twin brothers Andrew and Alex Heeren attend Calhoun and say that the wait has not been a pleasant one. “I worked a week for my math book and I still don’t have my history books,” says Alex. “I don’t have enough money for them, it’s as simple as that.”
WHNT News 19 took action and reached out to Janet Martin with Calhoun Community College. Janet says every institution is required to have a disbursement calendar when it comes to financial aid. Each school selects a date for disbursement and then the federal government gives them 14 days from that selected date to refund all the money to the students.
Martin says that deadline allows the school to make sure their students don’t just take the refund money and not come back to class.
“We’re required to turn in attendance,” says Martin. “They’re supposed to be in class for a certain number of time and that’s the reason we don’t give refund checks the first week of class, because we’d never see them again.”
If a student does choose to leave the institution after receiving the refund, then the payment falls back on the shoulders of Calhoun. Not only does that become a headache trying to find the student to bill, but it also doesn’t sit well with the Federal Pell Grant Program.
“We want to make sure that our students have what they’re supposed to in order to go to school but at the same time, we’re also looking at our ability to provide the grants in the future,” said Martin.
Calhoun legally has 14 days after the January 15th date to issue refunds to students. Martin says students can count on those checks going out no later than Monday, January 28th.