Federal Pell Grant

**Award Range:**  $326-$3,048/semester

Pell Grant is a federal program for undergraduate students who have not yet earned their first bachelor’s degree. The data provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) produces an EFC, or Expected Family Contribution, which is used in determining Pell Grant eligibility. 

Federal Pell Grant Eligibility is limited to 6 years at full-time enrollment. Once a student has reached the Lifetime Eligibility Used the student may qualify for other types of financial aid but will no longer be eligible for Pell Grant.

Federal Pell Grant is based on EFC, enrollment level, and the number of semesters attended. Students may not receive Federal Pell Grant funds from more than one school simultaneously (e.g. – award period or semester).  Pell Grant is adjusted through the 9th calendar day of the term for 9 to 16 week classes. Once that date is reached, Pell will not change for courses dropped as long as the student started the course.  Pell will not be increased for courses added after the adjusted date.  Students are paid up front for courses that begin throughout the term.  Pell awards are adjusted and money must be repaid if a student fails to attend a course that begins after the adjustment date.

**Actual Enrollment**

**Pell Eligibility**

12+ Credit Hours (full-time)

100% of Pell Award

9 to 11 Credit Hours (3/4 time)

75% of Pell Award

6 to 8 Credit Hours (1/2 time)

50% of Pell Award

Less than 6 Credit Hours

25% of Pell Award


Additional Policies regarding Federal Pell Grant:

  • A student must maintain enrollment and attendance during the semester in order to maintain eligibility for Federal Pell Grant funds. Dropping classes (or simply not attending class anymore) before the Financial Aid Census Date usually results in the student owing back the Pell Grant funds associated with that class.
  • If the FAFSA is received by Sandburg after the close of a semester and the student attended the current award year, retroactive reimbursement is calculated based on the number of credit hours successfully completed with an earned grade of “A, B, C, D, or P”. In addition, if the student is selected for verification, all required documents must be on file and the student must meet all other eligibility criteria to receive a retroactive award. The last possible day a valid FAFSA may be received for the year is the last day of the Spring/Summer term, or the last date of attendance for the award year, whichever is earlier.
  • The Department of Education has announced that students that are eligible for Pell Grant may be able to receive a third disbursement of Pell Grant. Carl Sandburg College will implement "Year Round Pell Grant" beginning in the summer of 2018. The general rules are that students must be eligible for Pell Grant as determined by the Department of Education, and must be enrolled at least half‐time for the Summer semester. Half‐time enrollment is six credit hours for undergraduate students. Students enrolled in five or fewer credits for summer can receive Pell if they were part-time (less than 12 credits) for fall or spring terms.