West Virginia Northern Community College has completed its 10-year recertification process and has received approval to continue participation in federal student aid programs authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965.
According to Alicia Frey, associate director of financial aid at WVNCC, to participate in the federal student aid programs, a school must have a current Program Participation Agreement signed by the school’s president and an authorized representative of the U.S. Secretary of Education. Under the PPA, Frey explained, the school agrees to comply with the laws, regulations and policies governing the programs.
These federal student aid programs include Federal Pell Grant Program, Federal Direct Student Loan Program, Federal Perkins Loan Program, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant and the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant.
Frey explained that during the recertification process, the U.S. Department of Education evaluates institutions on meeting the department’s institutional eligibility requirements, administrative capability principles and financial responsibility standards to determine the college’s capability to offer federal financial aid assistance to students in a “prudent and responsible manner.”
“Recertification has been updated to every five to six years, so we will have to go through the recertification process again in 2017,” she said.
Frey said, according to Northern’s last reported statistics, “Eighty-three per cent of our first year students require financial aid assistance and this aid is funded greatly from these federal sources, totaling more than $12 million in the 2011-12 school year.”