Free tuition in 3 easy steps!
Apply to Ocean County College
Even if you’ve previously attended, you’ll need a new application; be sure to choose a degree-program to qualify for the Community College Opportunity Grant
File your FAFSA
File your Free Application for Federal Student Aid at FAFSA Application | Federal Student Aid.
Complete your HESAA Profile
Answer the necessary questions on the HESAA website
- Complete and file the FAFSA or New Jersey Alternative Application
- Complete and answer the New Jersey State Grants Questions in NJFAMS
- Complete State Record and Verification documents (if selected)
- Enroll for a minimum of 6 credits
- Must have an adjusted gross income of no less than $0 and no more than $100,000
- Dependent Student adjusted gross income refers to parental adjusted gross income reported on the FAFSA
- Independent Student adjusted gross income refers to the adjusted gross income reported on the FAFSA, if applicable, combined with the student’s spouse adjusted gross income
Amount of Grant
- The Community College Opportunity Grant will cover up to the full cost of tuition for up to 18 credit hours and approved educational fees
- The Community College Opportunity Grant is a last‐dollar scholarship, therefore, the full amount of all state, federal, institutional, and community aid received by the student shall be applied to the tuition and approved educational fee charges to reduce the amount of the Community College Opportunity Grant award
Frequently Asked Questions
The Community College Opportunity Grant program will offer free tuition and fees to students with an adjusted gross income of $65,000 or less who take six or more credits making satisfactory academic progress towards a degree. Students will be eligible to receive funding after applying all other federal and state grant aid, such as federal Pell Grants and New Jersey Tuition Assistance Grants.
The Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) requirements are no less than $0 to no more than $65,000. For a dependent student, AGI refers to parents’ AGI reported on the financial application. For an independent student, AGI refers to AGI reported on the financial application for the student and, if applicable, the student’s spouse.
To learn more about adjusted gross income, visit www.irs.gov.
The Community College Opportunity Grant program will cover tuition and educational fees (books not included).
Fees that are covered include:
- General fees
- Registration fees
- Facility fees
- Technology fees
- Lab fees
- Program/Course fees
- Student Activity fees
All students (new and returning) must complete and file the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) or New Jersey Alternative Financial Aid Application prior to February 15, 2020 in order to apply for all other available forms of federal and state needs-based grants and merit scholarships. This includes students satisfying all requirements to determine eligibility to receive payments of these state and federal grants and scholarships within established state deadlines.
The FAFSA can be completed at FAFSA Application | Federal Student Aid or for the NJ Alternative Financial Aid Application at https://www.hesaa.org/Pages/NJAlternativeApplication.aspx.
Students who are in dual enrollment programs and still in high school are not eligible for the Community College Opportunity Grant. Students must be enrolled at Ocean County College and possess a high school diploma or GED.
The Community College Opportunity Grant is available for eligible students enrolled in the county college that serves the student’s county of residence.
The only exception in which students are eligible for Community College Opportunity Grant awards at a county college that does not serve their county of residence is when students had already been enrolled and approved to attend an out-of-county program for the Spring of 2020. Students must have provided OCC with a letter from the New Jersey county college serving their county of residence stating that the college in their county did not offer the curriculum that the student chose to study, or that the institution could not admit the students into the desired program of study due to lack of available space, which was expected to exist for at least one academic year. If students meet this standard for exception, the Community College Opportunity Grant amount awarded to these students will be computed as though the students were residents of the county served by that college.
Students are considered eligible for State financial aid, including the Community College Opportunity Grant, provided they meet the college’s published definition of part-time to full-time enrollment in accordance with N.J.A.C. 9A:9- 2.10 Verification of Enrollment and Academic Performance.
Tuition Aid Grant (TAG) recipients who are required to enroll in remedial, bilingual, and/or developmental courses to increase the probability of success in college-level work may not be receiving credit toward a degree for these courses. These students are, however, considered eligible for TAG and Community College Opportunity Grant if they meet Ocean County College’s definition of part-time or full-time enrollment.
OCC will notify students of their eligibility as part of the financial award information. The notifications will include the amounts of the grant.
The Community College Opportunity Grant program at Ocean County College begins in the Fall 2019 semester.
Students who have already earned a bachelor’s or associate’s degree are not eligible for the Community College Opportunity Grant.