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Financial Aid Programs

Students who are eligible for financial aid at College of the Desert may receive any of the following based on their eligibility:
State Aid

Board of Governor's Enrollment Fee Waiver (BOG):
This is a state fee waiver program that was designed to provide educational assistance for eligible California residents attending a California community college by waiving the enrollment fees.  Students can apply by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or BOG Fee Waiver application.   
Following are the different types of BOG Fee Waivers at California Community Colleges:
BOG A - For students receiving various forms of government assistance such as TANF, SSI/SSP or General Assistance.  Students applying for the BOG A only and no other financial aid, only need to submit a paper BOG Fee Waiver application available at the front counter of the Financial Aid Office.  
BOG B - For students meeting specific income requirements.  Only BOG B students can qualify for the EOPS Program.  For more infornation go to the EOPS website. 
BOG C - For students who have demonstrated financial need per the FAFSA application of at least 1,104 for the 2014-2015 school year.  
Cal Grants B and C:
These state funded grants are available to California residents who apply by March 2nd for the next school year and qualify on the basis of merit, financial need and/or vocational program.  This funding is limited.  In addition to completing and filing a FAFSA, a separate application - commonly referred to as the "Cal Grant GPA Verification Form" - must also be submitted.  If students have completed a certain number of units at a college, the school may submit this information on the student's behalf.  College of the Desert transmits GPAs electronically every February for California residents who have completed 24 units of transferrable coursework. 
Only Cal Grants B and C may be used at College of the Desert, but Cal Grant A may be used for future study if you decide to transfer to a four-year college or university in California.  If you missed the March 2nd filing deadline, you may still qualify by meeting the September 2nd deadline for community college students only.  Visit the Financial Aid Office for additional information or go online to  It is recommended that students go to to setup an account with the California Student Aid Commission to regularly check on the status of their Cal Grant.

Students awarded a Cal Grant C can only be paid for vocational courses; no funds will be disbursed for general education courses.  Other restrictions may apply.  For additional information please contact the Financial Aid Office. 

Students intending on transferring to a 4-year college or university should not use more than 200% of their Cal Grant award at COD.  In order to reserve potential future grant eligibility, please contact the Financial Aid Office at (760) 773-2532.
Chafee Grant:
The California Chafee Grant Program gives money to current and former Foster Youth to use for vocational training or a degree program.  Students must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 units and are awarded $2,500 each semester. The Chafee Grant Program, also known as the Educational and Training Voucher (ETV), is a federally and state funded program and is subject to the availability of funds each year.  The student must have been a Foster Youth between the ages of 16 to 18, have not reached his/her 22nd birthday as of July 1 of the award year and have been eligible to receive services from the Department of Social Services Independent Living Program (ILP).  Award amounts are based on financial need.  Applications can be submitted online at
Federal Aid
Federal Pell Grant:
The Federal Pell Grant is free grant assistance that does not have to be repaid.  These federal grants are available to assist students in meeting educational costs.  Federal Pell Grants are targeted to students with high financial need.  Student can only receive a maximum of 6 years of full-time grant towards their undergraduate education, including work at a four year college or university.  
Students cannot be paid Pell Grant at 2 different schools for the same enrollment period.  This includes overlapping terms. 
Students intending on transferring to a 4-year college or university should not use more than 300% or half of their Pell Grant eligibility at COD. In order to reserve potential future grant eligibility, please contact the Financial Aid Office at (760) 773-2532.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG):
This grant is provided to eligible students enrolled in at least 9 units and with significant financial need.  Priority consideration is given to students in high-cost or high fee programs who've completed a FAFSA by March 2nd each year.  Unlike Federal Pell Grants, FSEOG funding is limited.  College of the Desert receives a specified amount of FSEOG funds each school year.  Once those funds are depleted, no additional awards can be made to students.
Work-Study (Federal and Institutional):
This program provides part-time work in order to earn money to help pay for educational costs for those students with (federal) or without (institutional) financial need.  The amount of a Work-Study award depends on the student's financial need (federal) and the availability of unds at College of the Desert.  Pay rates may vary, but will not be less than the current minimum wage.  Additional information is available on the Work Study page of the Financial Aid Office website.
Federal Direct Loans:  
College of the Desert NO longer participates in the Federal Direct Loan program.  Students are still able to apply for private loans.  For more information, please see below.

Institutional Aid
COD Scholarships:
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit, financial need, major, or other criteria as specified by the donor(s) of each fund.  The number and types of scholarship awards available, as well as the scholarship application procedures, may vary.  Additional information is availabe on the Scholarship Information page on the Financial Aid Office website.   
Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS):
Funded by the State of California, this program is restricted to low-income, educationally disadvantaged students and provides grants, books and counseling services to eligible students.  Contact the EOPS Office directly for more information.
Cooperative Agencies Resources for Education (CARE):
A California state-funded program designed to encourage single parents receiving  TANF/CalWORKS to enroll at college that provides counseling, financial aid and child care assistance to eligible students.  Contact the EOPS Office directly for more information.
Outside Resources - Private Loans
Due to College of the Desert no longer participating in the Federal Direct Loan Program beginning with the 2013-2014 school year, some students and families will need access to other resources to cover their educational expenses. Private loans are one option.  These loans are credit-based and often require the student to obtain a creditworthy co-borrower.  Following are some of the lenders our students have borrowed with in the past:

Students can contact each of these lenders individually to find out the terms of the loan (interest rates, fees, repayment options, etc.).  College of the Desert does not endorse any particular lender. Students should research providers to best meet their needs. Loans should only be borrowed as a last resort.

For students who don’t qualify for a private loan with or without a co-borrower, a payment plan may be arranged with the Bursar’s Office. ​​​