Cabrillo Financial Aid & Scholarships

Frequently Asked Questions

Review our most frequently asked questions below!


The 2021-2022 FAFSA and Dream Act applications start Fall of 2021, and end as soon as Summer 2022 is over. After the Summer 20212 session, the 2021-2022 FAFSA application is no longer used for any type of aid at Cabrillo College. If you will be enrolled in any of the following terms: Fall 2022, Spring 2023, or Summer 2023 - then you will need to complete the 2022-2023 FAFSA or Dream Act application (available beginning October 1, 2021.

Cabrillo's school code is 001124

Your status depends on whether you meet the federal criteria for being an independent student. This has less to do with your individual financial circumstances and more to do with the federal guidelines. For example, students age 24 and over are considered independent, as are married students or those with children they take care of. Veterans and those on active duty with the armed forces are considered independent. But these are just a few examples of the most common criteria. See this reference on for a more detailed list of criteria.

Your dependency status determines whether financial information from your parents needs to be included in your application and whether their finances will be considered in determining your aid eligibility.

If you need help filing your FAFSA or Dream Act application you may contact our office or attend a workshop. Visit our workshops calendar for dates and times. You can also contact us at or (831) 479-6548 and we would be happy to assist you. 

You may be required to submit additional form(s) or documents to complete your file. You will receive an email from the Financial Aid Office with a link to log into your MyVerify account. After clicking the link, you will log in using your Cabrillo student ID and your Financial Aid Self Service password.

In many cases, yes-please see our Dream Act section below


The entire financial aid process can take up to 4-6 weeks

New financial aid applications are released every October 1st. The priority deadline is March 2nd and the applications closes June 30th. We recommend that students submit their applications as soon as possible in order to not delay their aid. 

Just apply! Many students are eligible for some type of aid. Leave eligibility up to the Department of Education and the Financial Aid Office to determine. The only way to determine what aid you may be eligible for is to apply by completing a FAFSA or CA Dream Act application. 

For your entire college career, there is a maximum lifetime limit for the Federal Pell Grant of 12 full-time semesters or 600% Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU) for your entire academic career. You can log on to and view your LEU.

Unfortunately, there is no way to "transfer" your aid from college to college. You can easily transfer your FAFSA by going to and adding the school code of the college you will be transferring to. Aside from the FAFSA, you will always need to complete the process for receiving aid at each college separately, submitting paperwork again (forms vary college to college) and following the new school’s processing timelines. Tip: If you submitted taxes, documentation for a dependency change, or change of income circumstances and did not keep a copy, you may want to request a copy of them before you leave and have them with you in case you need to submit them again. 

Once you have submitted all of your required documents, in your MyVerify account you will see the message "Your file has been sent to the Financial Aid Office for review. No further action is required at this time." Once “Final Review is done” you will receive an email with further notification from our office.

Go to Financial Aid Self Service, and then select the current school year under 'Select an Award Year' . 

You will now be able to select 'Review Your Financial Aid Award Letter'. For step by step instructions please check out this Financial Aid Self Service Cheatsheet and video.

Top reasons your financial aid could be delayed:

  • Cabrillo College is not listed on your FAFSA.

  • The name on your FAFSA does not match the name on your Social Security Card.

  • You did not sign your FAFSA or send in the signature page from FAFSA on the Web.

  • You made corrections to parental information FAFSA but the parent signature is missing.

  • You made corrections on your FAFSA but your signature is missing.

  • You received an email from our office but forgot to read it. (Read everything you get very carefully.)

  • Your documents weren't turned into our office in a timely manner.

  • Your documents were incomplete.

  • When you filed your FAFSA, you used estimated income and tax information, and when you filed your tax return, the information was different but you didn't correct your FAFSA.

  • You didn't make Satisfactory Academic Progress the prior semester.

  • Your FAFSA was filed after March 2nd.

California College Promise Grant

The California College Promise Grant is a fee waiver for eligible California residents to help pay for tuition. Eligibility is determined based on income. The grant is an electronic transaction which will waive the enrollment cost per unit and a portion of your parking permit for Fall and Spring semesters (you pay $20 ). The California College Promise Grant does not have to be paid back. You may be eligible for a fee waiver even if you are not eligible for other types of aid. For more information on the California College Promise Grant, please see our page on Types of Aid.

Generally, if you submit an application, and it is accepted, your California College Promise Grant award is entered within 24-48 hours. You can check any awards you have from Financial Aid Self Service. Log in and then select the current school year under 'Select an Award Year' .You will now be able to select 'Review Your Financial Aid Award Letter'. For step by step instructions please check out this Financial Aid Self Service Cheatsheet.

You will now be able to select 'Review Your Financial Aid Award Letter'. For step by step instructions please check out this Financial Aid Self Service Cheatsheet. . If you have been awarded the California College Promise Grant waiver it will be listed here. It’s loaded into accounts every Monday.

All students need to do is ensure that they have applied for the California College Promise Grant before the end of the school semester and they will be refunded their tuition cost per unit and a portion of their parking permit cost. Please remember: the only way to get a refund for a term is to ensure your California College Promise Grant was processed before the end of that term. For further general refund questions or information about your refund status, please contact Student Accounts in the Welcome Center.

Each California College Promise Grant is applied to one school year. The school year begins in the Fall and ends with Summer. You don’t need to apply each semester, but you do need to reapply every Fall.

Cabrillo College Promise Program

The Cabrillo College Promise Program provides two years of tuition at Cabrillo to graduating seniors from local high schools including Aptos, Coast Redwood, Harbor, Pajaro Valley, Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, San Lorenzo Valley, Soquel, Watsonville, Oasis and Delta, as well as some charter, private, and alternative schools. It works similarly to the California College Promise Grant, but is for local students graduating from high school.

The Promise covers full time tuition for each semester. Books, fees, supplies, living expenses, and study abroad programs are not included. To assist students with the other expenses related to college that are not covered under the Cabrillo College Promise Program, the college sponsors a large scholarship program and students are encouraged to apply for these additional scholarships to assist with the other costs. Information about Cabrillo scholarships can be found on the Scholarships Page.

Students who wish to receive the Cabrillo College Promise are required to apply for federal and state aid through the FAFSA or Dream Act Application, although it is not a requirement that you qualify for aid. Because the program works through a verification process, the College will remove your tuition charge from your student bill after the third week of classes each semester. This allows the College enough time to process all students who are eligible. You should proceed with enrollment as usual and request the Cabrillo College Promise through this form.

Dream Act

Under the California Dream Act, undocumented students who qualify under AB540 can receive some forms of financial aid. Instead of applying with the FAFSA, eligible students should fill out the CA Dream Act application. Visit our Dream Act page for information on how the process works and what kind of aid you may be eligible for. Much of our advice for the FAFSA on our site will also apply to the Dream Act.

Visit this link for more information on whether you’re eligible to apply through the Dream Act.

No, students do not need a social security number to fill out the application.

Academic Requirements, Dropping Classes, SAP Status

Students who have not met "Minimum Standard Requirements" will be placed on Financial Aid Warning. Note: You are still eligible to receive financial aid while on Financial Aid Warning.

Students who do not meet Minimum Standard Requirements at the end of their Financial Aid Warning semester will be Disqualified for the next term. For more information visit our Academic Requirements page.

Students who have not met "Minimum Standard Requirements" are placed on Financial Aid Warning. There is a GPA requirement and a unit completion requirement, requiring students to complete 67 percent of their attempted units during their entire time at Cabrillo. Often, students have a high GPA but did not meet the unit completion requirement, since grades of "W" count as units attempted even though they don’t affect GPA. You can check your GPA and units completed in Financial Aid Self Service through 'Satisfactory Academic Progress'. If any of that information seems incorrect, contact your instructor and Admissions and Records. Notify us once the grade is corrected.

If your cumulative pace falls below 67%, you must successfully complete ALL units attempted each term. If your cumulative pace is over 67% you must continue to successfully complete 67% of all units attempted each term.

Note: You are still eligible to receive financial aid while on Financial Aid Warning. We advise taking a manageable course load to avoid disqualification.

Yes. All students who apply for Financial Aid will have their academics reviewed regularly to verify that they are making "SAP" or Satisfactory Academic Progress. Maintaining this academic progress means that students complete the classes they attempt with a passing or credit grade on their academic transcripts. Students must also keep their GPA above 2.0 and cannot exceed 150% of their total program units to complete an A.A., A.S., Vocational Certificate or Transfer program. Please read our Academic Requirements page for more information.

  • You can still receive the California Promise Grant enrollment fee waiver
  • You may request Reinstatement for the following term IF you meet the Reinstatement requirements
  • If you were Disqualified because of extenuating circumstances beyond your control (federal regulations specify these as one time events such as ‘student illness or injury, or death of a relative’) AND your situation has changed to allow you to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress, you may submit a Minimum Standard Requirements Appeal form. Keep in mind students are only allowed one appeal on file. Official supporting documentation explaining the extenuating circumstances is required or your appeal will not be considered.

Fall 2020: November 27, 2020

Spring 2021: April 30, 2021

Summer 2021: July 30, 2021

If you are on a Maximum Timeframe extension and do not meet Minimum Standard Requirements and/or you have reached the end of the extended time period, your status will become Ineligible. Once you become Ineligible, there are no further appeals and you will not be eligible for Reinstatement. Please see our Dropping Classes And Your Financial Aid page.

Dropping a class can result in SAP problems and/or Overpayment issues. Depending on your current SAP status you may be placed on Financial Aid Warning, Disqualification, or become Ineligible. See our Academic Requirements page for complete information on SAP policy and statuses. Depending on when you drop, you may also owe money. Please see our Dropping Classes And Your Financial Aid page.

Students become Ineligible if they were granted an extension after reaching Maximum Timeframe and then exceeded that extension. Students would need to provide proof of extenuating circumstances that prevented them from meeting that timeline to become eligible for aid again.

Students become Not Eligible if their appeal was approved, they were on Probation, and then failed to meet requirements while on Probation. Only one SAP Appeal is allowed, so Not Eligible students can no longer receive state and federal grants, or loans, at Cabrillo College.

Federal Direct Student Loans

We offer Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans. For more information, visit our Student Loans page.

Once you’ve finished your FAFSA for the school year, and have developed a Comprehensive Educational Plan with an academic counselor, follow our step-by-step process to request a loan on our Student Loans page. 

Exit counseling provides important information that you need as you prepare to repay your federal student. Exit Counseling is required when you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment. Exit Counseling requirements are on our Student Loans page under the Loan Application Process. To complete Loan Exit Counseling go here


The student must provide consent for the school to disclose information to the parents, by submitting an Authorization to Release Information form to our office.

If a student is attending a postsecondary institution - at any age - the rights under FERPA apply (even if they are under 18). The student must provide consent for the school to disclose the information to the parents, by submitting an Authorization to Release Information form to our office.

You can find the forms on MyVerify. You will be able to review the forms and using your e-sign pin, you will be able to electronically sign the forms. Parents can access their accounts via this URL:  

We are here to help!
(831) 479-6548