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Pell Grant to cover cost of summer classes for qualifying STC students

The U.S. Department of Education recently made changes to the Pell Grant that may help college students cover their classes for the summer of 2018.

The U.S. Department of Education recently made changes that may help college students cover costs for their summer 2018 classes.

Alaa Alhaj, who studies biology at South Texas College (STC), plans to take classes this summer, thanks to the year-round Pell Grant.

"I think that's a great opportunity for us to take more classes in the summer, especially if we can't finish years earlier,” said Alhaj. “For some especially you can take three courses in a month, [but] that's a lot for something [someone] to pay a month."

Financial Aid Outreach Specialist at STC, Jovelli Deleon, said the college has seen interest from students wanting to take summer classes.

“Students would actually be surprised at how many students want to do classes in the summer, but they just get discouraged because there’s no money available,” said Deleon.

To determine whether or not you are eligible for the Pell Grant, it is very important that you fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online for the year 2017-2018. Students must also make sure that they have enrolled for six or more credit hours in the fall and spring semester and will do so during the summer.

Grant amounts depend on the student’s expected family contribution, cost of attendance, enrollment status and whether the students attend for a full academic year or less.

There are also other students, like Osvaldo Barrera, who find the opportunity to get financial assistance over the summer as a way to get ahead.

“Trying to get those extra hours really helps somebody who is trying to get in the workforce quicker," Barrera said.

If you have any questions about the Pell Grant, you can call STC Student Financial services at 956-872-8375.

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