Financial aid available to Moffat County residents for CNCC Community Education classes
Learning something new just got easier on the wallet after a Moffat County Junior Affiliated College District Board decision to expand eligibility for financial assistance for community education classes. Since fall 2018, the board has provided tuition buy-down for residents of Moffat County that makes most classes tuition-free. However, tuition buy-downs and most of the scholarships offered through the Colorado Northwestern Community College Foundation do not apply to community education, non-credit classes. Historically the board has addressed the need for financial assistance for such classes by providing funds for scholarships for senior citizens. Typically, about half of the designated funds are actually used by seniors.
In October, the board approved a policy to adjust the age of those who qualify for senior assistance from 62 to 55 aligning eligibility with Senior Social Center membership. The policy also allows Colorado Northwestern Community College to develop a process to provide financial assistance to county residents considered low income as determined by the federal poverty scale. The new policy and procedures will see discounts of up to 50 percent for eligible learners taking community education classes.
“Community Education is funded through class fees, but cost has been a barrier to learning for some county residents,” said Director of Community Education Sasha Nelson. “Now those who can afford to pay for non-credit classes will be asked to continue to support the program while our seniors, many on low or fixed incomes, and others struggling to learn the skills to get ahead, will now also have the opportunity to access college classes.”
For the 2019-2020 financial year, the board has set aside $13,000 that will be available on a first come-first served basis until funds run out. To qualify for financial assistance, people 55 years of age or older will need to tick the appropriate box on their completed registration form and provide photo identification with date of birth if requested by CNCC staff. To qualify based on income, a learner will need to answer a few additional questions to verify income is at or below 200 percent of the poverty line. To learn more and register for community education classes visit cncc.edu/communityed.