Financial Aid

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Gaston College offers low tuition rates while still providing the same high-quality education available at other colleges and universities. In addition to a tuition rate that is typically 50-75% less expensive than 4-year public or private universities, GC also provides financial aid and scholarships for eligible students.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) determines your eligibility for valuable federal and state grants as well as federal work-study positions. We encourage all students to complete the FAFSA and never assume you won’t qualify. 

Students can pursue an adjustment to their Financial Aid eligibility based on special or unusual circumstances.

  • Special circumstances refer to the financial situations (loss of a job, etc.) that justify an aid administrator adjusting data elements in the Cost of Attendance or in the EFC/SAI calculation.
  • Unusual circumstances refer to the conditions that justify an aid administrator making an adjustment to a student’s dependency status based on a unique situation (e.g., human trafficking, refugee or asylee status, parental abuse or abandonment, incarceration), more commonly referred to as a dependency override.

Visit the Financial Aid Forms page to select the correct form for your situation. Your completed form and documentation are reviewed and decisions are made on a case-by-case basis for all special and unusual circumstance requests.

Gaston College currently does not participate in the Federal Direct Loan program or with the various private loan servicers; however, the staff in the Financial Aid Office is available to answer questions regarding loans and debt management.

The US Department of Ed (DOEI) National Default Rate of FY 2018 is 7.3%. Gaston College’s Cohort Default Rate History.




The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) is changing for the 2024-25 academic year. The good news is that the FAFSA itself will be simplified, with changes that include a redesign and fewer questions. Plus, formulas determining aid eligibility have been modified with the goal of expanding financial assistance for low-income families.


The FAFSA Simplification Act passed on Dec. 27, 2020, as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 and represents a significant overhaul of federal student aid, including the FAFSA form, need analysis, and many policies and procedures for schools that participate in the Title IV programs. 

Federal Student Aid will be implementing the FAFSA Simplification Act alongside the FAFSA portion of the Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act which authorizes a direct data exchange with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to make it easier to complete the FAFSA form.


See what is changing on the FAFSA
See what's staying the same with the FAFSA
Glossary of FAFSA Terms



What term would you like to enroll in? What FAFSA do you complete? What Tax Year to Use?
Spring 2024 2023-24 Application opened on October 1, 2022 2021
Summer 2024 2023-24 Application opened on October 1, 2022 2021
Fall 2024 2024-25 Application opens December 2023 2022
Spring 2025 2024-25 Application opens December 2023 2022



The Federal Student Aid site will give you the latest FAFSA news and documents. Visit How FAFSA Changes Will Impact Families in 2024-25 to learn more. Use the Federal Student Aid Estimator to see how much federal student aid you may be eligible for in the 2024-25 award year.


Gaston College FAFSA Information

Financial Aid School Code: 002973

Priority Completion Date for Fall:  July 15
Priority Completion Date for Spring:  December 1
Priority Completion Date for Summer:  April 1



Have questions? You can contact us at 704.922.6227 or

The following courses are not eligible for financial aid: CJC-100, NAS-101, NAS-102, NAS-103, NAS-107, PBT-100 and PBT-101. In some instances, other courses or majors may also be ineligible. Please contact the Financial Aid office if you have any questions.