Special Circumstance and American Rescue Plan Act

Graduation officiants wearing masks, caps, and gowns during COVID graduation

Students and their families may have experienced unforeseen circumstances and/or expenses during the past academic year due to Covid-19 or other circumstances beyond their control. If you are a student with documented ‘Special Circumstances’ that negatively affect you/your family’s financial situation, you could be eligible for an adjustment to the original data provided on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and your financial aid eligibility.

For example, because of COVID-19, some employers have shut down, reduced work hours, or furloughed employees. Some students or parents may not have been able to work due to illness. The Columbia-Greene Community College Financial Aid Office will be able to review your special circumstances and possibly adjust the amount of financial aid you receive or would have received.

If your family has experienced a change in income due to unusual or extenuating circumstances, the Columbia-Greene Community College Financial Aid Office can use professional judgement, and U.S. Department of Education guided flexibility, to re-evaluate your situation for the following reasons:

  • Loss of job or permanent/indefinite reduction of work hours
  • Separation or divorce
  • Personal bankruptcy that occurs during the current financial aid year
  • Death of a member of your immediate family
  • Reduction/loss of child support
  • High non-reimbursed medical expenses
  • Parents took money out of their pension/retirement plan as a one-time payment to help cover expenses
  • Other documented special circumstances outside of the student’s control

**Supporting documentation is required for all special circumstance requests. All tax documentation must be signed**

If you would like a Special Circumstance Application, please use the link below to download the form:

Special Circumstance Application

Please note: Federal financial aid appeal decisions (Special Circumstances) are rendered on a case-by-base basis at the discretion of the campus, based on guidance provided by the U.S. Department of Education. All decisions are final. Every effort will be made by SUNY C-GCC to assist students in need. Once a student submits their Special Circumstance Application and supporting documentation they will be informed of a decision within 7 to 10 business days.

If you have additional questions, please contact us. Remember to include the Student Name and ID number on all documentation and communications. Please make sure you have completed a Proxy Authorization and FERPA Record Release.

Contact Us

Phone:  518-697-6360