Diverse California Community Colleges Pell Grants Students Sitting Outside on Campus

Pell Grants

Pell Grants can help you pay for your college education.

Federal Pell Grants go to undergraduate students who come from low-income families.

The Pell Grant is the largest federal grant program offered to undergraduates. Fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form every year you’re in school to stay eligible for federal student aid.

Pell Grants Recipient and Student Reading in a California Community College Campus Library


Pell Grants get awarded based on financial need and units enrolled per term. You can apply for a Pell Grant by completing a FAFSA form. Pell Grant lifetime eligibility is limited to a maximum of or no more than 12 terms or the equivalent (roughly six years). Once you have earned a baccalaureate degree or your first professional degree or have used up all 12 terms of your eligibility, you are no longer eligible to receive a Federal Pell Grant. You may not receive Federal Pell Grant funds from more than one school at a time.

Award Amount

Pell Grants award up to $6,495 for the 2021-22 award year (July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022). Under certain circumstances, an eligible student can receive up to 150 percent of their scheduled Pell Grant award for an award year-referred to as “year-round Pell” by attending an additional term (Fall, Spring and Summer) within that award year.

More financial aid programs available.

Most U.S. citizens qualify for financial aid with a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Undocumented students can get assistance through the California Dream Act (CADAA).



Federal Pell Grants go to undergraduate students without college degrees who come from low-income families.

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CalGrants get awarded to California resident undergraduates based on financial need, academic performance and other factors.

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Low-income students and students receiving cash assistance may automatically apply for a California College Promise Grant (CCPG).

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The California Community Colleges Scholarship Endowment (CCCSE) offers over 3,000 student scholarships per year.

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Part-Time Employment

Federal work-study students earn money to pay for college by working a part-time job on-campus or out in the community.

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Foster youth students who were in care on or after their 16th birthday can apply for a Chafee Grant up until they turn 26.

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