Community colleges accept all students. Each community college has its own process you must complete to enroll. Here are some of the common steps:
1) Complete the online application form.
All community colleges have online applications. Before you start the form, most colleges will require you to create an online account.
2) Submit your transcripts.
The application process will require you to submit your high school and college transcripts.
Here’s how you can access your transcripts:
- If you graduated from a Michigan high school, order your transcript from Parchment. To start, visit the Parchment website, create an online account, and provide basic information (such as when you attended high school and whether you have a maiden name). It costs $3.25 to order a transcript and you must use a credit card to pay.
- If you completed a high school equivalency exam (including GED, HiSET and TASC), order your transcripts from DiplomaSender. To start, visit the DiplomaSender website and create an online account. You will be asked for your name, birthday, and when and where you took your high school equivalency exam. It costs $17 to order a transcript, and you can pay by credit card or money order. If you took the test within the last 12 months, you can receive your initial diploma and transcript for free.
- If you’re a returning college student, you’ll also need transcripts from any college you’ve attended. Learn more about how to get your college transcripts and whether you can expect to receive transfer credits here. Visit Will my previous college credits transfer?
3) Complete placement testing.
Most colleges ask you to take a reading, writing, and/or math test as part of the application process. They use these tests to identify areas where you may need to freshen up your skills.
If English is your second language, you may be required to demonstrate your language proficiency. This is done through the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), IELTS (International English Language Testing System), or an institution-specific exam.
Some students are nervous to take a placement test. That’s understandable! Remember, no matter your score, you ARE college material.
If the test results show that you need to freshen up your skills with a remedial course, you are not alone. Many community college students take remedial classes (sometimes called developmental or non-credit bearing classes). These classes are just a step on your path to graduation.
- If you’ve recently completed your high school diploma or equivalent, you may be able to submit your transcript instead of taking a placement test. Check your college’s website for their policies or ask a college admissions counselor.
- If you’ve recently taken the SAT, ACT, AP, CLEP, or ASVAB tests, you may be able to submit your test scores instead of taking a placement test. Check your college’s website for their policies or ask a college admissions counselor.
In order to receive the Michigan Reconnect scholarship, you must apply for financial aid from the federal government by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Please note: If you are planning on attending community college in Summer 2020 you will need to submit both a 2020-2021 and a 2021-2022 FAFSA. If you are planning on starting Fall 2021, you will need to submit a 2021-22 FAFSA.
Here is how to complete your FAFSA:
1) Gather your materials. To complete the FAFSA, you’ll need your:
Social Security number or Alien Registration Number
Driver’s license, if you have one
Previous year’s federal income tax return, if you filed
Previous year’s W-2 form (and for your spouse, if you’re married)
Bank account statements
Federal School Code (if you’re not sure what your school’s code is, you can use the FAFSA’s Federal School Code Search
2) Create an FSA ID. An FSA ID is a username and password you’ll use to complete, sign, and submit your FAFSA. To create one, you’ll need your social security number and date of birth. You’ll also need to provide an email address or mobile phone number. Create an FSA ID.
Do you have an FSA ID? If you’ve logged into the U.S. Department of Education website since 2015, you may have an existing FSA ID. You can use the “Forgot My Username” and “Forgot My Password” links to access your account online.
3) Complete the online form. You can complete the FAFSA online.
There’s an app for that! The FAFSA application is available for free on the myStudentAid app. Look for it in the Apple app store or Google Play.
Never pay to file. Completing the FAFSA is always free. If a site requires payment, make sure you are at the official FAFSA site.
4) Sign and submit the FAFSA. One of most common mistakes students make is not signing their FAFSA. Be sure to sign and submit your FAFSA. Since it is electronic, you will sign using your FSA ID and password. Once your FAFSA is submitted, you’ll see a confirmation page and receive a confirmation email.
Don’t worry if the FAFSA indicates you are not eligible for federal aid. You are still eligible for Reconnect which will cover your in-district tuition, mandatory fees, and contact hours.
There are experts available to help you answer questions about completing the FAFSA.
- Contact the financial aid office at your local community college you plan to attend.
- Contact the federal FAFSA team through online chat or by phone at 1-800-4FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).
- Participate in orientation. Some colleges require students to participate in orientation either on campus or online. For adults, sometimes orientation is optional. We strongly recommend you participate! Orientation helps you get to know campus and better understand the academic, financial, and personal resources available at your college. During orientation, you may also meet with an academic advisor and register for classes.
- Review financial balances. If you are a returning college student and you owe your college money, the college will likely prevent you from registering for classes until the debt is paid or a payment plan is established. It can be intimidating to talk to college administrators about old bills, but remember that colleges want you to enroll. Some colleges even offer debt-forgiveness programs to help students return and complete their degree.
We want to help you track your progress! Check your status to confirm that your Reconnect application and FAFSA were submitted, and that you’re approved to receive the scholarship.
Have a question? We're here to help. Call the Customer Care Center at 888-447-2687, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.