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Financial Aid

Types of Financial Aid

Low tuition and fee rates and the absence of most residential fees keep the cost of attending Otero College to a minimum. Nevertheless, Otero College does operate an extensive financial aid program for students who find it impossible or difficult to enter or remain in college without some type of financial assistance.

Financial aid is awarded to students on the basis of need. In determining need in a consistent way for all aid candidates, Otero College requires all students and/or parents to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The Free Application for Federal Student Aid and information about financial aid may be obtained from the high school guidance counselors or from the Otero Director of Financial Aid at 719-384-6834. The

FAFSA website is:


Colorado Scholars Program (3.0 GPA scholarship)
Private Donor Scholarships


Federal Pell Grant
Colorado Student Grant
Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant
State Student Incentive Grant


Federal Stafford Student Loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized)
Federal PLUS Loans (parents)

Employment Opportunities:

College Work-study Programs

Financial Aid Awards

Award Descriptions

Colorado Scholars Program

Scholarships of tuition are available to Colorado residents who have a cumulative high school grade point average 3.00 or better and enroll full-time at Otero the fall semester after graduating from high school. These scholarships are also available to returning Otero sophomore students who have maintained at least a 3.00 cumulative GPA.

This scholarship is also available to current Colorado residents that are Otero or college transfer students who have a cumulative college grade point average 3.00 or better and enroll full-time at Otero.

Applications must be received by the Director of Financial Aid by August 1. Awards are made depending upon the availability of funds and will be supplemented by the Colorado Student Grant if the student receives both awards. (Funds from the Colorado Scholars Program are not available for the summer term.)

Private Donor Scholarships

The Director of Financial Aid administers a number of scholarships established by individuals and organizations interested in Otero and its students. Eligibility for these awards varies according to the donor’s wishes. Information concerning these awards is available from the Director of Financial Aid.

Federal Pell Grant

These grants are designed to provide financial assistance to those who need it to attend post-high school educational institutions. The maximum award for the 2018-2019 academic year is $6,095. Amount of the award is set each year by the U.S. Department of Education. Grants may be awarded to full-time and part-time students who are U.S. citizens, meet other federal mandated guidelines and are making satisfactory academic progress.

Federal Supplementary Education Opportunity Grants

One year grants-in-aid, valued at $100 to $4,000 depending on the extent of documented need, are designed to assist students of exceptional financial need, who, for the lack of financial means of their own or of their families, would be unable to attend college. The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant may be renewed annually upon application, providing the recipient continues to meet eligibility requirements.

Colorado State Grant

The Colorado student program is designed to assist needy students with educational expenses. To qualify, students must be residents of the State of Colorado and must demonstrate and document financial need. Colorado Student Grants to out-of-state students are not available.

Federal Stafford Student Loan

This loan is available to students who have demonstrated financial need. The loan is secured through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program. A student may obtain a loan up to $3,500 for freshman status and $4,500 for sophomore status (students who have completed 30 credit hours or more), based on documented need. Cumulative loan limits for a four-year degree program are $23,000. There is no loan payment or interest charged while the student remains in school at least half-time. Students must begin repaying the loan at a fixed rate, capped at 8.25%, six months after they graduate, leave school, or are enrolled less than half-time. These loans are guaranteed by various agencies and reinsured by the federal government.

College Work-study Employment

The college work-study program (federal and state) is designed to provide financial assistance in the form of part-time employment for students in need of such assistance to begin or continue their college education. Employment under this program is authorized for any student who shows need for assistance and is enrolled at least half-time. Students from low-income families are given first priority for available funds. Students employed under the work-study program are limited to a maximum of 15 hours per week during the regular academic year but may be authorized to work up to 28 hours per week during the summer and other vacation periods. Students employed under work-study are paid at the applicable minimum wage rate.

Part-Time Student Financial Aid

Part-time students who are enrolled for a minimum of six (6) credits are eligible to be considered for financial aid. Contact the Student Services Center for details.

Financial Aid Application Procedure

All students applying for financial assistance must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Applicants for financial assistance are not considered until they have completed all admission requirements and have been issued an official notice of admission to the college

Students who are seeking financial assistance are urged to submit their completed applications well in advance of the anticipated semester of registration.

Requests for additional information can be obtained by writing to the Director of Financial Aid, Otero College, 1802 Colorado Avenue, La Junta, CO 81050 or by calling 719-384-6834.

Student Hourly Employment

About one-third of the students enrolled at Otero College work part-time in the community to help pay their expenses. A limited number of jobs are available on the campus.


Otero College is approved for veteran training and works with the Veterans Administration and the Colorado Department of Veterans Affairs to help student veterans who enroll at the College. Veterans need to submit all records of previous education and training to the Student Services Center within one semester of enrollment or risk losing educational benefits. For more information contact the Otero Veterans’ Certifying Official in the Student Services Center or call 719-384-6949.

Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018

As part of the Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018, section 3679 of title 38, United States Code was amended. Effective August 1, 2019, the State Approving Agency, or the Secretary when acting in the role of the State Approving Agency, shall disapprove a course of education provided by an educational institution that has in effect a policy that is inconsistent with the areas below:

• Policy must permit any covered individual to attend or participate in the course of education during the period beginning on the date on which the individual provides to the educational institution a certificate of eligibility for entitlement to educational assistance under chapter 31 or 33 (a “certificate of eligibility” can also include a “Statement of Benefits” obtained from the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) website – eBenefits, or a VAF 28-1905 form for chapter 31 authorization purposes) and ending on the earlier of the following dates:

1. The date on which payment from VA is made to the institution.
2. 90 days after the date the institution certified tuition and fees following the receipt of the certificate of eligibility.

• Policy must ensure that your educational institution will not impose any penalty, including the assessment of late fees, the denial of access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities, or the requirement that a covered individual borrow additional funds, on any covered individual because of the individual’s inability to meet his or her financial obligations to the institution due to the delayed disbursement funding from VA under chapter 31 or 33.

NOTE: A Covered Individual is any individual who is entitled to educational assistance under chapter 31, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment, or chapter 33, Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at

“The school maintains a written record of the previous education and training of the veteran or eligible person and clearly indicates that appropriate credit has been given for previous education and training, with the training period shortened proportionately, and the veteran or eligible person and the Department of Veterans Affairs so notified.”

Otero Scholarships

Classified Employee Scholarship

The Otero College State Classified Employees are offering one scholarship of $250 for the year to a qualified returning Otero sophomore. In order to be eligible for this scholarship, the recipient must be enrolled as a full time student (12 credit hours) per semester and maintain a cumulative 3.0 GPA. This recipient must be a U.S. Citizen or permanent resident. Submit completed application by April 1.

Otero Premier Agriculture Scholarship

Selection is based on agricultural involvement (such as previous employment, extra-curricular activities, future aspirations, etc.). Scholarships will be awarded to at least five students at up to $1,500 per student for the academic year (a minimum of $750 per semester). Successful applicants may re-apply for a second year of funding if still eligible. Scholarship funds are sponsored by the Otero College Foundation.

Otero International Academic/Leadership Scholarship

This scholarship is available to current Otero international students who have received the distinction of being on the President’s List, have demonstrated leadership and have been active in community service can apply for this scholarship award of $500 toward the following semester at Otero.

Otero International Spirit Scholarship

This scholarship is available to current Otero international students who have received the distinction of being on the Institutional Recognition Honors List, have been active in community service and have demonstrated and fostered opportunities to reach across cultural borders to promote international understanding can apply for this scholarship award of $250 toward the following semester at Otero.

Foundation & Community Scholarships

Scholarship Name (in alphabetical order)QualificationsDurationAmount
Ashley Rochelle Abel Nursing Scholarship3.0+ gpa, Nursing student, 5 hrs community serviceSchool Year$500
Boundless Opportunity ScholarshipFull-time non-traditional students, 23 yrs or older, Satisfactory Academic Progress, Demonstrate financial need.School Year$2,000
CCCS Last Mile Scholarship SummaryPursuing an Associate’s degree or certificate. Have a maximum of 15 credit hours remaining to earn an Associate’s degree or completed 75% of program requirements for certificates. See scholarship attachment for more qualifications.Awards made throughout the year.Funding is limited and awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.
Central Colorado Educational Trust ScholarshipGraduate from SE Colo H.S., full-time student, Agricultural emphasis,School Year$1000
Chapter GM P.E.O. ScholarshipFull-time female student, 2.5+ gpa, La Junta, Cheraw, Swink H.S. graduate.School Year$500
Classified EmployeesQualified returning sophomore only, 3.0+ gpa, Full time student. One scholarship of $1000, ($500 per semester).Semester$500
Colley Scholarship (STEM)AS degree in STEM field, 3.0+ gpa, full-time studentup to Two Years$2,500 yr
Colorado Opportunity ScholarshipFull-time students, income qualifications, apply to TRiO programSemesterUp to $1500
Commitment to Otero ScholoarshipLocal students who graduated from an Otero College service area high school (La Junta, Las Animas, Cheraw, Rocky Ford, Crowley County, Swink, Manzanola, Fowler) with a minimum of 2.5 cumula-tive GPA from high school and enroll at Otero College in at least 15 credit hours. There is a two-year limit on the Commitment to Otero scholarship and it is not stackable with any of the Rattler Nation scholarships. FAFSA must be received by June 1st.up to two years$1000
Conley Memorial ScholarshipFull-time student, 2.5+ gpa, ASG or Athletics or Political Science/History major.up to Two YearsVariable
Cordova-Wentling Scholarship in Memory of Mona Becerra-GaribayGraduate of La Junta H.S., Full Time Student, Awarded to student earning associate degree in any transfer or career program related to teaching. The criteria for the scholarship are based on financial need, academic merit, Hispanic heritage, school and community involvement.School Year$1,000
E.E. Bruegel Memorial ScholarshipGraduate of Las Animas H.S.School Year$300
First-Generation ScholarshipFirst generation college students (neither parent has earned a bach-elor’s degree or higher), 3.0 high school GPA for first-time freshman, or transfer GPA for students who have attended another college prior to Otero College enrollment, FAFSA must be received by June 1st, must be enrolled in at least 12 credits at Otero. Renewable with a 3.0 cumulative GPA. There is a two-year limit on receiving this award. The First-Generation Scholarship is awarded to students upon their initial semester at Otero and may be combined with any other Otero scholarship.up to two years$850
The Franzman Family Scholarship – New model for the Franzman Family Scholarship2.5+ gpa, four scholarships each year. Two awarded to first year (freshman) students and two awarded to continuing second year (sophomore) students.School Year$1250
The Franzman Nursing Scholarship2.5+ gpa, Two Nursing Scholarships will be available to be awarded, one to a first year (freshman) student and one to a continuing second year (sophomore), both enrolled in the nursing program and pursuing qualification as registered nursesSchool Year$2,500
Franzman President’s Leadership Scholarship3.2+ gpa, 20 President’s Leadership Program (PLP) annual scholarships will be awarded.School Year$1000
The Freda T. Roof ScholarshipFinancial needSchool YearVariable
The Jenny Bransteitter Memorial ScholarshipWomen’s Volleyball athlete, full-time student at Otero, financial need, one volunteer event per semesterSchool Year$2,000 ($1,000 for Fall Semester and $1,000 for Spring Semester)
Jo Lynn Dutton Peters ScholarshipFull-time female student, 2.5+ gpa, Graduate of L.J., Swink, or Cheraw H.S.School Year$500
Kane Family 2 Year MeritColo Resident, 3.25+ gpa, seek associate degree within 2 consecutive years. Must plan to transfer to UCCS upon graduation from Otero.Two YearsTuition, Fees, Books
Kay Mahoney ScholarshipHealthcare Program at Otero, 3.2+ gpa, commitment to community service.School YearVariable
Living & Learning ScholarshipOut-of-State and WUE students enrolled in at least 15 credits re-ceive a $2,000 per year scholarship towards housing costs. Renew-able with a 2.5 cumulative Otero GPA. There is a two-year limit on the Living and Learning scholarship and it can be combined with the First-Generation scholarship.School Year$2,000
Ag Premier ScholarshipAgricultural involvement, enrolled in an ag science courseSchool Yearup to $1,500
President’s Leadership ScholarshipMust be selected for the President’s Leadership Program, 3.2+ GPA and remains in good standing with PLP.School Year$1000 ($500 for Fall Semester and $500 for Spring Semester)
Rattler Nation Merit ScholarshipsEligible students must be Colorado residents and enroll in at least 15 credit hours at Otero College the fall semester following their high school graduation date.School Year$1,000 – $2,500
Robert Hoag Rawlings Scholarship2.5+ gpa, journalism or business emphasis, students from 18-county Southeastern Colorado areaSchool Year$2000
Vera and Alan Shand ScholarshipFull-time student, 3.0 + gpa, pursuing a degree in education, priority given to students graduating from Lower Arkansas Valley. Full-time student, 3.0 + gpa, pursuing a degree in nursing and accepted into the Nursing Program.Semester$1000 – $1250
Twilla Anderson ScholarshipFull-time student, 3.0 + gpa, graduated from La Junta High School, participated in at least one sport and belonged to minimum of one club or organization their senior year.School Year$500
Wickham Family ScholarshipFull-time student pursuing a degree in the Engineering field or Math/Science, 3.0+ gpaSchool Year$500

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