Fresh Start Initiative
The Fresh Start Initiative is a balance forgiveness program created to alleviate OCCC student balances incurred during the pandemic. Oklahoma City Community College has forgiven student debt, including tuition and fees, of students enrolled during the pandemic from Spring 2020 to Spring 2022 who have an outstanding OCCC student account balance as of July 15, 2022 from any of those semesters. The Fresh Start Initiative used funding from the federal Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, appropriated by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
OCCC allocated nearly $4 million to go directly to students with outstanding balances. Approximately 4,500 student balances were forgiven under the Fresh Start Initiative.
What is the purpose of the Fresh Start Initiative?
The purpose of the Fresh Start Initiative is to:
- Reduce the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on OCCC students and their families;
- Relieve students of enrollment debts for the semesters listed below;
- Remove the Outstanding Balance Hold barrier restricting registration; and
- Provide opportunity to pursue and complete educational goals
Who is eligible for the Fresh Start Initiative?
The Fresh Start Initiative has been applied to all current and formerly enrolled OCCC students who have an outstanding OCCC student account balance as of the program effective date of July 15, 2022, and were enrolled during any of the following semester(s):
All terms within a semester will be eligible for the Fresh Start Initiative funding. The Fresh Start Initiative effective date is July 15, 2022. OCCC cannot refund any student payments made prior to this date for purposes of inclusion in the Fresh Start Initiative. Balance forgiveness will only occur once under the Fresh Start Initiative. All balances not meeting the above criteria and any future balances will not be forgiven under this initiative.
Student loans and debt from outside agencies, such as federal student loans or balances from other higher education institutions, are not included in the Fresh Start Initiative. No additional initiative monies will be issued in the form of either a refund or a credit balance.
There are times a student has status changes (petitions, residency changes, etc.) that result in a fee reversal for a prior semester’s enrollment and/or mandatory fees. In the event a student has a fee administratively and retroactively reversed, and those monies had been paid by the Fresh Start Initiative, those credits will be refunded to the program and will not be eligible for refunding directly to the student. If a credit remains greater than the amount credited by the Fresh Start Initiative, the student will be eligible for the remainder of the credit to be refunded to their BankMobile Refund Preference.
How do I know if I received Fresh Start funding?
Students can review their account on their OCCC student portal and look for the Fresh Start Initiative credit on their account. Additionally students can review their OCCC email, and check for notification letters that have been distributed to their physical addresses on file.
Have more questions?
Questions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name and student ID in the subject line of your email. Due to the volume of inquiries, responses to your email may take up to 5 business days to be answered.