College Opportunity Fund (COF)

The College Opportunity Fund—referred to as COF—is Colorado’s way of providing financial support for resident undergraduate students.

COF was created by the Colorado Legislature and signed into law in May 2004 by Gov. Bill Owens.

Colorado will no longer appropriate tax dollars directly to colleges and universities. Instead, eligible undergraduates may apply for a state-funded COF stipend (payment) to put toward the cost of undergraduate education.

COF is not a loan, nor is it financial aid.

Who is eligible?

Undergraduate students who are classified as in-state residents are eligible for the COF stipend.

In order to use the COF stipend, students must be registered for the course before the course census date. If the student was not registered before that date due to University administrative reasons, COF may be allowed on a case by case basis. UNC adheres to the Colorado Department of Higher Education College Opportunity Fund Guidelines, Revised 2014.

Undergraduate students who are classified as non-residents and graduate students are not eligible for the COF stipend.

Courses offered through our Extended Studies office are not eligible for the COF stipend.

How much of my UNC tuition will COF pay?

For the 2014-15 school year, the COF stipend is $75 per eligible credit hour, so if you take 30 credits this year, COF will pay $2,250 of your total tuition.

This amount may differ each year. It is determined by the state legislature each spring for the upcoming academic year. The amount is the same at all Colorado public institutions.

For current tuition information, please visit www.unco.edu/costs.

What do I need to do?

You must apply for and authorize UNC to accept the COF stipend on your behalf.

In order to apply, you need to:

Go to the COF website at https://cof.college-assist.org/ and click on "Apply Now". You need to apply only one time.

In order to authorize, you need to go to:

URSA Student Tab
Registration Tools
COF Stipend Authorization
Choose the current semester
Choose "Lifetime Authorization" - If you choose LIfetime, you won't have to do this process again while at UNC.
Click save.

When do I get the money?

The stipend will be applied to your student bill once tuition charges are posted for the semester. If you did not complete the application and authorization until after tuition was posted, you will see the stipend applied to your student bill within 5-7 working days.

If this payment results in a credit balance on your account, you will be issued a refund in the amount of the credit.

What happens if I don't use COF?

If you do not apply for and/or authorize COF, you will be responsible for paying the full tuition, including the portion that would have been covered by the College Opportunity Fund.

 

Is there a limit to the amount I can receive?

Yes. Current regulations allow you to use up to 145 credit hours.

If you reach the 145 credit hour limit, you may apply to UNC for a one-time, one-year institutional COF waiver to request the additional hours required to complete a baccalaureate degree. In order to apply, please complete the COF Waiver form and return to the Office of the Registrar. You may scan and email it to registrar@unco.edu, fax to 970-351-1870 or mail to CB 50, Greeley, CO 80631.

If you need additional hours after the one-time waiver from UNC, you may request an additional waiver through the Colorado Commission on Higher Education. More information may be found at http://highered.colorado.gov/Finance/COF/default.html.

 

Additional Information

Additional websites for more information:

College Assist - https://cof.college-assist.org/

Department of Higher Education - http://highered.colorado.gov/Finance/COF/default.html

 

 

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