Student Handbook

2018-2019 Student Handbook

Chancellor’s Welcome
We are excited that you have chosen to enroll at Houston Community College. As one of the largest and finest community colleges in the United States, HCC students come from all walks of life and have diverse educational goals in
mind. Our excellent faculty and staff are committed to providing quality programs and services that will enable you to transfer to the university of your choice with an associate degree, prepare for immediate entry into numerous exciting occupations with a certificate or a degree, acquire or improve linguistic and high-tech skills and/or meet the requirements for a high school equivalency diploma. Whatever your goals or aspirations may be, we are here
to help you achieve them as we strive to create the ultimate student experience.

This Student Handbook provides valuable information about many available resources while you attend HCC. In turning the pages of the Handbook, you will discover an array of services and activities offered that address any special needs you may have, and contributes to making your educational experience more enjoyable and meaningful. Again, welcome and best wishes as you experience all that HCC has to offer. We are proud to be Houston’s Community College.

Welcome
Your success is our top priority here at Houston Community College (HCC). To ensure that you move through an engaging college experience and receive all services needed to assist you from the time you enter HCC through completion, HCC provides assistance and integrated support, which introduces pro-active advising, career exploration and selection of identified pathways to help you navigate through college. The Student Handbook is a critical tool in your success.

The Student Handbook provides resources and information to enhance your academic, career, and personal growth and success along your educational journey to completion. Specifically, the Handbook has important college policies, information on student life and organizations, as well as a list of your responsibilities as a student. We encourage you to use and reference the Handbook whenever you have a question about your college and student experience. For
further information, please visit HCC’s website at https://www.hccs.edu or submit questions to student.info@hccs.edu.

Our commitment is to your success and completion.
Dr. Athos Brewer, Vice Chancellor of Student Services

Board of Trustees
HCC’s Board of Trustees represents the citizens of HCC’s taxing district. There are nine singlemember districts. Trustees are elected for six year terms with elections held on a 2-year rotating basis. There are no term limits. The district boundaries are legally determined. The most recent re-districting occurred in 2015 based on the annexation of Alief and North Forest Independent School Districts.

New officers are elected annually by the members of the Board of Trustees. The three offices include Chair, Vice Chair, and Secretary.

About Houston Community College

History of HCC
The Houston Community College District was created under the governance of the Houston Independent School District (HISD) as the result of a public referendum on May 18, 1971. In August of that year, more than 5,700 students enrolled in workforce education courses held at the Houston Technical Institute (housed in what was then HISD’s San Jacinto High School). In the following semester, academic transfer classes were added and taught at six HISD locations.

By 1977, HCC had an enrollment of more than 28,000 students and was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). In 1989, HCC separated from HISD, establishing its own Board of Trustees and taxing authority. HCC restructured in 1991, creating five regional colleges, as well as the College Without Walls, and selected presidents for each. The president of HCC then became the HCC System Chancellor. The Coleman College for Health Sciences replaced the College Without Walls in 2004. By Fall 2014, HCC had nearly 70,000 students enrolled, and consisted of 23 campuses with a service area of 631.3 square miles. Since its opening in 1971, more than 2.1 million students have improved their lives through education and training obtained from Houston Community College. An open-admission public institution, HCC awards associate degrees and certificates in academic studies and career and technology programs. HCC is committed to meeting the needs of its diverse communities, providing academic courses for transfer to four-year institutions, terminal degrees and certificates in more than 70 fields of work; as well as, continuing education and corporate training, lifelong learning and enrichment programs, and adult education.

Mission Statement
Houston Community College is an open-admission, public institution of higher education offering a high-quality, affordable education for academic advancement, workforce training, career development, and lifelong learning to prepare individuals in our diverse communities for life and work in a global and technological society.

Vision Statement

Houston Community College will be a leader in providing high quality, innovative education leading to student success and completion of workforce and academic programs. We will be responsive to community needs and drive economic development in the communities we serve.

The HCC Way – Core Values/Accreditation

Academic Standards – Measures of excellence created by professional organizations, innovative practices, and exemplary research in all instructional fields in order to establish benchmarks of accountability across the colleges to ensure student success.
Collaboration – The open sharing of resources, ideas, skills, and knowledge from diverse perspectives working towards common goals and solutions in order to generate synergy to achieve HCC’s goals.
Student Success – Achievement of the student’s specific goals through a holistic approach which includes instruction advisement and mentoring, providing the knowledge and skills for further academic and professional advancement.
Educated Workforce – Educated workforce that is responsive to industry needs, equipped with marketable, professional, social, innovative, futuristic skills and contextual knowledge to be tomorrow’s leaders.
Culture of Trust – Working in an environment driven by honesty, competency, fairness, reliability, and dependability toward organizationally valuable outcomes, and promises made are promises kept and honest failures are not punished.
Innovation – Creating the conditions to leverage what has been to what will be and moving beyond horizons to be a recognized global leader, and way of thinking that looks beyond the horizon and to the trends that others will follow.
Passion – Interests and enthusiasms that lead to a drawing desire that shapes our response to HCC’s goals and purposes for excellence in students’ success through commitment, belief, and persistence.
Accountability – The ethical obligation of all HCC employees to take ownership of the core values to ensure student success, a willingness to accept responsibility for everything we affect, and to demonstrate that as an institution, we have met or exceeded the expectations of our stakeholders.
Student Commitment – Provide a welcoming and safe environment, efficiently and effectively assess, place, educate, and train students by providing the necessary tools, resources, and information, and promote the freedom to engage in learning, complete goals, and maximize potential.
Consistency – Ensuring all stakeholders are treated fairly, all programs and services are uniform regardless of diversity and geographic location, and standard access to these programs is in line with measurable outcomes.

Accreditation
Houston Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the Accreditation of Houston Community College. For further information, you may call the HCC Accreditation Director’s office by dialing 713.718.8605. Additional information regarding accreditation or accreditation information for specific programs designed to lead to a certificate, license, or specialized credential can be found HERE.
Associated Board Policy GK(LOCAL) available HERE.

Download a PDF version of the HCC Student Handbook Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Student Handbook by sections

General Information

Campus Carry
Texas law previously permitted public and private universities to ban the carrying of concealed handguns on their campuses. On June 13, 2015, Governor Abbott signed into law S.B. 11 which adds section 411.2031 to the Government Code and authorizes a concealed handgun license holder to carry a concealed handgun on the campus of a public or private university in Texas, subject to rules and regulations adopted by the institution. HCC has designated certain areas as weapons-free zones in which concealed carrying of handguns by licensed individuals is prohibited. The effective date for HCC and community colleges across the state was August 1, 2017.

  • Open carry of handguns (or other firearms) on a college campus continues to be prohibited.
  • Applicable signage is posted to conform with applicable law.
  • Reference: Texas Penal Code §30.06; Texas Penal Code §46.035(b)(2).
  • For detailed information http://www.hccs.edu/departments/police/campus-carry/.


Equal Educational Opportunity Statement
Houston Community College is committed to providing an educational climate that is conducive to the personal and professional development of each individual. HCC does not discriminate and prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity and gender expression, national origin, age disability, sex, sexual orientation, Veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law, in the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded to or made available to students at the school, administration or its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school administered programs. Emerging English language proficiency will not be a barrier to admission to and participation in career and technical education programs. To ensure compliance with Title IX and other federal and state civil rights laws, the College has developed policies and procedures that prohibit discrimination in all forms. Such policies can be found at https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/hcc-board-policy-manual-section-f.

Houston Community College is committed to cultivating an environment free from inappropriate conduct of a sexual or gender-based nature, including sex discrimination, sexual assault, sexual harassment, and sexual violence. Sex discrimination includes all forms of sexual and gender-based misconduct and violates an individual’s fundamental rights and personal dignity.
David Cross, Director of EEO/Compliance is designated as the Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator. All inquiries concerning HCC Policies, compliance with applicable laws, statues, and regulations (such as Title VI, Title IX, Section 504, and ADA), and complaints may be directed to:

David Cross, Director EEO/Compliance, Title IX Coordinator
3100 Main Street, Suite 702
Houston, TX 77002 713.718.8271 or institutional.equity@hccs.edu
http://www.hccs.edu/departments/institutional-equity/equal-opportunity-statement
More information on these policies and programs follows in this Handbook.

Sexual Misconduct Information and Reporting
Any student who believes that he or she has experienced prohibited conduct or believes that another student has experienced prohibited conduct should immediately report the alleged acts to a responsible employee. The College District designates the following persons as responsible employees for the purposes of reporting prohibited conduct: any instructor, any administrator, or the Title IX Coordinator or College Title IX Contact. For additional information please use the following links:

The Sexual Assault Policy for Students is available at: https://www.hccs.edu/departments/institutional-equity/title-ix-know-your-rights/sexual-assault-policy-for-students/


Office of Institutional Equity
The Office of Institutional Equity (OIE) was established to ensure that all individuals have an opportunity to have full participation in the life of Houston Community College. Services provided by OIE include, but are not limited to:

  • Ensuring compliance with HCC’s policies and law prohibiting discrimination and illegal harassment based on protected characteristics.
  • Investigating complaints of discrimination initiated by students, faculty, staff, and the community, promptly and impartially.
  • Providing training and education materials regarding Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and diversity compliance issues.
  • Developing new programs and metrics to advance diversity, inclusion, and multi-culturalism at HCC.

For more information about OIE and its services, please see: https://www.hccs.edu/departments/institutional-equity/

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students in “attendance” at Houston Community College certain rights with respect to their education records. “Attendance,” as defined by Houston Community College, begins on the first day of the term in which a student is enrolled. These rights include:

  • The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the College receives a request for access. A student should submit to the registrar a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The college official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the college official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  • The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. A student who wishes to ask the College to amend a record should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed. If the College decides not to amend the record as requested, the College will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing. See policy FJ (LOCAL) available at https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/hcc-board-policy-manual-section-f/.
  • The right to provide written consent before the College discloses personally identifiable information from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. The College may disclose education records without a student’s prior written consent under several FERPA exceptions including:
  • Disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests
  • A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the College has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using College employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.
  • A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the College.
  • The student’s application for financial aid
  • Submitting proof of dependency
  • Response to a judicial order or subpoena
  • A bona fide health or safety emergency
  • Information requested by other schools in which the student seeks or intends to enroll
  • Directory information (described below)

 As of January 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which a student’s education records and personally identifiable information (PII) contained in such records—including a student’s SSN, grades, or other private information – may be accessed without a student’s consent.

  • First, the U.S. Comptroller General, The U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (“Federal and State Authorities”) may allow access to a student’s records and PII without a student’s consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is “principally engaged in the provision of education,” such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution.
  • Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to a student’s education records and PII without a student’s consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when HCC objects or does not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive a student’s PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities.
  • In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without a student’s consent PII from a student’s education records, and they may track a student’s participation in education and other programs by linking such PII to other personal information about a student that they obtain from other Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974, as amended, designates certain information related to a student as “Directory Information.” FERPA gives the College the right to disclose such information to anyone inquiring without having to ask a student for permission, unless the student specifically requests in writing that all such information not be made public without written consent (see link to HCC Confidentiality Form below) except by the National Student Clearinghouse to loan guarantors.
Houston Community College has designated the following as “Student Directory Information:”

  • Student’s Name
  • Address and telephone number
  • Date of birth
  • Major field of study
  • Enrollment status (full/part-time)
  • Classification
  • Dates of attendance at HCC
  • Number of semester hours completed & in progress
  • Student classification
  • Degrees earned and dates awarded
  • Most recent previous educational institution attended

If a student does not want directory information released, the student must complete a confidentiality request form at the college campus and submit to the Registrar’s Office. The Confidentiality Form is located at https://www.hccs.edu/media/houston-community-college/district/pdf/confidentiality-form.pdf.

The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education 400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5901
ferpa@ed.gov

 

Admissions Information

General Admissions Criteria
A comprehensive community college system, HCC offers many programs designed to meet the needs of students according to their interests. As an open-admissions, two-year undergraduate institution, HCC has an “open door” admissions policy; individuals who have at least one of the following qualifications are welcome to enroll:

  • Accredited High School diploma; or
  • High School Equivalency certificate; or
  • College-level hours earned at other accredited colleges or universities; or
  • International students who meet college and state requirements; or
  •  An eligible high school student.

All students, except international students, must apply online using the Apply Texas website at http://www.applytexas.org. There is no charge to apply using the Apply Texas website.

The process for international student applications is contained in the section titled International Services and Programs below.

Admission to HCC does not guarantee admission to all programs. HCC utilizes the Texas Success Initiative Assessment to assess the level of students’ reading, writing, and math skills. Based upon their assessment results and specific program objectives, students may be required to take developmental and/or prerequisite courses. In addition, special admission requirements have been established for programs that require students to possess previously learned skills and knowledge. Applicants may obtain some additional admission criteria by visiting https://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/. For further information regarding certain programs, see below.

Admissions Application Deadline
The admissions application deadline is one week before the class start date. Students should submit the application at least one week before the class start date. The application deadline calendar can be found on the HCCS website, available at https://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/application-deadlines/.

Online College
HCC does not have a separate admission policy for the Online College. All admission policies described above apply to all students regardless of how they plan to take their courses. In Spring 2011, HCC implemented Smarter Measure, an instrument to measure students’ readiness to take online courses and set minimum scores for course placement.

Health Science Program Admissions
Admission to the college does not guarantee admission to a specific program. The HCC Health Sciences Programs have special conditions for admissions, including the following possibilities: successful completion of pre-requisite courses, acceptable scores on the Health Information Systems, Inc. (HESI) or other exam, submission of a personal narrative, and/or personal interview. For details, please refer to the website by visiting https://www.hccs.edu/centers/health-sciences/.

Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Veteran and/or Military-Affiliated Students who plan to use VA/GI Bill and/or State of Texas “Hazlewood Act” educational benefits must follow the steps outlined in the applicable HCC enrollment checklist. Further information is provided on the Veteran and Military-Affiliated Services’ (VMASS) website at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at 713-718-8522.

Upon completion of the Admissions Application, Military, Veteran and/or Military-Affiliated students should contact a HCC Student Advisor to address questions regarding enrollment and/or gaining access to additional resources or information. Students may go to any advisor at any campus location.


Re-admission
After Absence - Students who have not enrolled for two or more consecutive regular semesters (fall, spring) must complete the core residency questions and satisfy all applicable requirements for residency again prior to registration. See Residency Information below.
After Suspension/Academic Withdrawal - Students seeking readmission after being placed on enforced Academic Withdrawal or Suspension at HCC must attend a Student Learning Intervention Program (SLIP) session at the college they attend. Students may be required to enroll in specified courses and/or have their course load limited. Information about readmission after suspension or academic withdrawal is available on the HCC website at https://www.hccs.edu/programs/catalog/admissions.
Academic Fresh Start - Under the provisions of the Texas Education Code Section 51.931, Texas residents seeking to apply for admission or re-admission to HCC and/or any specialized program at HCC may elect to have academic course credit more than ten (10) years old prior to the starting date of the semester in which they seek to enroll, not be considered as part of the admissions process. An applicant admitted to HCC under this provision may not receive any course credit for courses taken 10 or more years prior to enrollment. This means courses excluded under this provision may not be counted toward a degree, GPA calculations, academic standing or to meet pre-requisite requirements. Applicants interested in the Academic Fresh Start Program must meet all HCC admissions requirements and must submit official transcripts from all previously attended colleges and universities along with a petition found at https://www.hccs.edu/media/houston-community-college/district/pdf/academic-affairs/Academic-Fresh-Start-(Update).pdf prior to admission to HCC.

Special Admissions Information

High School Student Admissions and Enrollment - Currently enrolled high school or home-schooled students may enroll in the same volume of HCC courses (each semester) as a traditional HCC student. Students should furnish a high school transcript, TSI scores (or documentation of exemption from TSI requirements), and approval from their high school. These students will need to maintain a "C" average to continue taking courses at HCC without limitations.

Dual Credit

To be eligible for any dual credit course, the student may be currently enrolled in a public school district, charter, or private school with an established memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Houston Community College. Dual Credit students must complete an HCC admission application and submit an official high school transcript indicating TAKS, STAAR SAT, and/or ACT test scores (or bring the official test score report if test scores do not appear on the high school transcript). Dual Credit students are also allowed to take the Texas Success Initiative Assessment (TSIA) to qualify for college courses taught as dual credit. Academic Dual Credit Courses: To be eligible for academic dual credit courses, high school students must pass the applicable areas of a Texas Success Initiative (TSI). The student may be exempt from state-mandated TSI testing if he/she meets the qualifying standards on applicable areas of the SAT, ACT, PSAT, or qualifying STAAR scores by subject. Students may take college level courses related to the area(s) of the test they pass. The student must also meet institutional course prerequisites. Dual Credit students must take only courses that apply directly to their pathway and degree plan.

House Bill 505 removed limitations on the number of classes a dual credit student may take. However, Houston Community College recommends that students taking more than two classes per semester possess a 3.0 or higher grade point average in high school coursework. Dual Credit students, like all college students, are responsible for purchasing required textbooks and other essential course materials. The exception would be in cases where the high school provides textbooks. All Dual Credit instructional material is based on the recommended by the academic or workforce department. The Houston Community College Board of Trustees has waived tuition and fees for dual credit students. Students living within (In-District) or outside (Out-of-District) taxing districts may take dual credit classes at no charge. If taught in the high school, the dual credit class must be composed solely of dual credit and/or college credit students, not traditional high school students.

For Dual Credit courses, grading criteria allow faculty the opportunity to award high school and college credit based on the student’s performance. For further information, contact any HCC counselor/advisor at any of the college locations.

SB 1091 limits the courses students may take. The options are to either take academic core classes or career and technical education classes. Students may not do a mixture of both unless it is indicated in their designated degree pathway. The only exceptions are taking a foreign language course or being an Early College High School student. Dual credit students must be placed on a degree plan when they enroll in the dual credit program.

 Articulated Credit

HCC participates in the Advanced Technical Credit (ATC) program (commonly known as statewide articulation), provides an educational and training structure that is sensitive to the transition of high school students to college. The process that facilitates an orderly progression through programs of instruction is commonly referred to as “articulation.” Articulation agreements have been developed between HCC and school districts within the service area. These articulation agreements allow students to successfully complete certain Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses in high school to receive college credits, contingent upon enrollment in a similar Career and Technical Education program at HCC. The high school course must be on the state-approved articulated list and taught by an instructor who meets the HCC credential standards as defined by SACS. Students will only be awarded articulated credit if they received a letter grade of “B” or higher in the high school course while maintaining an overall high school GPA of at least a “C”. Students also will be awarded credit only if the course is a requirement of their degree or certificate.

Any individuals interested in majoring in Workforce (CTE) programs who want to know if they qualify for articulated credit under an Advanced Technical Credit agreement should contact an HCC Dual Credit Success Coach, Advisor or the appropriate program department chair. Students may apply for additional placement credit for no more than 25% of the degree hours. Credit for more than four courses in any one subject area requires special approval.

 Early College High School Students

Early College High Schools (ECHS) provide students with a “seamless” pathway from high school to college. ECHS allows high school students to complete a two-year degree while working through his/her traditional high school degree plan. This integration typically involves an additional year of high school that includes a heavy concentration of college coursework. After tackling this rigorous course of study, students graduate high school while earning up to 60 college credits, most of which are transferable to the post-secondary institution of their choice. ECHS provides strong support to students and their family in obtaining entrance to, and success in, higher education. For a listing of local ECHS, please visit https://www.hccs.edu/programs/dualcredit/dual-credit-high-schools.

 Home School and Private/Charter School Students

Home-schooled students may attend Houston Community College as dual credit students. They must meet the same requirements as dual credit students enrolled in public or private high schools and follow the same process of admittance to Houston Community College. In addition, they must document their status as home-schooled students, along with all pertinent information required to register for classes at Houston Community College.

The Houston Community College P-16 Council facilitates processes, consistency, standards, and procedures for homeschoolers who attend Houston Community College as dual credit students.

Private and charter school students may take dual credit courses at Houston Community College, on campus or online, but must work through the administration of their high school. Private and charter schools who want dual credit as an option for their students must have established partnerships with Houston Community College.

 Admissions for Minors

Students who are 16 years old or younger AND have graduated from high school may be eligible for special admission to Houston Community College. Applicants who are admitted under the special admission process can enroll in college courses at an HCC campus or online.

In addition to the regular admission process, students age 16 years or younger must:

  • Show proof of education indicating graduation from public high school or completed secondary education according to the same general standards as those students who graduated from public high school.
  • Once admitted, meet with the Dean of Student Success prior to registering for the first semester.

Students under the age of 14 must have a parent or legal guardian available at the HCC campus site at all times when their child is attending each class. This is required to help monitor the student's activities and to be immediately available in case of an emergency. While on site at HCC, the parent or legal guardian cannot be in the student’s classroom. Failure to be available on campus or insistence on being in the student’s classroom will cause the student to be removed from each enrolled class.

 Non-Degree Seeking

A non-degree seeking applicant is admitted on the basis that coursework will be taken for personal enrichment and not for the purpose of seeking a degree or certificate. Non-degree seeking students may not enroll in more than a total of 12 semester credit hours and are not eligible for state or federal financial aid.

 

Special Program Admissions

Upward Bound
The Upward Bound Program is funded through the Department of Education since June 1, 1974. The Program recruits H.I.S.D. students from 9th and 10th grades in order to aid and encourage them to successfully complete high school, enroll in a post-secondary institution and graduate from that institution. Through this program, HCC provides services to low-income students who will be the first generation in their families to go to college. HCC has over 80% of Upward Bound students who have successfully completed high school and have enrolled in an institution of post-secondary education.

The program has two components: an academic year and a summer component. During the Fall and Spring semesters, the program provides supplemental academic classes (Reading, Math, English/Writing, Study-Skills, and Science) and Cultural Enrichment Activities. The Summer component focuses on academic skills and comprehensive test preparation for 6–weeks (Individual assessment, college credit courses, financial aid, college admission, and etc.).
For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/locations/southeast-college/upward-bound/.

VAST Academy (Vocational Advancement and Skills Training)
The VAST Academy provides post-secondary transition programs and comprehensive support services which lead to meaningful credentials, employment and independence for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities at three college campus locations: Central, Northwest/Spring-Branch and Southwest/Missouri City. Opportunities include workforce certificates, pre-college and freshman success bridge courses, career readiness credentials, internships and employment assistance offered through an inclusive, relevant, affordable, and supportive environment.

VAST Academy offers a Career Readiness/Occupational Skills Certificate under HCC’s Division of Extended Learning, School of Continuing Education. The program’s successful supportive strategies include: person-centered planning, peer mentoring, independent living, and internships based on students’ interests and skills.

For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/continuing-education/departments/hcc-vastacademy/

 

Residency Information

Basic Residency Requirements
For tuition purposes, according to Texas Education Code Section 54.075 and Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Rule 21.727, all students must answer a complete set of core residency questions within the admissions application. These questions will be used by the institution to determine if the person is a resident. The following persons shall be classified as Texas Residents and entitled to pay resident tuition at all institutions of higher education:

  • A person who was enrolled at a Texas public institution during a fall or spring semester within the previous twelve months and was classified as a Texas resident for tuition purposes.
  • A person who graduated from a public or accredited private high school in this state or as an alternative to high school graduation, received the equivalent of a high school diploma in this state, AND maintained a residence continuously in this state for the 36 months immediately preceding the date of graduation, or received the diploma equivalent as applicable and the 12 months preceding the census date of the academic semester in which the person enrolled.
  • A person or a dependent whose parent established a domicile in this state not less than 12 months before the census date of the academic semester in which the student enrolled in an institution. AND maintained a residence continuously in the state for the 12 months immediately preceding the census date of the academic semester in which the person enrolled in an institution.
  • If a basing residency on a spouse and have been married at least 12 months, residency may be classified based on the spouse’s qualifications for residency.

Establishing Residency
HCC is required by state law to determine the residency status of all students for tuition purposes. Students who have not enrolled for two or more consecutive regular semesters (Fall & Spring) must complete the residency core questions and satisfy all applicable requirements to establish residency. Additional documentation may be requested at any time following registration. Residency is determined at the time of registration, either by a student’s current address or by the address of a parent or legal guardian, if the student is being claimed by his/her parents or is eligible to be claimed by his/her parents as a dependent for federal income tax purposes. A post office box can be used for a mailing address but cannot be used to establish residency. It is the responsibility of the student to register under the correct residency classification. A complete set of rules and regulations for determining residency is available at each campus’s Admissions Office.
For tuition purposes, a student will be classified according to the following guidelines. The Registrar is the final authority on all questions of residency.

In-District Residency

  • Students who have met the basic Texas residency requirements and live in the HCC taxing district (Alief ISD, Houston ISD, Stafford MSD, and part of Missouri City).
  • Students must reside at a street address in the district. Post office boxes and dormitory addresses cannot be used.

Out-of-District Residency

  • Students who have met the basic Texas residency requirements and live outside the HCC taxing district (Alief ISD, Houston ISD, Stafford MSD, and part of Missouri City) are considered out-of-district residents.

Out-of-State Residency

  • A student who has not resided in Texas for 12 months immediately preceding registration is considered out-of-state. A non-resident student classification is presumed to be correct as long as the residence in the state is primarily used for the purpose of attending school. To be reclassified as a resident (after one or more years of residency), the student must show proof of intent to establish Texas as his/her permanent legal residence. See the section below on Veterans Services for information regarding residency determinations of Veterans and military-affiliated students.

International Student Residency

  • An international student is a non-U.S. citizen who is not a resident alien.

International students living in the United States under an eligible visa permitting residence must provide documentation and meet the same requirements as a U.S. citizen to qualify for Texas resident status for tuition purposes.

Undocumented Students
Texas State Law states that undocumented students can be admitted to the college and be considered a resident of Texas for tuition purposes if the undocumented student resided in Texas, and met the conditions listed below:

  • Graduated or will graduate from a Texas public or private high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma in Texas;
  • Resided in Texas for 36 months leading up to graduation from high school or receiving the equivalent of a high school diploma;
  • Have resided or will have resided in Texas for the 12 months prior to the census date of the semester in which the student will enroll in the college.
  • Sign the Affidavit of Intent to Become a Permanent Resident provided by the college that states the student has filed or will file an application to become a permanent resident at the earliest opportunity the student is are eligible to do so.

If the student does not meet these criteria, the student may still enroll, but will be classified as out-of-state for tuition purposes.

 

Change of Residency

Change from out-of-district residency to in-district residency must be made at the time of registration. Any address change which results in a change to in-district status must be accompanied by adequate documentation. Changes to in-district status made after registration will be effective the following semester. A student who qualifies for a change from out-of-state to in-state residency status for tuition purposes may file a petition for change of residency. The petition must be filed by the Official Day of Record for the regular term in order to receive any refund of tuition paid for that term.

Penalties
Any student who provides false information or withholds information for proper determination of residency, admission, or enrollment is subject to any or all of the following penalties:

  • Withdrawal from all classes with no refund.
  • Dismissal from the institution.
  • Payment of the difference in fees within 30 days.
  • Loss of credit earned while under incorrect residency status.

See Student Code of Conduct or Board Policy FLB(LOCAL) for more information.

Additional Information for Non-U.S. Citizen Students
A non U.S. citizen who is living in the U.S. under permanent resident status, an appropriate visa, or who has filed an I-485 application for permanent residency and has been issued a notice of action from USCIS showing the I-485 has been approved has the same privilege of qualifying for resident status, for tuition purposes, as a U.S. citizen. Anyone permitted by Congress to adopt the United States as their domicile while living in this country is afforded the same privilege as citizens and permanent residents to establish Texas residency for tuition purposes.

For more information on residency or to see the list of approved documentation, visit http://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/residency-information.

 

Cost of Attendance and Refund Information

Students have to pay tuition and mandatory fees based on residency, as discussed above and subject to certain waivers and exemptions. Tuition and fee rates are published on the HCC website and can be accessed at https://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/tuition-calculator.

Some courses have additional course fees such as laboratory fees and program fees. Check course listings for additional fees. More information on course fees is contained below.

HCC charges a higher tuition rate to students registering for the third or subsequent time for certain courses. Students who enroll for most credit and CEU classes for a third or more time will be charged an additional $50 per semester credit hour and $3.00 per contact hour, except for courses exempted by The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Parking Fees are not part of the published standard Tuition & Fee rates. Therefore, Parking Fees are billed separately from these established rates.
HCC reserves the right to change its tuition and fees and refund policy structure wholly or in part during the year covered by this catalog.

Tuition and Fee Schedule for Academic Year 2018-2019

Semester Credit Tuition Fees

DescriptionFall 2018Spring 2019
In District    
Tuition ($50.00 minimum) $31.00 per hour $31.00 per hour
Out of District    
Tuition Out-of-District $95.00 per hour $111.00 per hour
Out-of-State    
Tuition Out-of-State $95.00 per hour $131.00 per hour

Mandatory Fees

DescriptionFall 2018Spring 2019
General Fee $25.50 per hour   $25.50 per hour
Out-of-District General Fee $33.50 per hour $33.50 per hour
Out-of-State General Fee $50.00 per hour  $50.00 per hour 
Tuition Out-of-District $95.00 per hour $111.00 per hour
Technology Fee $10.00 per hour  $14.00 per hour 
Student Activity Fee $1.00 per hour ($12.00
maximum)$95.00 per hour
$1.00 per hour ($12.00
maximum)$95.00 per hour
Recreation/Athletics Fee $6.00 per semester $6.00 per semester

Other Incidental Fees

DescriptionFall 2018Spring 2019
Distance Education Fee $32.00 per DE course $42.00 per DE course
Deferment/Reproduction Fee $50.00 $50.00
Drop/Add Fee $15.00 $15.00
Lab Fee $4.00 - $80.00 $4.00 - $80.00
International Student Application Fee $75.00 $75.00
Installment Plan Enrollment Fee $30.00 $30.00
Installment Plan Late Fee $10.00 per late installment $10.00 per late installment
Reinstatement Fee $75.00 $75.00
Repeater Fee $50.00 per hour $50.00 per hour
Returned Check Payment Fee $25.00 $25.00
Stop Payment Fee $25.00 $25.00
Transcript Fee $5.00 $5.00
Transcript Fee through Service Provider Based on Service Provider Price Based on Service Provider Price

Testing Fees

DescriptionFall 2018Spring 2019
Advance Standing Examination for
College Credit Fee
$25.00 per course   $25.00 per course
Advance Standing Credit Evaluation $25.00 per evaluation $25.00 per evaluation
Accuplacer College Level Math $10.00 per attempt  $10.00 per attempt  
Accuplacer ESL $29.00 Initial Test
$10.00 Retest
$29.00 Initial Test
$10.00 Retest
CLEP Test $12.00  $12.00 
Correspondence Test - Proctoring Fee $25.00 $25.00
EMT Testing Fee $29.00 - $209.00 $29.00 - $209.00
HESI $45.00 - $75.00 $45.00 - $75.00
National Registry Test Fee $80.00 - $125.00 $80.00 - $125.00
NCLEX-RN Prep Fee $23.00 - $45.00 $23.00 - $45.00
Medical Assistant Exam Fee $125.00 $125.00
State Fire Fighter Exam Fee $85.00 $85.00
Surgical Technology Exam Fee $190.00 $190.00
TEAS $86.00 $86.00
TSI Assessment $29.00 All Sections
$10.00 Per section
$29.00 All Sections
$10.00 Per section

Course Specific Fee

DescriptionFall 2018Spring 2019
Lab Fee $24 - Various  $24 - Various 
Adult High School Materials Fee $10.00/$20.00
(Art, BCIS, & BIM)
$10.00/$20.00
(Art, BCIS, & BIM)
Adult High School Tuition $275.00   $275.00
Cert Nursing Aid Liability Fee $12.00 $12.00
Computer Science Program Fee $24.00-$75.00 $24.00-$75.00 
Commercial Music Fee $75.00 $75.00
Commercial Truck Clearing Acct $225.00 - $350.00 $225.00 - $350.00
EMS AHA Card Fee $3.00 (CPR)
$15.00 (Advanced)
$3.00 (CPR)
$15.00 (Advanced)
EMS OR Fee $25.00 (Basic)
$40.00 (Advanced)
$25.00 (Basic)
$40.00 (Advanced)
EMT Online Web Tool Fee $110.00 $110.00
HS-Film Badge Fee $10.00 - $26.00 $10.00 - $26.00
HS-Liability Insurance Fee $10.00 - $34.00 $10.00 - $34.00
Music Fee $145.00 $145.00
Phlebotomy Liability Fee $12.00 $12.00
Phlebotomy Materials and Supplies $10.00 - $60.00 $10.00 - $60.00
Police In Service Mat/Test Fee $50.00 $50.00
Registration Fee Literacy NCR $20.00 $20.00
Registration Fee Math & Reading $60.00 $60.00
Software Access Fee $60.00 $60.00
VAST Office Lab Fee $10.00 $10.00
VAST Office Mat/Supply $5.00 - $15.00 $5.00 - $15.00

Online Course Fees
In addition to tuition, there is a $42 fee for each distance education course.

Dual Credit Course Tuition Waivers
Effective Fall 2016, tuition and fees are waived for all dual credit and early college high school
students. The dual credit courses count toward both a student’s high school graduation
requirements and a college-level certificate or degree. See Board Policy GH(LOCAL).

Flexible-Entry Course Fees
The cost of courses taken in the flex-entry term is the same as for regular semester-hour courses.

Laboratory/Supply Fees
Laboratory supply fees, which help defray the cost of materials used in lab classes, vary. Certain
programs have program-specific fees. Check course listings for additional fees in some classes.

Continuing Education Unit Course Tuition and Fees
Continuing Education Unit (CEU) course tuition and fees are based on the expenses unique to
each course. Therefore, each course is priced individually. For a schedule of classes and for more
information on tuition and fees and refunds, contact the School of Continuing Education.
For more Information, see https://www.hccs.edu/continuing-education/about-us/.

Community Service Programs Tuition and Fees
Service Learning (Non-State Funded)
Community Service course fees are based on total hours of instruction and maximum class size.
Courses which require limits to class size in order to provide additional individual attention have
larger fees. Students are expected to furnish materials necessary for the course.

For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/departments/division-of-instructionalservices/
service-learning/.

 

Adult Education

Adult Education
Adult Education classes are granted supported through the support of the Texas Workforce Commission. Adult Education courses include GED preparation, basic skills improvement and English as-a-Second Language courses. In certain cases, a modest nonrefundable registration fee may apply.
For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/programs/adult-education/.

Adult High School
Adult High School is a Credit Recovery program designed to assist current high school students and adults in obtaining a Texas high school diploma. A non-refundable tuition is charged for each half-credit course. Please see https://www.hccs.edu/programs/adult-education/adult-high-school/ for tuition and fee information.

Senior Citizen Exemption
Effective Fall 2018, HCC offers two senior citizen exemptions from tuition and fees for adults 55 years and older.
For more information, please see http://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/student-financial-services/waivers-and-exemptions/.

 

Tuition Rebate Program/Tuition and Fees Payment

Tuition Rebate Program
Students who graduate with a baccalaureate degree from a Texas public university may qualify to receive $1,000 from the baccalaureate-granting institution if they meet the following criteria:

  • Must have enrolled in a Texas public institution of higher education in fall 1997 or thereafter
  • Must have been a resident of Texas and entitled to pay instate tuition at all times while pursuing the degree.
  • Must have received a baccalaureate degree from a Texas public university
  • Must have attempted no more than three hours in excess of the minimum number of semester hours required to complete the degree in the catalog under which one graduated.

Hours attempted include transfer credits, course credits earned exclusively by examination, courses that are dropped after the official census date. Hours attempted shall not include: Course credit that is earned to satisfy requirements for a ROTC program but that is not required to complete the degree program; course credit, other than course credit earned exclusively by examination, that is earned before graduating from high school; and courses dropped for reasons that are determined by the institution to be totally beyond the control of the student.

Students are encouraged to consult advisors to plan their course of study at the community college to maximize their chances of qualifying for this rebate when they transfer and graduate from a university with a baccalaureate degree.

Tuition and Fees Payment

  • Tuition bills are not mailed. Students who need a paper copy of a bill should login to their student account online to print their current bill.
  • All HCC students are expected to pay or make payment arrangements at the time of registration. For a student to avoid losing a place in class, he/she should be sure to pay based on the timelines allowed under the registration procedures either at a designated registration site or online.
  • HCC makes education affordable to students. Students have the option to pay tuition and fees in full or in installment. See Payment Plans at http://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/installment-payment-plans/.
  • Students who fail to make payments according to the registration process guidelines may be dropped from some or all classes and will be required to register again. Section availability cannot be guaranteed.
  • It is the student's responsibility to pay all charges arising from registration/enrollment including those arising from reduction of financial aid award(s) due to change in enrollment and/or eligibility status.
  • Students with delinquent accounts at the end of the term will be referred to a collection agency and will be responsible for paying collection fees which may be based on a percentage at a maximum of 24% of the debt, and all costs and expenses, including reasonable attorney's fees, incurred in such collection efforts.

Pay Online
To pay tuition and fees in full online, a student will need to log in to his/her student account by visiting https://myeagle.hccs.edu/.

  • On the home page, Student Sign In.
  • Enter Web User ID and Password, or follow the instructions to obtain the Web User ID and Password.
  • After signing on, verify address and phone data. If no changes are necessary, click on continue.
  • Acknowledge Student Financial Responsibility and HCC Policies to continue.
  • On the Student’s Center, click “Make a Payment or Set up a Payment Plan".
  • Select Click here to make a payment or Enroll in Payment Plan. Complete the payment plan enrollment as directed.
  • Enter credit card/checking account information.
  • Enter student e-mail address.
  • Review information.
  • Submit payment.
  • Receive confirmation that payment has been accepted.

If credit card is declined, a student may repeat the process using a different credit card.

Pay in Person
Students may pay by check or money order at any cashier’s window. Some locations may accept cash.
If students are receiving a tuition waiver or tuition is billed to a company or agency, those students must present the waiver to pay in person. The remaining balance should be paid in full or a Payment Plan must be set up.

 

Refunds and Credit Balance

Refunds and Credit Balance
Refund of Financial Aid Residual
The Financial Aid Office determines the schedule of financial aid refunds in accordance with the requirements of the Department of Education.

HCC Eagle Card
In June 2016, HCC contracted with BankMobile Disbursement to manage student refunds through the HCC Eagle Card. Students can choose either to open a BankMobile account or have their refunds deposited to an existing account by clicking “Choose a Refund Option” button on their student center page.

Credit Balances & Refunds
Credits generated as a result of withdrawal shall be refunded after the official date of record or earlier upon student request. Credits resulting from credit card payments shall be refunded to the same credit card used for initial payment as the first option. However, if it is not practicable, HCC may refund it through HCC Eagle Card.

Amount of refunds for withdrawals are determined in accordance with the Drop and Withdrawal Refund Schedule based on total semester fees. If the student has established a payment plan, any remaining installment payments due are deducted from the refund amount. Any reduction in the balance due to a withdrawal will be adjusted on the remaining installments.

Course withdrawal does not release the student from the obligation to pay any balance owed to the College. One hundred percent (100%) refund before class begins of ALL tuition and fees will be made ONLY when the college chooses not to offer the class, college error is involved, or before the applicable drop deadline.

Delinquent Student Account Balances
Holds will be placed on the student record preventing registration, grades, transcripts and other college services as the account balance becomes delinquent. Balances not settled may be forwarded to a collection agency. It is the student’s responsibility to pay collection fees, which may be based on a percentage at a maximum of 24% of the debt, and all costs and expenses, including reasonable attorney's fees, incur in such collection efforts.

Notification of the outstanding student account balance is delivered by email to the student’s college email address and/or by mail to the current mailing address on record. Students can always view the balance and details online. It is the responsibility of the students to update their email and mailing addresses each time there is a change. Notifications sent by the college thru any of these addresses are considered delivered.

Schedule for Drop and Withdrawal Refunds
100% Refund Dates on Drops/Withdrawals are listed on the schedule.*
*A $15.00 Change of Schedule Fee is deducted after computing the percentage refund. All non-refundable fees will be deducted before the percentage for refund is applied.

Class LengthLast Day for 70% 
Refund *
Last Day for 25% 
Refund*
2 or less wks. 2nd day   n/a
3 wks. 3rd day 4th day
4 wks. 4th day 5th day
5 wks. 5th day 6th day
6 wks. 6th day   7th day
7 wks. 7th day 9th day
8 wks. 8th day 10th day
9 wks. 9th day 11th day
10 wks. 9th day 12th day
11 wks. 10th day 14th day
12 wks. 12th day 15th day
13 wks. 13th day 16th day
14 wks. 13th day 17th day
15 wks. 14th day 19th day
16 wks. or more 15th day 20th day

Returned Checks
A $25.00 returned check fee shall be assessed when a check payment or an electronic check payment is returned unpaid.

Non-Refundable Fees
NOTE: HCC does not refund the following fees for any reason other than that the selected class fails to have adequate enrollment to be offered in the selected term.

  • Drop/Add - $15
  • Returned Check - $25
  • Stop Payment - $25
  • Payment Plan Enrollment - $30
  • Payment Plan Late - $10
  • International Application - $75
  • International Orientation - $50
  • Deferment/Reproduction - $50
  • (One-time charge for F, M, or J Visas only)
  • Transcript - $5*
  • Transcript via Overnight Express or Fax - $15
  • Advanced Standing Examination for College Credit (per course) - $25
  • Advanced Standing Credit (per evaluation) - $25

A student is not registered for any course until the full amount is paid or an installment contract is executed. For students enrolling in a Health Sciences program, see the Health Sciences section.
*An additional service provider fee is required if transcript is requested by phone or Web.

 

Academic Information

Attendance Policy
Students are expected to attend all lecture classes and labs regularly. Students are also responsible for materials covered during their absences. Instructors may be willing to consult with students for make-up assignments, but it is the student’s responsibility to contact the instructor. Class attendance is monitored daily. Although it is the student’s responsibility to drop a course for nonattendance, the instructor has the authority to drop a student for excessive absences. A student may be dropped from a course after accumulating absences in excess of 12.5 percent of the total hours of instruction (lecture and lab). For example:

  • For a 3 credit-hour lecture class meeting 3 hours per week (48 hours of instruction), a student can be dropped after 6 hours of absence.
  • For a 4 credit-hour lecture/lab course meeting 6 hours per week (96 hours of instruction), a student can be dropped after 12 hours of absence.

Departments and programs governed by accreditation or certification standards may have different attendance policies. Administrative drops are at the discretion of the instructor. Failure to withdraw officially can result in a grade of “F” in the course.
NOTE: It is the responsibility of the student to withdraw officially from a course.

Requirements for Academic Progress
A student’s academic progress will be evaluated for the first time after a minimum of nine attempted semester hours. Houston Community College uses the 4.0 grade point average system and numerical code: 4.0 = A; 3.0 = B; 2.0 = C; 1.0 = D; and 0.0 = F.

Some health sciences programs use a different grading scale.

A student is expected to maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 based upon the aggregate number of hours attempted at Houston Community College.

Each status is defined with the required action:

Status - Good Standing
Definition - Cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above
Action Required - None

Status - Probation
Definition - Cumulative GPA below 2.0
Action Required - Must register for SLIP and work with a counselor prior to enrolling in classes.

Status - Continued Probation
Definition - Cumulative GPA below 2.0 and Term GPA 2.0 or above
Action Required - Continue to work with the counselor from a previous semester.

Status - Suspension
Definition - Previous term status of probation or continued probation and Term GPA below 2.0
Action Required - Must register for SLIP and work with a counselor prior to enrolling in classes.

  • Students on probation or suspension are required to attend a Successful Learning Intervention Program (SLIP) session prior to re-enrollment in order to meet with their designated counselor. The counselor will stipulate conditions of enrollment, including but not limited to, maximum hours and/or specific courses. It is important to note that a student on an Academic Suspension may be unable to enroll in classes for one semester. An Academic Suspension may be appealed by completing the necessary paperwork in the counseling office. For more information, see the Requirements for Academic Progress section at https://www.hccs.edu/programs/catalog/general-information/.
  • Students enrolled in multiple summer sessions will have their entire summer’s work evaluated for determination of their academic status.
  • Students in certain Health Sciences programs are required to maintain a grade of "C" in all courses in order to continue in the program. Students not meeting these standards may continue to enroll at HCC in other programs as long as they maintain minimum HCC requirements.
  • Students are responsible for knowing whether they have passed the minimum standards for continuation in college. Ineligible students who register will be subject to dismissal with forfeiture of all tuition and fees.

If a student has any questions, please contact a campus advisor at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/advising/.

Satisfactory Progress Requirement for Veteran & Military Affiliated Students
The Department of Veterans Affairs requires that any student utilizing VA education benefits make satisfactory academic progress to remain eligible for such benefits.

Respective students on academic probation and suspension will be reported to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Time Frame Component
A student receiving the Hazlewood Act exemption will be expected to complete their educational attainment objective or course of study within their first 90 semester hours.

Grades of “F, FX, I, NG, or W”, repeated courses are counted in the aggregate total number of hours attempted. Students will not receive exemption if the class has previously been passed unless the program of study requires students to take the course more than twice.

Please see the Academic Information section of the following website for grade definitions: https://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/student-handbook/

Repeating Courses / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Students using VA educational or Hazlewood Act benefits may not retake a course in which a passing grade or a temporary grade of “I” is awarded.

It is ultimately the responsibility of the student to know which course(s) has/have been completed.

The HCC VMASS District office is required to notify the VA of any course duplications, and appropriate changes will be made when a student has taken a class that has been deemed successfully completed.

Satisfactory Progress Requirements for Financial Aid Students
Financial aid students must meet the following satisfactory progress requirements set by the federal government:

  • Must maintain a term GPA of 2.0
  • Must complete at least 67% percent of attempted courses for the academic year
  • Must enroll in courses leading to an HCC degree or certificate
  • Students who do not maintain the standards listed above will be ineligible to receive financial aid. A student may appeal a suspension of financial aid by submitting a written request to the college Financial Aid Office. A detailed description of the financial aid standards of progress requirement is available in the college Financial Aid Office and online at https://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/financial-aid/satisfactory-academic-progress/

Progress Records
A student can check their grades at any point by logging into their Student Account. A student may login to his/her Student Account at the following link:
https://hccsaweb.hccs.edu:8080/psp/csprd/?cmd=login&languageCd=ENG

Grade Reports
Grades generally post one week after the last final exam for that particular term or semester.

Graduation
Prior to graduation, students must submit all official transcripts of credits transferred from other institutions to the Office of Admissions and Records. A candidate for any degree or certificate must meet the graduation requirements in the catalog for the year of initial enrollment unless the student elects to graduate under the requirements of a more recent catalog. The candidate must indicate the catalog choice when applying for graduation. A student who does not maintain enrollment at HCC and has a gap in enrollment for a period of more than one calendar year is required to graduate under the catalog requirements set by the student’s year of readmission.
To be considered as a candidate for the AA, AS, AAT, AAS degree or Certificate of Completion, students must meet with their advisor and get approval and then complete the application online through their student center. This should be done at the time of registration for the final semester or during registration for the spring semester if the student wants to participate in the May ceremony. Students who are unable to complete their degree plan on file at HCC may transfer back up to 42 semester hours of equivalent courses from an accredited institution. These courses must be completed within three years of their last semester of enrollment at HCC. All other graduation requirements must be satisfied including the requirement that 25% of a student’s degree must be completed at HCC.

  • Students who want a printed diploma must check the diploma box on the application and provide a diploma mailing address. There is no charge for the diploma. Students may request their records be reviewed at the conclusion of their course work so the appropriate degree or certificate will be recorded on the student’s transcript.

If a student did not elect to receive a copy of his/her diploma, a copy may be requested from the Registrar.

Graduation Honors
Graduation honors will be awarded to students pursuing an associates with superior cumulative GPAs. The following classifications of honors will be recognized on the student’s transcript and diploma:

  • Highest Honors - GPA 3.80 or above
  • High Honors - GPA 3.60 to 3.79
  • Honors - GPA 3.35 to 3.59

HCC will use the following guidelines to compute honors eligibility:

  • The student must complete at least 25% of the degree at HCC.
  • The student must complete requirements for the AA, AS, AAT or AAS degree (certificate graduates do not receive honors).
  • The grades in all HCC courses will figure in the cumulative GPA, including developmental courses, which are excluded from the degree GPA.

Courses taken through the preceding fall semester will be used in computing the GPA for the purposes of determining graduation honors. The student must have completed 75 percent of the course work for the degree at that time.

Participation in the Graduation Exercises
HCC holds one student graduation ceremony each year in May. Candidates for degrees and certificates are encouraged to attend the graduation ceremonies. Students who completed course requirements the previous December, or who plan to complete course requirements the following August, may participate in the May ceremony.

Records and Transcripts
A transcript of college credits is an official copy of the student’s permanent record bearing the HCC seal and the signature of the Registrar. Students may request a transcript at: https://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/transcripts/

Requests may also be made at any HCC campus. It is highly recommended that transcripts be sent electronically to colleges and universities to expedite processing. There is a charge for transcript processing. All admissions information must be on file and all holds cleared before a student’s record will be released. A student should allow a week for delivery following the transcript request.

Additional time should be allowed at the close of a semester.
Students should request transcripts of work completed at another institution from that institution.

 

Academic Support

Freshman Success Courses (FSC)
All students who attend Houston Community College for the first time and have 12 college level semester credit hours (SCH) or fewer must enroll in a Freshman Success Course (FSC) their first semester. Several FSC are subject-oriented, for example HPRS 1201: Introduction to the Health Professions, ENGR 1201: Introduction to Engineering, and LEAD 1200 Workforce Development and Critical Thinking. Students pursuing other majors or who are undecided should enroll in EDUC 1300 Learning Frameworks. This course is intended to help students determine their major and file a degree plan.
For more information, see the consult the Class Schedule, at https://www.hccs.edu/continuingeducation/sce-schedule/.


Learning Communities
Learning Communities consist of at least two courses linked together often by a common theme. Because they are linked, the same group of students attend both classes as a cohort, providing an opportunity to make deeper connections with peers and faculty. The instructors work together to plan and provide common outcomes, common activities, and additional support for students. The desired educational benefit of a learning community is that course content is reinforced by the two participating disciplines making it easier for the student to retain the information. The student must enroll in both classes of a learning community at the same time.
For a current list of Learning Communities at a specific campus, reach out to the Counseling/Advising Office or consult the Class Schedule, at https://www.hccs.edu/continuingeducation/sce-schedule/.


Service Learning
A course that is designated as having a service learning component is one that provides students with an opportunity to apply what is learned in the classroom to a practical experience in the community. Often partnering with non-profit organizations and community service sections of corporations, service learning enriches the educational experience for students by unveiling the relevancy of coursework to real life scenarios in the community. Service learning improves retention rates of students, increases their sense of civic responsibility and deepens their understanding of community issues. Service learning also allows students to explore roles and activities that will help them develop valuable knowledge and skills and explore possible career options. See also Community Service Programs: Tuition and Fees above.

Tutoring, Writing Centers, and Math Labs
One important key to success in college is learning to use available resources. Houston Community College provides many tutoring opportunities for students in almost all areas. Whether a student prefers face-to-face interaction or the privacy and convenience of working with a tutor online, HCC provides the options. In addition, HCC provides access to writing centers and math labs, staffed with experts ready to assist students with writing assignments and math problems. More information is available at https://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/tutoring.

Honors College
The HCC Honors College is located at three campuses: Central College, Northwest-Spring Branch, and Southwest-Stafford. It offers high achieving students the opportunity for enriched instruction, leadership development, and the opportunity for study/travel abroad. The program is designed for full-time students beginning their college experience or with limited HCC credit hours (under 15). Students study together in cohorts for their core curriculum classes. Qualified students can receive scholarships and textbook assistance. Students must have a 3.5 high school GPA or 3.5 HCC GPA and college-ready scores on TAKS, SAT, ACT or TSIA. The Honors College application must be completed separately from the HCC application and all students are interviewed before acceptance. To access the application, click on “Programs and Courses” on the HCC main webpage and next click on “Honors College” under “Explore.” For more information, contact the Honors College Executive Director at 713.718.5203.

Phi Theta Kappa
Phi Theta Kappa is an international honor society for community college students. Omega Sigma is one of 1200 chapters. Membership is based on high academic standards. HCC has an active chapter and has consistently ranked as a top 25 chapter on the international stage. The chapter promotes scholarship; develops leadership skills; and is involved in service to the college and community.

HCC Online
Courses offer one to four semester hours of credit and are equivalent to on-campus courses in terms of transferability (no distinction is made on college transcripts). Prospective students are encouraged to visit the HCC Online homepage at hccs.edu/online to review basic computer literacy requirements and to take a self-test to determine if they are a good candidate for on-line instruction through distance education. Students taking online courses are required to complete a mandatory online orientation and to be familiar with unique HCC Online requirements and procedures.
For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/online/.

Important note: Due to authorization requirements, HCC is not able to accept Distance Education (fully online courses) students who live in the following states: Arkansas, District of Columbia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

 

Adult Education Program

Adult Education and Literacy (AEL) courses are grant-supported and include high school equivalency preparation, Texas Certificate of High school Equivalency, basic Reading, Math, and Writing skills improvement, and English as-a-Second Language courses. Students pay a $20 non-refundable processing fee. These courses may be appropriate for students who are:

  • High school incomplete
  • High school complete
  • Other language speakers
  • Community business organizations

For information about Adult Education call the HCC AEL Hotline, call (713) 718-5381 or visit https://www.hccs.edu/changemylife.

Workforce and Career Training Program (WCTP) is a collaborative effort by HCC and a number of high-profile nonprofit organizations to assist underemployed or unemployed individuals. All WCTP training integrates career training with Adult Education classes. Financial aid is regularly available. All WCTP programs also can be configured to accommodate students whose second language is English. To find out more, email hcc.wctp@hccs.edu or call (713) 718-2779 or visit http://www.hccs.edu/programs/adult-education/workforce--career-training.

IET/EL Civics offerings provide advanced English language learners with tuition assistance for concurrently enrolling in ESL courses that are integrated with Level One Certificate career programs. More information is available at https://www.hccs.edu/programs/adult-education/iet-el-civics.

Career4U Academy
The Adult Education & Literacy program offers four Career4U Academies. These academies allow students to attend college without a TSI test and earn a Level 1 certificate. Each certificate program is between 6 months and two years long, and the classes are all credit courses with a combination of workforce preparation and an added support course throughout the program. When a student signs up for a Level 1 college certificate using financial aid or self-financing, HCC supports the student until graduation. HCC provides academic and advising support with Career Navigator and textbooks to borrow throughout a student’s Academy program. For more information, visit https://www.hccs.edu/programs/adult-education/career4u-academy/.

Business Technology Academy
The Business Technology curriculum is designed to provide students an opportunity to develop the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for assuming administrative assistant and other office positions in today’s competitive workplace. The curricula are competency-based and organized to teach industry-driven educational outcomes.

  • General Office Administration
  • Legal Office Assistant
  • Medical Coding/Transcription Specialist
  • Microsoft Office Technology Specialization
  • Payroll Specialist

Construction Management Technology Academy
The Construction Management Technology program is designed to develop qualified personnel for employment in the field of construction or to enhance the workplace skills of those already employed in the industry for career advancement.

  • Construction Management Technology
  • Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration - Advanced Certificate
  • Industrial Electricity – Electrical Helper
  • Machine Technology - Basic Manufacturing/Machining Certificate
  • Welding Technology - Basic Welding Helper Certificate Level 1


Information Technology Academy
Certificate programs focused on information technology usually last between six and 12 months. These programs will help a student to learn the basics of a particular area of information technology. IT certificate programs are often suitable for students who want to gain experience in the information technology field and are seeking to specialize in a particular skill or learn more about a particular topic.

  • Computer Systems Networking - Cyber Security Certificate Level 1
  • Computer Systems Networking - Microsoft Server Administration Certificate Level 1
  • Geographic Information Science Technician Certificate Level 1
  • Drone Operator Technician*


Healthcare Academy
Technology is becoming increasingly integrated into the healthcare industry, including medical records and health information systems. If a student is interested in these essential healthcare industries areas, Healthcare Information is a great place to start.

  • Health Information Technician Level 1

Ability to Benefit Programs
The Adult Education & Literacy office at Houston Community College (HCC) has arrangements that will allow students who do not have a high school diploma or TxCHSE certificate to enroll at HCC and receive federal student aid including Pell Grants. Students need to demonstrate that they have the “ability to benefit” from postsecondary education and training and can meet certain additional requirements.

 

Student Services

Student Services
The mission of the Student Services Division is to foster a learning environment that supports students in their educational journeys. This includes engaging students in innovative co-curricular programs and providing exceptional support services to promote their intellectual and social development.

Advising Services
HCC requires all new HCC students to enroll in a Student Success Course in their first semester to help them determine their major and plan their degree path. Once a student has selected his/her “major,” instructors who teach the courses in that field (e.g., accounting, computer science, history, etc.) will be his/her best academic advisors. If a student plans to transfer to complete a baccalaureate degree, it is important to determine a major and the transfer institution as soon as possible, because different universities may have different requirements. New students are assigned an advisor upon completion of the admission application. Advisors provide one-on-one advising support for students, assist with pathway planning, and provide information about institutional and external resources available to students. Please visit https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/advising/ for more information regarding advising services and locating an advisor.

Student Services Contact Center
The Student Services Contact Center provides information and registration assistance to future, current and returning Houston Community College students. Students may email inquiries online to student.info@hccs.edu or chat live with knowledgeable associates regarding registration, admissions, academic and student services. Information, answers to frequently asked questions, and a video library can be found 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. More information regarding the Student Services Contact Center can be found at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services.

Counseling Services
Mission Statement
The mission of the HCC Counseling Department is to provide holistic support for students pursuing their educational goals. In order to accomplish this mission, HCC will provide a full range of professional services including personal and mental health counseling, substance abuse counseling, ADA and Tile IX accommodations, career counseling, academic skills enhancement, outreach programming, consultation, and crisis intervention.
Counselors are available by appointment during the following hours:
Monday-Thursday 8:00 am-6:30 pm, Fridays 8:00 am-1:00 pm
Walk-in-hours vary across campuses.
To see a list of HCC counselors and their contact information please visit: https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/counseling/
Information regarding ADA counselors is located in the section below at disABILITY Support Services: ADA Counselors.
Information regarding Title IX contacts is located in the section above at Equal Education Opportunity Statement.

 

Financial Aid and Financial Aid TV (FATV)

Financial Aid Resources
Houston Community College’s Financial Aid Office is committed to helping students find the financial assistance needed to help meet their educational goals. The college participates in various state and federal grants, work-study, loan and scholarship programs. Most of these programs are available to anyone who demonstrates financial need and qualifies academically. Students interested in obtaining financial aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which can be accessed at https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa.

Financial Aid TV (FATV) at http://hccs.financialaidtv.com is a Web-based, self-service financial aid advising and outreach resource which allows students to find answers to common financial aid questions online rather than having to come to the financial aid office in person. FATV consists of a video library of over 60 videos that cover topics such as financial literacy, financial aid, and financial advisement. FATV is a natural extension of HCC’s financial aid services and is now available to current and prospective students on the Web 24/7.

For a list of answers to frequently asked questions, go to https://www.hccs.edu/applying-and-paying/financial-aid/.

Grants
Grants are gift aid from the federal and state government that do not have to be repaid. Grants are awarded to students on the basis of need. The Federal PELL Grant is the primary grant program. Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG), the Leverage Educational Partnership Program (LEAP) and the Special Leverage Educational Partnership Program (SLEAP).

When Should I Apply?
Students should apply for financial aid each year in early January. At HCC, April 15 is the Priority Deadline date for student aid applications. Students who meet the deadline date and qualify may be awarded aid in time to register and purchase books. The deadline for submitting an application for a federal student loan for the Fall and Spring semesters and the Spring only semester is March 1. Financial aid applications are accepted after the Priority Deadline, however, financial aid awards may not be available to pay for tuition, fees and books at the time of registration. Students who submit a financial aid application after the Priority Deadline must be prepared to make other arrangements to pay for books, tuitions and fees. The Installment Payment Plan is available through the college Cashier’s Office. See also Cost of Attendance and Refund Information above.

Loans
Loans must be repaid. Repayment begins after a student completes his/her educational program or once they are no longer enrolled at least half-time, whichever occurs first. The Federal Direct Student Loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized) are two of the major loan programs. HCC also offer the Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS).

Emergency Loans
A limited amount of money is available as Emergency Loans to those who need help to pay for tuition, mandatory fees and textbooks. Emergency loans are available on a first-come, first-served basis and must be repaid within 30 days. A student must show financial need to receive an Emergency Loan and provide proof of their ability to repay the loan.

College Work-Study Programs
The College Work-Study Program (CWS) provides jobs for students who demonstrate financial need, and allows them to earn money to help pay education expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to the course of study. The College offers the Federal College Work- Study (FCWS) and Texas Work-Study (TXCWS) Programs.

Scholarship
Scholarships are gift funds that do not have to be repaid. HCC coordinates a variety of institutional, foundation and private scholarships. Students should apply as early as possible, as all scholarship applications and awards have a deadline. See below for more information.

HCC Foundation Scholarships
A wide variety of scholarships are available to HCC students through the HCC Foundation. Most scholarships require that the student be enrolled in at least 6 credit hours at HCC per semester; many require enrollment in 9 or 12 credit hours per semester. Applicants will be considered for every scholarship for which they appear eligible. The HCC Foundation online scholarship application for the following academic year opens annually on the first Monday in January and closes on the first Friday in June.

The Annual Scholarship Application can be accessed at: https://www.hccsfoundation.org/annualscholarship

Additionally, applications are accepted year-round for HCC Foundation Workforce Scholarships.
For more information, please see HCCF Scholarships at: https://www.hccsfoundation.org/scholarships.

Opportunity 14 Scholarship
In addition to the array of merit-based scholarships that the HCC Foundation awards each academic year, the Opportunity 14 Scholarship is a need-based scholarship that is awarded on a rolling basis throughout the year. No application is required. Opportunity 14 is a program designed to remove the financial barriers that prevent so many young people from going to college. The Opportunity 14 Scholarship helps students who qualify for some financial aid, but not enough to pay for their education. The scholarship will provide up to $6,000 in supplemental support to each eligible student over a period of three years. Students may receive a maximum of $1,500 per fall and spring semester and $1,000 for summer semesters. The Opportunity 14 Scholarship is structured to encourage students to attend college full-time and complete their degrees. Students who do not qualify for federal assistance or who receive government grants exceeding $3,000 will not be eligible.

For more information, please see Opportunity 14 at https://www.hccsfoundation.org/O14Home

 

 

HCC Libraries and Learning Resources /Bookstore

HCC Libraries and Learning Resources /Bookstore
HCC Libraries are welcoming spaces to study and access resources to support learning. Libraries are open 7 days a week and are here to help students succeed. The HCC library system consists of 9 libraries, 6 electronic resource centers (ERCs) as well as holdings with access to more than 580,000 electronic and print resources. HCC librarians are available face-to-face and online to help guide students to the resources they need. HCC librarians also collaborate with faculty to provide course related instruction face to face and on-line. HCC Libraries also provide access to more than 270 unique databases, numerous digital journals and thousands of physical multimedia items. For more information regarding all of HCC Library resources, please visit http://library.hccs.edu.

How Do I Find What I Want?
HCC’s online catalog is accessible on and off-campus at https://librus.hccs.edu. The catalog is updated frequently and provides easy access for navigating library resources. The EBSCO Discovery Service also provides access to the HCC online catalog and a large selection of the HCC licensed databases in a single search.

More Than Books and Databases
HCC Libraries provides access to computers, printing, photocopying, scanning, DVDs, streaming video, Chromebooks, study rooms, 3D printing, and one-button studio access in certain locations. Assistive technology includes laptops with ADA software installed, TOPAZ video magnifiers, purple phones and more. More information regarding these resources is available at http://library.hccs.edu/accessibility.

What If It Isn’t At My Campus?
Books can be requested and delivered to any HCC Campus library by simply clicking on the "Request" button through the catalog. Students will need an HCC Library card number to access the databases away from campus. For an HCC ID card, go to “Get My Barcode” at http://library.hccs.edu.

How Do I Check Out What I Need?
A student ID card is a library card. Library material can be checked out for 3 weeks and renewed twice. Students can renew twice by telephone or the library website.

Overdue Books
The card inside books shows when it is to be returned. If a student fails to return it, a “hold” status is reported and reflected on their student record(s) and will affect their ability to register for additional courses or obtain a transcript. Also, students will be blocked from further borrowing until the materials due are returned to the library.

What About Other Libraries?
In the event the HCC Libraries do not own a particular item students need for their research, students, faculty, and staff have full privileges to the TexShare Card Program and to the interlibrary loan program which expands access to the collections of all participating libraries. Students will be subject to the loan rules of each individual institution—both as to the number of items they may check out and how long they may keep them out. Students will be responsible for any overdue fines or lost book fees that particular library may charge.

Bookstore
Students may purchase textbooks, study aids, and a wide range of novelty items and apparel at the college bookstore. Students are encouraged to purchase books prior to the first day of class. Students should bring a copy of their class schedule to ensure that they are purchasing the correct texts. The bookstore will buy back books that are in good condition and will pay 50 percent of the purchase price if they will be in use the next term and if the text is not overstocked. For more information: https://hccs.bncollege.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/BNCBHomePage?storeId=19561&catalogId=10001&langId=-1
For more information regarding HCC’s policy regarding textbooks, please see Board Policy EDA (Legal) and (Local) located at https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/hcc-board-policy-manual-section-e/.

 

disAbility Support Services

Services for Students with a Qualified Disability
Houston Community College (HCC) views equal access as a shared responsibility between HCC and the student. HCC recognizes students with disabilities as a valued element of diversity and ensures that no academically qualified student with a disability will be denied access to or participation in the services, programs, and activities of HCC. HCC makes its campuses and programs accessible to individuals with disabilities.

ADA Accommodation Process for HCC Students
The Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities and requires postsecondary institutions to provide accommodations when a student discloses a disability. In college, students with disabilities are covered under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, which also prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities, and under the Americans with Disabilities Act. HCC’s obligations under these laws are different than what students will have experienced during high school. The objective of reasonable accommodations in college is to accommodate the functional limitations of the student while maintaining the integrity of college courses and programs. Colleges provide reasonable accommodations in accordance with federal law, and not modifications to courses.

Student’s Responsibility

Obtaining reasonable accommodations is a process which is voluntary on behalf of the student and interactive. It is the student’s responsibility to self-identify, disclose his/her disability or condition to the disAbility Services Office, provide the appropriate documentation from a qualified professional, usually a physician or clinician, with a diagnosis of his/her disability (s), and request reasonable accommodations. The disAbility Services Office, in communication with the student, will issue a letter detailing the student’s approved reasonable accommodations. Once the ADA accommodation letter is received by the student, the student should contact his/her instructors at the start of the semester and present the letter to them. Accommodation letters are not retroactively applied. It is the student’s responsibility to communicate his/her questions or concerns associated with his/her accommodation letter to the disAbility Services office in a timely manner. Due to high demands for services, HCC strongly encourages students to request accommodations before the start of each academic term. Failure to provide sufficient documentation or timely request accommodations may delay the delivery of accommodations. Returning students should contact the disAbility Services office at the beginning of each semester to receive their reasonable accommodation letters. Additional documentation may be requested if students request to change their existing accommodations.

Examples of Reasonable Accommodations
Examples of accommodations students have received include, but are not limited to, extra time for testing, use of a tape recorder in classroom, Sign Language interpretation or CART services, preferrential seating in the classroom, and alternate text books.

ADA Counselors
The point of contact for the HCC students with a qualified disability seeking accommodations under the ADA is the Ability Services Office. The Ability Services Offices are located at each of our 6 colleges. For the list of counselors and their contact information visit: http://www.hccs.edu/support-services/disability-services/. Students enrolled wholly as online students can contact any of the ADA counselors to request ADA accommodations.

Grievance and Appeal Process
The College District official to receive complaints is David Cross, the ADA/Section 504 coordinator. Reports of discrimination based on disability may be directed to the ADA/Section 504 coordinator. The College District designates the following person to coordinate its efforts to comply with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended, which incorporates and expands the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended:

Name: David Cross
Position: Director of EEO Compliance and the Office of Institutional Equity
Address: 3100 Main Street, 7th Floor, Houston, TX 77002
Telephone: (713) 718-8271

A party who is dissatisfied with the outcome of the investigation may appeal through the applicable grievance policy beginning at the appropriate level. See DGBA(LOCAL) for employees, FLD(LOCAL) for students, and GB(LOCAL) for community members. These policies are available at https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/.

 A party shall be informed of his or her right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights.

 

Veteran Services

Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
All students must apply online using the Apply Texas website at http://www.applytexas.org.
There is no charge to apply.
Veteran and/or Military-Affiliated Students who plan to use VA/GI Bill and/or State of Texas ‘Hazlewood Act’ educational benefits must follow the steps outlined in the applicable HCC enrollment checklist. Further information is provided on the Veteran Center and Military-Affiliated Services’ website (VMASS) at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at (713) 718-8522.

Residency & Tuition / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Military personnel, as defined by Texas Education Code Section 54.241, their spouses and dependent children may be entitled to pay tuition and fees at an institution of higher education at the rates provided for Texas residents in certain circumstances and regardless of the length of time the person or persons has/have resided in the state.
Veteran and/or Military-Affiliated students may be required to file a ‘Letter of Intent’ with the institution to establish residency and reside in Texas while enrolled at the respective institution. In such cases, the ‘Letter of Intent/Non-Resident Waiver’ Form should be submitted to the HCC District Office of Veteran & Military-Affiliated Student Success (VMASS) prior to the start of the enrollment term but no later than the college’s Census Date (Refer to HCC Academic Calendar for respective date(s)). Additional documentation that may be required includes, but is not limited to: Military Identification Card, Official Military Orders, DD Form-214 or other official substantiating documentation.

Military personnel, Veterans and/or Military-Affiliated students should check with the HCC VMASS Office and refer to the applicable statutes found in the Texas Education Code at http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/ and Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Rules at http://www.thecb.state.tx.us/ for requirements on resident tuition.

Applying for Education Benefits / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Students applying for Federal VA education benefits should submit the following documents to the HCC VMASS District office:

1) Complete the appropriate application for Educational Benefits to obtain the appropriate Certificate of Eligibility (COE) and submit a copy of it.

Application for VA Education Benefits (VA Form 22-1990) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/1990/introduction

Application for VA Education Benefits Under the National Call to Service Program (VA Form 22-1990N) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/1990n/introduction

Application for Family Member to Use Transferred Benefits (VA Form 22-1990E) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/1990e/introduction

Dependents’ Application for VA Education Benefits (VA Form 22-5490) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/5490/introduction

Dependents’ Request for Change of Program or Place of Training (VA Form 22-5495) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/5495/introduction

Request for Change of Program or Place of Training (VA Form 22-1995) https://www.vets.gov/education/apply-for-education-benefits/application/1995/introduction

Disabled Veterans Application for Vocational Rehabilitation (VA Form 28-1900) https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/about/feature?feature=vocational-rehabilitation-and-employment

2) Submit the DD-214 member 4, 2 or 7. [DD-214 member 1 is not acceptable].

3) Submit official transcripts from all schools attended, including military technical schools and/or non-accredited schools:

To request military transcripts for Army, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard: https://jst.doded.mil

To request Community College of the Air Force transcripts: www.airuniversity.af.mil

Hazlewood Act Eligibility & Required Documentation / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
The Hazlewood Act is a State of Texas benefit that provides qualified Veterans, spouses, and/or dependent children with an education benefit of up to 150 hours of tuition exemption, including most fees, at public institutions of higher education in Texas. This does NOT include living expenses, books, or supply fees.
For more information, please see https://www.tvc.texas.gov/education/hazlewood-act/.
To be eligible, a Veteran must:

  • At the time of entry into active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces, designated Texas as Home of Record; or entered the service in Texas; or was a Texas resident;
  • Have received an honorable discharge or separation or a general discharge under honorable conditions as indicated on the Veteran’s Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (DD Form 214);
  • Served at least 181 days of active duty service (excluding training);
  • Currently reside in Texas;
  • Have no federal Veteran’s education benefits, or have no federal Veterans education benefits dedicated to the payment of tuition and fees only (such as Chapter 33 or 31; for term or semester enrolled that do not exceed the value of Hazlewood benefits;
  • Not be in default on a student loan made or guaranteed by the State of Texas;
  • Enroll in classes for which the college receives tax support (i.e., a course that does not depend solely on student tuition and fees to cover its cost), unless the college’s governing board has ruled to let Veterans receive the benefit while taking non-funded courses; and
  • Meet the GPA requirement of the institution’s satisfactory academic progress policy in a degree or certificate program as determined by the institution’s financial aid policy and, as an undergraduate student, not be considered to have attempted an excessive amount of credit hours.

Required Hazelwood Documents for Veterans
To comply with the requirements of the Texas Veterans Commission, during or before registration, Veterans or qualifying dependents must present the following documents to the HCC VMASS District office:

  • The member 4 copy of DD-214 (separation papers). DD214-member 1 is not a valid DD-214 for use of educational benefits.
  • Provide proof of eligibility or ineligibility for Chapter 33, from VA office in Muskogee, OK, if the Veteran served after 09/11 and separation. In the event the Veteran is eligible for chapter 33, the cost of enrollment for the term may not exceed the value of Hazlewood (COE is required). Veterans may request a copy of their benefits eligibility letter by submitting a request through the VA’s Ask a Question website at https://benefits.va.gov/gibill/
  • A completed formal application for Hazlewood Act benefits. Applications are available at the HCC VMASS District office or a student may also download the application from the Texas Veterans Commission website: https://www.tvc.texas.gov/education/hazlewood-act/
  • Veterans must also provide a copy of their Hazlewood Online Database Report: https://hazlewood.tvc.texas.gov/students/

NOTE: Veterans may use the Hazlewood Exemption in conjunction with other VA education benefits and Pell Grant, if eligible. However, compliance with the “default loan” clause will be verified by the school. Please contact HCC VMASS District office for additional support/information.
Further information is provided on the Veteran Center and Military-Affiliated Services’ website (VMASS) at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at (713) 718-8522.

Spouses and/or Children required Hazlewood Documents
The military member’s 4 copy of DD-214 (separation papers). DD214-member 1 is not a valid DD-214 for use of Educational Benefits.
A letter from the Department of Veterans Affairs Office stating the parent or spouse died as result of service-related injuries or illness, is missing in action or is considered totally disabled for purposes of employability as a service-related injury or illness.
Provide proof of eligibility or ineligibility for Chapter 33 from VA office in Muskogee, OK, if the Veteran served after 09/11. In the event the Veteran is eligible for Chapter 33, the cost of enrollment for the term may not exceed the value of Hazlewood (COE is required). Please request an education benefits letter by calling 1-888-442-4551.
A completed formal application for Hazlewood Act benefits. Applications are available at the Veteran Services department. Applications are also available at the Texas Veterans Commission website at https://www.tvc.texas.gov/education/hazlewood-act/
Students must provide a copy of their Hazlewood Online Database Report. https://hazlewood.tvc.texas.gov/students/.
Further information is provided on the Veteran Center and Military-Affiliated Services’ website (VMASS) at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at (713) 718-8522.

Transferability of Benefits (Legacy) Documents
Eligible Veterans may assign unused hours to a child under certain conditions. The following documents are required:

  • The Veteran’s member 4 copy of DD-214 (separation papers). DD214-member 1 is not a valid DD-214 for use of Educational Benefits.
  • Copies of birth certificate, marriage certificates or tax returns may be requested.
  • Applications are available at the Veteran Services department. Applications are also available at the Texas Veterans Commission website at https://www.tvc.texas.gov/education/hazlewood-act/
  • Provide all transcripts from any previously attended institutions.
  • Provide a copy of applicable Hazlewood Online Database Report. https://hazlewood.tvc.texas.gov/students/.

Transfer / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Transfer students should submit all academic transcripts from both accredited and non-accredited schools (to include military technical school credits/transcripts).

All academic transcripts (from both accredited and/or non-accredited schools) should be received and evaluated by HCC prior to selecting courses (when possible).

Further information is provided on the Veteran Center and Military-Affiliated Services’ website (VMASS) at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at (713) 718-8522.

Priority Enrollment / Veteran & Military-Affiliated Students
Houston Community College offers priority registration to Veteran & Military-Affiliated students prior to the general student population. Students should refer to the HCC Academic Calendar to find the appropriate Priority Registration date(s).

Veteran & Military-Affiliated students choosing to exercise ‘Priority Enrollment’ must provide appropriate documentation to HCC VMASS District office to ensure the respective student is identified within the HCC student management system prior to the start of each term.

Further information is provided on the Veteran Center and Military-Affiliated Services’ website (VMASS) at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/veteran-affairs/, or by phone at (713) 718-8522.

 

International Services and Programs (ISP)

Full-Time Enrollment Requirements for International Students
Effective Fall 2017, F-1 international students must earn letter grades (A, B, C, D or F). A grade of a “W” (withdrawn) or “FX” (failing due to non-attendance) will not count towards the full-time enrollment requirement. “W” or “FX” is not considered a valid letter grade and demonstrates the student is not maintaining F-1 immigration status.

F-1 students must maintain at least 12 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters (9 credit hours during the summer, provided this is their first semester of attendance at HCC). International students holding an F-1 visa are limited to no more than the equivalent of one class or 3 credit hours of distance education (online class) per semester that will count towards the full-time status.

F-1 International Students
Houston Community College (HCC) considers students holding a nonimmigrant visa to be an international student. Prospective students maintaining any other type of visa status, except F-2 and B (visiting) visas, may enroll at HCC as permitted by U.S. federal law. The student should call the college of choice for admission instructions and meet the published application deadline.

International students who want to study in the U.S. with an F-1 status must obtain a Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) Certificate of Eligibility, also referred to as a SEVIS Form I-20, from HCC. HCC has been approved by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to issue SEVIS Form I-20s required to obtain F-1 student status. The individual must then use the SEVIS Form I-20 to apply for an F-1 student visa (if outside the U.S.) or a change of non-immigrant classification to F-1 (if inside the U.S.). U.S. federal regulations require all applicants to provide certain documentation and information to the college issuing the SEVIS Form I-20 before it can be issued to a student. To apply for a SEVIS Form I-20, please refer to the “International Students” section of the HCC website (see link below) and follow the outlined application guidelines.

An international student under the age of 18 who wishes to gain admission to HCC must provide documentation proving that he/she has achieved the equivalency of a U.S. high school diploma in his/her country by completing a transcript evaluation with an approved evaluation agency. F-1 students must maintain full-time status, which is defined as being enrolled in a minimum of 12 semester credit hours for the spring and fall semesters or a minimum of 9 semester credit hours for the summer term, provided in that case that summer is the initial semester of enrollment at HCC.

International Student Advisors/Designated School Officials (ISA/DSO) report all changes in enrollment status pertaining to F-1 internationals (both students and alumni) to DHS as required by U.S. federal law.
F-1 international students must adhere to the U.S. federal regulations governing their nonimmigrant status while studying in the U.S. Non-compliance could jeopardize an F-1 international student’s ability to remain in the U.S and complete his/her studies at HCC. Students with questions may schedule an appointment with International Services and Programs (ISP) to discuss their options.

For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/

Concurrent Enrollment for F-1 International Students
An F-1 student maintaining his/her F-1 status at another educational institution and wishing to be concurrently enrolled at HCC must obtain a letter from the ISA/DSO at his/her parent institution confirming permission to take classes at HCC under the F-1 status. F-1 students maintaining status at other educational institutions are not eligible to work on the HCC campus until the student has received a SEVIS Form I-20 from HCC and approval to work on campus from an HCC ISA/DSO

For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/

Summer International Transient Students
Students who are attending another college or university and wish to take summer classes at HCC must provide a letter from the ISA/DSO at their parent institution that indicates they are maintaining their F-1 status and have been given permission to enroll at HCC.

English Proficiency and Course Placement
International students planning to enroll in academic programs must demonstrate English language proficiency. This can be accomplished by taking one of the following exams: TOEFL, IELTS, PTE Academic, ACCUPLACER (ESL), SAT, ACT or an approved Texas Success Initiative (TSI) test. Students who have not taken an English language proficiency test will be administered the ACCUPLACER (ESL) test by HCC to determine the student’s English language proficiency. Scores on the exams must meet state and institutional requirements for placement into college-level classes. Students who do not meet these requirements will be required to enroll in the Intensive English program. For more information, please visit https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/foreign-credentials/

International Transfer Students
A transfer student is any student who has previous college work and plans to pursue a certificate or degree at HCC. HCC admits transfer students who already have established F-1 status while attending other colleges and universities.

A transfer student may be admitted to either an academic program or the Intensive English program. Students planning to transfer to HCC must submit a complete application to the Office of International Student Services. For more information, please refer to the International Students section of the HCC website https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/ and click on “New Students.”

Transfer Credit from Foreign Institutions
Students petitioning to receive transfer credit from foreign institutions must first have their transcripts evaluated by an approved evaluation agency. For a list of approved evaluation agencies, students may visit https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/foreign-credentials/

Check-in and Orientation for International Students
F-1 students new to the U.S. are required to report to our office for further instructions upon arriving in the country. Each semester, all incoming students (new, transfer, change-of-status and reinstatement) are required to attend the mandatory student orientation to learn more about adjusting to life in Houston and at HCC. Please visit https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/orientation/

F-1 Student Health Insurance
F-1 students at HCC are enrolled in the College’s mandatory student health insurance upon registration. They cannot opt out of the plan unless a waiver of coverage is approved upon condition that the student has an acceptable alternative insurance plan. Please visit https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/international-students/health-insurance/

Contacting International Student Programs
Individuals seeking to enroll at HCC as F-1 students may also contact International Services and Programs at (713) 718-8521 or oiss.international@hccs.edu  or visit the office at 3200 Main St., Houston 77002 (street level of the parking garage) during normal business hours. Prospective students may also learn more at http://www.hccs.edu/international.

International Initiatives and Study Abroad
Houston Community College, with a diverse student body and its location within a global city, is committed to globalizing learning for students so they are equipped to compete in the global workforce. Students, faculty and staff collaborate with institutions abroad to create exchange programs and study abroad opportunities through this initiative.

Training Programs
Instructional programs and/or customized training are conducted through workforce partnerships to help students gain specific skills.
English for Speakers for Other Languages (ESOL) training and development for certificates and/or degrees are conducted through credit programs and continuing Education (CE).
For more information, see http://www.hccs.edu/international.

J-1 Visa Program
HCC was awarded the J-1 visa sponsorship through the U.S. Department of State. Only a few community colleges in the nation are eligible to host under the J-1 visa.

What is the J-1 Visitor Program?
The J-1 program enables foreign nationals to come to the U.S. to teach, study, conduct research, demonstrate special skills or receive on the job training for periods ranging from a few weeks to several years. The exchange of professors and research scholars promotes the exchange of ideas, research, mutual enrichment and linkages between research and academic institutions in the U.S. and foreign countries.

For more information about the J-1 Visitor Program or international initiatives, please contact the International Services and Programs (ISP) director at isp@hccs.edu.

Houston Community College (HCC) considers students holding a nonimmigrant visa to be international students. Prospective students maintaining any other type of visa status, except B (visiting) visas, may enroll at HCC as permitted by U.S. federal law. The student should call the program of choice for admission instructions and meet the published application deadline.

 

Transfer Information and Credit

Transfer Information and Credit
HCC Policy on Transfer
Transfer of academic credit is a public policy issue for several reasons:

  • an increase in student mobility,
  • the proliferation of distance learning programs and common acceptance of their legitimacy,
  • the economics of expending public money twice for the same course, and
  • consumer protection from expending private money twice for the same course

HCC analyzes credit accepted for transfer in terms of level, content, quality, comparability, and degree program relevance. Transfer of credit from one institution to another involves at least three considerations:

  • the educational quality of the learning experience which the student transfers;
  • the comparability of the nature, content, and level of the learning experience to that offered by the receiving institution; and
  • the appropriateness and applicability of the learning experience to the programs offered by the receiving institution, in light of the student's educational goals.

Transfer Credit
HCC guarantees to those students earning the Associate of Arts, Associate of Arts in Teaching and the Associate of Science degrees that their required courses will transfer to all public-supported Texas colleges and universities. If these courses are rejected by the senior institution of the student’s choice, HCC will offer the student an alternate tuition-free course that will transfer.
Transferability means the acceptance of HCC credit toward a specific major and degree at a specific institution, as defined by the student’s transfer/degree plan. However, no institution of higher education shall be required to accept in transfer, or apply toward a degree program, more than sixty-six (66) semester credit hours of lower-division academic credit. Institutions of higher education may choose to accept additional credit hours by agreement. The transfer guarantee of academic courses is subject to the following conditions:

  • The student must file a written transfer/degree plan by the time he/she has completed 12 semester hours or the equivalent at HCC. The transfer/degree plan must include the following: (a) the specific institution to which the student plans to transfer, (b) the bachelor’s degree and major the student plans to pursue, and (c) the date such decision was made.
  • Courses must be identified by the receiving institutions as transferable and applicable toward a specific major. The receiving institution determines the following:
  • Total number of credits accepted for transfer
  • Grades required
  • Relevant grade point average
  • Duration of transferability
  • Required courses must have been taken at HCC no earlier than three years before the attempt to transfer.

If the above terms and conditions have been met and courses are not accepted by a receiving institution in transfer, the following terms and conditions are applicable:

  • The student must submit to HCC a Notice of Transfer Credit Denial from the receiving institution (within 10 days of denial) so the resolution process may begin.
  • If transfer credit denial is not resolved, tuition-free transfer courses (semester hour for semester hour) must be taken within a one-year period.
  • Although courses are tuition-free, students will be responsible for any fees or course-related expenses, other than the course-required books which HCC is responsible for providing at no cost to the student.

Accreditations Accepted in Transfer
HCC accepts college level credit in transfer from colleges and universities accredited by any of the six regional accreditation bodies: Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, New England Association of Colleges and Schools, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Western Association of Colleges and Schools.

In addition, HCC accepts college level credit in transfer from colleges and universities by any of the following national accreditation bodies: American Board of Funeral Service Education, Association of Biblical Higher Education, Association of Theological Schools in the US and Canada, Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools, Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology, Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (if prior to 12/31/2016), Council on Occupational Education, and Distance Education Accrediting Commission, Distance Education and Training Council, and the National Association of Schools of Theatre.

Students Transferring to HCC from Other Colleges/Universities
Transfer students are students who have previous college work and plan to pursue a certificate or degree at HCC. HCC evaluates, accepts, and awards credit for transfer course work, experiential learning, advanced placement, and professional certificates that is consistent with the HCC mission and for which HCC can ensure that the course work and learning outcomes are at the collegiate level and comparable to HCC certificate and degree programs. Transfer students are required to send official transcripts from each previously attended college or university. Transfer work is evaluated within the first semester of attendance.

Prior Learning Assessment Credit
Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) is a process for assessing learning gained outside a traditional academic environment. This could be learning acquired through military service, employer training programs, independent study, non-credit courses, open courseware, or volunteer or community service. Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) is a means of evaluating what a student already knows at the college-level derived from these experiences for college credit, certification, or advanced standing toward further education or training. See PLA website for more information http://www.hccs.edu/acc.

To be eligible to earn PLA credit, a student must be currently or previously enrolled at HCC for the past 12 months and meet all Houston Community College admissions requirements. They should not have previously taken or attempted the course (by title that is the same as the PLA credit for which they are applying). PLA credit is only awarded when it applies to the HCC programs of study. Six hours of HCC credit must be successfully completed prior to posting PLA credit. Note: A minimum of 25% of the credits for the HCC certificate or degree must be completed at HCC, and PLA credits not counted toward this minimum.

Credit by Examination
HCC awards credit for qualified scores on nationally standardized examinations for the following instruments:

College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Examinations, the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), International Baccalaureate (IB) exams, and the Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) subject exams, Sophia Learning exams (with ACE evaluation), and Learning Counts exams (with ACE evaluation) . Credit earned through these examinations will be recorded by the Registrar only after the student has completed six semester hours at HCC. Official test scores must be sent from the testing agency to the HCC Office of Admissions and Records. Contact the Testing Office for examination schedules and availability of the CLEP. Questions regarding credit received for the above national exams should be directed to the Advising Office.

More information on CLEP is available at https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/transfers/transferring-credits/college-level-examination-program-clep/.

Students Transferring from HCC to Other Colleges/Universities
HCC recommends the following steps to students considering transferring to other colleges/universities:

  • Meet with an advisor at a student’s community college campus to discuss his/her academic goals, plans, and questions. Consider completing an associate degree before transferring. Some universities give preferential treatment in admission decisions, if a student transfers after completing his/her associate’s degree. Research indicates that students who have completed the associate degree perform better after transfer than those who did not complete the associate degree.
  • If a student needs to transfer to another institution before the completion of his/her HCC associate degree, the student may be able to “transfer back” to HCC his/her college credits from another institution in order to fulfill his/her associate degree requirements. In most cases, a student can “transfer back” up to 42 college-level semester hours of credit within three years of leaving HCC to complete his/her associate degree requirements. (Note: all graduation requirements must be fulfilled. See HCC catalog for more information.)
  • HCC also recommends that a student obtain a transfer plan from his/her HCC advisor. A transfer plan lists the university-required courses which can be taken at HCC toward a student’s university bachelor degree’s major. If a student is undecided about his/her choice of university or his/her choice of major, see a HCC career counselor for more help.

For more information, see Transfer Information and Credit at -https://www.hccs.edu/programs/catalog/transfer-information-and-credit/.

Transfer Dispute Resolution
If a student is informed by a Texas public college or university that it will not accept the transfer of any HCC academic course credit, the student may have a case for a transfer dispute which will ultimately be resolved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB). Students should be cautioned that workforce course credits may or may not be transferable, depending upon the program and articulation agreements between HCC and the college or university involved. In addition, no institution of higher education shall be required to accept in transfer, or apply toward a degree program, more than sixty-six (66) semester credit hours of lower-division academic credit. Institutions of higher education, however, may choose to accept additional credit hours by agreement. If the student wishes to transfer credit later to work on a bachelor’s degree, the student should consult with an HCC program or advisor. Rules and procedures for the resolution of transfer disputes regarding lower-division courses have been formulated by the THECB as follows:

If an institution of higher education refuses to accept course credit earned by a student at another institution of higher education, the receiving institution shall provide written notice to the student and to the sending institution that transfer of course credit has been denied, along with the reasons for denial. Students may dispute the denial of transfer credit by contacting a designated official at either the sending or receiving institution.

The two institutions and the student shall attempt to resolve the dispute in accordance with THECB rules and guidelines.

If the transfer dispute is not resolved to the satisfaction of the student or the sending institution within 45 days of the date the student received written notice of denial, the institution denying the course credit transfer shall notify the Commissioner of Higher Education of the unresolved dispute and the reasons for the continued denial of course credit transfer.

The Commissioner or a designee shall make the final determination in an unresolved dispute concerning the transfer of course credit and provide written notice of the determination to the involved student and institutions.
For more information, please see Transfer Dispute Resolutionhttps://www.hccs.edu/programs/catalog/transfer-information-and-credit/.

Transfer Limitation
Students who intend to transfer to baccalaureate degree programs should be aware of possible limitations on lower division course work. Universities will generally not accept in transfer more than 66 semester credit hours of lower division academic credit.

 

Centers of Excellence

HCC’s 15 Centers of Excellence focus on top-notch faculty and industry best practices to give students the skills they need for a successful career. The programs range from manufacturing and global energy to logistics, engineering, fashion design and information technology. For more information, please visit https://www.hccs.edu/centers/.

 

Guarantee of Educational Excellence

The Houston Community College District is committed to excellence in education. As an expression of this commitment, HCC guarantees its graduates both transfer credit and entry-level job skills. Such guarantee is a statement of confidence in the administration, faculty, and staff as well as a commitment to our educational mission to empower students so they may achieve their highest potential.
This guarantee is expressly subject to and limited to special conditions identified in the following sections on job competency and transfer credit. The HCC obligation under this guarantee is limited to providing additional courses under the conditions prescribed in these sections.

Job Competency Guarantee
HCC guarantees that graduates earning workforce certificates or degrees will possess the job skills required for entry-level employment in the occupational field for which they have been trained. (This guarantee does not imply the graduate will pass any licensing or qualifying examination for a particular career.)
Any HCC workforce program certificate or degree graduate whom the employer determines is lacking in the technical or general educational skills necessary for entry to the position shall be provided up to nine tuition-free credit hours. A program of instruction must be designed to meet specific occupational competencies identified in technical courses which are competency-based and emphasize the acquisition of the skills necessary for immediate employment and/or career advancement. Program competencies are identified in the course syllabus provided to each student.

  • This guarantee applies only to certificates and degrees of at least 30 semester hours or 360 contact hours.
  • All course work in question must have been taken at HCC and taught by HCC instructors.
  • The graduate must have earned the AAS or certificate in a workforce program listed in the HCC catalog no earlier than one year prior to the beginning date of the employment in question.
  • The graduate must have completed the degree within a five-year period beginning at the point of first enrollment.
  • The graduate must be employed full-time within 12 months of graduation and in a position directly related to the specific program completed at HCC.
  • Within 90 days of the graduate’s initial date of employment, the employer must certify in writing that the graduate lacks entry-level skills identified by HCC as program-exit competencies. The employer must specify the areas of deficiency.
  • The employer, graduate, and HCC personnel will develop a written retraining plan. The retraining will be limited to nine credit hours or 360 contact hours related to the identified skill deficiency.
  • The retraining must be completed within one calendar year from the time the plan is agreed upon.
  • • Although retraining is tuition-free, the graduate (or employer) is responsible for the cost of insurance, uniforms, fees, and any other course-related expenses. HCC is responsible for the cost of books required for the course work.

For more information, see https://www.hccs.edu/programs/catalog/hcc-guarantee-of-educational-excellence/.

 

Career Planning and Job Search

The Career Planning and Resources Office assists current and former HCC students with career assessments, career planning, identifying full or part-time employment, connecting with internship and externship opportunities. Workshops covering job and career readiness are held in classrooms and at various campuses throughout the district. The Virtual Career Network allows a student to search employment opportunities in the Houston-area, post resumes, register for various workshops, review upcoming events, participate in mentor discussions, and much more. There is a Career Planning Specialist at each college to help set a student’ career goals, resume writing, interviewing, and improving a student’s overall job readiness skills. Job fairs and other on-campus recruiting/hiring events are also made available to students and alumni. For more information, please visit: https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/career-planning

 

Testing

The Testing Center is responsible for the administration of various assessment tests to incoming and current students for the purpose of determining course placement. Testing schedules will vary, and not all tests are available at each college. For a list of testing center locations and hours of operation visit: https://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/testing-services/.

Special accommodations and testing centers are available for those who qualify. HCC students with a qualified disability seeking accommodations under the ADA should contact one of The Ability Services Offices located at each of our 6 colleges. For the list of counselors and their contact information visit: www.hccs.edu/support-services/disability-services/.

 

Child Care

HCC-Central offers childcare through a private vendor at a discounted rate for all HCC full- and part-time students and staff at the YMCA at HCC Child Development Lab School. The center serves children 6 weeks - 5 years of age, Monday thru Friday, 7:00 am - 5:30 pm. Lab school staff are not supervised by HCC, but are expected to follow the guidelines of developmentally appropriate practice and state minimum. For more information call (713) 718-5437or visit 3214 Austin Street for enrollment or see https://www.hccs.edu/locations/central-college/central-campus/child-development-lab-school/.

For more information on the YMCA, please see the Houston Community College section at the following website: https://www.ymcahouston.org/programs/early-care/locations.

Childcare assistance is also available through Workforce Solutions. For more information on eligibility criteria, visit http://www.wrksolutions.com/for-individuals/financial-aid/financial-aid-for-child-care.

 

Student Life and Recreational Sports/Student Identification Card

The Student Life and Recreational Sports Offices offer activities and programs that extend students’ personal and intellectual growth. Some of the activities include: student government; student associations; clubs and organizations relating to student interests; honor societies; student publications (The Egalitarian and organization newsletters); recreational and intramural sports as well as cultural, social, educational and leadership development activities. To get involved, visit https://www.hccs.edu/student-experience/student-life-on-campus/.

Student Identification Card
Student identification (ID) cards are available once a student has registered and paid for classes. The card will be needed for library and computer lab usage, admission to college activities, and voting in campus elections. ID cards are nontransferable and are to be held only by the students to whom they were issued. Students are required to be in possession of their ID card at all times. All ID cards are the property of HCC and must be shown when requested by a representative of the College District. If students lose their ID cards, they should report it to the campus police by calling 713.718.8888 as soon as it is discovered as missing. To obtain a replacement card, students must initiate the process at the college campus they attend.

 

Student Associations and United Student Council

Student Associations and United Student Council

The student associations, organizations and clubs, and the Student Government Associations and United Student Council have been developed as organizations through which students within the college district and its colleges and district-wide programs join together to:

  • Promote HCC and its college
  • Develop co-curricular activities and organizations
  • Address the issues brought forth by the student body
  • Become directly involved in the decision-making processes of HCC and its colleges.

Registered students are eligible to be members of their respective College Student Association. Membership is activated by attendance at a meeting. Voting and other privileges are determined by the organization’s Rules of Self- Government.

Student Publication
The Egalitarian is the newspaper of HCC, written and produced by students. The Egalitarian promotes the free exchange of ideas and information throughout the colleges subject to applicable policies and law. The newspaper staff maintains a high standard of journalistic excellence. The Egalitarian is distributed several times throughout the year to students, faculty and staff at all HCC campuses and centers.
For more information, see https://hccegalitarian.com/.

Alumni Association
The HCC Alumni Association is open to all graduates of HCC certificate and degree programs, former and current students who have successfully completed at least 12 hours at Houston Community College. The mission of the association is to promote meaningful engagement and continuing relationships between HCC and its alumni through programming and membership. The HCC Alumni Association strives to support, serve, inform, and involve alumni of the College, ensuring they have a lifetime connection to HCC and its mission.

Membership in the Alumni Association is FREE! For additional information and to join: https://www.hccsfoundation.org/alumni

 

Health Awareness

Health Services
HCC does not operate a Student Health Center; however, HCC is concerned about the health and welfare of its students and provides important health information to students. For information about student health insurance programs, visit https://www.hccs.edu/resources-for/current-students/student-health-insurance/.

 

Police Services and Campus Safety

Police Services and Campus Safety
The HCC Police Department receives reports of all incidents occurring on campus and is responsible for campus safety and the investigation of any campus crime. In addition, the department has a working relationship with the Houston Police Department, Harris County Sheriff Department, Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Department, and the Stafford Police Department, to provide assistance for incidents that require special resources. The HCC Police Department may investigate violations of the law or college rules and regulations. Administrative violations may be adjudicated in the discipline process. Violations which rise to violations of the law will may adjudicated by the appropriate court system. The HCC Police Department provides the following services:

  • Parking Passes – Passes are available on-line annually after August 1st.
  • Campus Escorts - The HCC Police Department will provide an officer safety escort to all students, faculty or staff upon request. Campus escorts may be scheduled by calling our department at 713.718.8888.
  • Vehicle Assists - Vehicle assistance is provided through a contractor for jump-starts, car unlocks and other disabled vehicle situations on most college campuses. Officers will assist the student in calling for assistance if necessary. PLEASE NOTE: all vehicle assist services must be paid for by the requester at the time the service is provided.
  • Disabled vehicles may not remain on college property. To request assistance, call 713.718.8888.
  • Lost and Found - The HCC Police Department maintains the Lost and Found service. If the student finds an item on campus, please bring it to the Police Department and turn it in to an officer. HCCPD will hold found items for 90 days (with some exceptions being disposed of sooner). To recover lost items, stop by the HCC Police Officer at the campus where the item was lost.
  • Crime Statistics - The HCC Police Department also makes available Information related to campus crime statistics. This information may be found by visiting https://www.hccs.edu/departments/police/crime-statistics--information/
  • Safety Tips and Crime Prevention Information – Resources are available at www.hccs.edu to include active shooter training, domestic violence information, general safety tips, and much more.

 

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Freedom of Inquiry and Expression
Educational institutions exist for the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students, and the general well-being of society. Free inquiry and free expression are indispensable to the attainment of these goals. Students and student organizations will be free to examine and discuss all questions of interest to them and to express opinions publicly and privately. They will be free to support causes by orderly means which do not disrupt the regular and normal operation of the institution and which comply with the regulations that relate to student activities and conduct. At the same time, it should be made clear to the educational and the larger community that in their public expressions or demonstrations, students or student organizations speak only for themselves. Recognized student organizations will be allowed to invite and to hear any person of their choosing when the purpose of such an invitation is consistent with the aims of the college district. Hate messaging will not be tolerated and will result in disciplinary action.

Student Complaints
Houston Community College is committed to providing an educational climate that is conducive to the personal and professional development of each individual. In order to ensure that commitment, the College has developed procedures for students to address their concerns within the college community. A student who has an unresolved disagreement with a faculty or staff member, another student, or a student group, or is dissatisfied with the service they received, may initiate a complaint without prejudicing his or her status with the College. It is the goal of HCC to assist all students in efficiently resolving their concerns.
Students should refer to the HCC policy or process for specific types of complaints/appeals:

Complaints not related to the issues noted above should follow the Non-Academic Student Complaint Policy (see Board Policy FLD (Local)) at https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/hcc-board-policy-manual-section-f/.

Students who have not been able to resolve their concern informally, may file a formal written complaint. Refer to one of the processes listed above based on the type of concern a student has and then submit a formal complaint at:
https://publicdocs.maxient.com/reportingform.php?HoustonCC&layout_id=5

For assistance in determining the correct procedure to follow or to identify the appropriate dean or supervisor for informal resolution, students can contact the Dean of Student Development at their campus for assistance at: https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/procedures/student-rights-policies--procedures/student-complaints/speak-with-the-dean-of-students/.

Per the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) codified rules under Title 19 of the Texas Administrative Code, Sections 1.110 – 1.120, after exhausting the institution's grievance/complaint process, current, former, and prospective students may initiate a complaint with THECB. Refer to THECB web site for details on this process at:
http://www.thecb.state.tx.us/index.cfm?objectid=989FE9A0-2213-11E8-BC500050560100A9

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) publishes a Policy Statement on Complaint Procedures Against Its Accredited Institutions. Students, employees or others may initiate a complaint on alleged violations of SACSCOC Principles of Accreditation, the Core Requirements, and policies or procedures, as well as address possible violations of an institution’s own policies and procedures, if related to the Principles. Refer to the Policy Statement for details on this process at http://www.sacscoc.org/pdf/081705/complaintpolicy.pdf.

 

Student Code of Conduct

What follows is the Student Code of Conduct, which includes non-exhaustive references to
applicable HCC policies. Referenced Board Policies may be found at:
https://www.hccs.edu/about-hcc/policies/.

2018-2019 Student Code of Conduct

 

Alcohol and Controlled Substance Policy and Procedures

Subject: The term Controlled Substances are those defined in Schedules I through V of Section 202 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, Section 481.001 et. seq. the Texas Controlled Substances Act. Controlled substances include, but are not limited to, such substances as marijuana, hashish, heroin, cocaine, LSD, PCP, methamphetamine, anabolic steroids, human-growth hormones and fentanyl.

  1. Purpose - Houston Community College (HCC) is committed to providing its students and employees a drug- and alcohol-free workplace and learning environment to promote the reputation of HCC and its employees as responsible citizens of public trust, and to provide a consistent model of substance-free behavior for students. All employees and students are informed of the program and policy regarding the use of alcoholic beverages and controlled substances by means of the website, student handbook, and electronic mail.
  2. Policy - Houston Community College (HCC) standards of conduct for all employees and students clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol on the campus, at District-sponsored events, on any HCC premises, or as part of any of the school’s activities. Students and employees who violate this policy will be subject to arrest and disciplinary action by the college imposed through established due process procedures as set forth in applicable law, applicable HCC Board Policy, and the Student Code of Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures. Students: As a condition of enrollment, all students are required to follow HCC policy and regulations concerning alcohol and other drugs. The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, sale, offer to sell, purchase, or use of a controlled substance or alcohol on campuses, at teaching sites, in vehicles, and on other property owned, leased, or under control of HCC, and at all on-campus and off-campus school-sponsored activities is prohibited. Students who violate the applicable HCC Board Policies and/or the Student Code of Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures regarding drugs and alcohol on campus will be subject to disciplinary action including but not limited to: referral to drug and alcohol counseling or rehabilitation programs, student assistance programs, suspension, expulsion, and/or referral to appropriate law enforcement officials for prosecution. College Employees: While at work, each System employee has a responsibility to deliver service in a safe, efficient, and conscientious manner. Therefore, the use, sale, distribution, manufacturing, or possession of alcohol, or any drugs, including prescription medication used in an unauthorized manner is strictly prohibited and may result in disciplinary action up to, and including, termination. Each employee has access to HCC employee rules and regulations governing employee conduct in the HCC General New Employee Orientation Booklet, (GNEO). These rules and regulations are in effect when on campus in any capacity and participating in any HCC (or College) sponsored activity, either on campus or at an off-campus event. College employees are subject to disciplinary actions as outlined in the HCC/HR policies and regulations.
  3. State and Federal Statues - Houston Community College (HCC) provides notice of the federal and state laws and regulations, including legal sanctions, which govern alcoholic beverages and controlled substances. The laws are listed and can be found at the following link: https://www.hccs.edu/support-services/drug--alcohol-abuse-prevention/standards-of-conduct-drugs-and-alcohol-abuse/
  4. Health Risks - Houston Community College (HCC) recognizes that drug and alcohol use is a health problem with serious consequences that affect students and their ability to reach their goals. Health risks associated with drug and alcohol use can be found on the College Drinking, Change the Culture website and DEA-United States Drug Enforcement Administration via a link from www.hccs.edu: https://www.collegedrinkingprevention.gov/ and https://www.dea.gov/factsheets
  5. Prevention Program - HCC has established a Drug and Alcohol Prevention Program to inform its faculty, staff, and students about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, penalties that may be imposed for drug and alcohol abuse violations, and available resources to combat drug and alcohol related issues. The following approaches and program activities and services constitute HCC’s effort to prevent drug and alcohol abuse on the part of students. The student services area provides oversight for the content and timelines of the programs for students.
    • A. Individual counseling services using Motivational/Feedback techniques
    • B. Use of the Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students (BASICS) administered by trained counselors
    • C. Use of the web-based surveys, Alcohol eCheckUp To Go and Marijuana eCheckUp To Go, to provide students individualized feedback
    • D. Educational Awareness Programs - at least one workshop, seminar, or presentation at event per college during the academic year open to students, faculty, and staff
    • E. Informational Services - counseling offices will provide readily available brochures and information sheets on alcohol and drug use to students
    • F. Referral Services - a list of referral services specialized in providing services and assisting individuals with substance use related issue
  6. Biennial Review - On a biennial basis, a committee chaired by the Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Success and comprised of representatives from the police department, human resources, counseling, financial aid, and student life will conduct a review of the program to assess the following:
    • A. Determine the effectiveness of the program and implement necessary changes
    • B. Determine the number of drug and alcohol-related violations and fatalities that occur on the HCC campuses
    • C. Determine the number and type of sanctions that are imposed
    • D. Ensure that sanctions are consistently enforced

Hazing Information
HCC prohibits hazing and/or any conduct related to hazing by any individual, group, or organization. Individuals or organizations that engage in conduct constituting hazing are subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the HCC Student Code of Conduct and Discipline Procedures and prosecution in accordance with applicable law.
Texas Education Code Chapter 37, Subchapter F governs conduct considered to be hazing in educational institutions. Criminal offenses may be imposed for hazing for both individuals and organizations.
Pursuant to Texas Education Code Section 37.151(6), “hazing” means any intentional, knowing, or reckless act, occurring on or off campus by one person alone or acting with others, directed against a student, that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student for the purpose of pledging, being initiated into, affiliating with, holding office in, or maintaining membership in any organization whose members are or include other students. The term includes:

  1. Any type of physical brutality, such as whipping, beating, striking, branding, electronic shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or similar activity;
  2. Any type of physical activity, such as sleep deprivation, exposure to the elements, confinement in a small space, calisthenics, or other activity that subjects the student to an unreasonable risk of harm or that adversely affects the mental or physical health or safety of the student;
  3. Any activity involving consumption of a food, liquid, alcoholic beverage, liquor, drug, or other substance that subjects the student to an unreasonable risk of harm or that adversely affects the mental or physical health or safety of the student;
  4. Any activity that intimidates or threatens the student with ostracism, that subjects the student to extreme mental stress, shame, or humiliation, or that adversely affects the mental health or dignity of the student or discourages the student from entering or remaining registered in an educational institution, or that may reasonably be expected to cause a student to leave the organization or the institution rather than submit to acts described above; or
  5. Any activity that induces, causes, or requires the student to perform a duty or task that involves a violation of the Penal Code.

An individual commits the offense of hazing if the individual: (1) engages in hazing; (2) solicits, encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid another in engaging in hazing; or (3) has first-hand knowledge of the planning of a specified hazing incident involving a student in an educational institution, or first-hand knowledge that a hazing incident has occurred, and knowingly fails to report that knowledge in writing to the dean of students or other appropriate official of the institution. The degree of offense depends on the specific conduct of the individual and the extent of injury to the victim. Additionally, an organization is subject to criminal penalties for engaging in hazing. An organization commits the offense of hazing if the organization condones or encourages hazing, or if an officer or any combination of members, pledges, or alumni of the organization commits or assists in the commission of hazing. Such offense is punishable as a misdemeanor by imposition of a fine. It is not a defense to prosecution for the offense of hazing that the victim acquiesced or consented to the act of hazing. Further, an individual who makes a report in good faith to the dean of students or other college official of an act of hazing is immune from criminal prosecution and civil liability that might otherwise be imposed as a result of the report. In addition to the penalties imposed by Texas Education Code Chapter 37, Subchapter F, individuals or organizations that engage in hazing may be subject to prosecution for other offenses in the Penal Code and subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the HCC Student Code of Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures.

Gang-Free Zones
Certain criminal offenses, including those involving organized criminal activity such as gang-related crimes, will be enhanced to the next highest category of offense if they are committed in a gangfree zone. For purposes of the college district, a gang-free zone includes a school bus and a location in, on, or within 1,000 feet of any district-owned or leased property or campus.

 

2017-2019 Calendar

SessionsFall 2017Fall 2017

RT (16 weeks)

August 28 -- December 17  August 27 -- December 16 
F4A (First 4 weeks)

August 28 -- September 24

 August 27 -- September 23
F8A (First 8 Weeks) August 28 -- October 22  August 27 -- October 21 
 SS (Second Start 12 weeks) September 25 -- December 17  September 24 -- December 16 
 F8B (Second 8 weeks)  October 23 -- December 17 October 22 -- December 16 
 DL1 (Dual Credit 15 weeks)  September 5 -- December 17 September 4 -- December 16 
DL2 (Dual Credit 14 weeks) September 11 -- December 17 September 10 -- December 16
Sessions Spring 2018 Spring 2019
Mini Session (4 weeks)

December 18 -- January 10

December 17 -- January 9
RT (16 weeks) January 16 -- May 13 January 14 -- May 12
F4A (First 4 weeks) January 16 -- February 11 January 14 -- February 10
F8A (First 8 weeks) January 16 to March 11 January 14 -- March 10
SS (Second Start 12 weeks) February 12 -- May 13 February 11 -- May 12
F8B (Second 8 weeks) March 19 -- May 13 March 18 -- May 12
DL1 (Dual Credit 15 weeks) January 22 -- May 13 January 22 -- May 12
DL2 (Dual Credit 14 weeks) January 29 -- May 13 January 28 -- May 12
Sessions Summer 2017 Summer 2019
Mini Session (3 weeks) May 14 -- June 3 May 13 -- June 2
S8A (First 8 weeks) June 4 -- July 29 June 3 -- July 28
S1 (First 5 weeks) June 4 -- July 8 June 3 -- July 7
S10 (10 weeks)

June 4 -- August 12

June 3 -- August 11
S2 (Second 5 weeks)

July 9 -- August 12

July 8 -- August 11

C12(Coleman 12 weeks)

May 29 -- August 19

May 28 -- August 18
Holidays (no class)

2017-2018

2018-2019
Labor Day

September 4

September 3
Thanksgiving Break

November 23 - 26

November 22 - 25
Winter Break

December 19 -- January 1

December 19 -- January 1
Martin Luther King , Jr.

January 15

January 21
President's Day

February 19

February 18
Spring Break

March 12 - 18

March 11 - 17
Spring Holiday

March 30 -- April 1

April 19 - 21
Memorial Day

May 28

May 27

Independence Day

July 4

July 4

 

Houston Community College is committed to providing an educational climate that is conducive to the personal and professional development of each individual. HCC does not discriminate and prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity and gender expression, national origin, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or Veteran status. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies:

David Cross, Director EEO/Compliance, Title IX Coordinator
3100 Main Street, Suite 702
Houston, TX 77002
713.718.8271 or institutional.equity@hccs.edu