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How BFET Works

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Steve Bridges

on 21 May 2016

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Transcript of How BFET Works

How Do I Become a Student at Whatcom Community College?
In order to become a student at WCC, complete the Five Steps to Your First Day, found at

These steps include: applying for the college,
completing math and english placement,
meeting with an academic advisor, completing financial aid, and attend a new student orientation.

During the advising process, you will register for classes for the quarter. Once you have registered, you will be eligible to be enrolled in BFET.

How Do I Enroll in BFET at WCC?
In order to enroll in the BFET program at Whatcom Community College, students must financially eligible for Federal Basic Food (SNAP) and be registered for classes at WCC in an eligible program. The BFET enrollment process may begin before food benefits and/or WCC enrollment are in place, but services will not be provided until both are completed.

Enrollment requires a meeting with a BFET advisor to complete necessary paperwork and help develop a student's academic and employment plan. Once enrolled, the student will be required to maintain WCC satisfactory academic progress and to obtain quarterly progress reports from instructors.

As long as the student is enrolled in courses in an eligible program, making satisfactory progress and receiving Basic Food, BFET enrollment will be carried forward each quarter.
Where Can I Get More Information?
Getting food benefits in place and becoming a student can seem complicated and confusing. This is especially for people new to both, such as those facing a recent layoff or who are accessing public services for the first time.

For further information, appointments with a BFET advisor can be made through WCC Entry and Advising at 360.383.3080. You can also contact BFET directly at 360.383.3185 or bfet@whatcom.ctc.edu. BFET staff are happy to answer any and all questions you may have about Whatcom Community College, Basic Food, and other community resources. Meeting with BFET staff is not a commitment to enroll in either Basic Food or Whatcom Community College.
What is BFET?
What does BFET provide?
Students in the BFET program are exempted from the work requirements tied to Basic Food benefits while enrolled in school. This means that both food and childcare benefits (if needed) remain in place while the student builds skills for greater opportunities in the job market.

Additionally, BFET may provide limited tuition/fee/book assistance to those students enrolled in the program who have unmet need in these areas.

BFET also connects students to resources both on and off campus. BFET advisors provide an additional layer of support for students while they are completing their professional/technical degree.
How Do I Apply for Basic Food?
You can apply for Basic Food either online at washingtonconnection.org/home or by visiting the Whatcom County DSHS office, located at:
4101 Meridian Street in Bellingham. An interview is required for each method, either by phone (1.877.501.2233) or in person.

Students inform DSHS that they wish to enroll in the BFET program on their Basic Food application or renewal. This is done by checking the box indicating you are a student.

If you are not currently receiving food benefits you need to contact the BFET office at WCC to request a letter establishing your BFET eligibility.

If you need childcare subsidies you need to complete an additional application for Working Connections Childcare.
Once BOTH Basic Food benefits are in place and WCC registration is completed, a student can be enrolled in BFET. BFET membership continues as long as the student maintains food benefits and remains enrolled in an eligible program at WCC.
How BFET Works
The Link Between Basic Food and Whatcom Community College
The Washington State Basic Food Employment and Training (BFET) program provides education and job readiness opportunities to Federal Basic Food (SNAP) recipients who are
receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)*. Students receiving State food benefits (Food Assistance Program) are not eligible for BFET.

BFET is available to all Whatcom Community College students receiving Basic Food and who are enrolled in an eligible academic program. Eligible programs include professional/technical programs and their prerequisites or basic skills education such as ABE, ESL, GED and High School 21+ classes.

*Students who receive TANF access similar services through the Workfirst program. These students can contact Megan Dougherty at 360.383.3182.
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