Financial Aid Policies

Awarding

Once a student has been accepted for admission and submitted all documentation necessary to determine financial aid eligibility, a financial aid award package is constructed.   The amount and type of financial aid for which the student qualifies, in most cases, is determined by the results of his/her Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which determines the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that the student and his/her family should be able to contribute toward the student's college expenses. The EFC is deducted from your Cost of Attendance to determine the student's demonstrated financial need.    The Financial Aid Office attempts to meet as much of a student's financial need and direct costs (tuition, books, and room and board, if residing on campus) with a combination of grants, scholarships, loans, and student employment programs. In constructing a financial aid award, full-time enrollment is assumed. (See Enrollment and Attendance Requirements for more information on enrollment statuses.)   When constructing a financial aid award package, the Financial Aid Office evaluates eligibility for individual federal, state and institutional programs. Eligibility for grants and scholarships are considered before loans and student employment programs are offered. Some financial aid programs have limited funding; therefore, these programs are awarded to students with the greatest need on a first-come, first serve basis until all available funds are depleted.

After your financial aid package is completed, you will receive an email notification that your financial aid award is available.   The notification will include instructions on accessing your award on our secure website, MyLC.   If an e-mail address is not available or the student opted-out of electronic communication, the award letter will be mailed in duplicate to the student's permanent mailing address.   A link to Understanding Your Financial Aid Award Letter, which contains information on maintaining financial aid eligibility and individual program requirements is included and should be read before accepting the financial aid award.   After reviewing the financial aid award, the student will have an opportunity to accept, decline, or reduce each financial aid program included in the award.  

Awards from Outside Sources

When determining eligibility for need-based financial aid programs, private scholarships and grants must be considered. If the student expects to receive scholarship assistance from a source other than LaGrange College, it must be reported to the Financial Aid Office.   Adjustments to the student's financial aid award may be necessary according to his/her financial need and program guidelines. Typically, need-based loan assistance is reduced first, if necessary.

Enrollment and Attendance Requirements

The amount of financial aid you can receive for a semester or quarter is based on your enrollment status at the end of the drop/add period and class attendance. Federal regulations mandate that only courses required for your degree program be used in determining your enrollment status for financial aid purposes. It is also important to note that as a financial aid recipient federal student aid regulations permit only one repetition (repeat) of a previously passed course in determining your enrollment status. (See " Repeated Course Limitation " below) The chart below reflects the minimum credit hours required for financial aid recipients to be considered full-time, three-quarter or half-time during a semester.

Enrollment Status

Full-Time

3/4 time*

Half-time

Undergraduate

12

9

6

Graduate

6 or more

N/A

3

*Only applies to Federal Pell Grant

Regular class attendance is required to establish eligibility for your financial aid award. If it is determined that a student's attendance in a course(s) cannot be documented by the instructor(s), the student will not receive financial aid for the course(s). As a result, the student's financial aid award will be cancelled or reduced to reflect the courses in which attendance was established. The student will be responsible for repaying any financial assistance for which he/she is deemed ineligible. Failure to resolve the overpayment can result in your ineligibility for future financial assistance at any college or university until the overpayment is resolved.

 Financial aid is awarded under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire academic year or semester for which financial assistance was awarded. The financial aid award of a student who does not enroll for a semester will be canceled and all funds returned to the applicable financial aid programs.

Repeated Course Limitations

 Financial aid funds are expected to be used to cover those courses required to complete a student's chosen major. Effective July 1, 2011, a previously passed course may only be repeated once and be counted as credit in determining a student's enrollment status (full-time, part-time, etc.). Any repetition of a class after passing it the second time, will not count in the student's enrollment status.

Withdrawal Procedures

Occasionally, it may be necessary to withdraw from an individual course or from all classes in a semester/quarter. If this should be necessary, it is the student's responsibility to initiate the withdrawal by contacting the Source Center.

 If the student fails to follow the withdrawal process, financial aid awards for subsequent terms of enrollment will be canceled. It will be the student's responsibility to contact the Financial Aid Office to request financial aid if he/she returns to school during the academic year for which aid was originally offered. It should be noted that the financial aid award will be based on available funds at the time of the request.

 In the event you completely withdraw (officially or unofficially) from school before the sixty percent (60%) point in time of the term, a refund calculation must be performed to determine the amount of financial assistance that the student earned for the portion of the semester completed. Funds received that are greater than the amount earned must be returned by LaGrange College and the student to the financial aid programs funding his/her education. Failure to do so can result in the student's ineligibility for future financial assistance.

If at any time you are considering dropping courses or changing your enrollment status, you should consult the Financial Aid Office before making a final decision to determine the effect on your financial aid eligibility.

Return to Title IV Refund and LaGrange College Fee Refund Policies

 Financial aid funds are awarded with the expectation that the student will attend classes for the entire term for which the assistance was awarded.  In the event a student withdraws or ceases attendance in all registered classes in a term, the student may not be eligible for the full amount of financial aid that was originally disbursed.  The Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended in 1998, require institutions to calculate a Return to Title IV Refund and a Refund of Institutional charges when a student withdraws or otherwise ceases attendance after beginning classes.  These calculations determine if the student earned all the awarded aid and if the student is due a refund on assessed institutional charges for the term.  The Return of Title IV Funds Policy applies to Federal aid such as Federal Pell Grant, SEOG, Direct Stafford Loan, Perkins Loan, Direct PLUS, and TEACH Grant.  LaGrange College also applies the same policy to State and Institutional aid programs.

 The Return of Title IV Refund applies only to students who completely withdraw from all registered classes after beginning attendance.   This policy does not apply if the student withdraws from an individual course but not all classes in a term or if the student never began class attendance. 

 LaGrange College Withdrawal Process and Effective Date

 It is the responsibility of the student to initiate a complete withdrawal from the College.   The withdrawal date for refund calculation purposes will be the date the student initiated or expressed his/her intention to withdraw from all courses by notifying the Source Center, located on the first floor of Smith Hall.  It is recommended that the student consult with the Financial Aid Office to determine the impact a withdrawal may have on future financial aid eligibility. 

 A student who receives grades of W or F in ALL classes and is determined to have ceased attendance before the end of the term will be considered an unofficially withdrawal.  In the event of an unofficial withdrawal, the Financial Aid Office will contact the instructor to obtain a last date of attendance at an academic related activity.  The withdrawal date will be the later of the last date of attendance documented by the instructor or the midpoint of the term, if a date cannot be determined.

 LaGrange College Institutional Refund Policy

 Based on the date of withdrawal, you may be eligible for a full or partial refund of your charges for the term.  The Business Office will apply the College’s Refund Policy to determine if a refund is due—see refund details below.  A student who completely withdraws from all classes can receive a refund up to the 60% point of the term which is measured in calendar days not business days.  Any withdrawal after the 60% point will not result in any adjustment to fee charges.  This refund policy will not impact the Return of Title IV Refund calculation but does affect the amount of money a student may owe to the College as result of the withdrawal.  The College’s refund policies for the refund of tuition, fees, room and board are described below.

 Tuition and Fees Refund Policy

 Tuition, course related fees, and books purchased through the College will be refunded on a prorated basis measured by the number of calendar days the student attended up to the date of withdrawal divided by the number of days in the term.  Federal regulations require that any break of 5 days or more be excluded from the number of days in the term.  The begin date of a term is defined by the academic calendar of the program, even if the student does not have a scheduled class on that date, and ends on the last day of final exams.  Parking permits, student health insurance, and testing fees are non-refundable.  The resulting percentage is used to determine the amount of tuition and fee charges the College earned.  The difference in the original refundable tuition and fees less the amount earned by LaGrange College will be credited to the student’s account as unearned fee charges.

Room and Board Refund Policy

 There is no refund on campus housing (the room charge) once the student has taken occupancy of campus owned residential housing.   Board charges (meal plans) will be prorated at a rate of $15 per calendar day of attendance.

 Return of Title IV Refund Policy

 In the event of a complete withdrawal, the Financial Aid Office must calculate the amount of Federal, State, and Institutional financial aid the student earned as of the date of withdrawal.  Any financial aid that exceeds the earned amount must be returned as unearned aid to the respective federal program from which it originated.  LaGrange College and the student are jointly responsible for returning the unearned aid.  The College applies the same policy to state and institutional aid awarded.

 The amount of Federal aid earned is determined by dividing the number of calendar days the student attended prior to withdrawal by the number of calendar days in the term, excluding any break of 5 days or more.  The number of days in the term begins on the first day of classes as indicated on the academic calendar of the program, even if the student does not have a scheduled class on the first day of the term, and ends on the last day of final exams.   (The Return of Title IV Refund Policy applies to students that withdraw on or before the 60% point of the term.  Therefore, if the resulting percentage is greater than 60%, the student is considered to have earned all disbursed aid and no adjustment to financial aid programs is required.)  If the resulting percentage is less than or equal to 60%, the amount of federal aid awarded for the term will be multiplied by the percentage to determine the amount of aid earned.  The earned amount will be subtracted from the original disbursed aid to determine the unearned aid that must be returned to the applicable financial aid programs.  The portion of the unearned aid LaGrange College must return is determined by multiplying the original refundable institutional fee charges by the unearned percentage.  LaGrange College must return the unearned aid, for which it is responsible, in the following order:

       1.     Unsubsidized Direct Stafford Loan

        2.    
Subsidized Direct Stafford Loan

3.     Perkins Loan

4.     Direct PLUS Loan (Graduate Student)

5.     Direct PLUS Loan (Parent)

6.     Federal Pell Grant

7.     SEOG

8.     TEACH Grant

9.     Other Title IV Aid

10.   State, Institutional, and private assistance programs

11.   Student

 

If the school portion of the unearned aid is less than the total unearned aid that must be returned to the financial aid programs, the student will be responsible for returning those funds and paying any balance created from the complete withdrawal.  The student will receive a notification from the Financial Aid Office detailing the aid returned by the College and any aid for which the student is responsible for repaying.  The Business Office will send a statement of any account balance due.

 The Student portion of the Return of Title IV Aid is calculated by subtracting amount of unearned aid repaid by LaGrange College from the total unearned aid.  Depending on the remaining program sources of aid due a refund after the school portion is applied, the student portion is distributed as follows: 

·          If the funds must be returned to a loan program, the student will repay those funds under the terms and conditions of the loan program when the student enters repayment.  The student will not be billed for loan funds that must be returned as a result of a refund calculation upon withdrawal. 

·          If funds are due to a federal grant program, the student will be responsible for repaying 50% of the refund due to the grant program.  This adjustment is made in an effort to reduce the impact of withdrawing on students receiving grant assistance.  LaGrange College will return these funds on the student’s behalf but the student is responsible for reimbursing the College.

 Refund of State and Institutional Grants

 Students receiving non-federal aid are required to return any unearned aid received from these programs.  Funds will be returned in the following order: 

1.     HOPE/Zell Miller Scholarship

2.     Georgia Tuition Equalization Grant

3.     LaGrange College Grants/Scholarships

4.     LaGrange College Tuition Courtesy and Discounts

 Withdrawals and Future Financial Aid Eligibility

 Withdrawal from classes can impact a student’s eligibility for financial aid.  Financial aid recipients must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress for continued eligibility for financial aid programs.  A recipient of student loans may have to begin repayment on his/her Federal Loan.  If the student fails to make required loan payments, the student can go in to default, which makes the student ineligible for future financial aid.  Also, if a student owes a refund to a federal grant or state grant, these funds must be repaid before further financial aid can be received.