STUDENTS RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
The student has the right to know:
- Types of available financial aid.
- Deadlines for submitting the 2019-2020 FAFSA for aid, June 30, 2020.
- When financial aid will be distributed.
- That financial need is determined by the Estimated Family Contribution number assigned by completing the FAFSA.
- The college’s refund policy.
- What portion of your aid package is “gift aid such as scholarships” and what must be repaid (loans).
- About the affect outside scholarships may have on your financial aid award.
- If the aid is a loan, you have the right to know the interest rate, repayment amount and procedures, length of time to repay and when repayment begins.
- How the college determines if you are making satisfactory academic progress, and what happens when you are not.
- You have the right to accept, decline or seek adjustment to your financial aid award(s).
- Information you give to the Office of Student Financial Planning will be confidential.
It is the student’s responsibility to:
- Apply for financial aid every year.
- Complete the FAFSA application form accurately and submit it on time.
- Provide correct information. Information found to be knowingly falsified may be referred to the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Inspector General.
- Provide all additional documentation requested by the Office of Student Financial Planning.
- Read all forms you sign.
- Keep copies of all your financial aid records.
- If required, you must register with the Selective Service System.
- Complete the required entrance and exit loan counseling sessions.
- Repay all loans in accordance with the terms of your promissory notes.
- Notify your lender if any of the following occurs before your loan is repaid: change of name, change of address, graduation, withdrawal or less than half-time attendance and transfer to another institution.
- Notify the Office of Student Financial Planning if you:
- Change your residency /housing plan,
- Change your marital status,
- Change your major,
- Change your graduate/undergraduate status,
- Change your enrollment status (i.e. full-time to below full-time).
FINANCIAL AID AND FEE PAYMENT
Fees are calculated each semester or term after the student registers. For students in which the Office of Student Financial Planning has received all requested documentation and the student’s financial aid file is complete, financial aid will be automatically applied to the student’s account after rosters have been finalized by faculty each semester and/or term and when funds have been received from outside entities. (Outside entities are, but not limited to, SC Tuition Grant agency, Palmetto/Life/Hope agency, veteran affairs, loan processors, alternative loan agencies, Parent PLUS Loans, vocational rehabilitation, workforce or trade agencies, and outside scholarship entities.)
The U.S. Department of Education requires that Federal Title IV financial aid funds be applied toward allowable institutional charges (tuition, fees, housing, and meal plans). Non-allowable institutional charges are items such as health fees, parking tickets, lock-out fees, etc. Federal Title IV funds can pay for up to $200 of the previous academic year’s remaining balance.
Questions regarding the student’s Statement of Account? Contact 843-383-8002
Questions regarding the student’s financial aid? Contact 843-383-8055
FINANCIAL AID ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS
Students with criminal convictions are subject to eligibility restrictions and may not be eligible for federal and/or state funds. The Higher Education Act of 1965, amended, relays that if a student has been convicted under federal or state law of the possession or sale of drugs while enrolled in school, that the student’s federal and state financial aid will be suspended. If the student is convicted of a drug offense after you submit the FAFSA, the student will lose eligibility for federal aid and may be liable for returning any financial aid they received during the period of ineligibility.
The student may regain eligibility by passing two random drug tests conducted by a drug rehabilitation program—the program must meet the criteria established by the U.S. Department of Education. If the student regains eligibility, contact the Office of Student Financial Planning.\
UNUSUAL ENROLLMENT HISTORY
A student’s FAFSA may be flagged as ‘unusual enrollment history’ by the U.S. Department of Education if the student has a pattern of enrolling in multiple colleges over multiple years, showing unusual activity. The student will receive an “Unusual Enrollment History” document to complete and return to the Office of Student Financial Planning. The Office of Student Financial Planning will review the “Unusual Enrollment History” documents and the student’s transcripts for four concurrent award years and determine if federal and/or state funding will be approved for the academic year. If it is determined that the student is enrolling just long enough to collect student aid funds, then the student’s “Unusual Enrollment History” documents will not be approved and will not be eligible for federal and/or state funding. (Federal funding includes Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, loans, PLUS Loan, work-study, and state funding includes the SC Tuition Grant.)
Student loans will be certified after the withdrawal date for each semester or term. This change was instituted due to inconsistencies in course registrations and students withdrawing from classes prior to the final withdrawal period. In such cases creating an overpayment to the student in which it is hard to regain those over-paid funds. This policy will help to ensure students are actively enrolled.
OPTION TO DENY LOANS TO STUDENTS
If a student is eligible for student loans, the Office of Student Financial Planning has the right to deny the distribution of Direct Loans Stafford and/or Parent PLUS Loans, or alternative loans. Student Financial Planning staff have the right to deny or revoke student loans for the reasons listed below.
- The student may be negligent in repaying loans;
- The student is concurrently enrolled at another institution;
- The student has not provided requested documents;
- The student provided fraudulent information; and/or
- The school received notice that the student is in default, bankruptcy status, overpayment status, or has a disability discharge status.
FINANCIAL AID SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS GUIDELINES
In accordance with federal regulations (HEA Sec. 484(c), 34 CFR 668.16(e), 34 CFR 668.32(f), 34 CFR 600.2, and 34 CFR 668.34), students must maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) in order to receive Federal Title IV aid. Coker University is mandated to deny financial aid to any student that is not in compliance with SAP. The following are Coker University’s SAP guidelines for financial aid. Financial Aid SAP is processed during each academic year at the end of the summer term, and for each enrollment period for which a student is provisionally approved through an appeal and/or academic plan process.
In order to receive Federal Title IV aid, the student must comply with the following eligibility requirements.
- Students must be admitted and enrolled as a degree-seeking student, and take courses required for the chosen degree completion. Only courses required for degree completion for your selected degree program will be eligible for Federal Title IV funds (Pell, SEOG, Work-Study, Direct Loans, Parent PLUS Loans, Perkins Loans, SC Tuition Grant, and Hope, LIFE, or Palmetto Fellows Scholarships). Per 34 CFR 600.2, courses that do not count toward the completion of the student’s degree program requirements are not eligible for federal funding.
- Maintain a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 2.0 or higher (as outlined in the college catalog under “Continuation Requirements and Classification Probation”).
- Complete at least 67% of the cumulative credit hours attempted during the academic year toward chosen program of enrollment (grades of W, I, and F will be counted as hours attempted).
- Transfer students must be making SAP at his or her previous college.
- Students must complete their chosen degree requirements for a single degree within the 150% published length of the program. Coker University requires that students complete 120-degree hours within the student’s chosen program—students will have up to 150% of the 120 hours to complete their program for up to 180 attempted credits. All transfer credit hours received by Coker University are included in the total attempted credit hours.
FINANCIAL AID PROBATION AND SUSPENSION
- The student will be considered as not making SAP for Federal Title IV financial aid for one payment period if one or more of the SAP requirements are not met. The student will be required to complete the Financial Aid Appeal process, and if provisionally approved, will be required to follow one or more of the following criteria to be considered for funding for future enrollment periods: make “C’s” or better in all courses; complete courses without incomplete grades; do not withdraw from courses; obtain at least a 2.0 semester/term GPA; and/or complete 100% of attempted hours.
- If the student does not make SAP under an approved appeal, the student’s aid will be placed in suspension status for Federal Title IV aid if SAP is not met during the previously provisionally approved probationary period. If there were mitigating circumstances, the student may contact the Assistant Director of Student Financial Planning to inquire about completing a second appeal. The student may be requested to complete an appeal and an academic plan to be considered for Federal Title IV funding if it is determined that it would take more than one payment period to achieve SAP. If the academic plan is approved, the student will be placed in probationary status and may be required to make progress with one or more of the following criteria: “C’s” or better’ complete courses without incomplete grades; do not withdraw from courses; complete a defined percentage above 67% of attempted hours; complete the term or semester with a 2.0 or higher GPA; and/or increase their CGPA. If the student does not make progress under the academic plan (i.e., make “C’s” or better’ complete courses without incomplete grades; do not withdraw from courses; complete a defined percentage above 67% of attempted hours; complete the term or semester with a 2.0 or higher GPA; and/or increase their CGPA), s/he will no longer be eligible for Federal Title IV funding. The academic plan length will be determined during the review progress and will not exceed the maximum program timeframe, but may be active until the student reaches SAP.
- The student will be placed on suspension for Federal Title IV financial aid if at least 67% of the cumulative credit hours attempted are not completed during the academic calendar year.
- The student will be placed on suspension for Federal Title IV financial aid when attempted hours exceed 150% of the allowable program credit hours. Attempted hours cannot exceed 180 hours. Transfer hours that count toward the student’s major or program will count in completed and attempted hours.
- Per the Federal Student Aid Handbook (V1, Chapter 1, page 13), “a student that completes the academic requirements for a program but does not yet have a degree is not eligible for further Title IV aid for that program”.
- The student will be allowed three program changes; however, if a student completes graduation requirements for a previous program, the student must graduate or Federal Title IV aid will no longer be available to the student. All courses attempted and completed will be included with program changes and transfer hours related to the program will be counted hours toward degree progression.
- Suspension of Federal Title IV aid will continue until SAP has been achieved. Coker requires that a student take courses for one semester and pay for those courses. When the student demonstrates SAP by completing courses toward progression and continually increasing their cumulative grade point average then the student may notify the Office of Student Financial Planning to review their records and determine Federal Title IV funding reinstatement. Reinstatement of Federal Title IV funding will not be retroactive.
- Students may repeat courses that were not satisfactorily passed, receiving an “F” grade, if the courses are required for program completion. Only one-course repeat will be eligible for federal funding if the student has previously pass the course; however, if the student repeats a course that they pass and fails the course then the student is not eligible to repeat the course (34 CFR 668.2(b)).
- Federal Title IV aid is not automatically reinstated when a student regains SAP after a period of financial aid suspension. Student must request the Office of Student Financial Planning re-evaluate their progress in order to have aid reinstated.
- The student will not be eligible for financial aid if in academic suspension status.
- Students can appeal the denial of Federal Title IV financial aid due to lack of SAP. The appeal must be made in writing to the Assistant Director of Student Financial Planning at least 2 weeks prior to the 1st day of classes. The appeal should provide the reason(s) (illness, injury, death of a family member, or other special circumstance) why SAP was not achieved, what has changed that would allow demonstration of progress at next evaluation, and what the student intends to do to regain SAP. Documentation substantiating the reason for the lack of SAP must be provided. The appeal conditions will be, but are not limited to: make “C’s” or better’ complete courses without incomplete grades (“B’s” or better for graduate students); do not withdraw from courses; complete a defined percentage above 67% of attempted hours; complete the term or semester with a 2.0 or higher GPA; and/or increase their CGPA.
- If a student’s appeal is approved, but it is determined that the student will require more than one semester to achieve SAP, the student will be placed on financial aid probation with an academic plan. As long as the student meets the requirements of the academic plan (subject to maximum timeframe requirements), s/he will continue to be eligible for Federal Title IV aid. Progress is checked at the end of each payment period, or enrollment period.
- If the appeal is denied by the Assistant Director of Student Financial Planning, the student has the right to appeal the decision with the Director of Student Financial Planning. If the Director of Student Financial Planning denies the appeal, the student may appeal to the following staff member in the following order: Vice President for Enrollment Management, and last, the President of the college.
- Students can appeal a maximum of two times provided that progress was made during the previous payment period.
- Academic plans can be customized for the student and will dictate conditions that must be met along with the number of semesters or terms allowed to regain financial aid SAP. The academic plan conditions will be, but are not limited to the following criteria during the payment period: make “C’s” or better’ complete courses without incomplete grades (“B’s” or better for graduate students); do not withdraw from courses; complete a defined percentage above 67% of attempted hours; complete the term or semester with a 2.0 or higher GPA; and/or increase their CGPA.
- Academic plans are not indefinite and are subject to maximum timeframe progression.
GRADUATE PROGRAM STUDENTS
- Students must be admitted and enrolled as a degree-seeking student.
- Graduate program students must complete courses as outlined in the college catalog, within 8 terms of continuous enrollment, and for interrupted enrollment 5 years from first enrollment. For the purpose of receiving Federal Title IV funding, students must complete their graduate degree within 150% of the published length of the program. If Coker University requires that students complete 30 degree hours for a graduate program—students will have up to 150% of the 30 hours to complete their program for up to 45 attempted credits. If 33 hours are required then the student will have up to 150% of the 33 hours to complete their program up to 49 hours. If 42 hours are required for a graduate program, then the student will have up to 150% of the 42 hours to complete their program up to 63 hours. All transfer credit hours received by Coker University are included in the total attempted credit hours.
- If a student receives up to 6.0 credit hours with a “C” grade, then the student may count the hours toward graduation. The student will be dismissed from the program if a “C” grade is received for more than 6.0 credit hours.
- If a student obtains a “D” or “F”, s/he must retake the course at Coker University. The student will be eligible for Federal Title IV funding to repeat courses passed with a “D” one time provided that the course(s) are required for graduation in the graduate program. Financial aid will pay repeatedly for classes that student has failed, until the student passes with “D” or better and it is a course required for graduation.
- Students who receive a below 3.00 CGPA will be placed on academic probation and financial aid suspension. The student will be required to complete the Financial Aid Appeal process and if approved the student will be eligible for financial aid for one payment period. The student may be required to complete an academic plan if it is determined that SAP cannot be achieved in one payment period to be considered for Federal Title IV funding. If the academic plan is approved the student may be required to: make “B’s” or better’ complete courses without incomplete grades (“B’s” or better for graduate students); do not withdraw from courses; complete a defined percentage above 67% of attempted hours; complete the term or semester with a 2.0 or higher GPA; and/or increase their CGPA. If the student does not make progress after the academic plan, s/he will no longer be eligible for Federal Title IV funding.
- The student will be placed on suspension for Federal Title IV aid if SAP is not met during the probationary period.
- The student will not be eligible for financial aid if in academic suspension status.
- Suspension of Federal Title IV aid will continue until SAP has been achieved.