Financial Aid Policies

FAFSA Requirement

The FAFSA must be completed each academic year in order to stay eligible for Federal Student Aid (FSA). The eligible students must complete FAFSA between October 1, 2020 and June 30, 2022 for the 2021-2022 academic year and between October 1, 2021 and June 30, 2023 for 2022-2023 academic year. In some cases, a new MPN must be completed if there is a pending expiration date. The FSA website: www.studentaid.ed.gov gives information on (1) Types of Aid, (2) Who gets Aid, (3) Estimate your Aid, (4) Repay your Loan. To meet the requirements of Federal Title IV programs and state grants, students must comply with a set of: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Maximum Time Frame academic measurement standards. These are defined by the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy available in the Financial Aid (FA) office (different from the institutional academic SAP policy).

For FA recipients, the policy includes and regulates the follows:

Qualitative Measurement: Students must maintain a minimum cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 (C) as an undergraduate student and 3.0 (B) as a graduate student.
Quantitative Measurement:
The number of units required for completion varies by program. A standard academic year at Lincoln University is defined as two semesters and one session. To be considered making quantitative satisfactory academic progress, all financial aid applicants and recipients must adhere to Unit Completion Rate/Pace Requirement. This means they must receive credits for at least 67% of all units attempted during a term. No credits are given for the following symbols: I, W, NC, Y, and F.
Maximum Timeframe:
Financial aid is not provided to students who exceed 150% of the total number of units required for their program, including transfer units.

Financial Aid Warning

Any student who fails to meet the academic measurement standards for either GPA and/or units completed percentage will be notified and placed on a FA warning for one term. Students are still eligible to receive federal aid while on a FA warning.

Financial Aid Termination Policy

If a student fails to meet the standards of satisfactory academic progress at the end of the probationary semester period, a dismissal letter from the financial aid program will be issued to the student. The termination status will include a letter informing the student of the Reinstatement and Appeal Process.

Appeal Process/Financial Aid Probation

If a student fails to meet the standards of satisfactory academic progress (SAP), he/she may be placed on Financial Aid Probation for a period of no longer than one semester while still participating in the federal financial aid program. The probationary period begins the next semester of enrollment. A letter informing the student of the probationary status and the need to meet the standards to maintain financial aid eligibility will be issued.

Financial Aid Reinstatement

At the time when the student meets the minimum satisfactory academic progress requirements, the student financial aid eligibility will be automatically reinstated. If a student has extenuating circumstances that prevent him/her from making academic progress toward a degree, an appeal may be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid as soon as the student receives official notification or 3 weeks before the end of the semester. The Financial Aid Office will review and consider appeals for extenuating circumstances such as a death in the family, a serious medical illness (personal or immediate family), accident, house fire, or other special circumstances.

Withdrawal & Return of Title IV Refund Policy & Procedure

When a recipient of Title IV grant or loan assistance withdraws from Lincoln University during a payment period or period of enrollment in which the student began attendance, LU determines the amount of Title IV grant or loan assistance that the student earned as of the student’s withdrawal date with the appropriate Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculations as listed on the FAA Website: https://faaaccess.ed.gov. If the student withdraws after the 60% point in payment or period of enrollment, the student has earned 100% of the Title IV funds scheduled to receive during the period.

A student is considered to have withdrawn period of enrollment if the student does not complete all the days in the payment period or period of enrollment that the student was scheduled to complete. If the student received more Title IV fund than earned based on the date of withdrawal, an R2T4 is completed and any excess received are returned to the Department of Education. Aid to be returned = (100% of the aid that could be disbursed minus the percentage of earned aid) multiplied by the total amount of aid that could have been disbursed during the payment period or term.

Title IV Funds are returned the following order:

  1. Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford loans.
  2. Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford loans.
  3. Federal Direct PLUS received on behalf of the student.
  4. Federal Pell Grants.

If the student received less Title IV funds than earned, a post withdrawal disbursement is be made for any Pell Grant. Direct Loan post-withdrawal disbursements are made only if written confirmation is received from the student (or parent in the case of a PLUS loan). The Financial Aid Advisor will notify the student within 30 days of the date of determination that the student needs to confirm any post-withdrawal loan funds to be credited to the student account. Post withdrawal disbursements must be made as soon as possible but within 120 days of the student’s withdrawal.

Official Withdrawals:

Lincoln University’s Registrar’s office will inform the student by email and in-person and it’s the student responsibility to pick up the Official University Withdrawal Form from the Admissions/Records Office. The student will then obtain the signature of required instructors and advisors. The Financial Aid Office will conduct an Exit Counseling session and instruct the student to complete the interactive electronic Exit Counseling online at www.studentloans.gov. Once this action has been completed The Financial Aid Office will sign off on the official withdrawal form. In the process if the student borrower withdraws without notifying the school, Lincoln University will confirm that the student has completed the online counseling and if the student has not, then Exit Counseling material will be mailed to the student borrower’s last known address within 30 days of learning that the borrower has withdrawn or failed to participate in the exit counseling session. Documentation will be maintained in the student’s file to substantiate the school’s compliance. After the appropriate signatures are obtained the R2T4 calculation is performed in CPS on FAA Access and The Financial Aid Office records the award adjustment based on the R2T4 worksheet. The Financial Aid Office will run the Excel transmittal process in conjunction with The Accounting/Fiscal Office. The Accounting/Fiscal Office will return the required funds to G5. A copy of the R2T4 worksheet will be placed in the student’s file.

Unofficial Withdrawals:

The Registrar’s Office will run a report at the 15th day of class and then another report at the end of each semester of all federal financial aid recipients to determine the Unofficial Withdrawals. A student is considered unofficially withdrawn if he/she is absent no greater than 15 days after the official last date of attendance; or when a student fails to return from an approved leave of absence. Lincoln University will return all amounts of federal financial aid funds for which the school is responsible no later than 45 days after the date the designated school official in the Registrar’s office determines the student has withdrawn. The Accounting/Fiscal Office will be responsible for returning the unearned funds to U.S. Department of Education G5.

The Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU)

The Federal Pell Grant regulations limit the amount of Pell Grant that any student can receive in a lifetime to 600% or the equivalent of six-years for example; an award year is a period from July 1 of one calendar year to June 30 of the next calendar year. ED tracks the student LEU by adding the percentages of the Pell Grant scheduled awards each student receives for each award year. If a student receives in a year $2,775 of a $5,550 scheduled award the student would have received a 50% LEU, or likewise $3,750 of a $5,000 scheduled award the student percent used would be 75% and a receipt of $4,000 of a $4,000 scheduled award the percent used would be calculated at 100% for that year until the student reaches a combined total of 600% Lifetime Eligibility Used. A student may log on the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) using the assigned Federal Student FSAID PIN and view the LEU at: www.nslds.ed.gov. In addition, students may also check the status of their borrowed loan account balances and payment history, again using the 4-digit pin number, twenty-four (24) hours a day on the website noted at: www.myedaccount.com. Also, at the website: www.myeddebt.com students can conduct Debt Resolution and resolve defaulted loans through online payment. Moreover, any student that wishes to participate in the federal direct loan consolidation program may do so by contacting: www.loanconsolidation.ed.gov.

The 150% Direct Subsidized Loan Limit

As part of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) (Public Law 112-141) the U.S. Department of Education (ED) has added a new provision to the Direct Loan statutory requirement that limits a first-time borrower’s eligibility for Direct Subsidized Loan to a period not to exceed 150% of the length of the borrower’s educational program. The 150% Limit is reached when the Remaining Eligibility Period equals zero or less as calculated by ED. All first-time borrowers on or after July 1, 2013 are subject to this new provision. A first-time borrower is defined as any student that did not have an outstanding balance of principal and interest on a Direct Loan (or on an older FFEL Program Loan) as of July 1, 2013. This provision would also include students who may have previously paid off their outstanding student loans. The borrower’s educational program is defined as the eligible program that the student is enrolled in, and for which the student is applying for a Direct Subsidized Loan. The Department of Education will calculate the first-time borrower’s maximum eligibility period, as well as the student’s subsidized usage period. The significant of this information is to determine if the borrower has any remaining eligibility period for Direct Subsidized Loans, and if so, how much. In addition, ED will determine whether a borrower loses interest subsidy on the Direct Subsidized Loans as a result of the 150% limit. The “Subsidized Usage Limit Applies (SULA)” field has been added the electronic functionality. All schools are required to ensure that an updated entrance counseling survey is completed by each student affected by this new provision at the website: www.StudentLoans.gov.

FA SAP Policy

SAP Standard for Title IV Students

Due to federal regulations, standards for Title IV students are the same or stricter than those for non-Title IV students enrolled in the same educational program.

Federal regulations require that all students make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in a program of study to maintain eligibility for financial aid. SAP includes meeting the minimum GPA requirement for your career, school, college, and/or program; completing 67% of all attempted course work, and completing your degree within 150% of the standard program length.

GPA Requirements

Students must maintain a University GPA consistent with their academic program requirement. The University GPA is the official GPA on the student transcript. This GPA is a cumulative GPA from all courses taken at Lincoln University.

Students may repeat a course one time while utilizing federal aid to cover the course. The Office of Financial Aid will recalculate SAP eligibility based on your current cumulative GPA if you repeat coursework.

Undergraduate Program GPA
Undergraduate 2.0

 

Graduate/Professional Program GPA
Graduate 3.0

 

Completion Rate (Pace of Completion)

All students must progress at a pace that allows the student to complete their program within the maximum allotted timeframe.

The pace is calculated by dividing the number of successfully completed credits by the number of attempted credits. Students must pass at least 67% of all attempted credit hours with a grade of D or better or Pass (P).

Non-passing grades for financial aid are: F (failing), I (incomplete), W (withdraw), Y (no basis for grade), or NC (no-credit).

Attempted credit hours are: all hours for current program, regardless of grade received, transfer hours accepted at LU from any other college or university, and AP or IB college credits (undergraduate only). Repeated and non-passing grades will also count as attempted credit hours even if the grade is no longer calculated in the GPA.

For graduate students, IP (in progress) grades are considered satisfactory and will not affect the completion rate.

Maximum Timeframe
Students have up to 150% of their program length to complete their degree before they become ineligible to receive financial aid (including Federal Direct and PLUS loans).

Refer to the chart below to review the maximum timeframe by degree type:

Degree Type Maximum Timeframe
Undergraduate 187 credit hours
Graduate (Master’s) 6 semesters

Maximum timeframe is determined by credit hours for undergraduate programs and is determined by length of program for graduate/professional programs. The maximum credit hours are all attempted hours for current program regardless of grade received, transfer hours accepted at LU from any other college or university, and AP or IB college credits (undergraduate only). Repeated coursework and courses with non-passing grades are also included in maximum credit hours. All coursework is counted whether or not the student received financial aid.

Undergraduate student maximum timeframe is intended for a student to complete all undergraduate coursework including changes in majors or degrees, or a second bachelor’s degree.
Graduate Master’s student maximum timeframe is calculated by terms. Any term that the student has attempted credit hour enrollment will count towards maximum timeframe except for the summer session because it is optional for the student. Terms are counted toward maximum timeframe if the student receives grades of F, I, Y, NC or IP; or the student withdraws for the term with grades of W. The number of terms is not extended for less than full-time enrollment. All terms except for summer session are counted unless the student received financial aid for the summer session, which is then counted.

SAP is evaluated at the end of every term, including summer, whether or not the student receives financial aid for the term. The first violation results in the student receiving a warning. The second violation results in loss of financial aid eligibility. All notifications will be sent to the student’s official university email address.

Notification

Any student who fails to meet the satisfactory progress standards for either GPA and/or units completed percentage will be notified and placed on a Financial Aid Warning for one term. Students are still eligible to receive federal aid while on a Financial Aid Warning.  If an undergraduate student has 60 or more non-passing credit hours, a review will also be done to determine if they can complete their program within the maximum timeframe. If it is determined that a student cannot complete their program within the maximum timeframe, they will be automatically suspended from receiving financial aid.

Financial Aid Termination & Appeal Policy

Financial Aid Termination Policy

If a student fails to meet the standards of satisfactory academic progress at the end of the probationary semester period, a dismissal letter from the financial aid program will be issued to the student. The termination status will include a letter informing the student of the Reinstatement and Appeal Process.

Financial Aid Appeal & Reinstatement Policy

At the time when the student meets the minimum satisfactory academic progress requirements, the student financial aid eligibility will be automatically reinstated. If a student has extenuating circumstances that prevent him/her from making academic progress toward a degree, an appeal may be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid as soon as the student receives official notification or 3 weeks before the end of the semester. The Financial Aid Office will review and consider appeals for extenuating circumstances such as a death in the family, a serious medical illness (personal or immediate family), accident, house fire, or other special circumstances.

Student Loan Repayment

The Loan Servicer and Lender will provide each student recipient/borrower with a loan repayment schedule that states the first payment due date, the number and frequency of payments, and the amount of each payment. It is recommended each student visits the website www.studentaid.ed.gov to review and understand the terms of loan period.

Private Collegiate Loans for Local and International Students

Conditionally admitted, international, and Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program students are not eligible for Title IV funds. There are however private loan funds from U.S. lending and banking institutions for all students including those who do not qualify for Title IV funds. These private banking loans or collegiate student loans must include a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident as co-signer of the loan application. Further information may be obtained from Lincoln University Financial Aid Office.

Return of Title IV Funds

When a student withdraws from Lincoln University, the Financial Aid Office must calculate the amount of financial aid that is earned by the student prior to withdrawing. If there is any excess aid received, it is considered unearned. The unearned financial aid must be returned to the appropriate programs. The calculation of the earned financial aid is done on a daily basis beginning with the first day of class.