FINANCIAL AID PROGRAMS
Federal Pell Grant Program
Pell Grants are awarded usually only to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or a professional degree. The maximum Pell Grant award for the 2012-13 award year (July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013) is $5,550. The maximum may change each award year and depends on program funding. The amount a student is awarded will depend not only on financial need, but also on the costs to attend school, status as a full-time or part-time student, and if a student plans to attend school for a full academic year or less. A student may receive a Pell Grant for a maximum of six years of study.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) program is for undergraduates with exceptional financial need. Award amounts are between $100 and $4,000 a year, depending on financial need and available funds.
Federal Work-Study Program
Federal Work-Study (FWS) provides part-time jobs for undergraduate students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay education expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to the recipient’s course of study. Students are paid an hourly rate no less than the current federal minimum wage. Employment is available in various campus departments or in a community service agency. Student working hours will depend on the need for services.
Federal Aid to Native Americans
An applicant must be a member of a Native American tribe within New York State. Applications can be obtained from the Native American Education Unit, NYS Department of Education, Albany, NY 12230.
NYS Scholarships for Academic Excellence
NYS Scholarships for Academic Excellence provide up to $1,500 per year for up to five years of undergraduate study in New York State. This program provides scholarship assistance to outstanding New York State high school graduates. Each year, 8,000 scholarships are awarded – up to 2,000 scholarships of $1,500 and 6,000 scholarships of $500 – to top scholars from registered New York State high schools. Awards are based on student grades on certain Regents exams. Recipients can also receive other nonloan student aid, but the total cannot exceed the cost of attendance.
NYS Tuition Assistance Program
The New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) helps eligible New York State residents pay tuition at approved schools in New York State. Depending on the academic year in which study begins, an annual TAP award can be up to $5,000. The award range is dependent upon NYS taxable income from the previous year. For associate degree students, there is a limit of six (6) payments. For bachelor’s degree students, there is a limit of eight (8) payments. Associate degree students may apply using the TAP Code 2093. Bachelor’s degree students may apply using the TAP Code 6093. You must be registered full-time (12 or more credit hours) to be eligible for a NYS TAP grant.
NYS Part-Time Tuition Assistance Program
To be eligible for part-time TAP, the student must have been a first-time freshman in the 2008-09 academic year or thereafter, have earned 12 credits or more in each of two consecutive semesters at Maria College, not including noncredit remedial courses, and have maintained a “C” average. Full-time award amounts are prorated based on the number of enrolled credit hours.
NYS Aid for Part-Time Study
New York State aid to part-time students is available to NYS residents registered for three but fewer than 12 credit hours a semester. Eligibility is dependent on a student’s NYS net taxable income and the status of the NYS budget. An APTS award cannot exceed tuition charges. Applications are available at the Financial Aid Office and online.
NYS Volunteer Recruitment Service Scholarship
New York State offers scholarships to volunteer fire and volunteer ambulance companies to use as a recruitment and retention incentive for new members. Students should request the application from their volunteer company official.
NYS Memorial Scholarships
NYS Memorial Scholarships provide financial aid to children, spouses and financial dependents of deceased firefighters, volunteer firefighters, police officers, peace officers, and emergency medical service workers who have died as the result of injuries sustained in the line of duty in service to the state of New York. Students must establish eligibility by submitting a Memorial Scholarship Supplement available at www.hesc.com.
NYS Veterans Tuition Awards
Veterans Tuition Awards (VTA) provide up to $1,000 per semester for full-time study or $500 per semester for part-time study to eligible veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.
NYS Children of Deceased or Disabled Veterans
Regents awards to children of deceased or disabled veterans are independent of family income or tuition charge, and are in addition to other grants or awards. Information regarding eligibility may be obtained from the Financial Aid Office.
Veterans Administration Educational Benefits
Maria College degree programs are eligible for educational benefits extended by the Veterans Administration. The College will certify all nursing courses based on the number of enrolled credit hours, including all course contact hours, clinical hours and lab hours.
Federal Direct Stafford Loans
To qualify for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan, a student must fill out a FAFSA so eligibility can be determined. A subsidized loan is awarded on the basis of financial need. For a student who is eligible for a subsidized loan, the government will pay (subsidize) the interest on the loan while in school, for the first six months after the student has left school, and if the student qualifies to have the payments deferred. Depending on financial need, a student may borrow subsidized money for an amount up to the annual loan borrowing limit for the student’s level of study.
A student might be able to borrow loan funds beyond the subsidized loan amount even if the student does have demonstrated financial need. In that case, a student may be eligible for an unsubsidized loan. The College will subtract the total amount of other financial aid from the cost of attendance to determine if a student is eligible for an unsubsidized loan. Unlike a subsidized loan, the student borrower is responsible for the interest from the time the unsubsidized loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. The student borrower can choose to pay the interest or allow it to accrue (accumulate) and be capitalized (that is, added to the principal amount of the loan). Capitalizing the interest will increase the amount to repay. A student can receive a subsidized loan and an unsubsidized loan for the same enrollment period as long as the student does not exceed the annual loan limits.
A dependent, undergraduate first-year student enrolled in a program of study that is at least a full academic year may be eligible to borrow up to $3,500. A dependent undergraduate student who has earned 24 credits may borrow up to $4,500, if the remainder of the program is at least a full academic year. A dependent bachelor’s degree student may be eligible to borrow up to $5,500 per year. A dependent undergraduate student can borrow an additional $2,000 unsubsidized loan per academic year.
An independent undergraduate student or a dependent first-year student whose parents have applied for but were unable to get a PLUS Loan (a parent loan), and who is enrolled in a program of study that is at least a full academic year, may be eligible to borrow up to $9,500. An independent undergraduate student or a dependent student whose parents have applied for but were unable to get a PLUS Loan, and who has earned 24 credits, may borrow up to $10,500 if the remainder of the program is at least a full academic year. An independent bachelor’s degree student may be eligible to borrow up to $12,500 per year.
These amounts are the maximum yearly amounts a student can borrow in both subsidized and unsubsidized direct loans, individually or in combination. Because a student borrower can’t borrow more than the cost of attendance minus the amount of any Federal Pell Grant and other financial aid, the amount received may be less than the annual maximum amounts.
The Financial Aid Award letter, which requires students to accept offered amounts before loan originations are submitted to the U.S. Department of Education, is the preferred document for the active confirmation process. However, Maria’s Office of Student Records will accept written and signed notification requesting disbursement of loan proceeds, assuming the identity of the requesting student can be clearly determined.
The Financial Aid office will originate each loan for an academic period determined by a student’s anticipated enrollment status; if the enrollment status changes, the Financial Aid Office must be notified in writing. Maria College is required to verify student eligibility prior to disbursing loan proceeds. If enrollment status has dropped below half time or satisfactory academic standing has not been maintained, loan eligibility has changed and funds will not be disbursed.
Maria College uses the Multi-year Master Promissory Note, which must be completed to qualify for Federal Direct Loans. This will permit applicants to complete a single loan application for their entire attendance at the College. The Federal Direct Loan Master Promissory Note can be completed at www.studentloans.gov.
All Federal direct Loan borrowers are required to complete student loan entrance counseling. student borrowers can complete this loan counseling online at www.studentloans.gov, click on “entrance Counseling.” All Federal Direct Loans require multiple disbursements: if approved for fall and spring semesters, half will be disbursed in each; if approved for only one semester, half will be disbursed at the beginning, the balance at its midpoint.
Federal Perkins Loan
The Perkins Loan is a low-interest (5%) loan made with government funds in which the school is the lender, and which must be repaid to the school. Students may borrow up to $5,500 a year for undergraduate study. Under certain circumstances, however, these loans may be cancelled over a five-year period, e.g., by working full time as a nurse, or as a teacher in low income area schools, or as a law enforcement or corrections officer. Students are required to complete their promissory note and entrance counseling electronically at www.ecsi.net.
Federal Direct Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students
Parents may borrow an amount that cannot exceed the yearly tuition and other costs of dependents enrolled at least half time, less any other aid for which they qualify. Parents must pass a credit check or have a cosigner for the loan. The interest rate is variable, but cannot exceed 9%. Repayment must begin 60 days after disbursement, but may be postponed under certain conditions.
New York Higher Education Loan Program
The New York Higher Education Loan Program (NYHELP) is a private, credit-based, college-certified loan program for undergraduate students and their parents or nonparent sponsors. Fixed-rate loans are available to eligible New York State student borrowers who have a required cosigner, or to eligible New York State parents, legal guardians, or sponsors on behalf of eligible students. Borrowers must first apply for, and receive all state, federal (excluding federal PLUS loans), and institutional aid for which they are entitled. Students must be enrolled at least half time, and making satisfactory academic progress in a degree. At Maria College, NYHELP loans are limited to bachelor’s degree students only.
PROCEDURE FOR APPEALING LOCAL FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE
The nonrecipient must start the appeal process within five business days of the awarding of the nongovernmental, local financial assistance. The appeal must be in writing and be delivered to the Director of Student Records. Within 10 days of receiving the appeal notice, the local scholarship selection committee will determine if the original application was received on or before the required application date, and/or if the applicant met the eligibility criteria specified in the written description of the award. If the applicant did not submit the application by the stated deadline or does not meet the published eligibility criteria for the local scholarship, the appeal process is terminated, and written notification will be delivered to the applicant within 10 business days.
If the local scholarship selection committee determines that the application was received in a timely manner and the applicant otherwise met the eligibility criteria for the local scholarship, the appeal will be forwarded to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Affirmative Action Coordinator for review.
The Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Affirmative Action Coordinator will review the appeal and determine whether the application was eliminated due to issues based on, according to the Federal Register, Volume 44, No. 56, 17167, “race, color, national origin, sex, handicap, except to overcome the effects of past discrimination.” The applicant will be notified of the decision in writing within 10 business days by the College Affirmative Action Coordinator.
If the applicant contests the decision of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Affirmative Action Coordinator, the President will review the entire record including the recommendation. Within seven business days, the President will decide either to dismiss the grievance for lack of evidence or recommend appropriate redress if unlawful discrimination is found. In all cases, the President will review carefully all information.
The Affirmative Action Coordinator will communicate the President’s determination to the grievant and other involved parties within five business days after receiving it. This will end the grievance procedure at the College.